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Life & Philosophy Productivity & Work

Bounce back

Why does every new passion start off with a rush of positive energy and excitement and then die?

Alacrity lives for the short-term. What’s new becomes old. Boredom strikes, a new and superior product emerges that we have to have. We also give up on our passions. The work involved outweighs the sticktuitiveness to achieve it.

Passion is a tricky subject. We can cultivate it through gratitude, but it’ll never reverberate with the enthusiasm it once did. Maybe, it is time to try something new.

gif via Anna Salmi

Categories
Creativity Life & Philosophy

Be brave, clench fists

The quietest people have the loudest minds. That’s why introverts are more active than extroverts on social media. It’s easier to speak through screens than it is face-to-face.

But showing up offline is the only way to get anywhere. No one’s going to marry or hire you because you speak well on screen but not in person.

Fortunately, the Internet is the perfect training ground for building creative confidence.

It’s a place where you can show your work and strengthen the presentation muscle for your real life.

In some cultures, it may be ok to hide behind a screen and still get where you want to go. But for the most part success still takes being present.

So get out. Show up. Strive to be an interesting person online and off otherwise, you might not get the recognition you deserve.

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Life & Philosophy Quotes

Nassim Taleb: ‘The best way to verify that you are alive is by checking if you like variations.’

“The best way to verify that you are alive is by checking if you like variations.”

Nassim Taleb, Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder
Categories
Books Culture Psychology Quotes

Are you an egg person or an onion person?

A gif of eggs cracked in pain

Introverts are egg people. They’re not hiding anything (per say), they are mostly reserved. And once they start to get comfortable, they are as open and talkative as anybody else. “Don’t think of introversion as something that needs to be cured,” writes Susan Cain in her book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking.

Extroverts, on the other hand, are onion people. They contain so many layers of bombast that it’s hard to know when they are being authentic, showy, or just spewing flotsam. Yet, extroverts are most likely to be leaders because they talk loud and carry a big stick.

George Mason economics professor and Oxford humanities associates Robin Hanson sums up the egg and onion divergence:

I’ve sometimes been tempted to classify people as egg people and onion people. Onion people have layer after layer after layer. You peel it back, and there’s still more layers. You don’t really know what’s underneath. Whereas egg people, there’s a shell, and you get through it, and you see what’s on the inside.

Are ambiverts egg or onion people?

Ambiverts are more like salad people, easy to digest and mix in with all types of other folks and scenarios. They’re adaptable like a chameleon depending on whatever social situation they’re in.

We all contain multitudes. But it is the mouth that separates us apart, with different levels of signaling.

Words are the original memes, for which some things are still best unshared and unsaid. Sometimes silence does all the messy talking, reveals all that needs to be conveyed. As Susan Cain puts it: “We have two ears and one mouth and we should use them proportionally.”

art via giphy

Categories
Tech

The dopamine surge

A gif of woman swinging below clouds

Dopamine is a superpower. Our brain hunts it down with the expectation of feeding it with some type of satisfaction, be it coffee or social media.

But our anticipation often exceeds reality. The coffee aroma smells better than the grounded beans actually taste. We only go on vacation with the promise of taking photos and sharing them on Instagram. Looking forward to these experiences energize us but fade just as quickly once we realize them.

Our neurons swim in desire, all the while ignoring the risks for drowning in it. Like a magnet, we are drawn to the pleasures of stimulants and irreality.

There’s no stopping us from swinging into the emotional rollercoaster, only to find that the high is not permanent like a tattoo. We can only rent moods and activities for so long.

gif by percolategalactic

Categories
Business Social Media Tech

‘Everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance’

“Another flaw in human character is that everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance,” said Kurt Vonnegut.

Everybody’s wants to start something, but rarely do they want to maintain it.

The problem in growing at no costs is that it obviates purpose and integrity. Instead of leading by example, the race to the bottom unearths the highest greed. Few win, more lose.

