the hidden risk of taking advice

In deep thoughts, inspiration, learning, relationships by Jay Clouse

Make no mistake, one of the most important factors in my life has been mentorship. But there’s a surreptitious risk to mentorship — and it’s when “advice” isn’t really advice. Sometimes, “advice” is really a veil over self-validation. Instead of giving thoughtful, calculated, and unbiased recommendations based upon personal experience, sometimes people will simply give prescriptive “advice” that you follow …

getting to the edges

In building a business, creativity, deep thoughts, inspiration, leadership, learning, motivation by Jay Clouse

If you’ve been following along recently, you know I’ve been on a kick about forming original thought. And it continued yesterday during an Unreal Collective group call when we discussed the merits and challenges of creating unique or proprietary language! As I think about writing more and making my own assertions, frameworks, and methods, I find myself having the most …

making assertions

In creativity, deep thoughts, inspiration, learning, motivation, personal brand by Jay Clouse

I am a big fan of the new Nike Just Do It campaign with Colin Kaepernick. Whether you agree or disagree, it’s provocative of a conversation. It asserts itself and forces you to reckon with whether you are with Nike, with Colin Kaepernick, or not. And it’s that forcing mechanism — making you first acknowledge that there are differing viewpoints …

living like a tracker

In inspiration, learning, motivation, productivity by Jay Clouse

One of the podcasts I’ve gotten into lately at the recommendation of my upside cohost, Eric, is Invest Like the Best by Patrick O’Shaughnessy. What I like about this podcast is that besides speaking with obviously great investors, the individuals he interviews have very interesting perspectives on life outside of investing. Recently, he re-ran an episode with Boyd Varty, a …

relationships and infinite games follow up

In inspiration, leadership, learning, relationships by Jay Clouse

I got a lot of great feedback on yesterday’s piece related to relationships and finite/infinite games. A little bit of inside baseball, I realized the terms “finite” and “infinite” games may be new to some folks. I borrowed the phrase from a book by James Carse called, Finite and Infinite Games. The phrases are defined on the cover of the …

holding space

In building a business, deep thoughts, inspiration, learning, motivation by Jay Clouse

When I started in undergrad at Ohio State, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life (does any 19 year old?) so I joined their Undecided program, which they call “Exploration.” I remember having a discussion with my Exploration Advisor (shout out to Stephanie) who told me, “Exploration isn’t a magic bean. Being in this program …

protecting myself from myself

In inspiration, learning, relationships, sales by Jay Clouse

You probably know what it’s like to feel like you’re seeing opportunity all the time. Maybe it’s your own idea, or someone else bringing you an opportunity, but it seems like when we’re open to it, opportunity is surrounding us. But every time we say yes to an opportunity, we’re implicitly saying no to another. So if you’re like me, …

are you overvaluing cash?

In building a business, learning by Jay Clouse

One of the biggest traps I fall into as both a solopreneur and operator is hoarding my cash like a squirrel saving its nuts for winter. When I’m worried about cash flow, it’s easy to get into a scarcity mindset and do everything I can to protect what I have. And that usually comes with trying to do everything myself …

good writing is made in the edit

In inspiration, learning, productivity by Jay Clouse

The more that I write, whether for this newsletter, my Linkedin Learning courses, or otherwise, the more I am reminded that good work is made during the editing phase. The problem is that getting started is the hardest, most daunting part. It’s the part that takes me the longest to do — actually start word vomiting onto a page. But …

how I learned about subscription boxes

In inspiration, learning, motivation by Jay Clouse

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve had a surprising number of conversations about subscription box products. We interviewed a subscription meal kit service on the pod, a couple members of our Unreal Collective Accelerator have been brought it up… And I’ve been able to give a lot of insight and perspective, because I’ve learned about those models. But the story …