Do You Know How To Think?

Creative Sparks #23

1. Crimes of Grindelwald: A case of too little and too much by Lavanya Lakshmi Narayanan

2. Zen Stories For A Calm, Clear & Open Mind by Niklas Göke

I like the approach Niklas Göke takes here to impart life lessons here. Rather than beating them over our head with a “you should do this” approach, he takes a more nuanced approach by using stories and parables to illustrate points while writing his thoughts next to them.

3. How To Think by Shane Parrish

Two of the most important executive functions are cognitive flexibility and cognitive self-control. Cognitive flexibility is the ability to see alternative solutions to problems, to think outside the box, to negotiate unfamiliar situations. Cognitive self-control is the ability to inhibit an instinctive or habitual response and substitute a more effective, less obvious one.

Slow down. Think more. Our first responses or ideas aren’t necessarily our best ones.

4. Subtract by Derek Sivers

  • How the idea is expressed: It’s crystal-clear, and super easy-to visualize with the example below:

Imagine a horizontal line, with 0 on the left and 20 on the right. I want to be in the middle, at 10. But I’m at 17.

“What can I add to get to 10? I tried adding 8 but that didn’t work. Maybe 3 would help. I should go all-out and add 50.”

No amount of adding will get me where I want to be.

  • It's length. You can easily read it in a minute, but the idea is no less impactful.

5. Rush’s Geddy Lee Talks Massive New Bass Book, Meeting John Paul Jones by Rolling Stone

I loved this interview as a perfect description of how creative obsessions are nurtured and the power of storytelling to make even the driest of subjects come alive.

What started this whole crazy thing of collecting these things was a curiosity about why my ’72 Jazz Bass sounded the way it did. For years I had trouble matching that sound — I couldn’t find a back-up for it that was equal. You ask yourself why. That’s the question that pervades the book, especially in the Fender chapter: “Why do these things sound the way they do?”

He also faced another problem; how do you make the bass; an instrument inaccessible to the layman interesting? How do you make them come to life?

6. These 7 Unusual Tips Will Explode Your Writing Skills (If You’re Willing to Try Them) by Sarah Cy

7. No, I Will Not Watch Your “Free” Webinar by Zulie Rane

Books I’m Reading:

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich: I seem to be on a Russian history spree lately. One Day can be credited as one of the pieces of literature that contributed to the break up of the Soviet Union. Openly critical of Stalin and the gulag labor camps, it is a critical look at the perils of communism and the harrowing conditions of a labor camp back in the day.

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