Oh, how I've missed you! This weekend round-up covers quite a bit of ground, seeing as the last one snuck through in October, pre- Long Pause abyss. Don't feel like you need to read the whole thing! Scan the links and pick a few goodies that jump out at you. Today's Coffee Talk is dedicated to Chuck G. who I had the pleasure of meeting in person (along with his lovely wife) at the Paleo Manifesto book launch party in September. He emailed a few weeks ago along the lines of, "Hey! Where's the Weekend Round-up? I miss it!" I appreciated the nudge and the affirmation that this crazy hodge podge is at least somewhat entertaining and educational for all of you :)
Year-end round-ups and reflection posts are afoot, and the one I enjoyed completing on a recent flight was Susannah Conway's Unraveling the Year Ahead workbook (big thanks to Clare for the link, who also does amazing round-ups). I'll be posting some public reflections soon here and my annual round-up at Life After College, which will be celebrating its 6-year blogiversary tomorrow!
- Does social media depress you? I've all but abandoned my Facebook account. Here's the NY Times on The Agony of Instagram. And this cracked me up from Wait But Why: 7 Ways to Be Insufferable on Facebook
- There is a formula for happiness, and it's split across three key areas: genes, events and values.
- Who you surround yourself by may be more important than you think. Slate asks: Has Google Destroyed Your Memory? No. It’s Much Weirder Than That.
- Here's How to Memorize Things Quickly and 23 Science-Backed Study Tips to Ace a Test (or a big speech, from yours truly)
- Find Out The Secrets Of Your Email's "Emotional Temperature"
- I loved this straightforward guide from Brian Johnson on How to Meditate Without Moving To The Himalayas
- If you need a few great reasons to meditate (which has been by far my best new habit of 2013), check out:
- Hah, is this true or what?! The Period, Our Simplest Punctuation Mark, Has Become a Sign of Anger (New Republic)
- Two recent favorites from James Altucher: DO YOU CONTROL YOUR LIFE? and HOW TO HAVE COURAGE
- Want to practice some ninja conversation tricks over the holiday mix n' mingles? Here's How to make people like you: 6 science-based conversation hacks and Susan Cain on Networking For Introverts
- A bit exhausted by the daily grind? Heather Havrilesky nails it in her essay, The eternal tide of dirty laundry. An excerpt:
"Trying to staunch that flow of dirty laundry is like trying to stop the flow of a river to the ocean. When I attempt to build a dam, the gods rain down more dirty laundry, and my dam breaks. Dirty laundry is eternal: it knows no boundaries.
We learn a lot about ourselves, about our plight in life as former free spirits who mutated into heads of household, when we gaze into that crashing river of dirty laundry that rushes through the closets and hallways of our habitat. Do we feel powerless, when we finally recognise that we’ll never truly conquer it?
. . . The laundry will never be done. Rather than pedaling faster and faster the answer is to surrender to the eternal tide."
—Heather Havrilesky, The eternal tide of dirty laundry
- Do you have crazy dreams like me? Brain Pickings on The Science of Dreams and Why We Have Nightmares
- If you need help sleeping, here's How to Manufacture the Best Night of Sleep in Your Life
- Are you a morning or a night person? It pays to heed your circadian rhythm, or else you may experience Everyday Jet Lag (NY Times)
- Apparently your body can also trains itself to wake-up on time: Why Do I Always Wake Up 5 Minutes Before My Alarm Goes Off?
- My thoughts exactly!! Replace Oreos with Macaroons and you have my latest form of crack. From The Week: Oreos may be as addictive as cocaine and heroin
- Speaking of my Macaroon, coffee and sugar addictions (so guilty of this): Do You Use Food as a Crutch?
- Yikes! You might not want to read this if you've eaten at Mickey D's lately: Look Inside a Chicken Nugget
- I mean, DUH. Wired.com says Math Proves Bacon Is a Miracle Food
- Do you do any of these? 8 Subconscious Mistakes Our Brains Make Every Day--And How To Avoid Them
- Need a brain boost? Here are 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power
- The NY Times on How Music Can Boost Our Workouts and Buffer on 8 Surprising Ways Music Affects and Benefits our Brains
- Nicole put together an awesome 3-part Healthy Holiday Survival Guide: [Part 1], [Part 2], [Part 3]
- Forbes on What Grain Is Doing To Your Brain
- This is true! The Science Behind Posture and How It Affects Your Brain. For a quick primer, check out my post from earlier this year On Alignment.
- Cooking novice like me? First, LEARN TO MAKE THIS SOUP! It's my mom's recipe and I've been eating it on and off (without getting tired of it) for over two years now. The best part is that you make it on a Monday and it lasts all week -- 10 bowls or so. A lazy cook's miracle!
- As is this list of 40 Things You Didn't Know You Could Make in a Microwave
- Are you guilty of this line of thinking? A great post from Peter Shallard on not falling prey to entrepreneurial superstitions: Confessional: My Intuition, Superstition and Denial Problem
- I really appreciated this one from Tim Ferriss: "Productivity" Tricks for the Neurotic, Manic-Depressive, and Crazy (Like Me)
- A quick but great read from Alan Weiss on why you need Honest Arrogance in business. Weiss also does some motivating math in Two Buyers A Week
- The brilliant Tara Gentile also runs smart numbers in Sales is a Numbers Game: Are You Adding to the Number That Counts?
