Asking for Writing Topics

When it comes to writing blog posts and email broadcasts, I write best reactively.

In a previous post, I talked about how to generate lots of writing ideas. That’s all well and good because I think those will be fun to write and interest people. And, in addition to coming up with ideas on my own, I find that some of my best stuff comes based off of another person’s question.

Question Mark

A few things can happen when I receive a question:

  1. I might not think the question is broad enough to be interesting to more than the person asking about it. Or it is just a bad question (yes, they do exist). In this case I’ll answer individually or not. But these cases are actually in the minority.
  2. I know the answer to the question and it is worth posting about. The question sends my mind off in a direction and the words just flow from my fingertips. The more you know a topic, the better you’ll be able to do this. This is wonderful because it may not be a topic I would have thought of myself. Still, if someone is asking it, probably lots of people are thinking the same things.
  3. I don’t know the answer to the question, and it is still worth posting about. In these cases, if it holds my interest, I’ll have to do some more research to give it a good answer. These posts take more time, but I learn as I go along so it is often worth it.

Although this happens more often than not with a question, it can also happen with comments. Those too can send me off in writing. Maybe to fill in more details. Maybe because I disagree with what was said. Maybe it just sends me off on a tangent.

You can see plenty of examples of these on my other sites. Some good recent examples include:

Just recently I did this in regards to topics for filming Youtube videos. It works much the same there.

On this note, what are your questions? I want to do the same thing here at LoganChristopher.com based on what YOU want to read about. Ask me anything that doesn’t have to do with health and fitness. (I may answer those things, but it will be at the other websites.) Questions on business. Questions on money. Questions on productivity. Questions on writing. Questions about how to be an awesome human being. Whatever you want to know, ask away…

Along with this I always like to put this disclaimer. There are no guarantees that I’ll answer your question.  And it probably won’t be individually but instead here in a future post. But if it fits in the categories 2 or 3 above, there is a good chance I will answer it. Please post your questions below…

Predictable Success

I read lots of books. When that happens you often come across books that leave you thinking “I wish I had read that earlier.” Or even a stronger feeling of “WHY WAS I NOT TOLD ABOUT THIS SOONER?!?”

Predictable Success by Les McKeown was such a book for me. (If that name looks familiar, I mentioned him in the previous post, talking about his second book.)

A big thank you to Michael Danner, CMO of DrAxe.com, for mentioning this book while speaking on stage at Ezra Firestone’s Blue Ribbon Mastermind.

In this book, Les describes the life-cycle of any business, and their movement through seven stages.

Businesses must move through these stages in order, except that they can go backwards too, and most businesses don’t make their way through all seven.

Predictable Success
The Seven Stages as outlined in Predictable Success

I’ll briefly describe each one of these stages here:

Early Struggle – The start-up phase where the business seeks to make sales and cash. To go from idea to proof of concept in the marketplace. Many businesses never get past this point.

Fun – Like the name implies this stage is a lot of fun. You’re making sales. You’re meeting the demands of the market place. There’s a flurry of activity and the business can pivot on a dime. Often just a few people are involved.

White Water – The business grows to the point where it begins to get chaotic. More people, more operations. It becomes a battle of constantly fighting fires. This is where systems must come in.

Predictable Success – The best stage to be at. As the title implies it is both successful and you can predict it will continue to be. Not based off of people working 20 hour days, but by different people properly and predictably fulfilling their roles. This means the business sets goals, and hits them. Of course, there are still fires to put out, but things run smoothly based on systems and processes, while the business continues to grow.

Treadmill – Here, the business becomes over reliant on those same processes and loses that entrepreneurial spark. In fact, for many businesses this is the stage when the founders leave and the environment becomes much more corporate.

The Big Rut – This is a continuation of the above, except at this stage it has gone on too long, so that the business cannot recover, not by itself.

Death Rattle – There is usually a brief flurry of activity before the end. Perhaps the business is acquired, or tries to be so. Perhaps there is an attempt at restructuring or bankruptcy. Many just fade away.

How Do My Businesses Stack Up?

The reason I loved this book so much is that I can see in my career how I’ve moved through some of these earlier stages.

Lost Empire Herbs is the best example.

