Reading Time: 42 minutes

2021

  • Enlightenment Now – Stephen Pinker 9/10 πŸ”‘
    • The world is depicted as a vale of tears, a tale of woe, a slough of despond. Saving the lives of billions, eradicating disease, feeding the hungry? Bo-ring
    • Optimism Gap “That can’t happen to me, my life is rosy. It’s the rest of America that is in shambles.”
    • Availability errors/heuristic “First-year medical students interpret every rash as a symptom of an exotic disease and vacationers stay out of the water if they have just seen Jaws.”
    • Carl Bosch and Fritz Haber used methane and steam to pull nitrogen out of the air, turning it into fertilizer thus saving over 2.7 billion lives from famine
    • In two-hundred years, the rate of extreme poverty in the world has tanked from 90% to 10%, with almost half that decline occurring in the last thirty-five years
    • The human mind, with its recursive combinatorial power, can explore an infinite space of ideas, and is not limited by the quantity of any particular kind of stuff in the ground. When one idea no longer works, another can take its place.
    • Tech is dematerializing the world by enabling the sharing economy so that cars, tools, and bedrooms needn’t be made in huge numbers that sit around unused most of the time.
    • As countries get richer, they become less vulnerable to civil war. Governments can afford to provide services like health care, education, and policing and thus outcompete rebels for the allegiance of their citizens and they can regain control of the frontier regions that warlords, mafias, and guerrillas stakeout
    • An expansion of policing and criminal punishment explains a good part of the Great American Crime De line of the 1990’s. An effective rule of law, based on legitimate law enforcement, victim protection, swift and fair adjudication, moderate punishment, and humane prisons is critical to sustainable reductions in lethal violence.
    • Education/literacy as a flagship of human progress. The more educated, the less racist, sexist, xenophobic, authoritarian. More likely to vote, volunteer, express views, belong to civic associations such as unions and community orgs. Also likelier to trust fellow citizens, a prime ingredient of the precious elixir called social capital.
    • Happiness isn’t everything. We can make choices that leave us unhappy in the short term but fulfilled over the course of a life, such as raising a child, writing a book, or fighting for a worthy cause.
    • When the Enlightenment began, a third of the children born in the richest parts of the world died before their fifth birthday; today, that fate befalls 6 percent of. the children in the poorest parts
    • Progress consists of deploying knowledge to allow all of humankind to flourish in the same way that each of us seeks to flourish. The goal of maximizing human flourishing – life, health, happiness, freedom, knowledge, love, richness of experience may be called humanism.
    • As people’s lives become more secure thanks to affluence, medical care and social insurance, they no longer pray to God to save them from ruin: countries with stronger safety nets are less religious. When people become more intellectually curious and scientifically literate, they stop believing in miracles.
    • One needn’t debate what religion is worse, what matters is how literally the adherents take them.
    • Humanism: 1) Reason 2) Science 3) Progress
  • Caffeine – Michael Pollan 7/10 πŸ”‘
    • Caffeine consumption is ubiquitous, even in the form of soda given to children
    • Caffeine suppresses adenosine, the chemical that makes us sleepy
    • China was first to consume it in the form of tea in 1000BC, then the use of caffeine in coffee came towards 850AD in Ethiopia
    • Before water was safe to drink everywhere, coffee and tea (boiled) were the safest bets for much of the world
    • Coffee houses embraced the Enlightenment, sharing of ideas and rationalism to progress humanity forward
    • By slightly narrowing our stream of consciousness, caffeine has, in its own way, helped shape the modern world
  • A History of God – Karen Armstrong 5/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Abrahamic Religions: Christianity, Judaism, Islam
    • Abraham’s first son, Isaac, escaped sacrifice (common among Pagan religions) as he was Gods gift
    • Yahweh = God origins
    • The ten commandments were delivered to Moses on Mount Sinai (burning bush ~ acacia tree?)
    • Yahweh was a jealous and fear-based God who was “One and unique” and other gods were a threat
    • The holy wars have scarred the history of monotheism. Instead of making God a symbol to challenge our prejudice and force us to contemplate our own shortcomings, it can be used to endorse our egotistic hatred and make it absolute. It makes God behave exactly like us, as though he were simply another human being.
    • “The whole point of God was to encourage a sense of the mystery and wonder of life, not to find neat solutions”
    • It was not until the 4th century that Jesus’ followers decided he had been divine, the doctrine that Jesus had been God in human form was not finalized until that point.
    • Nobody expected religion to be a challenge or to provide an answer to the meaning of life. People turned to philosophy for that kind of enlightenment. People worshipped the gods to ask for help during a crisis, it was based on emotion, not on ideology or consciously adopted theory.
    • Muhammad became a jealous monotheist, and shirk (idolatry; literally, associating other beings with al-Lah) became the greatest sin of Islam (along with the worship of materialism)
    • “If we claimed to understand God, that would mean that he was finite and imperfect”
    • Religion, like art, often consists of a dialogue with the past in order to find a perspective from which to view the present

2020

  • Fahrenheit 451 – Ray Bradbury 10/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • A story is about the author; it is about the world the author sees and deals with and lives in; it is about the words chosen and the way those words are deployed
    • Social means talking about important ideas, not getting a bunch of people to talk in circles
    • We’re force fed with a firehose from day one – running answers at you for memory, pouring water down a spout telling you it’s wine when it may not be
    • Many people feel a lack of choice as they feel only products of a circumstance
    • “Out of the nursery into the college and back to the nursery; there’s your intellectual pattern for the past five centuries or more.”
    • The zipper displaces the button and a man lacks just that much time to think while dressing at dawn, a philosophical hour, and thus a melancholy hour
    • A layman only asks how, never why – don’t give the people any slippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie themselves up with. Cram them full of non-combustible data, chock them so damned full of ‘facts’ they feel stuffed
    • The good part of dying is when you’ve nothing to lose, you run any risk you want
    • Books remind us what fools we are – yet provide us the opportunity to travel the world, talk with the greatest minds, and live great lives that have already passed
    • The devil will cite scripture for his purpose
    • A dwarf on a giants shoulders sees the furthest of the two
    • It doesn’t matter what you do so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that’s like you after you take your hands away
    • Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day, sleeping it’s life away. To hell with that, he said, shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass
    • With memory, knowledge, patience and skill. By looking yourself in the mirror, you can win out in the long run

  • Shoedog (reread) – Phil Knight 10/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • To understand how you fit into the puzzle, you must first see the bigger picture
    • To study the self is to forget the self
    • Place as much value on recovery as you place on work
    • Family will always come first, life is dangerous – be prepared
    • Confidence is greater than cash
    • Happiness is a how, not a what
    • Always be an avid student and do your best to share the knowledge
    • Easier to be a big fish in a small pond
    • Change can be slow “In one year, this bamboo will be one foot taller”
    • β€œSeek a calling. Even if you don’t know what that means, seek it. If you’re following your calling, the fatigue will be easier to bear, the disappointments will be fuel, the highs will be like nothing you’ve ever felt.”

