Listicles are all the rage these days, UnderCurrent notes, with popular websites like Buzzfeed making a motza dispensing information in the form of easily digestible tidbits in ranked order.
While prominent in today’s time-poor, attention span deprived world, the list is far from novel, with self-help gurus regularly leaning on this spartan form as a way of conveying their pearls without too much exposition. Ever since Dale Carnegie tapped out the Six Ways To Make People Like You, the Twelve Ways To Win People To Your Way Of Thinking and the Seven Rules For Making Your Home Life Happier in his seminal tome How To Win Friends And Influence People (which itself is prefaced with the immortal prologue Twelve Things This Book Will Do For You), the list has been the currency with which improvement tips have been transferred.
Since Carnegie’s 1936 bestseller, we’ve had the Steven R Covey’s Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People, Oprah Winfrey’s solo suggestion (‘If in doubt, don’t) and even Proper Journalist has gotten in on the act, recently publishing 20 practical sales tips, courtesy of retail training’s Bob Johnson.
Of course, these lists appear lazy when compared to sheer volume that is Winning Group CEO John Winning’s incredible half century of inspirational maxims, imparted on his blog under the headline My 50 rules for life that I try and live by, put on paper for the first time. Winning explains that the idea for sharing these words of wisdom came while flying home from Paris having picked up a World Retail Award for Appliances Online’s outstanding customer service.
“I have just asked myself what I think has led to me being in this position and I believe that it is obviously partly a case of the right place at the right time as with many success stories,” Winning explains. “In saying that, I also truly believe that if you look at the most successful people in the world they were not always the brightest students but in many cases they just had their own way of doing things which seemed to work for them.”
UnderCurrent meticulously read all 50 of Winning’s tips — here is a selection of the best:
6. Hug a friend rather than shaking hands, it just feels better.
22. Listen to music when you get a chance, it can inspire great thoughts, can make a good time feel better or cheer you up if you’re down. Plus it opens up parts of the brain that otherwise don’t get used.
30. Spend less time watching TV and on social media.
34. Be confident all the time, even if it has to be a fake confidence. You will eventually find yourself not needing to fake it.
42. Try to be the most knowledgeable person in the room on the topic you are talking about and if you are not, think hard before you speak.
47. Coincidences are rarely that.
And in case John Winning gets mad at UnderCurrent for this little piece of tongue-in-cheek publicity, it would like to humbly remind the whizz kid of his own #36 rule for living life: “Don’t take life too seriously”.