It’s startup involved being an outgrowth of Legendary Strength. A new website, finding a couple suppliers, and then selling some herbs from the kitchen table. It couldn’t have started on less of a shoestring. It went on like this for almost two years before we hit our stride.

The fun stage can really be marked as when we got our first office, officially formed a new LLC for the business. Shortly after this we got our first employees. It seemed like sales were growing by at least 20% each month, sometimes more.

Unfortunately, the Fun didn’t last too long. A few office moves, some changes in management and we landed in Whitewater. I’m very intimate with this stage because we’ve been living it the past few years now.

(The feeling of “Why was I not told about this sooner?!?” is because if I had this as a roadmap I believe we could have gotten to the next stage much faster.)

Legendary Strength itself has never moved past the Fun stage. The typical internet business based on cash flow and lifestyle actually aims only to get to this stage and stay here. It is purposefully kept simple to be a so-called lifestyle business. Nowadays I see this and aim to keep it that way. Previously, I didn’t know the difference.

Thus, with Lost Empire I was completely unprepared for the new things I had to learn with a “real business.” Thankfully, I’m good at learning, and beyond books, have lots of smart people that have done these sorts of things to learn from.

And we had a lot to learn. Here were a few of the activities of the past couple years:

  • Bookkeeping and how good finances work.
  • How to systematize and SOP the business.
  • Hiring and onboarding employees.
  • HR stuff such as insurance, payroll, firing, etc.
  • How to run more complex operations
  • Standardizing things so that it’s not all different
  • Good project management
  • And plenty more

I feel like right now we are just emerging from White Water into Predictable Success. It’s a good feeling. In fact, I feel so strongly about it that it has become Lost Empire’s theme for Q4 that just began.

Before I read this book, I was engaged in many of the things needed to do so. But it would have been nice to know about whitewater before I even got in it. Oh well, at least I’ll know this for next time…

The Visionary View

Recently, I bought my first home. Before that was months of being in the market to buy a house. My wife and I each had our own list of criteria.

There were things that were non-negotiable. For me, these included things like:

  • The location. We only wanted to live in certain areas.
  • The land. It needed to have some space and be close to nature.
  • A big garage for a gym.
  • A space for an office, with enough separation from the rest of the house.
  • The price. We had a ceiling in what we could get as far as a mortgage loan.

We looked at a lot of houses. Probably physically went to 30 or 40 over the span of a few months. (It was a crazy time that I’m very happy to be done with!)

One thing that we ended up with, that was not on either of our lists, was an amazing view.

Visionary View 1
This sunrise was from the first morning staying at my new place.

 

I love this expansive view because it is visionary. That’s an interesting word that I’ve been thinking about lately.

In business, they often talk about visionary leaders. Some of the prototypical ones of these are guys like Steve Jobs or Elon Musk.

The definitions of visionary:

1. (especially of a person) thinking about or planning the future with imagination or wisdom.

2. relating to or able to see visions in a dream or trance, or as a supernatural apparition.

I like both of these definitions.

And so, when I saw this view that I knew that living at this house, with the visionary view, would help me to become even more visionary.

How could it not?

Indeed, a friend of mine said the same thing to me.

And right around the time of waiting through escrow on the hous I was reading through Les McKeown’s book, The Synergist. (I’ll be talking about his earlier book in a future post.)

In it he discusses four different operational styles. The Visionary. The Operator. The Processor. And the Synergist.

Guess which type was highest for me? Visionary.

You can take a test to see how you stack up right here. (It’s free, though you have to signup with email address at the end to get your results.)

I had all my partners and employees take the test, and have also recommended it to other business owners in a couple mastermind groups I take part in.

In business, as well as everywhere else, it is important to know yourself.

It is also important to know where you want to go. In the future, I plan to be even more visionary. And it is great to have an amazing environment to support doing that.

Thinking, being imaginative, coming up with ideas, meditating while sitting out there overlooking the view.

Visionary View 2
A typical day…

We’re all products of our environment far more than many people realize. Plenty of studies showing how small environmental cues will shift habits, behaviors, even what we think.

That’s why it is very important to setup your environments for what you want.

The Secret to Winning

“The secret to winning the game is staying in the game long enough to win the game.”
-Dr. Glenn Livingston

I came across this quote somewhere the other day, and liked it so much I had to write it down.

I liked it so much because it is so true.

