“If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery–isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.”
Phil Knight writes in his memoir Shoe Dog that he wanted to be himself full-time, not that he didn’t like his PriceWaterHouse job “but it just wasn’t me” he writes.
Do you want to be yourself full-time and not have to pretend to be someone else, if you are working for somebody you must be someone else most of the day and only at nights and weekends you get to experience your true self but even that gets harder if you are spending that time worrying about why your work is not play, why you are not tap dancing to work, what brought you here and how can you get out of that box?
If you are pretending to be someone you are not with your own family, then you are toast anyway, no point trying to fix your work life, first go and figure out personal life issues. You cannot produce your best work.
“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken (Oscar Wilde)” is easy to quote and should be even easier to practice, fire is always fire, it doesn’t pretend to be water, why do we humans struggle?
“Swadharme Nidhanam Shreyaha Para Dharmo Bhayavahaha”
श्रेयान्स्वधर्मो विगुण: परधर्मात्स्वनुष्ठितात् |
स्वधर्मे निधनं श्रेय: परधर्मो भयावह: || 35||
śhreyān swa-dharmo viguṇaḥ para-dharmāt sv-anuṣhṭhitāt
swa-dharme nidhanaṁ śhreyaḥ para-dharmo bhayāvahaḥ
It is far better to perform one’s natural prescribed duty, though tinged with faults, than to perform another’s prescribed duty, though perfectly. In fact, it is preferable to die in the discharge of one’s duty, than to follow the path of another, which is fraught with danger.
Look at me, don’t get distracted. Why are you so distracted? Mindfulness yada yada is all about this one simple thing, don’t fall to the myth of multi-tasking. Be fully present and immersed in that book, that article, that blog post, that song, that artwork, that movie, that pastry, doesn’t matter how trivial or how important!
Wherever you are, be there.Jim Rohn
Ikigai, a Japanese concept which means a reason for being, literally translated to “reason to live”. What’s your reason to live? What is your reason to wake up in the morning?
At first, I didn’t see the connection between Ikigai and starting small, one of the pillars of Ikigai. To live a life of purpose, one need not imagine a grand vision of being the best or biggest or the fastest at something but it’s important to start small but with a purpose behind it and continuously improving it over months and years.
Art for art’s sake is absolutely important. What is the point of rationalizing art, isn’t art a matter of the heart. Shouldn’t true art come from the heart. Absolutely. But if art doesn’t console and comfort people when they are disturbed or shake things up when they are feeling too comfortable, is it really art or is it just an amalgamation of random ideas?
Our struggles in life are not because we don’t have talent, not because we don’t know what to do but because we don’t do what we know. We lack the discipline to build good habits. Talent is overrated, just as someone said 99% perspiration, 1% inspiration is the recipe for success, I would say 99% habit and 1% talent is the recipe for success in this new world where the distractions are many. There is a ding on the phone every minute, distractions are limitless, habits are limited. You can only make so many habits, you better choose the right ones that will help you make progress towards your goals. The choice is yours.
I have often heard people say, you are the masters of your destiny and the captain of your soul. I have heard people say we are defined by our choices. I will admit that not everything is our choice, there are circumstances in life that are way beyond our control. The choice to pay attention to them or not is in our control.
On Creating Fuels and Chemicals For The Next 100 Years and The Importance Of Accessible Role Models
Karthish Manthiram is an Assistant Professor in Chemical Engineering at MIT. The Manthiram Lab at MIT is focused on the molecular engineering of electrocatalysts for the synthesis of organic molecules, including pharmaceuticals, fuels, and commodity chemicals, using renewable feedstocks. Karthish’s research and teaching have been recognized with several awards, including Forbes 30 Under 30 in Science.
Everyday ask yourself “How am I being useful to this world”–Madhav SBSS
Notion, a neat tool that packs a lot of things into one app. Todo lists, documents, spreadsheets, team collaboration but is it too busy? Is it trying to do too many things, is it trying to be a Swiss Army Knife?
Spark email – love your email again. I like the app, it combines good features from Gmail, Yahoo and other popular email apps into one. Their Smart View option is interesting, it bubbles up email that is more important or relevant to the top of the inbox, instead of a reverse chronological order.
SuperHuman – what’s the big deal with this email app, why is it invite only for ever? I don’t know, interesting thing is no app has been able to monetize email clients. They certainly are doing something right!
Elevate brain games app – Not a recent find, I have been playing the games for a couple of years quite regularly, it takes just a few minutes to complete a session and I enjoy the challenges and visuals.
Flipboard – news personalized for me, hyper curated. Love the ease of use and relevancy of the articles to my tastes.
raagabox – connecting humans through music. Well, this is a website and app I have been maintaining for over a decade now. It gives me so much joy to listen to the beautiful voices of many of my close friends and family.
mint – not a day goes by without checking my portfolio, networth, bills and expenses in this cool little app that has been around for over a decade and hasn’t changed much. UX could be better but I won’t complain, it’s free and it connects to all my banks, investments, real estate and does a decent job of giving me clarity on my finances. It’s time someone developed nextmint that actually personalizes financial planning, is free like mint!
Google Voice – I don’t like most of Google products, with the exception of their Search, Maps and Docs. I have to say Google Voice is a blessing for those who need to call international at cheap rates and get the reliable service. My monthly telephone bills have dropped by 5 times.
Stockpile – a cool little app that I have given to my kids so that they can learn the value of investing in stocks. The app allows them to invest in partial shares, for example, even with $100 they can own AMZN stock which is trading at $2388.55 today.
digit.co is interesting, it is kind of like Acorns. It has been around for over a decade, it connects to your checking account and pulls small amounts of money regularly into a rainy day account.
We didn’t think of it as a business, we thought of it as a venture. We wanted to do it for a couple of years and then become cross country truck drivers.
A lot of our problems would be solved if we made the ice creams shittier.
Business is essentially “busyness”, it’s mostly commonsense and lot of work.
We ran a promotion in winter called “Penny Off Per Celsius degree Below Zero Winter Extravaganza (POPCBZWE)”.
Ben and Jerry are two great friends and amazing citizens of the world delivering happiness by the pint, under $5
Random tweet (credit: Marche’ Lawton) about Ben and Jerry, haven’t fact checked but if it is true I’m definitely buying more chunky monkeys as well
Notes and Links
On following ones curiosity, being comfortable with not fitting in and taking care of his next patient
Dr. Sreekanth is a leading Neurologist at Apollo Hospitals Hyderabad. He received his MD from All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and DM in Neurology from Institute of Medical Sciences at Chandigarh. Teaching medical students is one of his passions, he has been actively teaching and advising students over 10 years.