Happy August! Last week I was in Collegeville, Minnesota for a week of writing. I made some great progress in starting to shape what I hope will be book #3. This is the exciting part because it can go in so many different directions, but it's not without its stresses--it can be hard to find a foothold with something so nebulous. My mantra at this stage is Augustine's "It is solved by walking." The only way out is through.
Currently I'm on a road trip with the kids and my father-in-law through the upper Midwest and a bit of Canada on our way to Maine, where Robert will join us for a week. Can't wait to see him!
So without further ado--here's what's been interesting me lately:
Have you ever wondered what cities or countries sit on the same latitude as you? Wonder no more!
A coaching client sent this to me, perhaps knowing that it's like catnip for me:
So what is motivation, exactly? The author Steven Pressfield has a great line in his book, The War of Art, which I think gets at the core of motivation. To paraphrase Pressfield, “At some point, the pain of not doing it becomes greater than the pain of doing it.”
In other words, at some point, it is easier to change than to stay the same. It is easier to take action and feel insecure at the gym than to sit still and experience self-loathing on the couch. It is easier to feel awkward while making the sales call than to feel disappointed about your dwindling bank account.
This, I think, is the essence of motivation.
Much more at the link.
It’s not a pipeline problem. It’s about loneliness,
competition and deeply rooted barriers.
These are breathtaking. A favorite:
Emotional and physical abuse are clear-cut grounds for divorce, but they aren’t the most common causes of failing marriages, at least the ones I hear about. What’s the more typical villain? Change.
Feeling oppressed by change or lack of change; it’s a tale as old as time. Yet at some point in any long-term relationship, each partner is likely to evolve from the person we fell in love with into someone new — and not always into someone cuter or smarter or more fun. Each goes from rock climber to couch potato, from rebel to middle manager, and from sex crazed to sleep obsessed.
Nostalgia, which fuels our resentment toward change, is a natural human impulse. And yet being forever content with a spouse, or a street, requires finding ways to be happy with different versions of that person or neighborhood.
I genuinely like the mid-40s version of the guy I met more than half my life ago. That's a good thing.
More catnip for MaryAnn. I'm with those who says it comes from regular work + curiosity:
tl;dr is that teens spend way more time alone than they used to, and they report being much less happy. There's more, but that's a big finding.
This has inspired some conversation with my co-parent, who read this and was ready to chuck our kids' devices out the window. I expect a more measured but decisive response from us. This article paints a serious picture. Disclaimer that I hate the sensational title, and I just now realized it's by Jean Twenge, whose stuff about the narcissism of millenials has always felt suspiciously convenient to me. (Incidentally, we've already implemented the nighttime charging station for all the devices. It's a positive change all around.)
These are so cool:
Oy. An important read:
Is racism in law enforcement the problem of a few bad apples, or is the system as a whole rotten?
A new working paper looking at police officer discretion in speeding tickets in Florida tries to answer this question — and it finds that the answer is somewhere in between. In total, the number of police officers who show racial bias in the study is around 25 percent — not all cops, but still a fairly high number.
One finding of note: the fine for a speeding ticket goes up if you're going 10 mph or more over the speed limit. White people were much more likely to get tickets for going 9 mph over the speed limit than people of color.
10. The World as 100 People, Over the Last Two Centuries
Let me leave you with some reasons to cheer. Not everything is getting worse. In fact, many things are much much better. A reason for celebration, but also for vigilance to keep it that way.