  • Flow – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Flow: A state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else matters
    • To overcome the anxieties of everyday life one must become independent of the social environment and cease to rely on external stimuli
    • A combination of personal differentiation and relational integration can increase unique skillsets and intellectual perspectives
    • Flow provides discovery, creativity, new realities, higher performance and new levels of consciousness
    • People who can enjoy themselves in a variety of situations can reduce mental activity and screen out stimulation to focus only on what they decide is relevant at that moment
    • Through freely chosen discipline life can be enjoyed, control desires because you want to
    • Natural state of the mind is chaos – if left alone without focus it will reveal itself
    • Writing gives the mind disciplined means of expression, helps analyze experiences, brings self-communication that brings order to them
    • Enjoyment and quality of experience depend on increasing complexity
    • “It is the improvident use of our leisure, that the greatest wastes of American life occur
    • No trait is more essential for survival than the ability to transform adversity into an enjoyable challenge
    • Create meaning by bringing order to the contents of the mind through integration of action

  • Brave New World – Aldous Huxley 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Everything appears like a good idea to a sheep
    • Social stability is only as stable as those who fall victim to circumstance allow
    • Deconditioning a natural reflex will yield identical copies
    • The dichotomy of consumption enables great opportunities for differences between people
    • Soma: Any substance of distraction from life or goals
    • The desire for meaning post-life is in all of us
    • There is value in being a cell outside the social body
    • Social bodies persist though the component cells change
    • No matter how good an opportunity, there will be the “other” voice
    • Suffering can be a cause of joy
    • Unorthodoxy threatens society itself
    • The purpose of life is not the maintenance of well-being, but some intensification and refining of consciousness, some enlargement of knowledge
    • Excessive leisure may not be a virtue to all

  • A Mans Search For Meaning – Viktor Frankl 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Creating meaning 1. Creating work or doing a deed 2. Experiencing something or encountering someone 3. Attitude taken towards unavoidable suffering
    • He who has a why to live can bear almost any how
    • Your choice will always be under your control, the freedom to choose an attitude in any given set of circumstances
    • Suffering will fill any container in which you allow it, no matter how big or small
    • Extremely difficult situations give man the opportunity to grow spiritually
    • Detaching from yourself affords the opportunity the overcome sufferings of a moment
    • Every moment is an individualized experience only you can answer with action and responsible conduct to create meaning
    • Mental health is the tension between what one has already achieved and what one still ought to accomplish, seek striving and struggling for a worthwhile goal freely chosen
    • In the past nothing is irretrievably lost, rather irrevocably stored
    • With great freedom comes great responsibility
    • Happiness cannot be pursued; it must ensue. One must have a reason to be happy. We are not on a pursuit of happiness but are in search of a reason to be happy

  • The Omnivores Dilemma – Michael Pollan 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The story of life is a competition among species to capture and store as much energy as possible (sun–>plants–>plant eaters–>etc)
    • Fixing nitrogen allowed the food chain to go from biology to industry, growing at whatever rate we desire by using petroleum (fertilizer)
    • After government stop granting loans and provided subsidies, they removed the market price for corn – creating an immeasurable phony demand in where farmers buy more equipment and fertilizer to grow more corn and soybeans even when the demand isn’t there
    • As a result, corn has found it’s way into everything, mass production, efficient machines, and repackaged/rebranded cheap material has led to an epidemic of non-natural food choices – and is now being pushed through the meat we eat
    • We inhabit the same microbial ecosystem of the animals we eat – grass fed > corn/steroid/antibiotic/living in feces
    • The more ingredients in your food the easier it is to sub cheaper product without altering prices
    • Carbon from corn in McDonalds: soda-100%, milkshake-78%, salad dressing-65%, chicken nuggets-56%
    • Dow/Monsanto went from manufacturing agent orange to farm fertilizer
    • Accepting we don’t know it all can help us from oversimplifying and searching for magic fix pills
    • When buying local sourced more natural sources for food, the higher price justifies the external costs not accounted for in industrial operations (health, animal life, environmental)
    • “Farming is not adapted to large-scale operations because: Farming is concerned with plants and animals that live, grow, and die.”
    • Design systems around natural predilections rather than around the requirements of unnatural demand
    • A cat would die of hunger upon heaps of fruits or grain, even though it could nourish itself on the food it disdains if it made up its mind to try some
    • If you are unaware you will not perceive the role of each ingredient in the dynamic architecture for the grand scheme
    • Dreams of innocence are just that, they usually depend on a denial reality that can be its own form of hubris
    • What we eat is truly the body of the world

  • Life Principles – Ray Dalio 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Embrace reality and deal with it – be a hyperrealist
    • Be radically open-minded and radically transparent
    • Primary purpose of every living thing is to contribute to evolution
    • To gain anything you must forfeit something
    • Spending time on design is short term suboptimal but long term beneficial
    • Be evidence based and encourage others to do the same
    • Control your fight or flight responses with higher level thinking
    • Shapers/thinkers are intensely curious
    • No correlation between happiness and conventional markers of success
    • Choose great time tested material over new flashy
    • Be decisive and create processes for efficient systems and machines
    • View yourself as a machine in which you are in control over
    • View yourself as a machine programmed to carry out processes
    • Understand and relate to natures practical lessons

  • Stillness is the Key – Ryan Holiday 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • A wealth of information creates a poverty of attention
    • To improve in any area you must be willing to appear stupid in extraneous matters
    • Think complicated, wrestle with big ideas, doubt your own narrative
    • Save energy and mental space, write things down
    • Become brilliant by asking questions “Why do you think that?”
    • A person enslaved to urges is not free
    • Discipline creates freedom
    • Leave energy for higher thoughts by automating day-to-day decisions
    • Step back and analyze yourself to have better relationships with loved ones and yourself
    • Leisure is any action we enjoy
    • “No one is making you do this” – in that is freedom

  • Never Split the Difference – Chris Voss (Audio) 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Universal primal urges are to be understood and accepted (Safe/secure/in control)
    • Focus on intense listening – smile – slow down – use intent filled voice
    • Repeat last or critical three words of what someone else said to mirror effectively
    • Use tactical empathy, pay attention to tone and body language
    • Labels: It seems/sounds/looks like ____ (validating someones emotion)
    • Neutralize the negative (Look I’m an asshole)
    • Accusation audit (Eminem 8-mile tell these people something they don’t know about me)
    • Trigger a no (Is now a bad time to talk?)
    • Set an emotional anchor before extreme offer and use a range
    • Use what and how questions – rarely why
    • 7% content 38% tone of voice 55% body language
    • Use your own name and self deprecate to seem human
    • Deflect punches “no” becomes “How am I supposed to do that?”

  • The Science of Good and Evil – Michael Shermer 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Society nor people created morals, and they are unalienable because our species deny them to be forgotten
    • Holding yourself to be true to β€œjudges” of friends, family, community, is a transcendent moral idea
    • Religion codified and prospered from inherent morality, both theists and non-theists or atheists agree on similar moral principles
    • Part of America’s success certainly should be attributed to the separation of church and state
    • Gossip evolved as a system to measure trust, religion expanded this
    • Humans process information by categorization to apply to a learned set of pattern processing
    • One could make the argument that every act ever was inspired by a person trying to complete (in their perception) a good act
    • Science puts all objective actions and behaviors on a β€œscale” i.e. animals on morality scale
    • It is just as much human nature to be moral as it is to be hungry, tired, horny or in love
    • Diffusion of responsibility further down the string of communication or command
    • We are animals and act accordingly to survive in any environment with what tools and resources we possess at the moment
    • Human freedom arises out of the ignorance of causes and casual events/variables for themself and anyone else
    • Nothing is more seductive for a man than his freedom of conscience, yet nothing is a greater cause of suffering
    • The evolution of morality serves to prove that it is a piece of human evolution
    • Is embryo transfer anymore β€œungodly” than abortion? What point do human rights begin?
    • The act of giving produces high levels of dopamine

  • The Sports Gene – David Epstein 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The difference between experts and novices were in the way they had learned to perceive the game, the ability to recognize patterns and chunk information
    • Pros not only practiced more, but took responsibility for practicing better as well
    • The difference between experts and novices were in the way they had learned to perceive the game, the ability to recognize patterns and chunk information
    • Pros not only practiced more, but took responsibility for practicing better as well
    • The stronger larger sex within a species is attributed to which sex has the higher potential reproductive rate
    • We all have talents, and sometimes those talents are hidden and you have to dare to try something new or you might not know what you’re good at
    • “The rich get richer” when the hardware is available the download speed can be greater, the harder the training the less likely there are to be non-responders
    • Design training programs around an athletes natural predilection
    • Each kg of bone has a general limit of how many kg’s of muscle it can support
    • Men ages twenty to forty over 7’0″ — 17% are in the NBA right now
    • Sickle-cell trait and low hemoglobin are evolutionary adaptations to malaria
    • Brains can be genetically wired for grit/determination
    • Without both genes and environments, there are no outcomes
    • BDNF is elevated when people learn a motor skill, it’s also a signal that coordinates the reorganization of the brain

  • Everything’s Eventual – Stephen King 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Autopsy Room Four
    • The Man in the Black Suit
    • All That You Love Will Be Carried Away
    • The Death of Jack Hamilton
    • In the Deathroom
    • The Little Sisters of Eluria
    • Everything’s Eventual
    • L.T.’s Theory of Pets
    • The Road Virus Heads North
    • Lunch at the Gotham Cafe
    • That Feeling
    • 1408
    • Riding the Bullet
    • Luckey Quarter