With life, and achieving anything in it, you need to take a long term perspective. A year…years…a decade…multiple decades.

Something I’ve heard, and know to be true from personal experience, is that humans tend to overestimate what they can accomplish in a year, but underestimate what they can do in three years. 

(A lot of people tend to set yearly goals, but how many set three year goals? I wonder if that has anything to do with it.)

The fact is that most people quit too early. And in some cases too early may be after three or five years!

I’ve seen this happen in my fitness life. I was weak starting out. It pissed me off to see people that didn’t workout able to do things I had to bust my ass for six months to accomplish. But I continued working out. They didn’t.

I look back ten years and I’m amazed at all I’ve done. Holy shit! I am actually quite strong and do some amazing things. When did that happen? There was no magical flip of the switch, just consistency over a long time frame. 

I have made just about every mistake you could possibly make when it comes to business. I cringe to think about some of what occurred in my early days…or even just last year. But the one mistake I did not make, the one that made all the difference, was that I kept going.

I’ve stayed in the business game almost a decade now, and it’s really starting to pay off. 

It’s kind of aggravating thinking “Why did it take so long?” Well, I had a whole lot to learn over that time.

As long as you keep going, and you learn along the way, in the end you will be successful.

As coaching legend Vince Lombardi once stated after a loss, “We didn’t lose the game; we just ran out of time.”

In sports you have a finite time to win. While the time may vary, that’s part of the rules in pretty much every single sport there is.

In life, there is also a time limit…but this is far, far, far longer than any sport.

The more you can wrap your head around being persistent, being patient, and thinking for the long-term, the better off you’ll be no matter the endeavor. 

How to Triple Your Learning Speed

We are in the information age. At the reach of your fingertips is worldwide access to information on any topic you desire. This is a time unlike any other in history.

And this can be both a benefit and a curse.

With so much information, it is easy to fall into overwhelm. Or get paralyzed, never taking any action, because you stay in research mode. But this potential dark side of information access is manageable, though not the topic of this report.

3D How to Triple Your Learning Speed

Assuming you can manage that well, that leaves the upside even brighter. We can reap the benefits of having so much available. And when you add in the methods covered in these pages they’ll help you to accelerate your learning even more.

It is through massive learning that I have built my business, become strong and healthy, and developed a wide range of skills. Learning is the foundation on which on my success is built. And if you’d like to be successful, whatever that means to you, you’ll need to learn some things along the way.

As the saying goes, “School is never out for the pro.” Let’s just hope that your schooling didn’t beat the love of learning out of you. The process can be fun, rewarding, and as you’ll come to find, it can be done a lot more efficiently than what the average person does.

Even when you cut away the un-essentials, you may realize you still have a full plate with all that you’d like to learn and act upon.

This special report is about accelerating the rate at which that information enters your mind. The good news is that with some skills, some patience and some cool technologies you can do this with books, audios and videos; all the main means by which people learn.

So begins the introduction to this quick special report. If you’d like all the details, including the many technologies that allow this to happen, signup on the sidebar to the right or down below.

How to Generate Lots of Writing Ideas

In my previous post, I mentioned a long list of topics that I plan to write about here.

But a topic does not necessarily help you to write a blog post (or whatever else you’re writing). A topic is great for a book, but even then you’ll have to narrow it down in order to come up with a structure.

Topics need to be narrowed down. So as I set out today to write the second blog post here I had to come up with more specific ideas.

I’m a huge proponent of Trello. I use it for managing projects and my various teams…but I also use it for managing myself. A Trello board makes a great place to capture ideas.

I created a new board called LC Ideas, and I dropped that laundry list of topics into one column titled Topics.

Then I created a second column for Ideas.

Trello Writing Ideas List

Some people think that coming up with ideas is hard. I beg to differ. Anyone that can’t come up with ideas, just hasn’t practiced it enough. In fact, ideas are easy. Ideas don’t stop coming. And I don’t think you need to be particular creative in order for that to be true, just practiced.

An idea I heard about from James Altucher is to think of ten ideas about some topic, and do this as an exercise each day. Usually the first five or six ideas are easy, but you need to stretch for the final few. 

It’s a really good exercise. I could go down each of my topics in turn and generate ten specific post ideas for each one.

But I didn’t do that here…at least not yet.

