Contagious – Why Things Catch On – Book Review

I recently read Contagious – Why Things Catch On. Did you know that 7% of word of mouth happens online? Just think about that for a minute. 7%. With the right frame work, something shared could go viral. We have all seen the overnight posts that just run rapid.

There are 6 Principles of Contagiousness (Likeliness to Spread) or better known as STEPPS. These six things cause things to be talked about, shared, and imitated.

Social Currency – People like to share things that make them look good to others. What people talk about also affects what people think of them. Ideally, companies need to give people a way to make themselves look good while also promoting the company’s products. Scarcity and exclusivity of products also helps products catch on by making them seem more desirable. If something is difficult to obtain, people assume that it must be worth the effort.

Triggers – Stimuli that prompt people to think about related things. When hearing peanut butter it reminds us of jelly. Products and ideas need to take advantage of existing triggers. Sights, smells, and sounds can trigger related thoughts and ideas, making them more top of mind. By acting as reminders, triggers not only get people talking, they keep them talking.

Emotion – When we care, we share. People want to be moved. Be sure to select high arousal emotions that drive people to action; awe, excitement, and amusement.

Public – Making products and ideas more public. Making things more observable makes them easier to share, which makes them more likely to become popular. The more public a product or service is, the more it triggers people to take action. For small companies or organizations, try designing products that advertise themselves, this cuts down on spending resources

Practical Value – People like to help others (normally), if you can show them how your product or idea will save time, improve health, or save money, the word will spread. People use the price they expect to pay for something as their reference point. When it comes to having things on sale, for low priced items, be sure to use a % off. For high priced items, use the dollar off option. An easy way to remember this is the Rule of 100 – if the product is less than $100 use the % off option.

Stories – People don’t just share information, they tell stories. People have gotten so used to telling stories, that they create narratives even when they don’t need too. The key, when telling stories, make sure the narrative connects back to you.

This was a really good read with tons of examples and explanations for reach step. If you are creating content or sharing content, I highly recommend reading this book.

As always share some love, we could all use a little more love
XOXOXOXO
Casey

Living with Grief

Grief – Deep sorrow, the natural response to a loss. The emotional suffering you feel when something or someone you love is taken away. Many people associate grief with the death of a loved one, however any loss can cause grief. From the loss of friendships, relationships, pets, health, jobs to dreams or even selling the family home. One thing that I have learned about grief, is that each person experiences and handles it differently.

Grief can hit you in the most unexpected ways. There can be times when you think you are making progress, things seem to be looking up, and a song comes on the radio or you see something that reminds you of your loss and you are taken back to the pain. This recently happened to me and it was like getting hit with a wall of emotions. Everything changed in an instant, my mindset and how my body was feeling. It was the first time I realized what I was experiencing. As much as I tried to shift my mindset and stay busy, those feelings hung back there waiting for my mind to quiet down. Waiting for me to sit in them and sort through them. I think that is one of the hardest things, not brushing your feelings under the rug, but trying to navigate through them.

There are different stages of grief. A simple search online shows the original five stages that have now been amended to seven. The original five stages are highlight below.

Denial – This often come across as – “This can’t be happening to me.” Denial can also consist of not acknowledging your feelings, saying you are fine when you really aren’t.

Anger – If you have experienced any kind of loss, you more than likely have been angry, even if it was only for a short time. I have hit it. I have been angry, unable to understand, asking God questions that only He knows the answers too.

Bargaining – This one is just like it reads. When you are trying to make deals, this can often be with God or others depending on your situation.

Depression – This is the grief or sadness that hits you, sometimes out of no where.

Acceptance – When you come to peace with what has happened.

As I stated earlier, everyone grieves differently, some may go through all of these phases and some may not. Some may go in this exact order and some may jump around. There is no right or wrong way to grieve. You and you alone are entitled to your feelings. Do not let anyone else tell you how you should be feeling and don’t try to tell yourself how you should be feeling, remember there is not right or wrong way.

These are some things that I do to help with the grieving process; acknowledge and sit in your feelings. Feel the pain and know that things will get better. I also journal to help with this process. Pick up a new hobby or activity that brings you joy. Talk to someone, a support group or a counselor. Know that there is no quick fix, it takes time to heal. Know that you are not alone.

Sometimes it is hard to console people who are grieving. Sometimes no words are needed. Just having the mere presence that someone is there for you is enough for some people. If you know someone who is grieving or who is going through a hard time, don’t be afraid to reach out. We could all use a little more love in the world.

XOXOXO

Casey

Choose Forgiveness.

Forgiveness. Such a big word that packs so much meaning. It is the act or process of forgiving or being forgiven. To forgive is to stop feeling angry or resentful toward someone for an offense, flaw, or mistake. Forgiveness can sometimes be one of the hardest things to do, depending on what the other person has done to offend you. 

I have been mulling over this forgiveness issue for a while lately. I have often forgiven people for things they have done (even when they didn’t realize they did anything wrong). But how do you know when you have truly forgiven someone?

  • Time – one thing for sure, forgiveness takes time. There have been a few times where I said I have forgiven people, but honestly I hadn’t yet. I needed more time to feel, to work through whatever the issue was, and to move forward on my own time. Time is important.
  • When you can talk about what happened as a point of reference and not a point of pain – When talking about the issue no longer causes you hurt, you have reached forgiveness.
  • When revenge becomes a non-issue – If you reach the point of no longer trying to get back at someone for what they did to you, I would say you have reached forgiveness with them. 
  • When the lesson has been learned – sometimes when things happen, we don’t sit in the pain. We brush everything under the rug and go on with life. Then the same situation happens again and again, over and over. In this type of situation, learning through forgiveness allows for new boundaries to be set up. Boundaries, I have recently learned, are a very healthy thing to have. (Don’t worry, I have another blog on boundaries coming!)
  • Helping your offender – If something arised and the person that has hurt you needed help and you were able to help them and feel okay about it, you have probably reached forgiveness. 

Not only is forgiveness good for you emotionally, but there are some health benefits to forgiveness as well. Some of these include; less anxiety and stress, improved mental health, lower blood pressure, and improved heart health. 

Some hold on to grudges for ages, but think about what all you are missing out on. If you are so tied up being angry with someone else, you are missing out on all the good that is going on around you. I get it, you are probably saying, “Casey, you have no idea what they did to me”, but I bet I can relate in a small way. I have been through the abusive relationships, the liars, the cheaters, the people who take advantage, and raising a child on my own. I also understand that we as humans make mistakes, I know I have made my fair share. I have chosen the route of forgiveness, whether people have apologized or not.

Life to too short to constantly be hindered by something that happened in the past. Take the time to learn to forgive. It may take time, but I bet your heart will feel much lighter and happier. Choose Happiness. Choose Forgiveness.

Share some love, we could all use a little more love.

XOXOXO

Casey