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A 4-step guide to living from Albert Camus

Albert Camus, the famous existential philosopher and Nobel Laureate gives us some simple, practical tips for living a good life...

Intuition – sixth sense, gut instinct – use it well

Intuition is a powerful tool that complements logical thinking when we are at the limits of what we know but have to act...

Handwriting as therapy

Although almost extinct as a skill, writing by hand offers numerous benefits...

Motivation: keeping the fires alive

Once the glow of inspiration is lit, the spark needs to be kept alive by motivation...

Better memory in the age of information overload

Our memory is overwhelmed by the massive amounts of information that floods us. How can we handle this?...

Placebo effect – the mind as healer

The placebo effect is a dramatic example of the mind-body connection. The challenge is to harness it effectively...

“Photographs and memories” when everyone has a camera

In the age of universal mobile phones and cameras, there are specific drawbacks to excessive reliance on photos...

Positive thinking – how to make it work for you

Starry-eyed wishing won't get you results unless you have a practical strategy for execution. "WOOP" is one such...

Gratitude – the “flip side” of kindness

Gratitude is an action, not merely an emotion. There are many ways of going about it...

Discipline and routine can set you free

Productive people almost always have one trait in common: discipline. Far from being restrictive it frees the mind to explore new avenues...

Rules of thumb (heuristics) are often better than complex algorithms

In a "data-driven", complex world where algorithms dominate our digital lives, simple rules of thumb often outperform complex pathways...

Dealing with furious, raging people

Managing furious, raging people requires an insight into their thought processes...

Delegate. Don’t be a “control freak.”

From small chores to being a CEO, delegate, let go and gain productivity...

Looking for inspiration? It’s entirely up to you.

Inspiration is a uniquely personal experience. Trust your judgment; don't go by what is reported...

Focus – the vital skill for success in any endeavour

Focus and attention are the tools by which consciousness is converted to productivity and success in life...

Will power is a battery; it needs regular recharging

Will power is a resource that runs out with use but, like muscle power, gets better with training...

What makes up a sense of fulfilment in our lives

A feeling of fulfilment is the key to living a good life. Here are the elements that go into it...

The secret sauce for “Getting Things Done” – slow down

A counter-intuitive approach to productivity: slowing down...

Pay it forward; be a mentor

The downstream benefits and multiplier effects are much greater when "we pay it forward" rather than paying back. Mentorship is an excellent activity in this regard...

On trust – traditional and digital

Trust: how to earn it and how it has changed in the digital age...

“Peaceful, easy feeling” … x 2

Camping anywhere you want, with a hammock for two, that is also a tent...

On hope

The capacity for hope is the most significant tool in managing the ups and downs of life...

{P}rescriptions for a sustainable future – Rx 4- 2023

Rx-4-2023 | Flowers bring joy. Flower arrangements have an environmental cost: floral foam...

{P}rescriptions for a sustainable future – Rx 3 – 2023

Rx-3-2023 | ➡️ Born again. Mine shafts repurposed for energy ➡️ "Abracadabra!" - protein from thin air...

{P}rescriptions for a sustainable future – Rx 2 – 2023

Rx-2-2023 ➡️ Banning straws might be good for the planet – but bad for people with disability or swallowing problems. What is 'eco-ableism'? ➡️ We don’t need ‘miracle’ technologies to fix the climate. We have the tools now. ➡️ How green roofs can help cities (YouTube video)...

Agreeing to not disagree – making all voices heard by consensus

🔑 decision, consensus, voting, community || ✅ Making decisions by consensus takes more time than voting, but is more likely to be accepted and followed...

Good “dumb questions” can flush out valuable information

🔑 question || ✅ Asking dumb questions can often provoke answers of greater value than smart ones...

I like it because …

🔑 value, esthetic, quality || ✅ Quality lies very much in the eye of the beholder...

Like ice cream, happiness comes in flavours

🔑 happiness, meaning || ✅ The best taste is when you combine flavours into a sundae; don't stick to plain vanilla or chocolate only...

You can’t take a walk on a map

🔑 map, territory, fallacy, model || ✅ "Don't mistake the finger pointing to the moon for the moon itself." ...

