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The Ascent
Aspire to something greater.

With great power comes great responsibility.

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A few weeks ago, I attended a leadership seminar and the guest speaker asked this question.

You probably guessed it right, you would rather be a hundred sheep led by a lion than a hundred lions led by a sheep.

There is more to being a leader than what meets the eye. Power comes with great responsibility. Sometimes you have to make very tough decisions. …

And how doing so earned me four figures in one article.

Photo by Jared Rice on Unsplash

In the past two years, I have been practicing techniques to improve my writing in all different ways. There are days that the words flow like water, and some days it’s drier than the Sahara Dessert.

I always tell myself:

Eliminate distractions and work smarter, not harder.

And more often than not, this advice works perfectly.

It works because I have ambitious goals. All I want is to finish my work, get my job done efficiently, and have more free time.

However, there’s a limit to “working smart” and “being productive” that most people overlook or consciously ignore.

You can only work smart if you have an organized environment.

I read…

Freeing yourself from desires will give you freedom and happiness.

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Specifically, I wanted the freedom to do things.

Freedom to drink alcohol legally, drive a car and go out with my friends without permission. When I was 17, I craved it so badly I would have given anything to have the freedoms of a ‘real’ adult.

I centered my young life around maximizing this definition of freedom. I would always book out my weekends, find ways to get alcohol and sometimes joy ride in my parent’s car. I know. I was really stupid.

But that stupidity taught me a lot about myself. Once I got to do those things, I quickly realized how silly they were. …

Farming green cryptocurrencies, investing in Doge, and collecting NFT baseball cards are all part of my new identity.

Artwork: Tithi Luadthong

I became a proud Chia farmer a few weeks back, and… that’s probably one of the weirder sentences I’ll ever write, honestly.

For those who don’t know (which is still most people, I’m guessing), Chia is a new, recently released eco-friendly blockchain and a greener alternative to energy-intensive cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. It was created by Bram Cohen, the inventor of BitTorrent, so it has real potential I think.

I first heard about it on Kevin Rose’s new podcast, Modern Finance, which is a topic I’ve been diving deeper into lately. I’ve long been a fan of the nostalgia market and…

If our minds are always consumed with the acquisition of wealth, we’ll never be able to seek that which is greater than ourselves.

Photo by Amaury Laporte on Flickr

Living in America, I grew up with certain expectations imposed on me. I felt in order to fit in, I needed to buy a house, have a family, work most of my life and die with a decent sum of wealth in the bank.

I went through the normal middle-class kid set path and graduated college. Yet I still didn’t feel satisfied. I began to ask questions:

“Why are we here?”

“What is life’s purpose?”

“What is there to gain after money?”

I started to think differently from the conventions I had been taught. No longer did I feel the…

And then I wasn’t anymore.

Photo by Sasha Freemind on Unsplash

Alcohol, that wonderful magical nectar that can make any boredom-filled moment suddenly seem so much more exciting and valuable.

Until it doesn’t.

Soon after I discovered the wondrous world of alcohol I quickly learned what “Hey, let’s go out for one drink!" really meant. It could mean that I was going to end up coming back home a week later after possibly deciding to leave the country out of nowhere, maybe jumping out of a moving car on the way, and then taking LSD in the middle of the woods on my way back.

Or it could mean raising all…

If they changed my life, they can help change yours.

Photo by Ameer Basheer on Unsplash

Exactly three months ago, I drank every day. I went to bed no earlier than 4 AM and ate fast food for breakfast. Oh, I also watched endless porn.

As a result of such a *healthy* lifestyle, I got myself in such a hole of low energy, lack of motivation, and no hope that even antidepressants didn’t help. (Looking back, I wonder how I managed to keep my job and keep making any money at all.)

Typing this, I feel 10x better than I felt a month ago and 100x better than I felt two months ago (1,000x better than…

While experts work on long-term solutions to the opioid epidemic, the rest of us can take action now to save lives.

Sideview outline of a person’s head. The head is full of different coloured pills. A hand is feeding the person a spoonful of pills.
Sideview outline of a person’s head. The head is full of different coloured pills. A hand is feeding the person a spoonful of pills.
Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

The world is struggling with two major health emergencies: COVID-19 and the opioid epidemic.

While COVID-19 is constantly in our thoughts, the opioid epidemic may not be top of mind for most. But, for first responders kneeling on cold sidewalks injecting Naloxone into unconscious casualties and parents who’ve just found their teenager dead in bed from an overdose, it’s a devastating reality.

Government health agencies have given us reams of instructions for protecting ourselves from the COVID-19 virus. They’ve not yet, however, provided clear guidelines about preventing death from an overdose. Healthcare professionals are urgently searching for solutions to the…

How to harness the power of Defensive Pessimism to get better results in work and life

Photo by the author.

I stood in the operating room hallway at a very early hour, thinking about everything that could go wrong with my latest emergency surgery. All the bad scenarios rushed through my head; excessive bleeding, infection, injury to another organ, anesthesia complications, and on and on.

That may sound like I was “stressing out.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Rather than stressing, I was practicing Defensive Pessimism.

The Story

The patient had been failing in the ICU for the last several hours. …

What I learned from Francis Ngannou’s UFC journey.

Photo by Raúl Nájera on Unsplash

How far are you willing to go to chase your dreams?

Most people would say they’d do anything to make their dreams come true but give up in the face of multiple adversities, rejection, and failure.

And then there are people who would do whatever it takes in order to make their dreams a reality. These are the people who risk death just for an opportunity to chase their dream!

Read that again. It’s for an opportunity. There is not even a guarantee of success. They just want one chance. …

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