Remote, Day Nineteen - To Do

To say that our lives have been disrupted in the last few months is an understatement. Many of the illusions of safety and security have been stripped away and we are left with a general unease and outright anxiety about where things are going. Our usual patterns of life have been impacted and some of us have felt that more than others. Even so, we’re all in this very historical maelstrom together and the way forward is the same for every one of us - focus on what you can control. Read more...

Stepping Back From Too Much

It’s now 2020. The beginning of a new year and, depending on how your definitions are set up, a new decade. It is my hope that this year and the years following, we’ll see that there are a lot of facets to our lives where patterns, trends, and forces have simply become too much. Too Much Transparency Democracy might die in darkness, but it will burn in the light of a thousand suns. Read more...

Long Trails and the Daily Practice of Living

How you do anything is how you do everything. We all undertake projects in our lives. Whether it’s in our career or in our personal life, there’s always work to be done. Sustained, sometimes challenging work. Earlier this year, I undertook an amazing project cleverly disguised as a vacation. The Colorado Trail runs 486 miles from the outskirts of Denver to Durango. I started it on July 20th and finished thirty-one days later. Read more...

It's Only Failure When ...

You don’t learn from it. You didn’t give it your best effort. You don’t follow-through on what you planned to do instead. You believe it was (and still is) out of your control. You chose comfort in the short-term over fulfillment in the long-term. You listen to others instead of the voice inside. You don’t try to do better next time. You let fear stop you. You don’t frame it properly. Read more...

On Regret

I’ve heard it said that you should live your life with no regrets. This is bullshit. We’re going to have regrets. We’re going to get things wrong and wish we could have done it differently. We’re going to wish we had said something. Not said something. Said it differently. Held out a hand instead of walking away. Walked away instead of following. Said a kind word. Put away the anger and the ego. Read more...

Those We Do Not See

Stop for a moment and consider that no one will ever know you. There is only knowing their perception of you. The self-concept we carry around is based on an understanding, however flawed, of our own rich, inner landscape. Our thoughts and aspirations, our personal struggles, the generous advocate and scathing critic. That is who we know ourselves to be. Others do not see that. They have their own mental model (also flawed and incomplete) of who you are based on a limited set of interactions where the only available signals are your words and actions. Read more...

Spectrums

Psychology and neuroscience are interesting topics for me. I’m by no means enmeshed in these fields, but I’ve always been fascinated by the complexity and capability of the human mind. We are Paleolithic hunter-gatherer primates that managed to create a global civilization far beyond our simple beginnings. All because of the capacity and flexibility of our minds. Of course, it’s not all white magic and high art that we play with. Read more...

What Do You Want?

That’s one of the most important questions. The tandem questions of ‘who are you’ and ‘what do you want’ can guide your life. Once you can begin to answer them. The key word there is begin. They are not answered once. You will keep asking and answering them through a lifetime. For me and for now, it’s … Interesting friends and companions. An opportunity to learn, every day. A resilient, healthy, and loving family. Read more...

Observations From the John Muir Trail

In July of 2018 my son and I hiked the John Muir Trail. This was my second time and his first. The trail covers 211 miles from Yosemite National Park to the summit of Mount Whitney. It includes over 84,000 feet of elevation change and some of the most stunning scenery in the Sierras. We hiked it in 17 days. What follows is a collection of thoughts and observations. In one sense they are simple and obvious. Read more...

A System of Systems

You are not you. Not in the sense that you imagine yourself to be. That internal monologue in your head and that world view you have, that’s not your singular identity. It’s an assembly of complex and conflicting components that your brain smooths out into an image of unity. Western civilization says that we’re all unique individuals. Zoom out and abstract enough and you can fool yourself into thinking that. Read more...