‘Amazing things will happen’
The author is the head of Fol:in team of the JoongAng Ilbo.
In the age of despair, where do we find hope? As I read Fol:in stories recently, I highlighted the phrase “self-positivity.” It is a keyword proposed by Japan’s notable space planner Tanigawa Junzi, head of JTQ. He is a talent who planned spaces in collaboration with brands like Nike, Lexus and Ginza Six. He is also the president of CCC Creative, a subsidiary of CCC Group, famous for Tsutaya bookstores.
Now that he cannot attract people to his spaces, does he feel insecure? At the video lecture during the Fol:in conference, “Future of Offline Retail,” last month, he didn’t seem concerned. He summarized eight changes the coronavirus would bring to his business. “As people go through Covid-19 for a long time, daily life being moved by small things became important. People are carefully moving in search of inspiration. Space planners have to pay attention to this change.”
Small moving things. Choi Hyuk-joon, who will appear online in the Fol:in seminar “Ritual” next Monday, talks about a similar thing. He has run an online service called “Challengers” for two years. Members write down a habit they want to stick to and bet money. It is about trivial things like getting up at 6 a.m. or working out at home every day. Every time a member keeps the habit, he gets a little back from the money he puts in. Not keeping up with the routine leads to a fine. In two years, the service had total transactions of 6 billion won ($5.4 million) a month.
Why pay money to build a habit? “The young generation today is not familiar with dreaming a grand future. How many new hires think they would become the CEO when they join the company? They don’t know how many years they will work there. They find it more important to seek gratification day by day. They want to compliment themselves for getting up early and working out regularly as they pledged, and want to think they are moving forward,” says Choi.
I am careful to ask about New Year’s resolutions. I cannot imagine what next year’s end will be like. You don’t have to make a plan for the whole year. What small impression do you want to create for the day? I pray that you find daily pleasure from small moving moments throughout the year. I want to relay Choi’s favorite saying, by Conan O’Brien: “Work hard, be kind, and amazing things will happen.”