We let ourselves get tied to commitments that will take away time from the pursuits that will feed our creativity, relaxation, or deep work. We set intimidating goals like running a marathon or writing a novel that make us balk at the volume of work the activity will require; ultimately driving us to put off even the smallest baby steps toward the goal. What’s worse, we don’t constrain our leisure pursuits or appetites for entertainment & consumerism. Unbridled anytime and anywhere instant gratification leaves unsatisfied in the end.
I was once invited to attend a meeting to plan a meeting to schedule meetings. This was a real request from a Deloitte consultant to me while on a project in New York. I declined that invite and every single other meeting invite he sent. I wish I could say that was the last wasteful meeting invite I ever received but anyone who has worked in Corporate America knows that meetings, whether meaningful or not, are all too common. They are death by a thousand paper cuts. The deluge of meetings on my calendar eventually got me to think, how do you define a reasonable cadence between meetings? This thought lead me further down to how do you define a meaningful delta between occurrences for anything done repeatedly?
To be fair they deliver the 80% of the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus that you would expect. So, you won’t go wrong with them, they were just as underwhelming of a new shoe release that you could get. We will chalk it up to Covid and the constrained design, testing, and collaboration experience that Nike was working under.
The deliberate practitioner won’t just rely on one source for skill development. You have to learn across multiple mediums. Go out and read on the history of your interest, listen to podcasts, and watch how-to tutorials from masters.
Another shoe review about a pair of trainers from an up and coming shoe maker. The history of Nobull as I understand is that they started by creating a multi-purpose shoe for weight lifters and crossfit athletes. After finding their stride, pun intended, they branched out into multiple segments. You can find shoes, clothing, and accessories for all manner of activities. Including cycling, running, and weight lifting. I have been impressed by their styling from the beginning but didn’t think they would get into the running space. So, I bought a pair and put them to the test.
You can trace the individualistic mindset of Americans to its founding. That pursuit of various individual freedoms fueled the don’t tread on me spirit. Whether it was the freedom of religion, the lawless expansion into occupied indigenous lands, or the right to practice morally bereft chattel slavery. Americans have demanded the room to pursue what they solely want no matter the impact to their neighbor. It is no surprise then that “the United States scores highest on the individualism end of [the individualism-collectivism scale … and consequently] is the only industrialized country in the world that does not provide its citizens with universal health care.”
These Allbirds Tree Dashers are the late 2020 reworking of the original AllBirds trainers. I had a pair of the original joggers when they first launched years earlier. They were woefully under-designed to be a serious running shoe. They even lost their new “cool” factor when Paul Ryan could be spotted walking around in them. Some years later, I am giving them another try after a few redesigns, new styles and color options, and improved engineering.
I find I have to constantly explain the idea of Minimalism to everyone I discuss it with because their first idea is some Monk like existence, barren of joy or material belongings, wasting away alone in some empty white walled room. That’s the double entendre in the naming this philosophy, Minimalism. In reality, Minimalism should be equated with Essentialism. An essentialist philosophy that is reinforced by mindfulness. The two fuel the thoughtful consideration of everything we bring into our lives and how we allot our time and attention.
As we neared the end of winter early in 2020, and the first signs of spring were sprouting, we discussed how we wanted to define this year during one of our longer walks. The quarantine had only just begin and the first rush of travel cancellations and postponed plans had been grudgingly agreed to. A wealth of free time was now on our hands. We asked ourselves what would we do to not go crazy and we elected on making this a year of self-improvement. Those long delayed “some day” aspirations would start getting daily attention, others at least once a week; but whatever we could manage under a lockdown, would get our time and focus.
Work From Home has become what my wife calls, live at work. Each one of us adapting in our own way to a semi-permanent remote worker status. Dining room tables, closets, garages, and empty guest rooms have transformed into make shift offices and classrooms. My experience in working remotely for extended periods of time is not new. Having worked from home in some capacity since 2008. During that time it became clear to us the value of planning office space in your home in some capacity up front.