Tips To Stay Active At Work

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“If you are insecure, guess what? The rest of the world is too. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.” -Tim Ferriss

Written By: Maxwell Fayans

Estimated Read Time: 2-3 minutes

I’m going to talk about a sedentary versus active lifestyle and how you can be active while you’re at work. Something I use is the Move app (it’s free) and I set it to run while I’m at work. Every 60 minutes it will remind me to get up and move. You get a cool quote with the reminder too. Something I do every morning when I get into work is I’ll do some air squats, usually 25 at a time. I also do some stretching which I learned from Pavel Tsatsouline book Relax into Stretch. This will do yourself justice by moving a little bit more each day. By the end of the work day I try to do at least 75-100 air squats.

They say sitting is the new smoking. I have moved to a stand up desk. However, standing in one spot is the not key either. It’s moving around as much as possible all day. I always have a lacrosse ball at my desk and will use it to roll out my feet once a day while standing. This self-myofascial release is key to loosening those small muscles. It feels great. I was also referred to read the book: Becoming a Supple Leopard by Kelly Starrett which I just ordered. One thing that I enjoyed reading from Starrett online was how to properly stand. I agree that flexing your core at 20%, keeping your shoulders back and glutes tight, will give you better posture. I can’t stand all day so I do have a chair in my office that I will sit at here and there to give my legs a break. How do you maintain an active lifestyle at work?

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The Magic of Creativity

Written By: Maxwell Fayans

Estimated Read Time: 1-2  minutes

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“It’s you + creativity + fear.” -Elizabeth Gilbert

What I appreciated most from Big Magic was the part on fear. I feel that everybody can make great things. However, at times fear tries to hold you back. This is what gets in the way. You may be afraid as to what other people think of you.

I think this book opened my eyes a little bit and allowed me to say: You know what, I am just going to go for it and put fear aside. I acknowledge that fear is there but you need to have the courage to get past that level of fear and move forward in creating great art. You have to be willing to let your passions and ideas come forth and make a move on them instead of rejecting them.

I want to continue writing as it is something that excites me. I want to work on that art every day. This is what makes me happy and that is what is most important. We are brought up in school with the emphasis that if you work hard you’ll be happy. But what if you don’t like what you are working hard on. I think it’s important to find your creativity and work on that everyday which will create happiness along the way.

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Investing in Great Businesses: Warren Buffett

Written By: Maxwell Fayans

Estimated Read Time: 3-4  minutes

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Investing= “Allocating resources to improve quality of life.”         -Tim Ferriss

After reading a blog post from Tim Ferriss regarding lessons from Warren Buffett, I decided to compile the key takeaways.

If there is one thing you should know: Never, never, never invest in something you don’t understand better than the majority.

Here is how to think of the great, good and gruesome companies:
To sum up, think of three types of “savings accounts.” The great one pays an extraordinarily high interest rate that will rise as the years pass. The good one pays an attractive rate of interest that will be earned also on deposits that are added. Finally, the gruesome account both pays an inadequate interest rate and requires you to keep adding money at those disappointing returns. (2007)

Determining if a business is a great business:

• Those that have high returns on capital and that require little incremental investment to grow. (2009)
• High returns, a sustainable competitive advantage and obstacles that make it tough for new companies to enter.
• A truly great business must have an enduring “moat” that protects excellent returns on invested capital. (2007)
• “Moats”—a metaphor for the superiorities they possess that make life difficult for their competitors. (2007) Moats can widen or shrink.
• Long-term competitive advantage in a stable industry is what we seek in a business. (2007)
• One question I always ask myself in appraising a business is how I would like, assuming I had ample capital and skilled personnel, to compete with it. (1983)
• A great business has pricing power or the power to raise prices without losing business to a competitor
• An economic franchise arises from a product or service that: (1) Is needed or desired; (2) Is thought by its customers to have no close substitute and; (3) Is not subject to price regulation.
• The best protection against inflation is a great business: (1) Has the ability to increase prices rather easily (even when product demand is flat and capacity is not fully utilized) without fear of significant loss of either market share or unit volume
• Businesses needing little in the way of tangible assets simply are hurt the least.
• Customer goodwill creates economic goodwill
• It’s far better to have an ever-increasing stream of earnings with virtually no major capital requirements. Ask Microsoft or Google (2007).

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How to Become One of the All Time Greats: 5 Keys

Written By: Maxwell Fayans

Estimated Read Time: 2-3 minutes

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“If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep walking, eventually you’ll make progress.”- Barack Obama

Over the past few days I listened to the book Good to Great by Jim Collins. I heard about this book after reading Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh. He continually referred to it so I said to myself: let me give this a shot. It was on my “To Read” list, but I never got around to getting it.

This book had some great takeaways and I wanted to share those with you.

  1. To be a great leader, your decisions and actions need to be about the company and not yourself
    • The leader does not let his ego get in the way of making decisions.
    • The leader is not concerned about fame or his salary.
    • When the company succeeds: the leader says it is because of the entire company, each and every employee. The leader believes they are lucky to be at such an amazing place.
    • When the company makes a poor decision: the leader takes full responsibility.
    • The leader will put the company first and do whatever it takes to accomplish the goal.

 

  1. Who before what
    • It is about hiring the right people
    • One needs disciplined people who you can trust will do an amazing job and will continue to “break new ceilings”
    • Wait until you find the right person, as it will help your team to succeed rather than spend the time training someone who might have had some red flags

 

  1. Managers should manage the system not the people
    • When you have the right people from the get go, a manager should manage the system to help make the team more productive and effective

 

  1. The goal/vision for your team should be simple
    • Ask yourself: What can we be the best at?
    • Continually ask yourself: Is the decision I am making getting our team closer to the goal?
    • Stay focused, present and don’t let the sunk cost fallacy get in your way

 

  1. A culture of your own
    • Bring in the right people that are aligned with your culture and values
    • Make your workplace lively and fun. A place where you are excited to come in each and every day.
    • Work should not just be work. It should be a place full of friends that are there for you, with that same passion and fire under their feet.

 

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More about Maxwell Fayans

For book suggestions: The Maxwell Fayans Book Club