I’ve always been fascinated by Jason Fried and his approach to Basecamp. It’s a very trusting, thoughtful, and generous approach. I wonder how these principles could be applied to large corporations, perhaps outside of tech.
I’m working on finding stillness. Instead of saying “I’m busy”, I’m trying to replace that phrase with “I have priorities and obligations to address“ - helps me filter out what really matters and what I perceive as something that matters
But what we lose, ironically, is exposure to suffering.
While I don’t ever wish for anyone to undergo traumatic, high-stakes, high-pain experiences, those experiences are really the ones that transcend our lives and teach us lessons that could not have been learned otherwise.
On a parallel note... when I was a student, I wondered if instructors remembered what it was like to be a student. At work, I wonder if upper management remember what it was like to be junior staff. At what point up the ladder does that empathy and compassion start wearing off?
Knowledge is peculiar in that it grows when it’s shared (as does love, as the romantics would likely point out). And luckily, we humans are ridiculously good at sharing.
Really loved that line. The back and forth in this article (the paradox!) kept throwing me between feelings of despair and hope. If we can get ourselves into this fossil economy, we have the brains to get out of it. Just not alone, but as a collective.
This was fascinating to read. Like some other articles on Readup, one overarching theme here is to slow down, in life, in everything. I know I always feel like there is more to do... I fall right in that trap.
What does this history tell us about life in the 21st century? Bosses set hours and income, and workers adjust. When husbands controlled their wives’ schedules, they insisted on a clean and tidy home and a ready-made dinner; and their wives typically obliged. When today’s employers hire a full-time worker under modern labor laws, they insist on a 40-hour week, or more; and the worker typically obliges. It doesn’t matter whether technology stays the same, or improves by leaps and bounds.
I’m super interested to see how this morphs with increasing creations in automation moving forward.
Reminds me of a study that showed folks who had external, serious hobbies demonstrated better work performance and satisfaction, especially if that hobby/activity is something very different from the main money-making daily grind.
And of course, this quote: “Jack of all trades, master of none, though oftentimes better than master of one.”
I am guilty of paying less attention to the Australia fires than I probably would have if this were a few years ago. On the contrary, I pay excessive attention to the California fires.. because I am a California resident and identify as Californian through and through.
I do feel massive guilt for not giving as much attention as I should. It is difficult to put more energy on such a heartbreaking climate scenario on a different continent when I have (what feels like) limitless situations local to me that I can barely pay my full attention to..
This pairs really well with the New Atlantis article that was AOTD recently. Highly recommended!
Without some ownership of one’s feelings and thoughts, it is difficult to take responsibility for them.
When I started meditating, I developed a system where I would write down how I felt after meditating, what thoughts stood out to me during meditation, and think about why those usually unsettling thoughts joined in. I can understand how mindfulness creates a barrier between thoughts and self as in the author’s case, but for me, the practice of separating thoughts and self simply served as a tool for developing greater self-awareness. For instance, I may not be my sadness, but I know that sadness permeated me strongly, and I investigate my habits and tendencies that trigger tough emotions. It’s that next step after the self-awareness that really feels transcending.
Agree with many comments and the conclusion of this piece that mindfulness is not a one size fits all. I do find it is a practice that facilitates life quality and freedom for me in this crazy world of fast flowing information and addictive devices, but only after I worked on developing a mindfulness process that works for my personality and lifestyle.
I always found NYE activities to be very counterproductive to New Year’s resolutions. Now that I’m a lot more conscious about my finances, flamboyant NYE celebrations are even more unnecessary for me. Anyway, I’m sleeping at the usual time tonight and wake up at my normal hour for 2020. Happy new year to y’all!
Interpersonal conflicts can harm a whole field by reducing trust and solidarity, which impedes coordination and makes recruitment much more difficult. Nobody wants to join a field where everybody is fighting with each other.
True for almost every aspect of social connection.
Although I find the article content important, my already over-analytical mind is probably going to become prone to even more overthinking now. Heavy sigh
I really enjoyed reading this. It pulled me out of the murky hole that I sometimes unknowingly dig myself in, especially from working as an employee of a large corporation where a “go getter” mentality is the norm.
“They see life as a moral drama and feel fulfilled only when they are enmeshed in a struggle on behalf of some ideal.” Whenever difficult situations arise, I’m just going to call them “moral dramas.” That phrase reframes the situation/puts it in an all new light.
I feel that emotional labor happens all the time in my personal life.
Especially when the other party talks too much/is fragile to most things in their life.. listening to someone else continuously talking, especially with me just nodding my head every time/not being able to speak, is like helping them manage their emotions.
The part about the colors that mish and mash with social media "enhancement" (I am currently not able think of a better word to describe that urge to make instagram feeds look prettier/faker) made me shake my head. Agh. The food industry has enough to deal with; let's not let the trap of platforms like instagram and "influencers" make that industry even more difficult.
Felt busted for a moment. I had a knee-jerk reaction to the title and panicked for a split second, thinking, (1) I need to spend even more money now to do things I enjoy, like browse a bookstore??, (2) oh no, that is so selfish of me, and (3) is the bookstore market getting worse? and worse? am I part of the problem? [because I certainly do browse amazon for prices and see how much more/less I would potentially spend.]
I am a blank slate on bookstore business models. All I know is the grey-zone of bookstore decline with online retailers (like amazon). While the idea of paying to enter a bookstore makes me feel squeamish, especially since I habitually visit local bookstores to browse new titles, I see the concern for extra payments as a way to keep these stores thriving. A donation box came to mind.. or a fee for store events/meet-ups.
I also have been going more to my local libraries, many of which have small used-book sales of their own that support community events for my library. In many ways, I find libraries more resourceful and accessible to the community than bookstores (which often serve folks of privileged demographics and financial base). I'm lucky to have the option to shop at bookstores.. and I love that they provide the latest and greatest in the publishing world.
This part also stuck out to me: "Never mind that I probably own more unread books than I could ever possibly read in a lifetime. Somehow, deep down, I think I believe that I will live long enough to read them and everything else, eventually. Books make me feel immortal, and I want more of them, always."
I will probably always have more books on my to-read list than I will be able to finish. Right now, I'm in this process of coming to terms with starting more books than I actually finish; and, very importantly, not feeling guilty for being unable to finish a book at that moment if I am really unable to bring myself to learn the subject matter or connect with the story being told.
As I read Pollan’s book on psychedelics (which is blowing my mind; is that not uncanny??), I’m meeting fascinating folks like Feilding.
Feilding: The only person I know of who would drill a hole in their head and also make it an art-piece while testing a scientific hypothesis on blood flow with implications for psychological states and mental illness.
I’ve been following farnam street lately and I am loving their content. I also recommend the Knowledge Project podcast. Shane Parrish is a great interviewer.
So so many thoughts on this.
I used to feel super guilty and pressure myself to “work better” when I’m not in focused mode. Somehow, I thought that if I were not constantly in focused mode, my work was of lower quality. [I used to be SO guilty of taking social media “breaks” because I’d attempt to be in focused mode for too long.] There would be days when I’d get upset about interruptions. Some days I still fall into this trap.
And this is so true about reading, and relevant to the incredible articles on readup:
<< Think of how your mind works when you read. As you read a particular sentence of a book, you can’t simultaneously step back to ponder the entire work. Only when you put the book down can you develop a comprehensive picture, drawing connections between concepts and making sense of it all. >>