  • The Pleasure of Finding Things Out – Richard Feynman 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • There is a large difference between knowing the name of something and truly understanding it
    • Live with doubt, be uncertain, juxtapose your own ideas
    • Great thinkers can present new ideas, discuss objectively/unattached, and move forward with the best decisions
    • One of the greatest dangers to society is the idea of thought control, science provides power in knowledge but does not include instructions on what is moral and what is not
    • “Universe View” our unique place and time in history, the enormous range of possibilities for arranged atoms in space
    • Open discussions of differing ideas keeps the mind sharp, our ideas should constantly be placed on the chopping block, finding which will stand the test of time: a trial and error system
    • There is no learning without posed questions, most of our actions are based on incomplete knowledge, it is possible to live and not know
    • Leave the door of doubt open to allow for progress, we are only at the beginning of the development of the human race and mind, it is our responsibility not to give the answer today as to what it is all about
    • The transfer of energy is the process of life and existence
    • All science roads can lead to “because the sun is shining” if you ask why enough
    • The first principle is to not fool yourself, because you are the easiest person to fool
    • The Human Problem: If I do this, what will happen? Do I want that to happen and what value would come of it?

  • The Power of Habit – Charles Duhigg 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The brain converts sequence of actions into chunks that require less mental effort
    • Habits, memory and reason are the roots of behavior
    • Unless you deliberately fight a habit, it will automatically unfold
    • Cue, Action, Reward: Habit
    • If there is a habit that needs changed, you have to find a new activity to replace it
    • Bill Wilson founded AA after an intense hallucinogenic experience
    • In order for things to ever get better, you have to truly believe there is opportunity for change
    • Don’t fall victim to the Law of Triviality (obsessing over trivial details)
    • “A capacity for obsessiveness” to describe Phelps, MJ, etc.
    • The best way to strengthen willpower is to practice it, willpower can occur without conscious effort – work it like a muscle and it will become stronger
    • Plan ahead for inflection points so that decisions aren’t necessary
    • Give employees a sense of agency, inspire them to police themselves
    • The only real power of habit comes after you have the ability to recognize what your habits are

  • Way of the Peaceful Warrior – Dan Millman 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Learn disciplines, ways of seeing the world
    • Life is the only real teacher, but the lessons of experience are hidden – not all old people are wise. You have to learn how to turn knowledge into wisdom
    • Knowledge has limitations, it has no heart – no amount of knowledge will nourish or sustain your spirit
    • To see where something leads, it’s best to wait until you reach the end
    • When we don’t get what we want, we suffer – when we get what we want, we suffer. Our minds are our predicament
    • You don’t have to do anything except stop seeing the world from the viewpoint of your own personal cravings
    • Attention is the intentional channeling of awareness
    • Live like an infant, treating every experience as new
    • Embody what you teach, and teach only what you have embodied
    • We all have a terminal illness: it’s called birth – be happy without reason, or you never will be at all

  • Freakonomics – Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Incentives are the motivation behind almost every choice
    • Real estate agents incentives may not always be aligned with sellers
    • The dissemination of information levels all playing fields, if you want the upper hand in a situation – gain more information
    • Experts need journalists just as bad as journalists need experts
    • The prize of making it to the top selling drugs is similar to gamblers or MLM scheme’s advertising the big money to be made at the top “Lottery Bias”
    • Causation or correlation with crime rates and abortion in Roe vs. Wade to the 90’s
    • Additional police, do indeed substantially lower crime rates
    • “Signal” theory of small nuances that compound to larger issues (make your bed, broken windows in NY)
    • Can we make the drug problem an economic problem for good? Lower prices = Less violence. Increase supply?
    • Low maternal education is the single most powerful factor leading to criminality
    • Students who opted out of their district school were more likely to graduated, likely because they had ambition
    • The black-white income gap is largely a product of black-white education gap, and the mothers age at the birth of her first child. To promote equality – promote education to disenfranchised communities and single/young mothers
    • Regression Analysis: Isolating two variables out of many
    • It’s not a matter of what you do as a parent as much as it’s about who you are
    • Syllogism: All cats die; Socrates died; therefore Socrates was a cat

  • Born to Run – Christopher McDougall 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • There’s something so universal about running, the way it unites to primal impulses: fear and pleasure. We run when we’re scared, we run when we’re ecstatic, we run away from problems or run for a good time
    • Life is a game, you never know how hard it will be. You never know when it will end. You can’t control it. You can only adjust.
    • You can’t muscle your way through a five hour run, you have to relax into it. Until you no longer resist the shock and begin to enjoy it.
    • Running was evolutionary. You ran to eat. To avoid being eaten. To find a mate. To start a new life. We weren’t born to run, we were born because we run.
    • Let us live so that when we come to die, even the undertaker will be sorry
    • Beyond the very extreme of fatigue and distress, we may find amounts of ease and power we never dreamed ourselves to own; sources of strength taxed at all because we never pushed through the obstruction
    • Human anatomy was designed around the ability to run – foot arches, achilles tendon, springy muscles meant for long duration bouts
    • Treat running as an art: Easy – light footed – swift
    • Our ability to sweat separates us from other running animals, our stable form allows for controlled breathing
    • Running is the only athletic field where sixty-four-year-olds can compete with nineteen-year-olds. We are remarkable machines built to run

  • Attention Merchants – Tim Wu 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Time is the one resource that we are always spending
    • Modern day technology is programmed to absorb us using our biology
    • Our experiences in this world are what we agree to pay attention to
    • Look now! Pay later…
    • Inconsistent reward systems of media create addiction
    • Social media is the same as social grooming in primates
    • The closer we feel to a program or show, the easier to live vicariously
    • Media has made us lose the bubble of private life people once enjoyed inside their homes

  • Beyond Training – Ben Greenfield 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • With anaerobic and interval training combine for endurance capability
    • Polarized Training: 80/20 (Pareto principle) where 80% of training is below aerobic threshold and 20% is incredibly intense, above VT2 threshold
    • Endurance trains central, cardiovascular system – while HIIT works on peripheral muscle fitness
    • Stress is stress – whether from training or life, and endurance athletes tend to lean towards the accumulation of too much cortisol leading to adrenal fatigue and hosts of other issues
    • Use Tabata sets combined with super slow and controlled exercises twice per week
    • Goal of weight training should be to train the body to be able to recruit multiple motor units firing all at onceBeta (12+Hz), Alpha (8-12Hz FLOW state), Theta (3-8Hz), Delta (0.1-3Hz)
    • “Ancestral Athlete” – stay continually active, do routine maintenance, always be ready
    • Necessity of strength in “ultra-endurance” events more than just cardio
    • Training for power trains your nervous system more than the actual muscles
    • Always use dynamic stretching before workouts
    • Relearn how to breathe – and stress the importance of deep breathing throughout the day
    • Try to be in bed by 10:30pm so that recovery and rebuilding is in full stride by 2:00am-6:00am
    • Cycle caffeine : 3 weeks on 1 week off
    • High fat, lower carb diets are proven in endurance athletics to be superior for training
    • Fast to give your body a chance to reset, a break from the constant onslaught of food
    • Liquids beat solids in racing fuel for runners
    • Don’t let training get into the way of the more important things in life, train efficiently for that reason

  • Good to Great – Jim Collins 8/10πŸ”‘ 
    • “That’s what makes death so hard – unsatisfied curiosity.”
    • Greatness is a function of circumstances. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice.
    • You must maintain unwavering faith that you can and will prevail in the end – but do not confuse that with facing the brutal facts of reality that lay ahead
    • Mix extreme humility with intense ‘plow-horse’ like work ethic
    • Find the right people, establish an efficient machine, make consistent improvements, then find a purpose – in that order
    • Create management environments in which debates are encouraged and transparency is of most importance throughout the chain
    • Want to learn more? Ask better questions
    • Hedgehog Concept: Keep the main thing, the main thing (What can you be the best in the world at? What drives your economic engine? What are you deeply passionate about?)
    • Pick your economic denominator…profit / x (walgreens–> profit / customer visit)
    • Disciplined action without self-disciplined people is impossible to sustain, and disciplined action without disciplined thought is a recipe for disaster
    • Align interests of all employees throughout every level (10 commandments)
    • You don’t have to be first, but you do have to be the best
    • ‘Flywheel’ principle – never one big event, rather a culmination of many small actions
    • Each piece of a system reinforces the other parts of the system to form an integrated whole that is much more powerful than the sum of individual parts
    • “We run best at the end” – effort based positive feedback loop to inspire more action
    • In the end, it is impossible to have a great life unless it is a meaningful life – and it is very difficult to have a meaningful life without meaningful work. Perhaps your hand in creating a unique contribution of excellence will afford you the deepest satisfaction of all: knowing that your short time here on this earth has been well spent, and that it mattered.

