Self-Realisation

Making it political

The difference between an actual discussion (where we seek the right answer) and a political one is simple:

In a political discussion, people don’t care about what’s correct or effective or true. Facts aren’t the point.

The honest answer to, “if it could be demonstrated that there’s a more effective or just solution to this problem, would you change your mind?” is, for a political question, “no.”

It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about the the local water tower, the death penalty, labor unions, euthanasia, fair trade, organic food, the EPA or carbon. In political discussions, we don’t have enrollment in the scientific method. We’re not open to effectiveness or proof. We’re engaged in a tribal conflict.

The problem with the fencing in of one topic after another as political is that it gives us less and less space to learn and grow and understand.

Think tanks in DC call themselves non-partisan. But of course, that’s not true, because they’ve already made up their minds. They’re not thinking at all. Merely arguing.

Reblogged from: here

Advertisements
Self-Realisation

Synchronize your watches

Time zones are a recent invention. It used to be that local time was different everywhere. Each village had its own high noon.

Factories required synchronization, so that workers would all show up at the same time (which probably led to the alarm clock’s invention as well).

Today, of course, two things have happened:

Everyone knows what time it is, all the time. Precisely the same time, to the second.
It matters less. More work is asynchronous. The work itself now tells you when to start working on it, as the project is passed from desk to desk, from account to account.
Work is no longer time-based. It’s now project based.

Act accordingly.

Reblogged from: here

Self-Realisation, Uncategorized

“Is judgment involved?”

No judgment, no responsibility.

No responsibility, no risk.

There’s a fork in the road. If you seek out roles without responsibility, you might just find a sinecure.

This is the hot job for undifferentiated job seekers at the placement office, the job where a famous company will tell you what to do all day.

Alas, those are the jobs that will be deleted first. The jobs that come with little in the way of respect or stability. These are the jobs that big companies automate whenever they can, or create enough rules to avoid any variation if they can’t.

The other choice is a job loaded with judgment calls. One where it’s extremely likely you’ll make a decision you regret, and get blamed for it. One where you take responsibility instead of waiting for authority.

It turns out that those are the best jobs of all.

Reblogged from: here

Self-Realisation

With the sound off or on?

If you watch a well-directed film with the sound turned off, you’ll get a lot out of it. On the other hand, it takes practice to read a screenplay and truly understand it.

It’s worth remembering that we lived in tribes for millennia, long before we learned how to speak. Emotional connection is our default. We only added words and symbolic logic much later.

There are a few places where all that matters is the words. Where the force of logic is sufficient to change the moment.

The rest of the time, which is almost all the time, the real issues are trust, status, culture, pheromones, peer pressure, urgency and the energy in the room.

It probably pays to know which kind of discussion you’re having.

Reblogged from: here

Self-Realisation

The paradox of the flawless record

If your work has never been criticized, it’s unlikely you have any work.

Creating work is the point, though, which means that in order to do something that matters, you’re going to be criticized.

If your goal is to be universally liked and respected and understood, then, it must mean your goal is to not do something that matters.

Which requires hiding.

Hiding, of course, isn’t the point.

Hence the paradox. You don’t want to be criticized and you do want to matter.

The solution: Create work that gets criticized. AND, have the discernment to tell the difference between useful criticism (rare and precious) and the stuff worth ignoring (everything else).

Reblogged from: here

Uncategorized

Is it possible there was a misunderstanding?

Is it possible that you misunderstood them, or they misunderstood you?

With your client, employee, vendor, partner, or that random passerby?

The thing that just happened, it sounds terrible, and if they did it on purpose, the way it sure seems to you and to me, that would be horrible.

But before we burn down bridges and ruin everyone’s day, just a quick moment to wonder, “what if there was something misunderstood?”

It’s a lot easier to ask than it is to go to all the trouble of breaking things.

Reblogged from: here

Uncategorized

Empathy

Empathy doesn’t involve feeling sorry for someone. It is our honest answer to the question, “why did they do what they did?”

The useful answer is rarely, “because they’re stupid.” Or even, “because they’re evil.” In fact, most of the time, people with similar information, similar beliefs and similar apparent choices will choose similar actions. So if you want to know why someone does what they do, start with what they know, what they believe and where they came from.

Dismissing actions we don’t admire merely because we don’t care enough to have empathy is rarely going to help us make the change we seek. It doesn’t help us understand, and it creates a gulf that drives us apart.

Reblogged from: here