8 Crazy Experiments To Change Your Boring Life
I have personally done all of these experiments. Not all of them will be for you, but I bet you’ll find one that you want to try. Let me know if you do any of them.
ASK A FAMOUS PERSON FOR A SKYPE INTERVIEW
PURPOSE: This will bolster your confidence and open new doors to more interviews with other high-profile people.
I found a documentary called Scientists Under Attack and was so impressed with it that I tracked down the director on Facebook. I sent him a friend request and then asked him via a Facebook message how I could order his dvd in US dollars. I also told him how much his film helped me to understand the GMO situation and expressed my deepest gratitude. Through our interactions, I got up the nerve to ask him for a Skype interview. He said yes! Also, after our interview, he sent me two of his dvd’s, including Scientists Under Attack for free. He also wrote me a personal letter which gave me inside details about his films and experiences with the company, Monsanto. Scoring this interview with a famous filmmaker opened the door to other interviews with leading GMO experts like Jeffrey Smith.
BRING DONUTS TO A COMPANY WHERE YOU WANT TO WORK
PURPOSE: to score an informational interview without any prior reservation. To potentially get a job.
Buy a dozen donuts. Show up at the company with a box of donuts. When the receptionist asks you if you have an appointment, just say, “It’s donut day.” Let intuition take it from there. When I went to Bernstein Rein, a leading ad agency in Kansas City, I offered the receptionist a box of donuts and asked her if she knew it was donut day. She smiled, said no, and was surprised. I offered her the box of donuts which she couldn’t refuse. From there, we started talking casually and I told her that I was visiting ad agencies in Kansas City to determine where I would make a good fit. At this point, she took me over to her computer and asked if I wanted an informational interview with an available art director. She called a few people and after a few minutes, an art director appeared and sat down with me for 15 minutes, discussing the various opportunities and her role in the company. Click here to see the entire episode shot with a hidden camera. The most amazing aspect of this entire experience is that I never asked for anything. All I did was offer the donuts and talk, but I never asked for an informational interview.
GO TO A PUBLIC PLACE AND VIDEO RECORD YOURSELF
PURPOSE: to dissolve shyness and strengthen confidence in yourself.
Place the camera in front of your face. Try to speak as naturally as possible, ignoring the people that will begin to stare at you. A restaurant is a good place to do this exercise. In the video, I wanted to find out which donut store had the best donut in town. Lamar’s was the clear winner and after I shared my video via a tweet to Lamar’s Twitter account, they gave me a coupon for a free dozen donuts.
IDENTIFY A FEAR THAT’S HOLDING YOU BACK
PURPOSE: to reach your full potential as a human being and not be held hostage to your fears.
Set aside one afternoon to create a plan of action to overcome this fear. Get outside help, go online, get a life coach or call a hotline to get ideas about how to approach your issues. Many adults go through their entire life afraid of something that exists only in their own mind. To overcome a fear, you must first become aware of it. After awareness comes an action plan that forces you to confront the fear.
I used to be terrified by public speaking. I had suffered my entire adult life from this fear and during my 41st year of life, I decided to do something about it. I knew the only way I was going to overcome it was to secure a speaking engagement. There was an event that I attended in San Diego called Pecha Kucha and I knew that I wanted to become a speaker for that event. I contacted my local Pecha Kucha chapter and asked if I could present slides and speak at the next event. They said yes! I made sure to document my speaking so that I could improve and see myself objectively. I still have a long way to go, but I am no longer being held hostage by my fear of public speaking! While watching the video of me speaking, I learned that I showed my nervousness. After watching how horrible I looked, I stopped that habit and never did it again the next time I gave a speech.
COMMENT SINCERELY ON 10 YOUTUBE VIDEOS YOU ADMIRE
PURPOSE: to build real connections in the YouTube world.
Kingston Welfare Organization is a non-profit public organization working in Abbottabad, Pakistan to promote education among physically and mentally challenged students.
I wrote in response to a video that shows one of the hearing-impaired children drawing with both hands: “this is quite amazing!!! It’s fun to draw with both hands and this student is much better at it than I will ever be!!! Something has to be done to give art a chance!” In response to my comment, I received a complimentary message from the director of the Kingston school and I heard that the student who appeared in the video was very excited upon learning that she had received a nice message on Youtube. This activity strengthens good will and gains followers and supporters. I’m now close Facebook friends with the director.
DRESS UP LIKE A CRAZY PERSON AND WALK AROUND TOWN
PURPOSE: this will shock you out of your rigid persona and wake up your mind to new possibilities. Also, it will build compassion for those who are frequently the target of bullying. It will also remind you of the kindness of strangers.
During the filming of my video, Ham and Cheese Sandwiches, I didn’t have a crew or a production team. So, instead of that preventing me from making my video, I decided to do everything myself. I designed a blue cape onto which I glued pieces of toast. I then referred to the cape as a “Toast Cape”. When I rollerbladed on the boardwalk wearing my Toast Cape for one of the scenes, I heard someone comment, “Oh, it’s one of those crazies…”. I explained that I was making a video. I got more laughs. Then I asked a young man if he would hold the camera and film me rollerblading past him. With laughter spreading across his face, he agreed. He also seemed to think I was nuts. In the end, however, it was worth all the trouble and I came away from that experience with a new level of compassion for street people.
BRING AN OLD TV SET TO A BAR. TRY TO TRADE IT FOR A DRINK
PURPOSE: to break out of normal monetary transactions and create humor in normally dull customer service interchanges.
When I was poverty-stricken and living in Tucson, Arizona with my roommate, Daphne Young, I remember coming up with the idea of attempting to trade a tv for a gin and tonic. We were so hard up for cash and so thirsty that this seemed like the only option available. We were successful! Unfortunately, we did not make a video of this…
GO THROUGH A FAST-FOOD DRIVE AND TRY TO SELL SOMETHING TO THE WORKER
PURPOSE: this will create a culture jamming experience that will throw off the usual banter that takes place between customer and worker. This alleviates fast-food worker malaise and creates harmony out of dissonance. This also will create unstoppable laughter for you and your friend(s) who decide to do this. To see a video of this experiment, click here.
I just self-published my first book, Un-Crap Your Life.
I’ve been doing weird experiments for most of my adult life.
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