  • Exhalation – Ted Chiang 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • What you do today is either gifting or stealing from your future self
    • Coincidence and intention are two sides of the same coin
    • We exist by creating disorder in the universe
    • The process of energy transfer is inevitable for everyone, it’s up to us to decide what to do in between
    • What makes you has also made everything in existence
    • You only will ever complete something when you feel like you have no choice
    • Writing enables speaking as brick laying enables road systems
    • At what point is the pursuit of a truth non-beneficial
    • It can be hard to make sense of any behavior different from your own

  • Elon Musk: Biography – Ashlee Vance 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Inspire ownership through passion
    • When you are relentless towards something, you will break through
    • Work efficiently and then structure the desire, not vice-versa
    • Prioritize in chaos and then execute a plan
    • Always thirst for knowledge
    • Free/conceptual thought will take you a long way
    • Surround yourself with talent

  • Work Principles – Ray Dalio 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Create an environment in which ideas thrive (Idea Meritocracy)
    • Work with people you want to, treat them like family, have fun
    • Power should lie in the reasoning, not a title or position
    • Money is a byproduct of excellence
    • There should be no hierarchy of criticism
    • Make your passion and work one in the same
    • Every rule has an exception – operate by majority rules
    • Fundamental law of nature that you become stronger doing difficult things
    • In a meaningful relationship you hold each other accountable and speak openly
    • Most people operate to get as much money by doing as little as possible
    • Recognize that conflicts are essential for great relationships
    • Belief weight peoples opinions based on topic expertise
    • Do –> Then say
    • If you give someone a question they will give you an answer, be weary of whom you ask
    • Look for people who ask great questions
    • Experience creates internalized learning
    • People tend to be more defensive than self critical
    • Learn to experience the thrills of success during the pain of the process

  • 1984 – George Orwell 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • When erasing history becomes acceptable it is time to worry
    • Totalitarianism can gradually be progressed to the point of “Big Brother” always watching
    • Through thought we are able to fall outside of fine lines which contain the masses
    • The ideas of one entity can be distributed throughout many, transcending one lifetime and becoming culture
    • By stripping an individual of spare time for thought there is less likelihood of any rebels
    • The ‘telescreens’ watching you constantly is an eery reminder for what happens today
    • Free think can be drowned with substance and the freedom of speech should be the utmost priority

  • Sapiens – Yuval Noah Harari 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Most notable revolutions in history (years BP): Cognitive (~500k), Agriculture (12000), Scientific (500), Industrial (200)
    • Interbreeding theory – explaining why Neanderthal DNA is still present today (~700k-300k BP)
    • Language, stories, myths have given humans the ability to cooperate at an unprecedented rate towards progress as a species
    • Symbiosis of multiple species is possible as both cooperate for the longevity of the individual and species
    • Changes of great magnitude must be accomplished with idealogical movements or complex organizations, you alone will not effect the backing of something deeply rooted in culture
    • “Biology enables, culture forbids”
    • How and why is the hierarchy of culture set up to the current place we are today?
    • Religions purpose as a great unifier (mono/polytheism and how they are still at work today even in Catholicism –Saint hood under the umbrella of God)
    • The dichotomy of good and evil is present everywhere
    • Religion is a system of human norms and values that is founded on a belief in superhuman order
    • “We study history…to understand that our present situation is neither natural nor inevitable, and that we consequently have many more possibilities before us than we imagine.”
    • The willingness to admit ignorance is the only way to learn – before the scientific revolution premodern traditions such as Islam, Christianity, Buddhism and Confucianism asserted that everything important was already known
    • Disciples of progress do not share a defeatist attitude toward death – people do not die because the gods decreed it, but due to various technical failure: heart attack, cancer, infections are technical problems that may all have technical solutions
    • Imperialism empowered Great Britain to take over the world with a search for knowledge
    • The immense value of a credit system based on future trust in our society still is great today. “Greed is good and by becoming richer I benefit everybody, not just myself. Egoism is altruism (Dawkins)
    • Consumerism has taken over the mind of today convincing that frugality is self oppression
    • Today wealth consists of mainly human capital and organizational know-how
    • The more significance we give our feelings, the more we crave them, and the more we suffer

  • The End of Illness – David B. Agnus 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The value of health is in preventing illness – not in treating it
    • An ounce of prevention is worth more than a million pounds of cure
    • Your DNA is a list of parts that complete a manual that explains how you operate – while it is not your fate, it tells us more about our risk
    • “Germ Theory” Historical health outlook, figure out what germ has infected you then treat that disease
    • Misunderstanding and ignorance beget fear
    • Health: A system of checks and balances that you can attempt to control using all the knowledge that you have at any given time
    • SNP (Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms) – markers that occur every 100-300 bases along the genome
    • Vitamins should be obtained through diet and there is no proof that supplementation is effective
    • Oxidation is a combustion process w/ free radicals as the byproduct – it is a necessary evil as the body attempts to conduct reactions and keep itself in homeostasis
    • Maintain a regular schedule: meals, sleep, etc
    • STAY ACTIVE: Move frequently to maintain health, it’s a matter of life and longevity, exercise is the only proven fountain of youth that doesn’t require a pill or potion

  • ChiRunning – Danny Dreyer 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Running doesn’t cause injuries, how people run does
    • Let your legs be pulled along for the ride
    • The body wears out, the mind lasts forever
    • The process is the goal
    • Form –> Distance –> Speed
    • 85-90 rpm is optimal
    • Take a moment for pre/post-run intention/reflection
    • #1 Focus on gradual progress #2 Non-identification
    • Speed is a by-product of proper form
    • Warm-up before races is vital
    • Anytime you’re stuck on an idea, you’re “identified,” meaning you are using your ego and not your body to guide decisions

  • The Selfish Gene – Richard Dawkins 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Genes are worried about the survival and good of themselves, rather than the entire species
    • One selfish rebel can take advantage of a largely altruistic group
    • The bodies in which genes occupy could be referred to as “survival machines” carrying them along
    • Genes expectation of life is in the millions of years
    • Senescent cells are an example of gene selfishness, causing cancer in older generations after they’re no longer capable of reproducing
    • Machines work harder to reduce discrepancy between desired state and current state (anxiety)
    • Natural selection favors genes who make the best of their environment
    • Be a conditional strategist, molding behavior based off conditions of the environment
    • The death of an altruist can be compensated by the increase of genes in the entire pool
    • % of genes shared with family, longevity outlook, and time invested all have a roll in family kinship
    • Children are masters of being selfish in order to survive by getting what they need/want
    • A body is a machine blindly programmed by it’s genes
    • Become aware of the sunk-cost fallacy in order to steer away from the bias
    • Cultural transmission is analogous to genetics as it can give rise to evolution
    • When we die we can leave behind genes and ideas, as each generation passes our gene aspects will be forgotten – leave ideas that can last for many generations for biggest impact
    • In the long reach, nice guys finish first (Tit-for-tat strategy)
    • All species on Earth are constantly seeking homeostasis or ESS (evolutionary stable strategy)

  • The Botany of Desire – Michael Pollan 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Seeing plants as willing partners in a relationship with us makes us look at ourselves differently, as the object of other species designs and desires
    • We should appreciate the value in turning raw material into foods, rather than blindly consuming
    • Flowers can teach us about time, to be present in a moment, and that beauty may be fleeting
    • In etymology, extravagant means to wander off a path or cross an orderly line
    • Plants and animals have lived in symbiosis for 200 million years, forming mutually beneficial relationships
    • Cannabis indica is frost tolerant, coming from central Asia with more physically debilitating effects
    • Humans have an innate desire to experience intense emotions, but such moments are only acceptable when they’re palatable to the masses (i.e. alcohol)
    • Intoxication can bring humility but also the addiction of ego
    • THC can be used as a “reset” or compound to be present only in the moment of now
    • “We realize that the infinite, is the finite of each instant”
    • Selective memory is what makes us able to process millions of pieces of information and still focus and function
    • We cast unconscious evolutionary votes with every decision that we make

