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Musings March 2023
It has been a few months since I wrote, but by now, I am assuming that you are used to my sporadic posts. The last few months I have been thinking a lot about “midlife clarity”, a phase that people go through where they see life in terms of years ahead instead of years that have passed.
My current model for thinking about years ahead is to have different weights for each decade. Specifically, I give 40-50 a 5X weight, 50-60 4X, 60-70 3X, 70-80 2X and > 80 is 1X. So, if you are 45 and expect to live until 95, then 50% of your best life would be done when you reach 60.
If you buy this reasoning, then you need to think deeply about where and how you want to spend your time. Among the options that exist, spending the bulk of it staring at a screen, feel like the least preferable one.
Most of us constantly postpone the life we want to live with the excuse that our commitments come in the way. Change is hard and more importantly takes time. However, when you persist with a change for a long period of time, you become a new person. This article recommends that you consider a 1000 day calendar and argues that it leads to lasting change, significantly more than what can be achieved by resolutions. You could become very fluent in a new language, you can master a new instrument or you can completely change how strong and fit you are. So if you are experiencing the clarity of midlife, pause to think about how you want to reinvent yourself with disciplined practice for 1000 days.
On to some interesting articles that I read recently
While most of our social feeds have been bombed by a hallucinating AI, this indeed is an exciting time for ML and AI. My favorite small innovation is this engineering student who built a model to convert American Sign Language (ASL) to English.
I have been fascinated by Wim Hof’s methods. But I hate cold showers. Articles like this that gather evidence of the mental and physical benefits of cold showers are finally convincing me to take the plunge.
If the previous section on midlife left you introspecting, you should read this piece on “Why we are never satisfied”. Satisfaction in this article is defined as “What you have”/ “What you want” and the author makes the case for decreasing the denominator. I think the formula should be “Satisfaction” = “what you give”/ “what you want” and in that construct you can work on increasing your numerator and decreasing your denominator.
The importance of being demanding and supportive, in leadership, perhaps even in life.
And finally some tweets that I enjoyed
A moose shedding its Antlers
Morning Brew’s explanation of SVB’s implosion
and of course Matt Levine’s single paragraph summary of the same implosion
this inspiring insight about Jane Austen
National Park Service’s wit in their tweets. Read their responses to comments.
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