An Intentional Life
"Have you found joy in your life? Has your life brought joy to others?" - Carter Chambers, The Bucket List
Whether or not you celebrated the Thanksgiving holiday last week, I hope that you were able to have a few days that were more relaxing and away from the typical day-to-day bustle around your home or office. My week started didn't start with good news: I received a text that a former employee and friend of mine passed away from cancer (fuck cancer). It was unexpected and quick; a surprise to those that knew her.
It was a sad reminder of just how short your time on this rock hurtling through space is, that unfair things can happen to even the most kind person and how the universe is mainly uncontrollable and unforgiving.
Tim Urban's Your Life in Weeks has been on my mind lately and I'm well aware that more than half of these bubbles have been filled for me.
The last few years haven't been easy on me and my family. I've had to deal with heart issues that I never thought I'd experience at 50, shifting to a job which required relocating (along with the impacts of that), then another switch to ultimately make things right and move us back home. And like many, had to figure out new ways to lead people through unprecedented change during a global pandemic.
Yet, I keep coming back to my notion of time.
The last years have seen my professional and personal priorities shifting significantly in ways I never predicted; I am trying every day now to dedicate space to things that matter to me. We only have 24 hours in a day – I am focused on changing my mindset on what I do with them.
I haven't cracked this entirely yet, and sure, I've had days where I slip back into old habits. But I'm trying every day to live a more intentional life and focus on bigger things: Self-care. Family and Friends. Learning and unlearning how I interact with people. I am taking the time to reach out to friends I haven't talked to recently. Shifting focus on what matters and (more importantly) letting go of what doesn't.
I’ve stopped living on auto-pilot. Focused on where and how I want to spend time.
I've made great strides towards "life 2.0", but also keenly aware that I have a long way to go until I'm there. It's a work in progress; keep trying to make every day better.
Live intentionally. Bring joy where you can.
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This week, I was introduced to the concept of the Hedonic Treadmill (thank's Derek). Described as:
is a metaphor for the human tendency to pursue one pleasure after another. That's because the surge of happiness that's felt after a positive event is likely to return to a steady personal baseline over time.
Think of it as "Chasing Unhappiness" and that 'the pull of accumulating more and more 'things' eventually keeps you running in place forever.'
Justin Kan, the co-founder of Twitch, recently had a lot to say about it. It's worth the watch.
Thought of the week
I love this one, and it's perfect for the holidays.
Inspired by the Japanese wrapping cloths "Furoshiki," the folks at Tom Bihn took the Shepherd's Wool Utility Cloth to create a video showing how you can wrap gifts.
This weeks "Deep Links"
Here are a few of the articles and videos that resonated with me over the last week:
- Continuing this week's theme, 'we all have a finite amount of time to live, and within that mortal countdown we devote some fraction towards our work' via "work on what matters." - More
- In my favorite post of the week, "10 Healthy Reasons to Procrastinate". There are some really good reasons why particular work should be put off for now - More
- "Please Buy Literally Everything" takes a look at the chaos and psychological tricks that are played on you as a consumer this time of year. One way the author has countered this is by 'asking myself whether the object in question helps me create or consume' .. good stuff in here - More
- Looking back: What a wild read, "Someone Unearthed A 1997 Wired Article Predicting '10 Things That Could Go Wrong In The 21st Century'". Number 9 in the list: 'An uncontrollable plague - a modern-day influenza epidemic or its equivalent takes off like wildfire, killing upward of 200 million people' 🤔 - More
- Looking forward: "What next? 22 emerging technologies to watch in 2022" - More
- I've started my annual list of 'things i like', which evolved out of doing a yearly review, so I always enjoy reading about how others take this time to reflect and live more intentionally. "How to do an Annual Review and Set Goals for Next Year" has an interesting framework around this process - More
- Another great "2021 in review" to read - More
- "Dave Grohl retraces his life-affirming path from Nirvana to Foo Fighters" as part of his new book, The Storyteller (which is now in my 'to-read pile) - More
- File under 'who knew?' but "Why Ocean Spray Intentionally Labels Its Cranberry Sauce Upside-Down"; the answer may surprise you as there is science behind it - More
- Simply brilliant, but this artist uses "Ceramic Mosaics Mend Cracked Sidewalks, Potholes, and Buildings in Vibrant Interventions." Read more about 'the pavement surgeon' - More
Jason Sudeikis seems to be everywhere lately with Ted Lasso. Still, I enjoyed his portrayal of a passive-aggressive swim coach in the latest Foo Fighters video - Love Dies Young.
Be well. ✌🏻