Happy Super Bowl Sunday! Here‘s to paying grown men obscene amounts of money to give each other concussions. 🍻
I think Joseph Campbell once said something along the lines of: you can tell what a society values by what their tallest buildings are dedicated to.
Some food for thought. 😉
On the docket for this week:
Hoping to carry my 2022 goals forward through the year, I decided to turn my outcome-oriented goals into process goals. Outcome goals (great for setting direction) are binary, measurable and time bound (eg. Grow my newsletter audience by 5,000 readers). Process goals (great for making progress) are non-binary, iterative, and on-going (eg. Send 2 weekly emails for 25 consecutive weeks).
Below are the process goals that I came up with:
I had a blast learning about social technologies (also called cultural infrastructure) — and how they enable people to work together towards shared goals.
We talked about about how we can use modern technologies to build new ways of belonging, and the importance of third places for cultural thriving.
Third places are locations (between home and work, our “first” and “second” places) where we spend time exchanging ideas, socializing, and building relationships (think coffee or barber shops). This salon made me all the more grateful that I found online third places during the pandemic in the Write of Passage, Interintellect, and Tools for Thought communities.
Social media preys on our need for approval (to be accepted by our tribe) with their “like” counters. Their intermittent reward systems have turned our phones into slot machines. Their algorithm-driven feeds calculate that the invoking of negative emotions (anger, jealousy) keeps users more engaged, so they show us more and more upsetting content with no regard for psychological or societal consequences. (Source)
You may or may not be aware of the recent “crime wave” in Los Angeles — as someone who lives there I can tell you that it has people spooked. This article begs the question are we just being paranoid, or is the city really falling apart?
The answer is: there has been an uptick in criminal but activity, but “the current situation justifies quiet concern not alarm bells”.
I think one of real culprits is news outlets competing with social media in a race to the bottom of our brain stems (ie. leveraging our deeply embedded survival instincts against us).
As someone who can fall into the whiner or victim trap, this matrix made me think more about taking more responsibility for the situations I’ve put myself in. The next time I face adversity in my life, I’m going to try to remember that I have the freedom to choose which quadrant I want to be in.
We can control whether stress reduces or enhances our capacity for life and to perform. If you have any cares or values or passions, you are inevitably going to experience stress.
Stanford’s Dr. Alia Crum suggests a three-step “stress enhancing mindset” for using that stress to energize yourself into action: 1. Acknowledge stress 2. Welcome stress (find what it is you care about) 3. Utilize stress response (to achieve thing you care about)
I wrote at length about reframing our stress response in my article, The Right Amount of Stress Is Called Stimulation.
If everyone were vegan, only a quarter of current farmland would be needed (Source)
Totally worth it.
Extra thanks to Jeffrey Bezos.