Just looking at the list, I started to come up with specific ideas.

Now, to be honest some of the things came up could be topics in and of themselves, or at least a multi-part series of posts. Still, some were very specific posts in my ind.

On my 12th idea I happened on this one, i.e. what became this post. Why not share exactly what I’m doing? And so I did.

Here’s the great thing about Trello. I’ll be continuing to use this board for some time now. Any time a great idea pops into my head about something to write here, I’ll save it in this spot.

Welcome to LoganChristopher.com

I’ve decided to bring this website back since letting it go dormant from back in 2013.

Why?

Quite simply, because I have a lot more to share than just about health and fitness.

If you’re here reading this, chances are it’s because you’re familiar with my work through one of my two other major businesses and websites, LegendaryStrength.com and/or LostEmpireHerbs.com.

At Legendary Strength I discuss all things strength and fitness.

And it was from that platform that we launched what has now become Lost Empire Herbs. I was supporting my own health and performance through a number of ways, one of which was the use of tonic herbalism. The rest, as they say, is history…in the making. There we don’t just talk about herbs, but all things health.

While I love strength and health, and am no ways slowing down in writing and teaching and sharing about those topics, ultimately, I am interested in a lot more.

Long ago, I used LoganChristopher.com as the place to teach people about making money and online marketing. My plan was once I hit the six-figure mark I could start teaching and that’s what I did. I did some coaching with others and have some great success stories. While that will be a piece of what I cover here, it too is only a piece.

The old website as captured from Wayback Machine. I like the new logo a LOT more.

In brainstorming some of the topics and things I’ll be coming up with here I developed the following list:

  1. Book Reviews
  2. Resources
  3. Philosophy
  4. Routines/Habits
  5. Practicing
  6. Journaling
  7. Goals
  8. Happiness
  9. Productivity
  10. Delegation
  11. Finances
  12. NLP
  13. Family
  14. Adventure
  15. Learning
  16. Epiphanies
  17. Success
  18. Business
  19. What’s Wrong with the World
  20. Spirituality
  21. Thinking
  22. Persuasion
  23. Communication
  24. Presenting
  25. Storytelling
  26. Writing
  27. Masculinity
  28. Excellence

In the fitness world, I was given the name “Physical Culture Renaissance Man.” This was because I did a wide variety of things in that world. If it had to do with getting stronger I likely had devoted some time to it. Bodyweight exercise, kettlebells, barbells, modern strongman, oldtime strongman, feats of strength, acrobatics, odd objects, etc.

But my aim was never to be limited to one world. One of my strengths (and I also recognize it is at times a weakness) is that I do lots of different things. Specifically, I excelled in the strength world because I looked for methods outside of it. I took NLP and hypnosis and applied them to it. Now I am one of the top experts in mental training for that purpose. See Mental Muscle for more. I took herbalism and applied it to getting stronger. At the time, no one else was focusing on that. And that grew into Lost Empire.

If you’re familiar with Leonardo Da Vinci, the prototypical renaissance man or polymath, he did a wide variety of things including: invention, painting, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, writing, history, and cartography. That’s a short list from Wikipedia.

And so it is that I do a lot more than just health and fitness. This website is to be a catch-all for anything I want to do outside of those two topics, like the 28 topics above.

Tim Ferriss talks about being a “professional dilettante.” He’s done quite well with that model and I share many similar ideas. It’s not the path for everyone. There is advantage in going deep on a single thing…but what can I say? I get bored easily.

If you want to get good at something than teach it. I have found this maxim to be very true. In fact, I write books and create courses first and foremost for myself. I am the one that gains the most by doing these. The fact that I sell them, help people and make money is a side benefit!

That is why I’m bringing back LoganChristopher.com in an expanded form. By writing posts like these I get better and get to share with the world. Soon enough, this will include books and course on some of these topics as well. (Currently, I have a bunch of ideas and one book on habits at least half way done.)

My initial plan is posting something here once a week or so, but this will change over time. Remember how I said going wide can also be a weakness? Time spent working here is time not available to spend on my other two businesses and websites. So while I made the decision to launch this, as I needed a new platform, it is just a side project. For the time being, it is those other businesses that pay the bills.

But this is only the beginning…

As always, happy to hear your comments, questions and suggestions. Welcome to my expanded world!