Monthly Consumptions: June 2019

I’m going to try another regular posting series (HA!). it’s an very abbreviated list of my media consumables each month that were deemed interesting or noteworthy.

(delivery and formatting may change over time. but for now, I’ll just word dump stuff, lol.)

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Building Greater Self-Reliance: Day 07

31 Journaling Prompts for Building Greater Self-Reliance:  Day 07

Ultimately, we come to self-reliance by forgetting ourselves. It’s the kind of self-trust many new parents feel because they finally have this thing outside themselves that matters much more than themselves. We can access it by caring about anything properly (a project, a movement, an idea, a person, etc.).

Milton Mayeroff describes this dynamic in On Caring:

“Direction that comes from the growth of the other should not be confused with being ‘other directed,’ where this refers to the kind of conformity in which I lose touch with both myself and the other. Rather, by following the growth of the other, I am more responsive to myself, just as the musician is more in touch with himself when he is absorbed in the needs of the music.”

Ironically, no matter how physically self-reliant we become, if we never truly care for something outside of ourselves we’ll never become self-reliant.

What do you care most about? As in, what do you give yourself to most freely? How could you care for it a little more perfectly? How does caring for this thing outside yourself actually help you trust yourself more?

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30-Day Minimalism Game

starting tomorrow, I’ll be playing a game for the entire month of June. it’s call the “30-Day Minimalism Game”. the full details are available here. but as for the TL;DR version: get rid of one item on day one, two items on day two, three items on day three, etc.

and if my math is right, that would 465 items by the end of everything. heh, I know me. I won’t get past day ten (and that’s being generous!) for a number of reasons — the main two being that A] I have commitment issues, and B] I can’t get rid of that much stuff in a single moment.

but even if I just get to day five, I will have already gotten rid of 15 items! so it’s worth it to even just start.

I’ve seemed to have talked my mother into doing it with me. which is rad — because Accountabilibudies FTW. we’re going to share photos with one another of what we select. we are also going to tweak one of the rules: the items do not have to leave by midnight. our schedules and/or transportation situations do not allow for that.

also, I think it would be cool to chronicle here the shit I get rid of. so that’s what I’ll do below. by dropping it here, I’m not clogging your feed each day with a new list of items I’m donating, giving away, or tossing out. (I will try to remember to make a “final haul” or recap post of sorts, linking back to here if necessary.)

if you’re interested in joining in, just let me know and in what capacity. otherwise, enjoy the ride!

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photo drop: escape room aftermath

2019-05-18: Brian, James, and Linnea

I haven’t posted any images here in a while. this is Brian, Linnea, and myself narrowly escaping from the “Do Not Disturb” escape room at Breakout in the Ridgedale Center near us.

no spoilers. but it was great. try to go with a smaller group. it was just the three of us in the room, and we agree that even more person would have make it too cramped. the room is small — but in a creepily cozy sort of way.

anyway. Linnea is basically my best friend up here. so it was pleasure to pop her escape room cherry. 😉 she seemed to really enjoy it, too.

“You don’t have to do it all.”

Jenny Lawson, the Bloggess, is amazing. and also so accidently timely.

I have been feeling like shit for not keeping up with this damned blog better. I was doing so well for a few weeks. and as usual I let it all fall apart.

then in comes the Bloggess with her amazing words of wisdom. I feel better. not good or just or right — but at least, better.

here’s what she said….

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Building Greater Self-Reliance: Day 05

31 Journaling Prompts for Building Greater Self-Reliance:  Day 05

“All failed companies are the same: they failed to escape competition.”

― Peter Thiel

“The dynamic [of competition] is not unlike a popularity contest in which everyone tries to win by being equal parts friendly, happy, active, and fun. Or an election campaign in which all the candidates try to be charming, serious, humble, and strong. Once everyone starts doing it, no one stands out.”

― Youngme Moon

To compete is to choose to play somebody else’s game. This can be a massive source of energy, but it’s also a dangerous game. The billionaire investor and founder of PayPal, Peter Thiel, said that the fierce competition in his college career nearly kept him from doing what he actually was meant to do. He later wrote in Zero to One, “All failed companies are the same: they failed to escape competition.”

When we’re locked in competition we tend to obsess on doing the same thing but faster, bigger, or cheaper. Competition can blind us to opportunities to truly distinguish ourselves.

In fact, the fiercer the competition, the more similar things get. Harvard Professor Youngme Moon writes in her book Different: Escaping the Competitive Herd that, “The dynamic [of competition] is not unlike a popularity contest in which everyone tries to win by being equal parts friendly, happy, active, and fun. Or an election campaign in which all the candidates try to be charming, serious, humble, and strong. Once everyone starts doing it, no one stands out.”

Put simply, Moon has found that, “The more diligently firms compete with each other, the less differentiated they can become.”

Even more often than businesses, individual lives are ruined by being too preoccupied with competition to look around. Where are you competing in your life that you don’t actually want to be (e.g., money, audience, position, possessions, looks, awards, travel, experiences etc.)? If you weren’t worried about winning that, what would you focus on?

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Building Greater Self-Reliance: Day 04

31 Journaling Prompts for Building Greater Self-Reliance:  Day 04

“The objection to conforming to usages that have become dead to you is that it scatters your force. ”

― Ralph Waldo Emerson

What pieces of your old identity do you hold onto that are no longer serving you or you no longer believe in wholeheartedly? Are they worth letting go of?

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