How to Change Your Perspective and Why That Change is Good – TUB-Thump 023



A friend of mine was invited as a guest on a podcast and was so worried about sounding nervous, rambling and unintelligent.

The interview was fine. But regardless of that, many listeners wouldn’t have noticed anyway.

Why not? Because a growing number of us speed up podcast audio as we listen. Some apps also take out some of the gaps in between speech. Even a nervous or slow performance can sound confident and well-paced.

This is an example of how everything we experience requires our perspective.

We don’t simply consume external voices. We use our current internal state of mood and perspective to translate those external events into our own internal experiences.

That means we can shape our mood and perspective to engage with the same content in different ways.

You may already know this, but it’s easy to take for granted. Unless you constantly meditate on the moment and have a deep awareness of your surroundings, life probably happens without you checking in every few minutes. Your perspective feels fixed, even though it’s constantly changing throughout the day.

But it’s good to change your perspective. Familiar things can feel fresh and new. Give it a try.

On episode 023 of TUB-Thump, I talk about this in terms of audio. Try listening to podcasts faster or slower than usual. How does it make you feel? How do you engage with the information, with the personalities, with the setup?

Where will your new perspective take you today?

Here are the show notes for the 7-min episode:

  • 00:40 – What speed do you listen to your audio?
  • 01:40 – People sound far more confident and competent when you hear them at a faster speed.
  • 03:00 – What is your perspective when experiencing at a normal speed versus a faster speed?
  • 04:30 – Can you find new perspectives and viewpoints when you immerse yourself in other things that you are otherwise used to?
  • 05:50 – Find new ways to engage so you can find something new. The content hasn’t changed, but your analysis might.
  • 06:30 – You don’t always need to up your game. Sometimes you just need to change it.

Music for TUB-Thump is Life, by Tobu, which is released under a Creative Commons license. Check out more of Tobu’s great sounds on Soundcloud, YouTube, and his official site.

TUB-Thump is part of the Learning Always Network.

Keep being awesome!

Can You Develop Your Academic Writing With a Copywriting Formula? – TUB-Thump 021


I enjoyed writing academic essays most when I was being creative in the process.

My aim was to guide the reader on a journey of discovery. A couple of times, I was a bit cheeky and argued against an idea that didn’t have much to argue against.

The best way to do that was to build up a compelling story and back it up with as many relevant points as possible.

Since I was writing about fiction on these occasions, I was demonstrating how perspectives aren’t all the same. But in order to do this, I needed to take the reader with me. After all, what’s the point in them getting lost after turning the first corner?

I was being cheeky, yes. But I wasn’t being kamikaze. The aim was to have fun, not lose marks!

It helps to look at different styles of writing, no matter what you’re working on.

For instance, academic coursework uses a particular language and flow. Yet that writing can still be improved by borrowing from fiction, copywriting, and other aspects of the written word.

That’s why today’s TUB-Thump takes a look at Pamela Wilson’s 7-part formula for content marketing.

Marketing may not be your first port of call, but it could help you see your writing from a different perspective, or let you tweak your style in creative ways.

What creative flourishes can you borrow today?

Here are the show notes for the 9-min episode:

  • 00:30 – Copyblogger FM show on making content marketing easier.
  • 01:00 – I introduce Pamela Wilson’s 7-part formula for writing content. See the infographic below for more detail. And if you’re really interested in content marketing, check out her new book, Master Content Marketing.
  • 02:20 – Narrative and flow are important, no matter what you’re writing.
  • 03:05 – Leading the reader in and getting them involved. “Why am I here? What’s this all about? Why should I care? What’s interesting about this?”
  • 04:50 – Pack a punch in your summary/conclusion by reinforcing your ideas and findings.
  • 05:15 – Call to action. Not quite the same with academic essays, but there’s still some scope.
  • 06:40 – Steven Pressfield: Writing the hero into the story, whatever the writing. The hero’s journey gets the reader hooked. “I’ve had my own hero’s journey, and you have too. We’re both still on those journeys.”