  • Anything You Want – Derek Sivers 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Business isn’t about money, it’s about making your dreams come true for you and others
    • The best plans start simple, help one person, sell one widget, tutor one student
    • Necessity is the best teacher
    • You can always start now, this way you’ll be ahead simply because you started
    • Don’t act like there’s only one way to accomplish something, make ten radically different plans and likely one will be close to the best path
    • Never forget why you start something. Are you happy? Are you helping people?
    • Grade yourself based on personal and professional benchmarks that you value
    • Face the potential mortality of your own business, the “I’ll be okay” mindset
    • Be incredibly clear, transparent, concise, and feel pain if you are not
    • Humanize your business, you don’t ever have to behave in a manner like you “should’
    • In the end it’s about what you want to be, not what you want to have
    • Delegate, don’t abdicate. Trust, but verify
    • Know what makes you happy and do that

  • The Evolving Self – Mihaly Csikszenthmihalyi 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Acting in concert with positive evolutionary trends make it likely to derive happiness and provides serenity knowing that our actions are shaping a better future
    • Blaming humanity for it’s greed and selfish nature is holding a shark accountable for it’s bloody habits
    • Prayer, meditation and worship are intended to bring harmony to our internal experiences, yet most only wish for external, material, and ephemeral things
    • If we allow our consciousness be directed by our genetic programming our quality of life is likely to suffer in the present
    • All evolutionary forces lead to greater complexity: animal, innovative, tech, etc
    • Our genes are in a constant state of “catch-up” with the rates our society paces
    • What we pay attention to creates our experience, what patterns exist shape our minds
    • Recognition of our mental processes is liberation like no other
    • In general people who are happy are those who live their lives how they choose to
    • Organisms can be anything: a system of interrelated parts that require inputs of energy for existence
    • Personal differentiation, relational integration
    • The “self” we experience analogy with traffic cop or filter from the noise
    • One has to first possess the skeletal structure before developing any muscle

  • 10% Happier – Dan Harris 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Step #1 Become aware of the voice in your head
    • The ego is obsessed with the past and the future – at the expense of the present
    • Make the present moment your friend – design your life around natural predilections, don’t treat moments as obstacles
    • Value the current moment more than any memory of such
    • The mind defaults to imperialistic perspectives
    • R.A.I.N: Recognize, Allow, Investigate, Non-identify
    • Non-identification renders moments, experiences, feelings as something that happens to impact you – rather than aimed at you
    • Meditating can give you a front-row seat to your own consciousness
    • Ask “Is this useful?” or “Can I change this?”
    • The brain can be trained, happiness is a skill
    • Take purposeful pauses, slow down to speed up
    • Be wise selfish (altruistic) rather than foolish selfish
    • Hide your zen, be simple, but don’t be a fool
    • The most difficult question may be the balance of equanimity and ambition

  • Tribe of Mentors – Tim Ferris 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Naval Ravikant: Desire is a contract that you make with yourself to be unhappy until you get what you want
    • Matt Ridley: In the vast majority of the professions and vocations, the people who succeed are not any cleverer than you. The adult world is not full of gods, just people who have acquired skills and habits that work for them
    • Max Levchin: The difference between winning and losing is most often not quitting
    • Patton Oswalt: Ignore anyone who tells you to go for security over experience
    • Anna Holmes: Follow your curiosity, wherever you can find it
    • Andrew Ross Sorkin: Persistence matters more than talent. The student with straight As is irrelevant if the student sitting next to him with Bs has more passion
    • Annie Duke: Disconnect failures from outcomes, what matters is the decisions made along the way
    • Bill Gates: The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency
    • Josh Waitzkin: A core operating principle is that there is no better investment than in my own learning process
    • Warren Buffet: Beware the investment activity that produces the applause; the great moves are usually greeted by yawns.
    • Oscar Wilde: A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing
    • Author Unknown: Lose an hour in the morning, chase it all day
    • Jason Fried: Time and attention are very different things. They’re your most precious resources moving forward. You work through your attention, it’s the medium of your work. While people often say there’s not enough time, remember that you’ll always have less attention than time. Full attention is where you do your best work, and everyones going to be looking to rip it from you. Protect and preserve it.
    • Gary Vaynerchuck: Macro patience, micro speed. Care not about the next eight years, stress the next eight days.
    • Kevin Kelly: Don’t find your passion. Instead master some skill, interest or knowledge that others find valuable. If you continue to optimize your mastery, you’ll eventually arrive at your passion.
    • Tony Hawk: True success is doing something you love for a living. Learn every aspect of your chosen field or craft.
    • Flannery O’Connor: The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that does not require his attention.
    • Stewart Brand: Learn to live happily on almost nothing
    • Tommy Vietor: For many people, the real world is a slog and they live for the weekends. It will never get easier than right now to recklessly pursue your passion.
    • Evan Williams: Be in a hurry to learn, not in a hurry to get validation. If you resist asking for too much, you will often get more
    • Whitney Cummings: Don’t waste your time socializing with people who you think can help you. Just get better, and opportunities will naturally present themselves to you once you deserve them.
    • Rick Rubin: When you start something new, it’s okay to do it in an unsustainable way. Once you achieve it, then you can devote your time to figuring out how to sustain it. Two different playbooks
    • John F Kennedy: Too often we hold fast to the cliches of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought
    • Peter Attia: When you stop caring about being right in the eyes of everyone-versus being right in your own eyes and the eyes of those who matter to you-it’s amazing how little you care to waste energy trying to convince people of your view
    • Yuval Noah Harari: The only way for humans to stay in the game will be to keep learning throughout their lives to reinvent themselves again and again

  • Lessons of History – Will & Ariel Durant 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The present is the past rolled up for action
    • The past is the present, unrolled for understanding
    • To be aware in itself, is a victory
    • We cannot dismiss decisions of the past, decisions from people we do not know in circumstances we will never encounter
    • Tension is what creates movement in society
    • Written history always differs from real history
    • The sanity of an individual lies in their continuity and agreement of memories
    • The sanity of a group lies within its traditions
    • The real revolution is enlightenment of the mind
    • Creative minds can be talked about forever, stories educating millions
    • Education transmits mental, moral, technical heritage for greater control, understanding and enjoyment

  • The Tipping Point – Malcolm Gladwell 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • The value of the compound effect towards tipping points
    • Diffused responsibility in groups, inspire individual ownership to make ideas stick
    • Word of mouth is still the most valuable human communication
    • Target super-spreaders (connectors) those with rare social gifts – use charisma to help spread
    • Mavens: Those who accumulate vast knowledge and responsible for initiating many “epidemics”
    • Bias of choice creates ownership in an individual
    • Advertising: Package information to make it irresistible, guide them along the way without their knowing
    • People generally underestimate the importance of situation and context
    • Group sizes over 150 likely become ineffective
    • Peer pressure is much more powerful than a boss
    • To start a large movement, you must first create many small movements
    • Salesmen alter an idea in a way that extraneous details are dropped and others are exaggerated so that the message itself comes to acquire a deeper meaning
    • Proof of contagion in newspaper and media stories on grim events amplifying the occurrence
    • Don’t look to change a habit, change the cues. Smoking isn’t cool, smokers are cool
    • The world may seem immovable, but with the slightest push – in the right place – it can be tipped