That’s the lesson of Facebook, the so-called ‘behavior modification empire.

The social network cut corners on data collection to make another buck. No Facebook: We will not answer any more questions “to help people get to know us.” Just replace the word “people” with the attention merchants.

The Cambridge Analytica scandal was the nudge Facebook needed to become more accountable. Seizing the data of others and building on top of it contorts the machinery of morality. 

The selfish reason to be ethical is that it attracts the other ethical people in the network.

Naval Ravikant

So now Facebook is all about the privacy game because it’s good for business. But just wait until Instagram becomes the victim of data exploitation.

Sometimes the genie of innovation requires that the master purveyor gets slapped again and again until it gets it right.

The seesaw tilts back to the morals of vision over avarice, eventually.

Categories
Daily Prompts Life & Philosophy Poetry

The effect of expectation

The placebo creates a ceremony of expectation. It builds off novelty and reinvigorates confidence in the possibility of recovery.

We all fall victim to the soft mental implantation of a placebo, the oldest medicine in the world. One simple belief kickstarts a chemical revolution. But in reality, the answer just needed to be poked from dormancy.

Reawakened, the inner narrative thrives on hedonic editing.

We certify the belief in our internal storage. Over time, it gains credibility and records the transaction on the human block chain of the genetic code. Truth happens to the idea

If at first, we expect, then we can succeed. It is faith that moves mountains.

Categories
Daily Prompts Politics & Society Social Media Tech

The pointlessness of constant self-grading

The pointlessness of constant self-grading #mindfulness #anxiety #selfawareness #mindfullliving
  • Five-star ratings
  • Gallup polls
  • Followers and social media ‘clout’

We obsess with gauging the temperature of our present reputation. The numbers are public, ticking up or down like stock prices.

The internet is the grandest stage of them all where we endeavor to present our best self. We strive to prove our self-worth, using likes and follows to pepper our egos.

A reputation is never finished. There’s always one more person to attract and appease.

Yet, the perpetual chase of approval remains illusory. There is no need to install an elaborate series of checks and balances on fame’s usefulness.

Our mood, needless the temperament of others, is as fickle as the weather.

Vigorous grading is not good for the person, nor the whole.

Categories
Culture Daily Prompts Tech

Beware the algorithms

Six hundred red years ago, there was no such thing as personal identity. Only when people owned mirrors did they start seeing themselves as individuals.

One hundred years ago, all fighter pilot seats were the same size until there became unnecessary deaths. The US Air Force adapted and customized its seating options.

The mass markets ushered in by industrialization standardized our style. The factory mindset kicked in. But then the internet came along and let people shop in niches. The bell curve flattened, and we felt special.

But the algorithms that run the world today have once again undermined our uniqueness.

The machines determine what we wear, listen to, and read.

We have no choice but to partake in an algorithmic world. We get it: There are too many resumes for one job, a surfeit of photos, new music, and so on.

But picking the mathematical best obviates the outlier and the error. It is the spontaneity that makes us human. Context matters.

If we’re already living in a simulation, let’s not be afraid to be random. We know what we like, the rest is thrown at us by optimizing bots.

It’s time to get weird again.

Categories
Apps Productivity & Work Social Media Tech

A plethora of unconsumed content

via giphy

Movies, books, magazines, music, and podcasts. There’s too much content and too little time.

We can try to keep up and multitask or listen to podcasts 2x their speed. But it’s a zero-sum game. The internet never ends. There will always be another Netflix show to catch up on.

Yet we mustn’t fret. We only have so many hours in the day.

An overdose of content. An underdose of time.

Attention competes with sleep.

We spend 18 hours of our day staring at the rectangular glow. How much of that time is consciously doing versus seeking distractive entertainment?

As tech journalist Jonathan Margolis points out, we’re consuming ever more media but not necessarily getting more intelligent. Yet, the sales of physical books are up! Go figure.