Embrace the Weirdness – 7 Takeaways No. 137

Goat, see?
(Image: depositphotos.com)

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1. “Embrace the weirdness”

Don’t Forget How Strange This All Is – David Cain – (Raptitude blog)

This is about noticing as much as it is about realizing how weird everything is. EVERYTHING.

In our world, people sometimes take off all their clothes—or at least as much as society will allow—so that they can get radiation burns from a glowing ball in the sky.

This has serious Strange Planet vibes — viewing the world through atypical language to reveal the absurdity of it all.

Do this: Observe, and embrace.

2. “Bet on yourself”

How to Take Risks in Times of Uncertainty – Polina Pompliano – (YouTube)

This talk is aimed primarily at entrepreneurs and those in the workplace looking to make scary decisions. Ultimately, though, it applies to almost any aspect of life.

Pompliano shares several stories of individuals making scary, life-altering decisions, ultimately leading to great success or deep personal fulfillment. Including her own.

I’m gonna learn so much even if The Profile fails miserably I’ll have learned more than if I just like stay at my job.

Life is full of uncertainty, but it’s definitely navigable.

Do this: Embrace the uncertainty.

3. “You were supposed to sing or to dance”

Be Sincere – Not Serious – Michael Ashcroft – (Every)

One thing I’m realizing as I age is this: life it too short to take so much so seriously. In the long run, very little matters as much as we think it will. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t engage with life, but instead, as the author suggests, be more sincere in our approach, and less serious. The article explains just what he means by that.

I love this metaphor:

The difference between seriousness and sincerity is not how involved you are in the activities of your life, but in how tightly you grip.

I know there are some things I’m still holding on to a little too tightly, and some I wished I’d loosened my grip on earlier.

Do this: Hold on loosely, and enjoy the ride.

4. “Life is so very fragile”

How Will You Choose to Live? – Sahil Bloom – (Curiosity Chronicle newsletter)

I lost someone very close to me a week ago, and this (and the prior) takeaway hit close to home. Bloom defines “Eulogy” virtues — the things people will say at our funeral — and “Resume” virtues — the accomplishments listed on our resume. He then points out both are important, but to differing degrees, and we often prioritize them in the wrong order.

If there’s one thing I learned last week, it’s that life is so very fragile. But no matter how fragile it is, each day, we have a choice of how to live it.


Do this: Make good choices.

5. “Does this shit really matter?”

TSS #082: What’s the Point of Peak Productivity? – Justin Welsh – (The Saturday Solopreneur newsletter)

There’s a bit of a backlash to the so-called “hustle culture” promoted by many online entrepreneurial gurus and celebrities. All that hustle often misses an important point: having a life.

Can’t we shift our focus from ‘doing more’ to ‘doing what matters’?

Instead of optimizing our lives for productivity, can’t we optimize for joy, fulfillment, and impact?

I’ve felt this way often, but it’s very easy — too easy — to get sucked back into the “doing more” mindset.

Do this: Optimize for joy.

6. “Nobody promised you a bullshit-free existence”

The Optimal Amount of B.S. – Tom Greene – (Blog)

An ode to patience and gratitude, using air travel as an example. Air travel is full of bullshit, as the author says, and how we deal with it not only affects those around us, but shows so much about exactly who we are.

When you watch someone totally lose their marbles on a gate agent over a delayed flight, it tells you something about them. It tells you they don’t do travel very well. It tells me they don’t do life very well, either. Cause when things go awry, it doesn’t matter who you are. Or, what your status is. Or, how important you think you are. Delays in travel are normal bullshit. And, losing all your marbles won’t change the outcome. In fact, you’re just making an unfortunate situation worse for everyone. (And, you may never see your luggage again.)

I have witnessed, and benefited from, treating a harried gate agent with kindness and patience, when many around us were not. It’s just the right thing to do.

Do this: Have patience, particularly with life’s inevitable bullshit.

7. “People have malicious intent far less often than we think”

Hanlon’s Razor: Not Everyone is Out to Get You – Shane Parrish – (Farnam Street blog)

Attributed to Robert J. Hanlon, but apparently seen earlier, including even being used by Napoleon, the razor states:

Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.

“Incompetence” has variously been replaced with “stupidity”, “ignorance”, “neglect”, and other characterizations.

The razor is well known, yet under applied. What sets this essay apart is not only the origins and definition but also practical application, including signs it might be called for. It also includes examples of where it might be wrong. But more often than not, it’s quite correct.

Do this: Be very reluctant to “ascribe to malice”.

More random links & thoughts


Recommendo – “6 brief personal recommendations of cool stuff.” — Source of the “Structural Failures” random link this week.

I’m building and keeping a list on the sources page.

What I’m Reading

In progress:


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