New hope for social media?

🔑 social media, downfall, opportunity, Mastodon || ✅ The promise of the internet in its early days, was quickly hijacked by self-serving, commercial interests. The free fall that Facebook and Twitter are now in, offers hope for a renewal of the early aspirations...

Show me the menu, anyway

🔑 choice, decision, default || ✅ We want to see the full menu even though we already know what we want.
...

Using charts to misinform and fool people

➡️ 𝕌𝕤𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕔𝕙𝕒𝕣𝕥𝕤 𝕥𝕠 𝕞𝕚𝕤𝕝𝕖𝕒𝕕 𝕒𝕟𝕕 𝕗𝕠𝕠𝕝 𝕡𝕖𝕠𝕡𝕝𝕖 -- Most of us struggle with making sense of numbers and data. Charts are the most common method of making numerical data understandable. Like all tools, they can be used for education just as well as for misinformation. Here's a common example of how bar graphs can manipulate the viewer's judgment...

Random acts of kindness … make the brain more resilient

Till very recently, neuroscientists clung to the belief that the fully formed adult brain was incapable of further change. We now know that this is not true. The brain exhibits a remarkable capacity for change: a property that is labelled "neuroplasticity". Many stimuli invoke and propel this fantastic power. Neuroscientific research shows that kindness, compassion and generosity rewire the brain, making it more resilient to the challenges of everyday life...

Changing jobs: consider trade-offs and opportunity costs

Moving upwards in your career often involves looking for and finding new jobs. Five issues need to be weighed before committing to a new position. Change, for its own sake, might have a downside that needs careful consideration...

Experts are rarely right in forecasting future events

We live and work in the midst of uncertainty. To relieve our anxieties, we turn to experts for guidance about the likelihood of future events. Philip Tetlock, after a massive 18-year study of expert predictions, demonstrated that their advice was no better than lay persons. They were actually worse than simple algorithms. He gives us many valuable guidelines...

Why ignorance and stupidity prevail: The Dunning-Kruger effect

There is an inverse relationship between knowledge and confidence in competence. The less you know, the more you are certain of your ability. First described in 1999 in a paper by Dunning and Kruger, it provides a good explanation for why it is so difficult to change existing beliefs and opinions...

How to get the most from meetings: do it like Jeff Bezos

Instead of Powerpoints and other presentation tools, Jeff Bezos of Amazon uses a unique method for extracting value from meetings. He insists on a written-out, carefully structured narrative. He then goes on to do some more unusual things with the meeting...

The ideal number for a meeting is …

Meetings are universally disliked. They disrupt work schedules. They are roadblocks to productivity. A handful of vocal people dominate the proceedings; the rest sit bored. But, abolishing meetings is akin to "throwing the baby out with the bath water." Limiting the number of attendees is the key to effective meetings. Each person needs to have a role in the proceedings. There is a magic number...

Confirmation bias

Blind spots cloud clear cognition and understanding. The confirmation bias heads a long list. We programme our minds to filter out events that don't align with our existing beliefs...

Parkinson’s Law of Triviality

Long and hot discussions about trivial matters with small economic impact are easier to have than those over important issues requiring big sums of money. Large chunks of discussion time are spent on the former while the latter is quickly brushed away...

Better memory in the age of information overload

Now, more than ever, we need good strategies for remembering information that is valuable. Here is a popular tools for countering the "forgetting curve": the Cornell note-taking system...

The Peter Principle

The Peter Principle - Why and how hierarchies become incompetent bureaucracies...

The sunk cost fallacy

The sunk cost fallacy offers an explanation for why we persist with lost causes - throw good money after bad...

Why is disinformation so pervasive and what can we do about it?

Distortion of the truth, giving it a spin or angle, has been going on through all of history. But, it has never been so easy to spread misinformation and lies, widely and quickly, as is possible in the age of the Internet...

This tyrant now rules the world: our screens

"The locus of entertainment" has been slowly wrested from within our own choosing and dropped onto our all-pervasive screens. The "feeds" have taken over our minds...

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