Non-doing is uncomfortable but worth it

I rolled out of my twin bed and stumbled into the common room. As I started the coffee maker I started thinking about my day and had a feeling of emptiness.

I had nothing to do.

It was sometime in early September in 2018. I had just moved across the globe to Taipei. I was technically a self-employed freelancer but didn’t have any clients. I was single and had declared to my friends a month earlier that I was going to embrace a life path as a “cool uncle.” …

A Book Review of Agnes Callard’s Aspiration

To others, I made a bold decision to quit my job and chart a different course in 2017. Yet in my own experience of the event, there was no singular moment or decision made. This disconnect between my own experience and the narrative of bold all-or-nothing leaps has mystified me and driven a lot of my own writing about the process.

I thought I was alone in pondering this question until I stumbled upon a small reference to Agnes Callard’s work in a New Yorker article about decision making. Here is that passage:

Agnes Callard, a philosopher at the University…

Remote work is poorly understood and for good reason. What most people have experienced is merely being “allowed” to work remotely on occasion, having to stay home with someone sick in the family, logging in while traveling or waiting for the cable guy to install internet.

While I am a fan of remote working I am not sure that most companies realize that experimenting with remote work until the end of the covid-19 crisis is a free strategy option. …

I’ve been self-employed for three years and after landing remote gigs in my first couple of months and enjoying the freedom and flexibility, I decided to “default to remote” with everything I worked on.

Two years ago I moved to Asia and “default to remote” went from a nice idea to the only option to continue to with my consulting business. In addition, it gave me useful constraints that forced me to think more deeply about how to build a lasting life and work by creating and working digitally.

Over that time, I’ve worked in many different ways with Zoom…

The most important ideas on culture

Culture is a messy term. In 1952, two Academics, Kroeber and Kluckhohn, completed a comprehensive review of the term and found that by then there were over 134 definitions.

As Kroeber and Kluckhohn explored the history of the word, they found all roads pointing to Germany, where the word was emerging as “cultur”:

Kant, for instance, like most of his contemporaries, still spells the word Cultur, but uses it repeatedly, always with the meaning of cultivating or being cultured

It wasn’t until the late 1800’s that the word started to form into the modern form of the word, adopted by…

Taking the leap to self-employment

In my own experience and experience working with people who quit the corporate world to work on their own, I have found five consistent themes in common with most of these people. Most don’t plan these five things, but looking back there is an element of each in people who take the leap to self-employment.

cover five things you need to take a leap to self-employment or any leap off the beaten path.

#1 Make A Friend Taking A Different Path

People who take a leap often cite a strong influence that gave them proof or the courage that they could do something different. …

Rethinking the role of rest in the modern world

Photo by Rutger Geleijnse on Unsplash

More than two thousand years ago, the Roman stoic philosopher Seneca wrote a letter to his friend Paulinus, urging against a certain type of rest:

I do not summon you to slothful or idle inaction, or to drown all your native energy in slumbers and the pleasures that are dear to the crowd.

That is not to rest;

To the stoics rest and leisure were active pursuits. Rest did not mean, as it often does today, vacation, days off, or a day or two spent catching up on sleep.

For many of us, rest in the historical sense — the…

When one first encounters universal basic income, it is a radical idea. When you read a bit more about it, however, you come to realize that our current system may be the radical one. There are a number of sacred beliefs that support our current system. In order to embrace an idea such as universal basic income and other ideas that could help us imagine a life beyond work such as shorter workweeks and work-days, one must question these sacred beliefs:

#1 Work is virtuous

Reimagine Work

Dreaming beyond the default path…

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