  • Food of the Gods – Terrence McKenna 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • Our species has long been obsessed with altered states of consciousness
    • We need a comprehensive, libertarian, open view of drugs discussed in public without previously held biases to focus our true attention to their benefits and shortcomings
    • Some view plants as exopheromones, communicating information to those who listen
    • Our brains and nervous system serve to sift through masses of largely non-useful information allowing us to focus on what is practical, temporary by-passes may be acquired as the result of deliberate exercises/drugs
    • The link between spirituality and human past is unavoidable and important to recognize
    • The story behind Santa Claus is a result of Amanita Muscaria shaman hunting and retrieving the plant
    • Distilled alcohol/spirits was the first drug to be isolated
    • In todays society acts of introspection are not viewed as typical – healthy activities
    • The four acceptable stimulants (benefit of imperial/capitalists) sugar, tea, coffee and chocolate
    • Frued gives a perfect example of how new substances were introduced as solutions to current problems (cocaine helps heroin addiction)
    • We have a Dionysian system in which the sinner is punished into being an exploitable hapless customer
    • The 80’s was a time of restructuring Western values, television for the poor and cocaine for the rich
    • Serotonin bears a striking resemblance to DMT known as 5-hydroxytryptamine

  • The Signal and the Noise – Nate Silver 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • We face danger whenever information growth outpaces our understanding of how to process it
    • A certain amount of immersion in a topic will provide disproportionately more insight than an executive summary
    • How can we identify signals amongst noise, without succumbing to our bias
    • Hedgehog: Type A – Big ideas in governing principles on how things should behave
    • Foxes: Scrappy who believe in many small ideas looking at a multitude of approaches towards a problem (predict like this)
    • Emulate a consensus projection – constantly ask projections of yourself
    • Learn how to react to new information when it comes to your processing of ideas and adaptiveness towards learning abilities
    • Order data in sensible ways to see the likelihood of events in the future based on previous held beliefs and update your thinking as more information is available
    • “Self-fulfilling prophecy” Prediction bringing itself about by a pre-conceived notion
    • Whenever you encounter a problem, take two steps back to get an overview, predict, and move forward strategically and accordingly
    • Bayes Theorem: [(xy)/(xy+z(1-x)] x = prior likelihood y = new event occurrence z = not occurring
    • A heuristic approach to problem solving consists of employing rules of thumb when a deterministic solution to a problem is beyond our practical capacities
    • We are constantly forced to make decisions based on limited info and processing power
    • Many predictions are a result of a complex phenomenon that are a result of many variables in play, by thinking probabilistically it forces you to slow down and make better decisions
    • Information becomes knowledge only when it’s placed in context

  • Slaughterhouse-Five – Kurt Vonnegut 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • The impact of war on an individual can be immense and never ending
    • Fleeing a moment in time was analogous to time traveling in the book
    • Views of time can be linear and the value of lives are put into perspective
    • The horror of Dresden reveals the fragility of our reality
    • The participants of war as reminders were not always willing
    • Coping with the evils is frequently done through humor “So it goes”

  • The Doors of Perception – Aldous Huxley 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • The function of the brain and nervous system and sense organs is in the main eliminative and not productive
    • Chemical intoxicants allow us to view the world from the eyes of musicians, artists, and creatives
    • The sum of evil would be much diminished if a man could sit in a room alone in peace
    • When consciousness worries, stresses about the future, it becomes much less effective in the present
    • If your frame of mind is set the wrong way, everything that happens will seem like a villainous plot against you
    • The urge to escape self-hood and environment is in everyone, all the time
    • Our ancestors remained sane by escaping the rationalistic, anthropomorphic, logical, difficult reality that was surviving everyday into transcendence to the spiritual realm
    • The acts of faith in a higher power lead to mental congruency, saving the mind from the strife of materialism, social angst, keeping us peaceful through death

  • The Little Book of Stoicism – Jonas Salzgeber 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • Core principles of a Stoic: Wisdom, Courage, Justice, Self Discipline
    • Live with aretΓ©, do not worry about what you cannot control, keep emotions in check
    • Acting rationally and using reason are what separate us as humans
    • Don’t explain your philosophy. Embody it
    • You first must catch yourself doing something before you can correct it
    • Continually improving your character is the only true way to peaceful happiness
    • Confidence is a result of living in alignment with your true intentions
    • Just because we accept something for how it is, does not mean we approve of it
    • Step in between a stimulus and your conditioned response
    • Contemplate your ephemeral existence, a piece of the whole
    • We’re tight with property and money, yet think too little of wasting time
    • Take days off, go on vacations, find your place in the universe, but never take a day off of learning
    • Don’t set your mind on things you don’t possess as if they were yours
    • No one errs on purpose
    • Kindness is invincible, for what can even the most malicious person do if you keep showing kindness?
    • View an insulter as an overgrown child, we would be foolish to get hurt by the insults of a childish person
    • Say only what’s not better left unsaid, become comfortable with your own silence for the most part
    • Resist the urge to speak, enter as far as possible into the speaker’s mind

  • Dream Like A Champion – John Cook & Brandon Vogel 7/10πŸ”‘ 
    • Continually challenge ideas that you hold as true
    • Injuries/pain occur when the body is misaligned
    • Be active as often as possible
    • Only way to lead is by understanding people
    • Do not create an echo chamber around you
    • Doubt will creep in along the journey. – there is no such thing as a half-hearted kamikaze
    • Fall in love with the process
    • Goals are more valuable when they are shared
    • You will drop to the level of your training during big moments

  • Fingerprints of the Gods – Graham Hancock 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Advanced human civilization may date back to 13,000 B.C. rather than previously suggested ~3000 B.C.
    • Similarities between pyramids in South America (mainly Peru), Mexico, and Egypt raise many questions as to shared knowledge
    • No one truly knows the mystery behinds the pyramids or the sphinx
    • Many different religions (62+), cultures, etc. passed down stories of times where cataclysmic events (especially floods) decimated the world
    • Pyramids and structures on Giza plateau required vast amounts of technical and mechanical tools/expertise – geometry, engineering, astronomy, etc in play
    • Greatly unexplained extinction event ~10-13,000 B.C. (end of last ice age)
    • Orthodox science explains reasoning for the pyramids as eternal tombs although there are many just as qualifying alternative hypotheses
    • Some individual pyramid blocks weighed as much as a diesel locomotive
    • The evolution of human civilization may not be as linear as we imagine
    • Boston Univ geologist suggests sphinx has been worn by thousands of years of rain fall, most likely dating back to before 10,000 B.C.
    • We have the unique ability in the animal kingdom to learn from predecessors

  • It’s Not About the Bike – Lance Armstrong 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The frailty of life is often something that can’t be taught
    • Make every obstacle an opportunity
    • Endurance events aren’t only about suffering pain, they’re about inflicting it
    • Question your beliefs, get second opinions from doctors, be well educated, make patient decisions, gather sources, be a unique individual
    • Believe: When all along we know that nothing can cure the briefness of life, there is no remedy for our basic mortality, to go on everyday – is brave

  • Extreme Ownership – Jocko Willink and Leif Babin 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Discipline will lead to your freedom
    • Own. Everything. Creates courage and maturity.
    • Value the core mission with highest regard
    • Leave ego at the door
    • Lead upward
    • A unity of purpose connects the entire team
    • Make things simple
    • Learning how to prioritize will help in all facets of life
    • Leaders thing big
    • Prepare for everything, then prepare some more

  • What I Talk About When I Talk About Running – Haruki Murakami 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional
    • Play hard to get with work, workouts, etc. Stop at a point that you will want to come back
    • Self set goals matter most
    • The price of independence can be emotional hurt
    • Patience and focus are a lethal combination
    • Humans naturally gravitate towards things that we like, we allow time for things that are important to us
    • Veterans always stay calm
    • “I run, therefore I am” – If you are what you do, then you’re not when you don’t
    • Enjoy the race, a metaphor in life

  • Sacred Hoops – Phil Jackson 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Directing groups toward a collective goal is essentially a spiritual act
    • Everything is based on mind, is led by mind, is fashioned by mind
    • People yearn for the sense of group/tribal belonging
    • “The gap between accepting things the way they are and wishing them to be otherwise is the tenth of an inch difference between heaven and hell. If we can accept whatever hand we’ve been dealt – no matter how unwelcome – the way to proceed eventually becomes clear
    • Use what you’ve got, paradoxically the acceptance of boundaries and limits is the gateway to freedom
    • Being aware is more important than being smart
    • A good merchant hides his goods and appears to have nothing
    • The sun nurtures by giving away its light, but in the end which direction do they grow?
    • One: Out of clutter, find simplicity. Two: From discord, find harmony. Three: In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity

