Feeling the flow

You know when you are in the flow. Decisions feel like perfectly paired joints locking together. Opportunities in the form of people, ideas and things uncloak. You don’t look back or forward, there is only now. Recognize and remember the flow feeling. You’ll know it when you feel it.

Sycophant moats 

Some people surround themselves with a claque and never hear the truth. The politicians and celebrities who do this are easy to spot because they are under the klieg lights in the public domain. An objective observer sees it immediately. It’s cringeworthy because the people inside the bubble think it’s completely normal.

When the truth does catch up with them, and it always does, they refuse to believe it or melt down and replace the messenger with a loyal sycophant comrade.

A moat of sycophants creates an impenetrable reality distortion field. Truth is the only antidote. Don’t be an enabler. Speak truth to power or go spend your time elsewhere.

Live and work with people who hold you accountable, and are quietly confident enough to tell you the truth.

Be careful of slow maybes

Set your own agenda. It creates consistency for others and is habit forming. If you aren’t on your own agenda then you are on someone else’s. Stick to your plan.

You’ll find yourself saying no more than yes…that means it’s working.

Be careful of maybes. A quick no is better than a slow maybe and clears the way for a yes.

Wisdom from Bill Gates

My take on Bill Gates’ tweet storm advice:

Intelligence comes in many forms

Always be learning

Be aware of inequity in the world and be the change you want to see. Do it locally or globally.

Measure happiness by whether people close to you are happy

Make a positive difference in other peoples lives

Spend time with people that push you to be a better person

The world is getting better, but there’s more work to do, start now.

It is an amazing time to be alive

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Simple complexity 

Simple ➡️ Complex ➡️ Simple ➡️ Complex ➡️ Simple

Most things look simple from a distance. But until you understand the complexity, you can’t fully appreciate the simplicity. Go deep, get detailed and immerse yourself. There is simplicity and beauty on the other side of complexity.

Persistence and compassion are underrated

These lines in the NYT Michael Bloomberg interview resonated with me. It covers what I think is important. Persistence, compassion and hard work.

Who Gets the Job

What disturbs me is you talk to kids applying today and they invariably say, “I cured cancer, I brought peace to the Mideast.” Spare me. How about, “My father never existed, my mother is a convicted drug dealer. I worked three shifts at McDonald’s.” That’s the kind of kid I want — with an ethic of taking care of his family — because then he’ll take care of others. Some of us don’t have much prenatal intelligence, but nevertheless go out and try and have a decent chance of surviving. I’m not the smartest guy in the room, but nobody’s going to outwork me.

And he doesn’t look in the rear view mirror.

What I Would Have Done Differently

Given the way things turned out, nothing.

It’s a great interview. Read the rest here.