Pamela Wilson has helpfully published an infographic with her 7-part formula. Like I say, it’s not an alternative to academic writing, but it may give you an extra creative jolt:


Like this infographic? Get more content marketing advice that works from Copyblogger.

Music for TUB-Thump is Life, by Tobu, which is released under a Creative Commons license. Check out more of Tobu’s great sounds on Soundcloud, YouTube, and his official site.

TUB-Thump is part of the Learning Always Network.

Keep being awesome!

Understand Essay Titles Better With 3 Quick Questions – TUB-Thump 013



“You haven’t answered the question.”

Has a tutor ever said this to you?

Hopefully they went into more detail than that. But what is really behind the advice to make sure you actually answer the question that’s been set?

In Episode 013 of TUB-Thump, I’ve got a brief method of working out what a question means. It’s a quick process, and you should get used to it over time.

Essay questions have keywords and details. It’s easy to pick up on the keywords.

Your exercise is to deal with the details too. Stuff like reference and structure. Points that are easy to gloss over when you spot a keyword and think you know loads about that particular area.

It feels good when that light-bulb goes off in your head and you can think of loads of great points to make before you’ve even started writing.

But then…the assignments aren’t:

  • “Wordsworth…Wax lyrical about all you know.”
  • “The history of food…How much can you regurgitate?”
  • “Human geography…What facts can you uncover?”

Today’s episode looks at the three quick considerations that will get you looking at essay questions in more detail.

Here are the show notes for the 7-min episode:

  • 01:15 – What is the essay question actually asking you to do? Assess, discuss, describe, list, analysis, was X right or wrong…find the top-level reason for the question that’s being asked.
  • 02:00 – What is the question referring to specifically? Find the context and the relevant reference points.
  • 03:00 – What clues can you find from the question’s structure? Has the question been written as a challenge to a popular opinion? Is it asking you to look at several different angles rather than give a single perspective? You can often find clues within the questions to help you in writing a great answer.
  • 04:15 – If the question feels misleading after you’ve asked these follow-up questions, ask for clarification. And see if you can describe the question’s meaning in your own words.
  • 05:10 – Summing up the main points from the episode. Your questions should only take you a few minutes to unpack. And they can help you get started quickly once you get used to the process.

Music for TUB-Thump is Life, by Tobu, which is released under a Creative Commons license. Check out more of Tobu’s great sounds on Soundcloud, YouTube, and his official site.

TUB-Thump is part of the Learning Always Network.

Keep being awesome!

Learning Leads to Changed Perspective

We change more dramatically over time than we expect.

Look back five or ten years. How different were you back then? Probably a lot.

glasses (photo by hotblack)

Perspective changes

It’s no wonder that we look back on our past work and flinch at some of the stuff we did and said. Especially in public forum, like online, changes in opinion look more like contradictions if you’re not careful. Old blog posts or tweets where you make one argument will look strange–weak, even–when you write something new and argue the opposite thing.

But this is natural. Perspective changes.

“A major challenge for me is that, in spending a lot of time learning, my opinions grow with time. Hopefully my minor reversals and shifts in emphasis don’t irk or confuse longtime readers too much.” – Scott Young

I would be more worried if I didn’t feel challenged and if I didn’t sense any kind of development as time passed.

Plus, I like to consider other people’s perspective. Don’t live in a bubble. Explore views that aren’t your own.

For instance, I have offered advice in the past that I wouldn’t use myself, but that I knew would be useful to others. The type of information that I’ve seen others thrive off, despite it leaving me cold.

Why? Because I don’t assume that only my choices bear fruit. Especially when giving subjective advice. One size does not fit all.

That’s why, if I give two opposing pieces of advice, it could look misleading at first glance. On further reflection, the contradiction may highlight two perfectly valid options that require a choice (or exploration) on your part.

As with my previous post on planning your day, I suggested options to play with. And I regularly ask questions like, “What works best for you?” so the discussion can continue. The more we join in with offering and exploring new solutions, the greater the chance that we uncover even more treasures.

Don’t sweat the change. We all do it, though we don’t always notice it.

What has been your biggest change so far?