The key is to find wands that work for you. I've found a number of places where I can find magic wands - the little tricks and changes you can make to your life with almost no effort and bring about big results. Below are the ten best places I've found for looking for new ideas
1: The Internet - the net is full of self help blogs, life hack blogs, motivational and advice blogs. Find someone whose ideas you like, then see who they link to
2: Bookshops - I'm a self help junkie - most of what I write here has been gained from years and years of reading self help books, and trying to extract the little bits which actually work
3: Toastmasters - Toastmasters isn't just about learning to speak - its about learning to lead, learning to have confidence, and finally, it is a remarkably clever education system - an alternative to the school system we are taught to think of as the best way to learn
4: doctors: Doctors can give you bad advice, and they can give you answers which act as brush offs, but if you approach doctors on their level, and explain to them calmly and intelligently why their standard advice doesn't work, then they begin to think about real cases where real patients made real changes. Doctors see lots of people, and have come across some truly amazing ideas.
5: Teachers: Like doctors, teachers spend their time working with people. they have the public speaking skills of toastmasters, and the inspirational skills of some of the best public speakers - as well as lots and lots of life experience. Ask a teacher about handling a problem, and they can give you many sided views
6: Your spouse, or partner, or family: My wife, every so often, just drops new ideas onto my lap. She doesn't always realise it - she just thinks shes telling me about her day, or about how something happened - or perhaps asking me for advise. By listening to my wife, and trying to help her with her problems, I learn new things
7: Your friends - how often have you been in a pub, chewing the fat and putting the world to rights when a friend says something that makes you stop and listen - a different view of a subject you've become too familiar wit, or their love for an activity you would otherwise have no interest in. Friends can spark ideas - never be afraid to let them challenge you
8: Strangers. Very occasionally I find myself taking to a stranger. And because strangers come from outside your world, outside your comfort zone, they can seem less like random occurrences and more like a meeting with a guru. Listen to the bites of zen they offer you, and see if, perhaps, they are giving you a key.
9: The radio. NPR or Radio 4 in the UK. How often it is i turn on the radio and listen to a program the subject of which I have no interest in, but because I'm doing something else, perhaps driving or doing some sort of mindless work, the chatter keeps my mind occupied. And as I listen to it, it begins to absorb me, throwing e into places I would otherwise not venture. The discovery channel is a bit like this, but TV is too absorbing. Radio seems to hold my attention in exactly the right way
10: Yourself. Because deep down, your a freak - everything you do is just a series of random actions. This is good - because we can watch those actions and see which ones work - and how they feel. We can tweak things and try them again and again and again. We are out best teacher, and the only subject we get to play with int he great experiment of life. Don't be afraid to play with your ideas. Write them down, expand on them when you're bored. And turn them into something beautiful.