What I’m Reading – Week of December 31st

* It’s You Against You, All Day Long

“Some you’ll win. Most you’ll lose. Sometimes you’ll feel accomplished and warm-fuzzies and the burst of happiness and ownership in doing a great job, being recognized, being loved, winning. Most times you will go to bed knowing you did alright, not your best, but given the chance to wake up tomorrow you’ll get a little closer to your best.”

* Favorite Farnam Street Posts From 2020

“Much of what we do at FS is about reflection. Learning requires reflection; time to sit, think, and process.”

* Own The Tools

“This little insight suggests a principle that we 21st-century wanderers might want to write down: whenever you can, own the tools, or you never stop paying for them.”

* Resistance And Dreams

“I wish I could hear that voice and say, ‘Ah, that’s Resistance! I’ll simply dismiss it.’ But I’m terrified that the voice is true.”

What I’m Reading – Week of December 20th

* Don’t Look Back and Don’t Look Down: “We’re talking here about a discipline of the mind. Mental toughness. A choice that you and I make (and hold ourselves to) as professionals … a deliberate act.”

* Highlights From 2020’s Farnam Street “Ask Me Anything” (Video)

* Marc Andreessen On Productivity, Scheduling, Reading Habits, Work, and More: “The sheer load of the number of things coming at me and coming at the senior partners here is just very intense. That has forced a comprehensive shift to a far more structured way of living. It’s actually by far the most structured I’ve ever been.”

What I’m Reading – Week of December 13th

* You’re Only As Good As Your Worst Day: “As individuals, we tell people the most about who we are when everything goes wrong.”

* Practice = Professional: “All are here to serve a higher purpose, to seek, in the training and conflict between and among one another, to realize the best of themselves. That’s you and me every day at the easel, at the piano, at the keyboard. That’s a practice.”

* The Comfortable Misery Syndrome: “If everything is too good, you’re probably stuck not being awesome.”

What I’m Reading – Week of December 6th

* How To Handle The Beast: “Our species knows the Beast well, but we don’t talk about it much. I suppose that’s because it’s hard to win at the rat race and other public-facing status games when you admit you are suffering. But suffering less is more important.”

* Leading During A Crisis (video): “There are certain kinds of rules in a crisis. Number one, I don’t respond in little pieces and then change my mind. I wait until I get the facts. It’s your response that defines who you really are in other people’s eyes.”

* How Julia Child Used First Principles Thinking: “There’s a big difference between knowing how to follow a recipe and knowing how to cook. If you can master the first principles within a domain, you can see much further than those who are just following recipes.”

What I’m Reading – Week of Nov 29th

* Lots of Overnight Tragedies, No Overnight Miracles: “An important thing that explains a lot of things is that good news takes time but bad news happens instantly.”

* Three Recession-Proof Investments for 2021: “Emotional stability. Connection to others and the environment. Frequent moments of peace and gratitude. A world that seems quieter. An easier time being yourself.”

* Gratitude – Becoming A Better Person By Not Taking Things Personally (video): “What you’re actually made of is what you encounter when you voluntarily embrace the unknown.”

* The Learning Loop (video): “A short video that answers the question of how we can translate information and experiences to actual knowledge that we own.”

What I’m Reading – Week of November 22nd

* How to Gradually Become a More Relaxed Person: “Our cultural ideas of relaxation tend to involve some sort of external intervention — drinks, vacations, entertainment, or some other kind of stimulation, more to distract us from tension than actually relieve it.”

* On Cultivating and Sustaining Love: “Love is losing yourself in the process of caring about and showing undivided attention to someone or something, through ups and downs. It’s as simple and as hard as that.”

*Learning Through Play: “Doing things we enjoy without a goal in mind leads us to find new information, better understand our own capabilities, and find unexpected beauty around us.”

* The Big Lessons From History: “An important lesson from history is that the risks we talk about in the news are rarely the most important risks in hindsight. The same story, again and again.”

What I’m Reading – Week of Nov 8th

* Never Stop Learner: “These life lessons taught me that we need very little in life to make us happy, provided we have that frame of mind to enjoy whatever we have.”

* Painfully Tiny Goals: “If you’re expecting your willpower to do the work towards a task that hasn’t drawn you in naturally already, then acknowledge the reality of the situation by biting off something it can actually chew.”

*I Have A Few Questions: “Ponderings and life lessons.”

* Descriptions Aren’t Prescriptions: “When you encounter a representation of something, it’s useful to consider which parts are descriptive and which parts are prescriptive. 

What I’m Reading – Week of November 1st

* Be a Schedule Builder Not a To-Do List Maker: “To-do list devotees keep a running register of all the things they promise to get done, but at the end of the day, they’re surprised to find the list of uncompleted tasks has gotten longer, not shorter.”

* The Meaning of Life is Subjective: Lessons From Intellectuals: “Loving your life no matter what it has in it can help you find meaning. If life matters, what we do with it whilst we are still alive is probably something important to ponder about.”

* Inversion As A Critical Thinking Skill: “The thinking in which you want opposite — not only thinking forward but also thinking backward. This trick is a powerful idea because it de-biases us from having blinders.”

* On Ideas And Identity: “Ideas become part of who we are. People get invested in their ideas, especially if they get invested publicly and identify with their ideas.”

New Book Release From One Of Our Readers

I am SO EXCITED to share the new book Productive Intuition from one of our readers, AdaPia d’Errico. There have been many phases of my relationship with AdaPia, all of them enriching and valuable.  We first met when I owned a lead generation company and she was a C-Suite executive at a financial technology (FinTech) firm. … Read more

What I’m Reading – Week of October 25th

* On the Illusion of Choice (short video): “Young people have the illusion of choices. But if you want to be good, you have no choices.” – Nick Saban

* A Basic Skill We Should Have Learned as Kids: “Emotions really do work like sets of spectacles. It is a huge help to know which lens you’re seeing the world through, at any given moment.”

* What Sharks Can Teach Us About Survivorship Bias: “If we focus only on the survivor stories, we might think that being a real estate agent or an architect is safer than starting a technology company.”

* On Resilience: What My Sled Dogs Taught Me About Planning for the Unknown: “Planning for forever is essentially impossible, which can actually be freeing: It brings you back into the present.”