Welcome to the 21st edition of The Random Newsletter, sent every other Thursday by Joe Pulizzi (me!). I focus on marketing, writing and money. I also like to comment on interesting human behavior. THANK YOU for being here.
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Buffett's 25/5 Goal-Achieving Strategy

It’s always about this time of the year I start thinking about the next year.

What do I want to accomplish?

What’s most important to me? To my family?

How do I prioritize everything I want to do?

What’s the best way to accomplish these things?

It can be overwhelming. I mean, let’s be’s a lot easier to just sit and flip through what’s new on Netflix.

So after a couple deep breaths, I always come back to something I learned a few years back from billionaire/investor Warren Buffett.

It’s called the 25/5 rule.
Note: there’s a full backstory about this rule here.

Let’s do a step-by-step for 2020.

Start with the 25

First, list 25 things you want to accomplish in 2020.

This should take a week or two. Look at all areas of your life. Ask yourself:

What do I want to accomplish in my career?

What financial goals do I want to tackle?

How’s my health? What can I do better? How do I stay in size 32 pants (uh, that’s mine)?

How about my family? How do I find more quality time?

What about charitable goals? Is there a cause I should align with?

Don’t stop until you get to at least 25.

Narrow It Down to Five

Take the entire list and select the MOST IMPORTANT five goals.

This is extremely hard to do. I mean, they’re all important, right?

I try to select one from each category that’s the most important. For example, I’ll have one career goal (like finishing my new book) and one health goal (like running three times per week).

Once you have selected the five, circle each one. Remember, circle five. No more, no less.

Detail a Plan for the Five and Forget the Rest

Of course, you’ll want to come up with a plan to accomplish your top five. Critical to success here is how you are going to measure each one.

If it’s the completion of a project, like a book, how will you get there? When I set the goal to write and complete
The Will to Die, I wrote at least 500 words per day and kept track of each day I did and did not complete that task. Same thing for running. I counted all the days I did and did not run (I use an app called HabitBull to keep track of these things).

And…the best part…once you complete that step, YOU FORGET ABOUT THE OTHER 20 GOALS.

That’s right…you vow to never work on them. You need to avoid these at all cost. Why? If you even have an inkling that you can accomplish more than five, you are kidding yourself. If you plan to accomplish everything, you’ll end up accomplishing nothing.

Folks…this works. If you actually put this into practice you’ll have a 2020 that’s beyond your wildest imagination.

Greatest Movie Ever for Entrepreneurs

Well, I may be exaggerating, but the new Netflix original film
Dolemite Is My Name is one of the best movies I’ve seen about the entrepreneurial experience. Now, it’s a bit racy and crude, so if you’re sensitive to that you might want to skip it. The movie stars Eddie Murphy, who should be nominated for something on the comeback performance.

The story documents the life of comedian
Rudy Ray Moore and how he risked everything multiple times to create one of the most successful movies of 1975 (called Dolemite).

The Will to Die Update

As you probably know, The Will to Die officially launches December 4th, but it’s already available if you want to check it out. I’m doing a crazy content experiment with the book and launching as an audiobook only…and…giving it away for free.

Yes, it’s a mad, evil plan that nobody understands…but I’ll fill you in on the madness as we go along.

Initial reviews have been fairly positive, but most of the people reviewing it actually know me and they are most likely being nice. Once 12/4 comes along, strangers will begin to listen to it…and then I’ll know for sure. Either way, it’s mine and I’ll own it.


A Random Idea - Thank the Critical

NOTE: The image above is of my son falling asleep while reading a proof copy of my book.

A few weeks ago I received a "two-star" review on my book at Apple podcasts. It wasn't a scathing review, but I took it personally none-the-less.

I went from mad to sad to giving up writing altogether (all you writers know what I mean).

Then slowly (I mean very slowly) I started to come around to feel what I can only name as thankful. I was thankful the person took the time to write the review. I was thankful they listened to my audiobook. I was thankful that receiving this kind of feedback was even possible (well, maybe not this one).

So I decided to send the reviewer a note. I simply said "thank you for taking the time to review my work. It means a lot." That's it.

I immediately felt better. And you know what? The person took down the review. I'm not sure why. I didn't ask them to. They just did.

So as we close in on US Thanksgiving, I think we put too much emphasis on thanking people who are nice to us. I think we should also thank people who are critical of us. If nothing else, it will push the hate out of our hearts. But maybe, we'll gain a better understanding of why they do what they do and say what they say.

And isn't Thanksgiving more about understanding and accepting others anyway?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thank You!

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Contact me @JoePulizzi on Twitter or to get everything. And check out my podcast with Robert Rose -  This Old Marketing (a must listen for marketers).

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