- Motivated to grow your business but overwhelmed? You might need to delegate more. Tips from The NYT Magazine on how to Outsource Your Way to Success
- Counterintuitive, but Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer Thrives Off a Never-Ending To-Do List
- The NY Times on why Activity Does Not Always Equal Productivity
- And don't let your busy-bee overwhelm affect others -- you may unknowingly be Spreading Secondhand Stress (WSJ.com)
- That said, do busy yourself with backing up your data! Dropbox FTW. As it turns out, Small Businesses Spend More Time Tidying Desks Than Backing Up Data
- Hitting a dip? Love this motivating post from the gorgeous Kelly Newsome on entrepreneurial resilience: You Have a Job to Do
- Lists Galore! See if any are of interest:
- 99 Ways to Market Your Art
- 63 Blogging Tools That Will Make You Insanely Productive
- 11 Lame Excuses That Successful Bloggers Never Make
- How To Ask People for Things Via Email: An 8-Step Program
- James Altucher hits another one out of the park! The 100 Rules for Being an Entrepreneur
- What 13 Successful Entrepreneurs Wish They Knew 5 Years Ago
- Evernote CEO Phil Libin says Don’t bother making friends with people you can’t start a company with
- A few important Google articles:
- How to Download a copy of your Gmail and Google Calendar data
- 22 Free Google Products for Small Business Owners
- and while we're on the topic of my corporate alma mater, Google Reveals Its 9 Principles of Innovation in Fast Company
- Need help making a decision? Amazon founder Jeff Bezos on his “Regret Minimization Framework” (AKA Why [he] Started Amazon)
- Debating business school? NYT assesses Whether Entrepreneurs Should Get M.B.A.'s
- If your decision is related to your full-time gig, here's Richard Branson on Knowing When to Quit Your Day Job
- On that note, Time.com on Why It’s a Good Thing More People Are Quitting Their Jobs
- Are you holding yourself back? Seth Godin on The first lie...
- So true. Another goodie from Godin: What "no" means (in full below):
What "no" means
- I'm too busy
- I don't trust you
- This isn't on my list
- My boss won't let me
- I'm afraid of moving this forward
- I'm not the person you think I am
- I don't have the resources you think I do
- I'm not the kind of person that does things like this
- I don't want to open the door to a long-term engagement
- Thinking about this will cause me to think about other things I just don't want to deal with
What it doesn't mean:
- I see the world the way you do, I've carefully considered every element of this proposal and understand it as well as you do and I hate it and I hate you.
—Seth Godin, What "no" means
Books & Coffee
Two of my favorite things!
- As if we needed it: 10 Benefits of Reading: Why You Should Read Every Day
- Here's a good summary of the 13 Best Psychology and Philosophy Books of 2013
- Jony Ive’s Secret Coffee Ritual
- Quartz on how an army of robot baristas could mean the end of Starbucks as we know it
- I loved this interview from Copyblogger on How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes:
Do you believe in writer’s block? If so, how do you avoid it?
I believe that it happens (and I have experienced it) but I don’t believe that it is a stand-alone psychological disorder. I believe that Writer’s Block is a symptom, usually, of some other actual psychological disorder (depression, anxiety, narcissism, alcoholism, extreme competitiveness, fear, etc).
I combat it through gentleness toward the self. Anything you fight, after all, fights you back. So I don’t fight Writer’s Block. I just try to coerce, persuade, encourage, bribe, and trick myself into returning to work.
And I diminish the stakes by reminding myself that none of this is actually that big a deal. Writers are some of the most dramatic people who ever lived, but in fact, what is at stake in the work of writing is kind of … nothing.
Nobody’s child ever died because someone got a bad review in The New York Times. It’s just art. And as beautiful as art is, and as much as we love it, there is no such thing as an actual real-life Arts Emergency.
. . . Nothing real is at stake here. So just go make a pretty thing. Or make a clunky thing, or a tiny thing, or a big thing, or an ugly thing, or an experimental and wild thing. Doesn’t matter. Enjoy the making. Let it go. It’s merely art. This line of thinking brings me great peace. Gets me out of my own way.
—Elizabeth Gilbert for Copyblogger
Just for Fun
- Brilliant! Here Is What Happens When a NASA Scientist Designs Holiday Sweaters
- YES. I got lost in the Tumblr site for about 30 solid minutes: Hilariously Awkward Engagement Photos
- These photos, on the other hand, are STUNNING: National Geographic Photo Contest 2013 - In Focus - The Atlantic
- This had me rolling on the floor. Thanks to my brother T-Bones for sending! The 2013 Hater's Guide to the Williams Sonoma Catalog:
"Item #54-3800760 Williams-Sonoma Snowflake Marshmallows
Williams-Sonoma says: "Fluffy marshmallows are hand cut and individually dusted."
Price: $5.95. Set of four.
Notes: That's six dollars—plus shipping—for four fucking marshmallows. A bag of 50 Jet Puft marshmallows is three bucks at the store. Oh, but these were hand-dusted, which makes all the difference. You can taste when your marshmallows have been dusted by some heartless dustbot. It's a cloying taste, which I why I NEVER serve them at my parties, which are attended by many federal appellate court judges and newspaper barons."