#058 – SPECIAL: My Essentials and the Future of First Things

I want to get personal today and tell you about some of my struggles (and successes) with Essentialism.  Also, I need your help!  I discuss some of the future of First Things podcast in this episode.

My Essentials

My Essentials

I hope you will consider taking the first annual survey of First Things listeners.  The survey link is in the Show Notes below.  There are only 10 questions, and it is completely anonymous.

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“My Essentials” Show Notes

Here is a link to the Survey:

First Things 2014 Listener Survey

“My Essentials” Episode Resources

Resources on Essentialism:


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2 thoughts on “#058 – SPECIAL: My Essentials and the Future of First Things

  1. Hi, Brandon! I’ve been thinking about a few topics that might be interesting to learn about. I completed the survey when it had come out, and I couldn’t think of too much save for what we have covered already. In my daily life, I’ve started to reflect on my communication styles (thanks to your podcast, I might add) and I’ve noticed that sometimes I ramble on when I could have shortened it to a good two sentences. There have been a few other leadership podcasts, that I’ve listened to, and they dedicate only 10 minutes to the “lesson” of how to be concise and, in doing so, being an effective communicator–and clear leader. I’ve been reading a book from Sheryl Sandberg, and she says that women tend to ramble on because they are nervous of seeming too “bossy,” are apologetic when they take days off from work, etc–so it has definitely been interesting. So, I think learning how to be a concise speaker might be interesting–if you happen to know any research on that. You went into it during your email episode–which was great–but would there be any action steps to train yourself to be concise while in a class, for example. Or for a presentation or an instance of public speaking.

    Also, perhaps, going more into body language–I was very interested in Vanessa’s research and learning more about it. Would it be possible to go in-depth with Vanessa’s book? I’m particularly interested in the idea of “owning who you are” and being confident in your body language.

    Happiness might be an interesting topic–or how to further harness your passions? I think in your earlier episodes, you mention a couple of topics that you would like to go into more. I don’t remember them, but I know you mention them. I think one was about effective study tips, passion, etc. Or how about motivation? Fulfillment? Psychology for being successful?

    I’ve been looking up a few books–and one goes into the power of “inquiry” and asking inspiring questions. As one that is studying to be a teacher, I’m not very good at questioning–it’s not really covered during the theory in terms of practical question generation. How to be a successful teacher (in any way)? Mentor? Coach?

    But that’s really all I could come up with in terms of my brainstorming.

    But thank you, Brandon, for your helpful show. I have been following you since episode 6–and I’m so happy that I found it when I did. (I operate under Jenn Toli on Facebook, but Toli isn’t my real last name. Ha, ha–teacher problems!) It has gotten me through graduate school burnout, feeling unmotivated and lost, and has helped me find the courage to apply to doctorate programs so I can get into research and, one day, be an effective teacher and learner in both the secondary and higher education levels (as I definitely do have the fear of failure). As someone that has constantly been discouraged from my passions, and my dream of a doctorate degree, writing a book, and exploring other curiosities, the podcast has been a mentor for me to evolve both professionally and personally. You have also inspired me to ask people for help, as I was too shy to do so before, and I’ve been reaching out to professors–who have now started to help me with the doctorate application process. And if I hadn’t gathered the courage to ask, I don’t know where I would be today–probably still lost in the rush of working and school without a purpose. I guess, you could say, I’m now being pushed into conferences and applying to certain programs that, as my professors think, might be a good fit for me. And so, I wouldn’t even have that help if I hadn’t listened to your podcast–so, thank you for that as well. It has inspired me to reach my true north. So, thank you so very much, Brandon. And I hope to read a book one day from you–or take a MOOC that you are leading yourself. 🙂 Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    • Jenn, you made a lot of great points. I’ll try to respond to a lot here, but feel free to email me at me (at) brandonvaughn (dot) com if you want to talk about any of this in detail.

      I think you would like the course on Creative Live by Vanessa Van Edwards. Have you been able to check it out yet?

      That is amazingly encouraging to hear how you’ve been putting it into practice, especially on your doctoral work. I would love to talk to you about that more, so please consider emailing me.

      And thank you so much for the suggestions. You are an encouragement to me!!!