Thanks for checking out the Monthly Learning Roundup. These bite-sized, monthly posts are designed to give you a quick hit of interesting learnings and articles I came across this month.
It’s a motley assortment of tips, resources, and links that will hopefully give you a bit of inspiration for the upcoming month. Enjoy!
What I’m reading —
One of the biggest challenges we have as human beings is managing the gray area between what we can control and what we can’t. I love James’s perspective on handling criticism or rejection for work that we produce and deeply care about.
The Ultimate Guide to Making Smart Decisions by Farnam Street
Making decisions is difficult. Multiple variables, lack of information, and the influence of emotions can all affect the decision making process. We can, however, decide to make decisions based on principles and models that, if consistently applied, can lead us to the best decision available.
This is a meaty read but well worth it. Taylor goes into details about how he uses well planned, 90-day sprints to achieve his goals.
Books that I enjoyed last month —
So Good They Can’t Ignore You by Cal Newport
Every young graduate and professional should read this book. It turns the “follow your passion” career advice upside down in a convincing fashion.
Mating in Captivity by Esther Perel
Written by one of the most well-respected thinkers on relationships today this book goes into how to create and maintain intimacy. I also recommend checking out Perel’s new Audible podcast series Where Should We Begin?
Quotes that are inspiring me —
If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.
We are caught in the trance of fear when the emotion of fear becomes the core of our identity and constricts our capacity to live fully.
— Tara Brach
Everything you want is on the other side of fear.
— Jack Canfield
Behaviour change of the month —
Shifting my internal mindset.
In September, I started to read to myself a personal commercial to shift my internal mindset. Drawing inspiration from the book, The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz, I wrote myself a motivational commercial to read everyday.
I was a little skeptical about doing this at first but as I began to make this part of my daily routine, I started to believe the words that I was saying to myself. I walked around smiling more often at people and managing fears in my life a little better. It’s almost as if neural networks in my brain were getting re-wired in new ways.
All this to be said, it takes time to change one’s mindset and reading my personal commercial has only planted the seeds that have yet to grow. I’ll be continuing on with this behaviour change goal into October and will report back with progress.
“ah-ha!” thoughts of the month —
Expertise > Passion
Is “follow your passion” good advice for your career? Author, Cal Newport, argues that the popular advice may be lead us to choosing the wrong career. Newport suggests that we should think about how to develop rare skills that people value as the key to having a fulfilling career of impact and passion.
We’ve all got a ton on our plate. Whether it be with our relationships, career, finances, or health. It’s a lot of balls to juggle in the air. And it’s no surprise that we sometimes fall short of our goals. Instead of trying everything at once, why not try to focus on ONE area over the course of a quarter and see how much progress you can make?
It’s something I’m interested in trying out – having ONE main focus per quarter. Of course, I’ll make sure that the other areas of my life get enough attention but how much more can I get done if I focus on one area? How much more can I get done if I concentrate my resources (i.e. money, time, and energy) into one area?
Product I’m loving —
Adding this hydrolyzed collagen to my supplements has been a game changer for me. I’ve dealt for years with inflammation and pain from my osteoarthritis in my left knee but adding collagen has almost completely removed all pain from day-to-day activities. There is robust research available around the effectiveness of collagen with improving knee joint comfort including this double-blind study from 2009 from the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition. With this being said, there doesn’t seem to be a long-term restorative effects of collagen on joints. So if you’re planning on adding collagen to your supplements, just be aware that this isn’t going to “fix” your knee to what it was like before.
Please make sure to check with your doctor if this is the right step for you first.
As always, thanks for checking out this Monthly Learnings Roundup. Follow me on Twitter @peternakamura to see all the articles that I share on a daily basis.