  • Genomic Messages – George Annas & Sherman Elias 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • DNA can be compared to a recipe, the way they will turn out is dependent upon ingredients (environment)
    • The path to personalized medicine will be a long process, where the privacy and detriment of individuals will be lost for the benefit of the masses
    • The dialogue between genes and their surroundings determines how they may function
    • With fetuses and newborns the path to genetic testing is tricky as the patients rights fall under another’s decision, where the outcome may create more questions than answers
    • The Tuskegee Syphilis study is a hideous reminder of the racism in American medicine’s past
    • In Orwellian fashion, programs like CRISPR and fetus testing have the ability to turn children into commodities of the market, designed to be up to ‘par’
    • “There is no difference between men, in intelligence or race, so profound as the difference between the sick and the well.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald
    • Environmental factors account for 75-80% of cancer cases in the US
    • The uses for genomic testing will only be of importance in mass quantities where the relations to other individuals will hopefully provide answers to patients
    • The 20th century was the century of physics while the 21st will be the century of biology

  • This is Your Brain on Sports – L. Jon Wertheim and Sam Sommers 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • “Quarterback Effect” – If you think highly about someones character, you’ll do the same about his looks.
    • People tend to think that they are the center of attention, at all times
    • The majority of people root for an underdog, even MJ portrayed himself as one for motivation
    • Be highly competent but (intentionally) and charmingly flawed
    • Home field advantage is part of a territorial instinct built into DNA (increase in testosterone)
    • “Curse of expertise” – The best players aren’t always able to articulate/translate knowledge because they are on a much higher level of consciousness: hence why many great coaches were mediocre players
    • Action Bias: Sometimes the best move, is no move at all – Be intentional with action (goalkeeper on PK)
    • The action is usually more addictive than the result
    • Create positive, specific feedback loops based upon effort – internal locus of control
    • Effort Justification: Something you build is worth more value than something you buy (i.e. picking a lottery number vs standard slot machines) – also ‘control bias’
    • Rivalry can bring out the best in competition
    • The more we take pleasure in the missteps of our rivals, the more susceptible we may be to harassment and violence down the road
    • “The brain generates an appropriate and acceptable perceived exertion strategy based…on the expected duration of exercise that remains'” – Learn how to tap into previously untapped ‘energy reserves’ by moving the finish line psychologically

  • Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Boasting of wealth and virtue brings your demise – an over-sharpened saw cannot last long
    • Thirty spokes join together in the hub – it is because of what is not there that the cart is useful
    • If you dedicate your life for the benefit of the world – you can rely on the world
    • The world is a spiritual vessel, which can’t be controlled – manipulators mess things up – grabbers lose it
    • If you understand others you are smart – if you understand yourself you are illuminated
    • Knowing what is enough, you will not be humiliated – knowing where to stop, you will not be imperiled and can be long lasting
    • Do not force your way to transform people – enjoy serenity and people correct themselves – do not interfere and the people enrich themselves
    • If you do not fear death – how could someone scare you with it
    • The one who really knows is not broadly learned – the extensively learned do not really know

  • Cosmic Impact – Andrew May 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • It’s not a matter of if, but when a cosmic impact will occur and it comes down to preparedness and preparation for aversion
    • Becoming a multi-planetary species should be of utmost concern to ensure our survival
    • Earth travels around the Sun at 30km/s – exit velocity to objects going into orbit is 11km/sec
    • Kinetic energy of an object is 1/2M x sqV
    • Comets/asteroids can travel at 42km/s when combined with Earths velocity brings impact intensity to terrifying proportions
    • Earth as a planet attempts to remain in homeostasis
    • Chicxulub impact (dinosaur extinction) was more than five billion times larger than Hiroshima
    • Comets and space material are essential sources of organic material – and the potential ability to harvest material is being looked at
    • Unknown unknowns and unknown knowns (signal and the noise N.S.) applies to near Earth objects
    • Takes the planet 7 minutes to travel the full length of it’s diameter
    • Avoidance tactics: Hitting a bullet with a bullet, gentle touch, gravity tractor, explosion

  • Finding Ultra – Rich Roll 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • You can always set a positive example, but you cannot make someone change
    • Pay attention to your own interests and the substance they hold, don’t take up the prevailing common ones around you
    • Change your perception, change your reality
    • At times the only choice is to get our of your own way by surrendering
    • There is bliss in depletion – silence speaks volumes
    • All obstacles are opportunities for growth – and if you aren’t growing, you aren’t living

  • Deep & Simple – Bo Lozoff 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • “The time that one puts into the practice of an art is what one is getting out of it. It is the process of training that is truly valuable, not some eventual goal. All of life truly exists only at this instant.” -H.E. Davey
    • The first Great Equality is that the moment we are born, whether we are born in a crack house or the White House, we have no idea when or how we will die
    • It is never going to be fully convenient to begin. If you think you have to wait for something, you’re missing the point, and you may as well be waiting forever. Now is the only time we can ever use.
    • Anytime we step aside from the crowds there will be work involved. There may be people trying to discourage us. Fellow slaves mocking our efforts to be free. “The Story of My Experiment With Truth”
    • Create an inner journey beyond all words, and an outward path of devoting ourselves to others
    • Self -esteem and personal happiness are impossible goals if pursued selfishly, yet they are free gifts when we give up self-absorption
    • We only exist in relation to each other. We need to look around, realize that, and act like it
    • Make small clarifications throughout your day – “why am I doing this?”
    • Work with your anger – do not run away from it or push it down

  • Sigmund Frued Knowledge in a Nutshell – Alan Porter 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Known as the father of psychoanalysis
    • Created controversy within the field
    • His theories and practices helped lead to cognitive behavior therapy
    • Worked closely with Carl Jung and had comparatives to Marx in some ways
    • Founded the idea of ID, ego, superego, and the suppression of such personalities
    • Inspired by Broca (speech) and Wernicke (language)
    • Viewed a person as an entire structure that needed viewed/analyzed at large
    • Recognized the value of mirroring in conversation
    • Recognized evidence and don’t use preconceived notions (why the shrink is always out of view from patient)
    • Psychoanalysis to this day is under question of whether it is truly science or placebo and is still being studied to see if it has effectiveness

  • You Are Not a Gadget – Jaron Lanier 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Giving yourself the time and space to think and feel is crucial
    • Personhood requires encapsulation – you have to find a way to be yourself before you can share yourself
    • The central mistake of digital culture is to chop up a network of individuals into a collective mush, where people mean less than the mass
    • Don’t be fragmented by prearranged molds and current structures
    • The combination of human and machine will always beat machine alone
    • Computer models of ourselves leach our empathy and uniqueness
    • First know the reality, then advance or improvise
    • Separation anxiety is created when one finds themself in a power vacuum – to vill that void they will take to social services

  • The Purpose Project – Carolyn Tate 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Treat life as though it is a work of art
    • Come to the realization that our lives are a “do it yourself” project
    • You will find your passions in uncomfortable places
    • Control leaves you tight and unable to maneuver, surrender leaves you open to take on any new challenge
    • Change yourself and watch how it will change others
    • Thoughts are simply conditioned reactions to the past and projections of the future
    • If you died tomorrow, what stories would they share
    • Curiosity -> Awareness -> Attention -> Interest -> Desire -> Intention -> Action -> Learning
    • Our life has seasons just like the weather. Times to stay out late working hard, and times to be alone generating ideas
    • You don’t need to see the entire staircase, just take the first step

  • Untethered Soul – Michael Singer 5/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • We are interpreters of the world around us and have control over how we perceive it
    • Take a back seat in your own mind
    • When something disturbs you, ask why
    • Distance yourself from your psych
    • What separates us is our ability to focus and be aware
    • Energy comes and goes with openness and has strong effects on others
    • If your filter is dirty, your experiences will be as well
    • Problems are agents for growth
    • Your mind is a tool and a muscle, use it wisely
    • We become unhappy when the world doesn’t fit our model
    • Life will exist without you, we are lucky to get a glimpse into the big picture

