Incremental Growth

In “The Art Of Learning”, Josh Waitzkin talks a lot about "incremental growth" as a core part of his learning philosophy. The key, says Josh—who has used this technique to become a chess grandmaster and a Tai Chi Chuan world champion—is to focus on the fundamentals, practicing them over and over and add to them slowly, piece by piece. There's nothing new here. Josh is simply putting ancient wisdom to practice....

Think About Your Identity First

As James Clears describes it in his book Atomic Habits when approaching new habits we normally go through a three-step process of results, processes and identity. Most of us go through these steps in a top-down approach. We first think of the results we want, like wanting to lose some weight. Then we think about our processes to achieve the desired results like choosing what diet to follow or what gym routine to try....

The Hard Things

Not long ago I read somewhere online the phrase "Do the hard things early in life". On the surface, the phrase is simple enough. It makes sense to do the hard things early in life because one has more energy and fewer responsibilities. But it is also a call to action. We don't know how much life we have left. It's OK to plan for the future, but as Marcus Aurelius said, we could leave life right now....

Project Yourself into the Future

Last night after a delicious dinner with friends, the conversation steered into life decisions and the practice of projecting oneself into the future. Visualizing my future self in 1, 5, and 10 years is an exercise I've been doing for over a decade and will keep doing because it gives me a sense of direction. When I review my notes, I'm often surprised how close I've come to my original vision....

Bad Days

You should expect bad days. To think that you can run every day and feel great every single time is naive, to say the least. Anything can affect your running. Maybe you didn't get enough sleep the night before. Or you had too much dessert. What about that extra beer with friends? Today was one of those bad days for me. I woke up. Followed my morning routine (stretching and writing)....

Theory vs Practice

In an interview with Joe Rogan, David Goggins describes a time when he was invited to discuss the workings of the mind with a panel of experts at MIT. During the panel, a professor went on and on about how the mind works. All David could think was "You read a bunch of books and think you know how the mind f* works." Now, you've got to understand David and his choice of language....

Concentrate Like a Roman

As a software engineer, my job requires me to be able to concentrate for long periods of time and think hard about the programs and algorithms I want to implement. But, it is all too easy to get distracted when sitting in front of a computer: not only are there meetings and calls, there are also direct messages, emails and the normal distractions from the Internet: Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc....