‘The enemy is our chattering brain’

Don’t prepare. Begin. Remember, our enemy is not lack of preparation; it’s not the difficulty of the project or the state of the marketplace or the emptiness of our bank account. The enemy is Resistance. The enemy is our chattering brain, which, if we give it so much as a nanosecond, will start producing excuses, alibis, transparent self-justifications, and a million reasons why we can’t/shouldn’t/won’t do what we know we need to do. Start before you’re ready. Good things happen when we start before we’re ready. For one thing, we show huevos. Our blood heats up. Courage begets more courage.

Steven Pressfield, Do the Work
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Integrative thinking, a definition

The ability to face constructively the tension of opposing ideas and, instead of choosing one at the expense of the other, generate a creative resolution of the tension in the form of a new idea that contains elements of the opposing ideas but is superior to each.

Roger L. Martin, The Opposable Mind

‘Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence’

Book image of Emerson's Self-Reliance #books

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. The desire and ability to press on has and always will solve the problems of the human race and divide those who achieve from those who might have been.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

‘Start the next one today’

I remember rolling the last page out and adding it to the stack that was the finished manuscript. Nobody knew I was done. Nobody cared. But I knew. I felt like a dragon I’d been fighting all my life had just dropped dead at my feet and gasped out its last sulfuric breath.   Rest in peace, motherfucker.   Next morning I went over to Paul’s for coffee and told him I had finished. “Good for you,” he said without looking up. “Start the next one today.

Steven Pressfield, The War of Art

‘Don’t water down your natural style’

"What you love to think about, dream about, speak about, learn about and create about is your genius. Don’t water down your natural style or contort yourself into some idealized version of who you think you should be. The impulses that come from deep within are your guide track to greatness. We want you as is." Ralph Waldo Emerson #Quotes #life

What you love to think about, dream about, speak about, learn about and create about is your genius. Don’t water down your natural style or contort yourself into some idealized version of who you think you should be. The impulses that come from deep within are your guide track to greatness. We want you as is.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Self-Reliance

‘In the future, everyone will want to be anonymous for fifteen minutes’

Banksy reversed the Warhol quote so it fits today's weather. 

“In the future, everyone will want to be anonymous for fifteen minutes.”

Banksy

“In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.” 

Andy Warhol

Needless to say, social media changed things. Going off the grid will be the new luxury. 

Anthony Bourdain’s tip for aspiring travelers

No Reservations: Around the World on an Empty Stomach (Amazon) was Bourdain's sixth book. In it, he offered this sage advice to ambitious world travelers.   

“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves mark on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.”

Anthony Bourdain

Against running with headphones

“If I don’t leave my headphones behind when I run, I wouldn’t spend a single minute of my waking life free from input." Peter Sagal #books #amazon #running

The host of NPR's Wait Wait…Don't Tell Me! wrote about the delights of running in our overconnected age and it looks fantastic. 

“If I don’t leave my headphones behind when I run, I wouldn’t spend a single minute of my waking life free from input.

I have a friend who wears headphones on long solo runs because, he says, “I can’t spend that much time alone in my head.” I disagree. He can, and he should. Spending that much time inside one’s head, along with the voices and the bats hanging from the various dendrites and neurons, is one of the best things about running, or at least one of the most therapeutic. Your brain is like a duvet cover: Every once in a while, it needs to be aired out.”

Peter Sagal, The Incomplete Book of Running

‘The test of a book is how much good stuff you can throw away’

“The test of a book is how much good stuff you can throw away,” he said. “When I’m writing it, I’m just as proud as a goddam lion. I use the oldest words in the English language. People think I’m an ignorant bastard who doesn’t know the ten-dollar words. I know the ten-dollar words. There are older and better words which if you arrange them in the proper combination you make.”

Ernest Hemingway

Writing tip: ‘Never get up from your computer until…’

"Never get up from your computer until you’ve made a note about what you want to write next. That way you can slide right back in.” Jane K. Cleland #quotes #tip #writingtips #blogging

“Never get up from your computer until you’ve made a note about what you want to write next. That way you can slide right back in.”

Jane K. Cleland (see books)

gif via Shameless Maya

‘I don’t paint things. I only paint the difference between things’

"I don’t paint things. I only paint the difference between things." - Henri Matisse #art #quotes
"I don’t paint things. I only paint the difference between things." - Henri Matisse #art #quotes

I don’t paint things. I only paint the difference between things.

Henri Matisse
"I don’t paint things. I only paint the difference between things." - Henri Matisse #art #quotes
"I don’t paint things. I only paint the difference between things." - Henri Matisse #art #quotes

‘We do not grow absolutely, chronologically’

"We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations." Anais Nin #quotes #amreading #books

We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations.

Anais Nin, The Diary of Anais Nin (Amazon)

image via The Anais Nin Foundation

‘When I wrote ‘Fahrenheit 451’ I hated book burners and I loved libraries. So there you are’

“When I wrote ‘Fahrenheit 451’ I hated book burners and I loved libraries. So there you are.”

Ray Bradbury

‘I have the vanity of an artist, I want my work to be seen, but I don’t have to be seen’

“I have the vanity of an artist, I want my work to be seen, but I don’t have to be seen." David Hockney #art #artwork #painting
David Hockney, Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures), 1972. Courtesy of Christie’s

“I have the vanity of an artist, I want my work to be seen, but I don’t have to be seen.”

David Hockney

Now the world's most expensive painting by a living artist, David Hockney's Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures) sold for $90.3 million from the Christie's auction house.  

‘The idea of painting two figures in different styles appealed so much that I began the painting immediately.’