2019

  • What The Heck Should I Eat – Mark Hyman 10/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Eat whole foods.
    • Average diets are not only lacking vital nutrients but are overflowed with inflammatory seed oils, sugar, starches, etc.
    • Don’t eat processed foods, eat food the way nature intended
    • Food is fuel. Medicine.
    • Food helps not only our body work efficiently but also our mind
    • Dirty Dozen list of when to buy organic and when is not necessary
    • Eat a wide variety of vegetables: Eat the rainbow
    • Grass fed beef, pasture raised chicken is worth the extra price
    • Fat, carbs and salt aren’t the enemy, it’s the way you intake these macro nutrients
    • Dietary cholesterol should not be a primary concern
    • Antibiotics kill all gut flora we have spent years building up to digest food and fight infections and illness. Should be avoided whenever possible
    • Vegetables should be the bulk of your plate, using meat as a condiment or “condimeat” ~~~ 4-6oz

  • Range – David Epstein 10/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Ask the hard questions, the ones you don’t want to know the answer
    • There is both beauty and intelligence in competition
    • Be a forever student, never stop learning
    • Make sense of things, don’t make hard stance decisions. Be open and have ideas that can change and adapt as you learn
    • Hobbies are not wasted time
    • There is creativity in diversity
    • Don’t ask if a person works hard, ask when they do
    • Humans process life as pattern recognition, with more experiences you have more to draw from to draw a conclusion
    • Stop and think about they way and the why of your actions
    • Learning stuff is less important than learning oneself
    • Our work and life preferences do not stay the same because we do not stay the same
    • Take questions back to step 1 to see bigger picture
    • Find yourself before you find your path

  • The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The idea of fear is always worse than whatever you are scared of
    • What you hold true to yourself will always be
    • Break routines and become uncomfortable in new situations
    • Be yourself at every waking moment
    • The butterfly effect applies to relationships around you
    • Dream big. Don’t listen to what others say.
    • Action is what truly counts
    • Your journey through life should be your priority

  • How To Change Your Mind – Michel Pollan 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Practice new things in order to break old mental patterns
    • Psychedelic drugs can rearrange your entire mental framework and offer a new view of the world
    • Strong evidence supporting psychedelic treatments for mental patients
    • Tim Leary and anti-culture created a taboo type atmosphere around psychedelics where the stigma is still apparent today
    • If you are in a rut they can offer an opportunity to break mental bounds
    • Stoned ape hypothesis on reasoning behind the doubling of human brain size through evolution
    • The culture around controlled dosing with hallucinogenic drugs is rapidly changing

  • Braving The Wilderness – Brene Brown 9/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Soft front, strong back
    • Learn to stand alone and become comfortable with yourself, don’t fit in
    • We desire belonging to ensure our survival
    • Get out of your own way and allow yourself to be yourself
    • You can’t control external events but you can control your response. Turn negative events into positive emotion
    • Don’t rely on others opinions for validation, it’s a never ending cycle of approval
    • Be reliable, hold promises you keep to yourself and others. This creates confidence
    • Be generous and always maintain integrity at all costs
    • Do not give others fuel with your hate, practice kindness

  • Epoca: The Tree of Ecrof – Kobe Bryant 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Find your flow – similar to a runner/writer/artist/musician getting into a zone
    • Telling stories will forever be effective
    • Our biggest faults are being scared of the big things we can accomplish
    • Believe in yourself
    • If you work harder than everyone else, success is inevitable
    • There will be setbacks, there will be obstacles. The journey is the dream

  • Tribes – Seth Godin 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • The key to growth is becoming comfortable in uncomfortable situations
    • Always. Be. Curious
    • Use fewer, effective words when speaking. Quality is greater than quantity
    • Followers already exist, put out your message
    • Good: React – Better: Respond – Best: Initiate
    • Fear can be motivating
    • Don’t be a sheepwalker
    • Tell stories to communicate effectively
    • Be a thermostat, not a thermometer
    • Show you care to get best response

  • Living With A Seal – Jesse Itzler 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • If it doesn’t suck, we don’t do it
    • Push yourself to the limit, then go forty percent further
    • Break every mental bound and move your baseline
    • Willpower is the effect of hundreds of thousands of decisions
    • It doesn’t have to be fun, it has to be effective
    • The only way to gain mental toughness is by doing things that don’t make you happy
    • What have I done today to improve myself

  • This Is Your Brain on Music – Daniel Levitin 8/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Music is ingrained in our DNA
    • Learning music is connecting the dots on what you already know
    • Context of any situation or note matters
    • We like to try and predict what is to come in songs, this greatly influences how much we like songs
    • Every song you listen to changes the way you hear the next song
    • Music changes the chemicals of our brain
    • Hearing an old song and taking you to that moment is a similar process to a number lock lining the pins up correctly

  • Art Of Living – Bob Proctor 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • You were born rich, it is all within you
    • Money is simply a byproduct of the work you do, don’t chase money, chase hard work
    • No amount of reading will make you financially successful
    • Be willing to part with what you don’t need

  • The Compound Effect – Darren Hardy 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • “Talk about things that matter with people who care”
    • Success is a small number of things repeated tens of thousands of times
    • The only real key is consistency
    • Take full responsibility of your life
    • Write things down and be aware
    • “Personal finance is 80% behavior”
    • Every choice you make in a day will affect your outcomes in thirty years

  • Memory Techniques – Kevin Horsley 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Improving memory can improve your life, remember names, dates, events to improve relationships
    • Memory is a muscle, practice good habits to improve it
    • Concentration is the first step, rule out all distractions
    • Use strategies and repeat memory techniques to keep them fresh in your mind
    • Exaggerate events to make them stand out
    • Attach newly learned information to old memories to make them stick
    • Multi-tasking is incredibly inefficient
    • Repetition is the only way to continually improve your memory
    • Your mind never wanders, it only moves towards more interesting things

  • The Origin of Humankind – Richard Leakey 7/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Human brain doubling, many theories behind cause
    • 99% of all species to ever exist are extinct
    • Teaching and language separate humans
    • Upright walking is a distinctive trait
    • Consciousness may be described as the ability to view the entire world as a system that you are a part of
    • Hunting/sharing food/community/home dwelling are paramount characteristics
    • The ability to plan ahead is unique

  • Letters From an Astrophysicist – Neil DeGrasse Tyson 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Those who die are lucky to have lived
    • Morality is a constantly changing code that is drastically different today than it was tens or hundreds of years ago
    • Be curious
    • Ask the hard questions
    • Teaching is a valuable tool for both student and teacher
    • Don’t put boundaries around what you think about
    • As the perimeter of knowledge grows, so does the perimeter of ignorace
    • Ask why, how, when, at all times
    • No one has it all figured out
    • Science can provide legitimate reasoning to difficult questions

  • Emotional Intelligence – Daniel Goleman 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Exercise your mind like muscles
    • Mindfulness will unlock previously unreachable places
    • We have two minds: One that thinks and one that feels
    • Think optimistically and mirror body language

  • Think & Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill 6/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Your thoughts will become your reality
    • To become better, learn to think better
    • You only have control over your own thoughts
    • Work towards finding your purpose project
    • Believe in something with your whole being
    • Don’t defeat yourself in your mind

  • Grit & Grace – Tim McGraw 5/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Dedication to health and fitness spills over to entire life
    • You must have a “why” to successfully stay passionate
    • Small results add up in the long term
    • Success is something you must work on everyday
    • Start small, brick by brick
    • Just. Move.

  • Origins of The Mind – Charles Furst 5/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Your life is a compilation of memories
    • Using left and right brain actively will improve brain function
    • Our brains are attracted to shiny new things
    • Questioning everything allows for more creativity

  • Mentor Leader – Tony Dungy 5/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Ask yourself how you can improve yourself to improve relationships
    • Winning is the byproduct of daily work
    • It’s never about you, it’s about helping others
    • Focus on the long term, not short term satisfaction
    • Results will come when the work is automated
    • Action creates results, information is only your assistance
    • Differences help groups move forward

  • Living With Enneagrams – Ian Morgan Cron 4/10 πŸ”‘ 
    • Recognize someones personality to tailor your actions towards them
    • Understand how you are affected at all times by all events
    • Always be willing to see the world through another persons eyes
    • Ignorance can be bliss – except in self awareness
    • A deeper knowledge base of yourself will help everyone around you
    • Understanding why people act the way they do is a valuable tool
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