Music · You

MGMT and Buddha Agree on Solutide

With a little more time to myself right now, it’s good to have reminder that this is not a bad thing. So say two opposing forces: MGMT and Buddah. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ

I don’t love all the hedonistic fantasy of the MGMT song Time to Pretend, but the song does rock, and this line stands out:

I’ll miss the boredom and the freedom and the time spent alone.

And apparently Buddha had given being alone even more thought. πŸ€” This video is worth three minutes if you’re feeling lonely.

You

Get Ready For The Roaring 2020’s

I’ve been saying for a few months that I really want to make the most of this awful pandemic. Stuck at home with time on your hands, it’s a great chance to focus and reinvent yourself. So I loved seeing this post touting the idea that we’re just getting ready for the next phase of our lives individually and collectively.

Prepare for the Golden Age: Why The Next Decade Will be Awesome

This post says that people will thrive in the coming years if they have the right attitude and beliefs, or dwindle if they let the changes in the world beat them down.

Many of us have spent the past year not just coping with the present moment, but getting better. When the conditions are back to normal, we’re already going to have momentum. The golden age is upon us.

Is this just wishful thinking? Maybe so, but your beliefs tend to become your reality, so this is a good starting point.

And as more people believe this, the more real it will be for everyone.

The world has been through much worse than the current situation and come out better on the other end. Make the most of it.

I just feel something in the air. I feel an awakening. I have this strong conviction that a large portion of society is just done with the pessimistic outrage culture nonsense. We’re ready to take control of not just the discourse, but our own lives.

Happy roaring 2020’s.

Image for post
You

Express Yourself (Ethan Hawke Edition)

Ethan Hawke gives an inspiring talk on creativity and how it forces you know yourself, lets you empathize with others, and gives you room to be a happy fool.

In singing our song, in telling our story, in inviting you to say, “Hey, listen to me, and I’ll listen to you,” we’re starting a dialogue. And when you do that, this healing happens, and we come out of our corners, and we start to witness each other’s common humanity. We start to assert it. And when we do that, really good things happen.

If you want to help your community, if you want to help your family, if you want to help your friends, you have to express yourself. And to express yourself, you have to know yourself.

You

The Shortest Self-Help Book You’ll Ever Read

Having now read enough (too many) self-help books, I was starting to think that they all overlap and are just saying different variations of the same thing. I feel like I have unofficially graduated from self-help school. πŸ‘¨πŸ»β€πŸŽ“

So I was happy to see this post that basically captures all of the self help out there in one concise list. It’s a really good summary of how to take charge of your life and your own happiness. It has “chapters” on goals, limiting beliefs, growth mindset, thinking too much, self-care, gratitude, and all the other top hits.

πŸ‘‰ The Shortest Self-Help Book You’ll Ever Read

My favorite quote is from The Mortality Chapter.

You have to go about every day like you might live forever, but also like you might die tomorrow afternoon.

That pretty well describes one of the key tensions in life. Well said, Jessica Wildfire (is that a pen name or what?).

You

Introvert-Friendly Conversation Tips

As a bit of an introvert, I find happy hours πŸ™„, networking events πŸ₯±, and other stand-around-talking situations frustrating. They tend to feel shallow, and they get boring fast.

But these events can be fun, even for us introverts!

I really like this Medium article because it’s just such a simple win-win: tips for having fun and being more likable when meeting random people. Plus it lets the people you are stuck talking with have a better time too!

πŸ‘‰ 3 Habits of Super-Likable People

Basically, it says to go ahead and be the geek that you really are and curiously let other people geek out about themselves. Hmm, that feels like two tips. Anyways, it’s three somehow. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ

There is no right or wrong way to interact with people. There’s only the authentic way β€” being you; which means connecting with others in a way that feels right for you.

See also: 3 Ways To Improve A Conversation If You’re An Introvert (πŸ‘‰ Ask Open-Ended Questions, Don’t Make The Conversation About Yourself, Improve Your Body Language.

By the way, these tips overlap a lot with a previous post about easy conversation here as well.

Practical · You

Things and the 5 Second Rule

I recently came across this book on Audible called The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins. I didn’t end up buying the book since I don’t want to send 7 hrs and 35 mins listening to a book about a 5-second strategy. The math just didn’t add up for me. πŸ˜†

But I saw there was a short TED talk on the 5 Second Rule plus an even shorter YouTube video on the topic.

The basic idea is that as you go through your day, you have things constantly popping into your head. These are fleeting things that you should do, would like to do, useful ideas, and so forth. Mel says you have 5 seconds to act on that idea or it’s gone, or at least you won’t do anything about it. And acting on those ideas is the difference between making the life you want and not. 🀯

I like that idea. But what can you actually do in 5 seconds? I mean, you’re probably driving or out for a jog or playing Wii. You can’t necessarily write down a note or call up your cousin right then and there and invite him to lunch. You can’t go adopt a dog in 5 seconds. And you sure as hell can’t write a book in 5 seconds.

Mel has other suggestions on how to handle this 5-second period, but I’ve been dumping things like this into the appropriately named Things app on my iPhone. It goes like this:

Hey Siri, using Things, remind me to invite my cousin to lunch

That’s it. Now it’s in your inbox. You can figure out the details later, but at least now you have a placeholder / reminder. My Things inbox has grown way too long to be useful in the past (way into the hundreds), but I eventually fought it down, gradually turning this list into projects or reference notes or calendar reminders. I’ve also turned more than 400 fleeting thoughts into a database of book ideas (thanks to Evernote).

The only way I keep my Things inbox under control is to clean out the inbox once a week on Sundays. Usually I have about 40 things for the week to act on, organize, file, or discard. It takes about an hour a week.

And by the way, both this very blog and this specific post came out of a 5-second thought. πŸ€“

Hey Siri, using Things, remind me to check out Mel Robbins and The 5 Second Rule

The World

It’s Time To Go On the Offensive Against the Coronavirus

I was talking with my kids about going after the virus the other day, half jokingly but also half serious…

I’m tired of sitting around the house waiting for the pandemic to solve itself. We didn’t win World War II sitting around the house hoping the Axis would surrender! We didn’t land on the moon waiting around doing nothing to see if somehow someone magically landed there!

It’s the same with the virus. We need to go after the virus! We need to hunt it down and destroy it until the planet earth is free if this deadly, hidden nemesis of all humankind.

It’s time for action!

As Winston Churchill would say, or rather did say, near the beginning of World War II…

We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.

Winston Churchill – June 4, 1940

I joked with my kids that we should have a day where everyone in the world just Clorox’s every inch of the planet. “Inch by inch!” was our rally cry.

So I was pleased to see this article come up on The New Yorker, which offers more realistic and helpful ideas than a Clorox Day. Still, it basically says that that yes, we can and should go on the offensive against the coronavirus. It offers hope and something specific to actually do! πŸ’ͺ🏻🌎

πŸ‘‰ It’s Not Too Late to Go on Offense Against the Coronavirus

Thank you, Jim Yong Kim, inspiring physician and anthropologist. Via Apple News.