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Life & Philosophy Quotes Writing

You are the one and only

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“Go out into the streets of Paris and pick out a cab driver. He will look to you very much like every other cab driver. But study him until you can describe him so that he is seen in your description to be an individual, different from every other cab driver in the world.”

Guy de Maupassant on the process of finding specific uniqueness in everybody, everything.

Categories
Creativity Life & Philosophy

Think for your selfie

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Your first opinion is always someone else’s. There’s nothing wrong with that; that’s just the way we learn. At first, we copy, then we pursue our own version of the truth. The truly curious will spend time doing research and originating their own thought.

Thinking takes a lot of work. You can spend years analyzing and combining disparate ideas, letting it all marinate. Only then does the big idea hit you in the shower.

If there were one answer, people would’ve stopped thinking a long time ago. What we consider truth now is what we know to work most of the time. But we’re all still guessing.

To propose new ideas is only risky because of all the pertinacity required to get others to accept them. It’s even harder in a world that twists the facts. But the facts don’t lie. They explain.

To echo William Gibson: the doctrine of the future is already here — it’s just not evenly distributed. What matters isn’t always popular, at least just yet.

Categories
Arts Creativity Culture Quotes

Susan Sontag on taste

Intelligence is really a kind of taste- taste in ideas.”- Susan SontagFailure is notan option.png

“For taste governs every free — as opposed to rote — human response. Nothing is more decisive. There is taste in people, visual taste, taste in emotion – and there is taste in acts, taste in morality. Intelligence, as well, is really a kind of taste: taste in ideas.”

— Susan Sontag

From the essay “Notes on Camp,” available in Against Interpretation: And Other Essays (1964)

Categories
Creativity Writing

Get it down

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Jot it down,

Write it,

Scribble it,

Record it,

Instagram it,

Snap it,

Scrawl it,

Paint it,

Graffiti it,

Visualize it.

Sauté it.

It doesn’t matter what tool you use to capture it; what matters is that you get it down first. Only then can you consider sharing it.

Categories
Creativity Life & Philosophy Psychology

Note to Self

Oliver Sacks (RIP) used a different colored notebook for each of his ideas. He selected a green notebook to input his notes on philosophy.

Had he grown up a Millennial, his notebook would be his phone. He might use Evernote to categorize his notes in different folders. He might dump them all into the default Notes app on iPhone.

It doesn’t really matter how or where you place your ideas and observations when you’re on the go. The most important thing is to write them down so you can remember them later.

Note-taking is really note-talking, the act of connecting disparate ideas to better understand yourself.

“Each of us constructs and lives a “narrative,” this narrative is us.” 

Oliver Sacks

Categories
Creativity Life & Philosophy Productivity & Work Writing

What’s Your UBI?

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gif via reddit

My high school English teacher had another word for thesis. He called it UBI, for Unifying Big Idea.

Anytime I get confused or frustrated because I can’t explain something, thinking about that acronym helps me simplify my thoughts. What’s the point? What am I trying to say, in a nutshell?

One of the challenges of making statements is that they’re not proven yet. They’re merely guesses about what feels right. We need to think and talk about them more deeply to develop them further.

Jony Ive alludes to the UBI conundrum in the most recent New Yorker interview:

“My intuition’s good, but my ability to articulate what I feel was not very good—and remains not very good, frustratingly. And that’s what’s hard, with Steve not being here now.”

Jony Ive worked out his ideas with Steve Jobs the same way my English teacher helped me corroborate my thinking.

Ideas are democratic. They need to be launched, discussed, and tested about. We need other people to rebut and poke at our theories to make us clarify and justify them.

Categories
Creativity Writing

Why I Write

I write because I’m bored and writing is productive. I write because of all the arts it’s the easiest to do. All I need is a pen or keyboard or paper or computer. I write because of all the things I make it may be the only thing that lasts. The Internet archives every word, the good, bad, and mediocre. I own all these words.

I write because like a DJ, it gives me an opportunity to combine disparate things and share it with the Internet. Writing is learning. I write because I want to make sense of my surroundings. An attentive mind finds pleasure in the dullest moments.

I write to connect the dots between the now, space, and time. I write for the future. I write because it motivates me to do other things.

I write to investigate life. Writing opens up the doors to new possibilities. The more I write, the more ideas I have to play with. Writing is not my job, but it is my experiment. I refuse to see a blank page.

Why do you write?

Categories
Creativity Quotes

Seth Godin: ‘If you’re in the idea business, it doesn’t matter where you’re from’

gif via dianapietrzyk

“If you’re in the idea business, it doesn’t matter where you’re from. It matters if we care about the change you’re making.”

— Seth Godin

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Uncategorized

In a project called “Emoji Daydream” my friend ableparris takes a cue from Snapchat and attaches Emojis to his Instagram. So simple, so fun.

Read how he does it.

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Uncategorized

Inspiration x Action

Inspiration gets the blood flowing and the mind churning with ideas. All of a sudden, the mission becomes possible.

While inspiration is an impetus for action, it doesn’t get any of the hard work done. The grind is the most important part in finding and testing your legend.

Think big picture. Think about your overall contribution rather than your collection of achievements.

Gather sources of inspiration as a means of figuring it all out. And then pick something and pursue it. It may not be exactly what you want but you’ll learn a lot along the way and it’ll lead to something else.

Inspiration is for amateurs. Action is for professionals.

gif by @kochstrasse