jerryking + mindfulness   13

Opinion | Can We Slow Down Time in the Age of TikTok?
Aug. 31, 2019 | The New York Times | By Jenny Odell. Ms. Odell is a writer and artist.

"I can’t give my students more time. But I try to change the way they think about and value it."

Ms. Odell, a writer and artist at Stanford, wishes her students would slow down, be allowed to focus on one thing--particularly in an era where "Time is precious; time is money". Students spend their time responding to their phones and to social media which is a drawback to their capacity to concentrate......The attention economy demands not just consumption but also the production and upkeep of a marketable self. The work of self-promotion fills every spare moment. In the age of the personal brand, when you might be posting not just for friends but potential employers, there’s no such thing as free time.....Odell's students includes many who aren’t art majors, some of whom may never have made art before. She gives them the same advice every quarter: Leave yourself twice as much time as you think you need for a project, knowing that half of that may not look like “making” anything at all. There is no Soylent version of thought and reflection — creativity is unpredictable, and it simply takes time. .....When Odell is bird watching (a favorite pastime that is, strictly speaking, “unproductive,”), she's noticed that her perception of time slows down. All of her attention is collected into a single focal point, kept there by fascination and genuine, almost unaccountable interest. This is the experience of learning that she want for her students — that she wants for everyone, actually — but it’s a fragile state. It requires maintenance.........That’s why she's built time into her classes for students to sit or wander outside, observing something specific — for example, how people interact with their devices. She takes one of her classes on a hike, using the app iNaturalist to identify plants and animals. Students don’t just need to be brought into contact with new ideas, they also need the time for sustained inquiry, a kind of time outside of time where neither they nor their work is immediately held to the standards of productivity......Odell wants people to make work that is *deliberately useless* in a way that pokes at prevailing notions of usefulness. Art seeks not to resolve or produce, but remains (and, indeed, luxuriates) in the realm of questioning......the attention economy makes time feel contracted into an endless and urgent present. A simple awareness of history can help cultivate a different sense of time.......reading history about the past trials and successes of activism, or taking historical walking tours of a city can counter feelings of despair and distraction.....Taking a longer view can help to stop feelings of being an unmoored producer of work and reaction and all you to see yourself as an actors grounded in real, historical time. This, just as much as the capacity to follow one’s own curiosity at length, might be the best way to fortify yourself against the forces that splinter our attention.....If we want students to be thinkers, then we need to give them time to think....Let's all agree: to just slow down.
advice  art  attention_economy  buffering  Colleges_&_Universities  creativity  focus  idleness  mindfulness  monotasking  noticing  op-ed  personal_branding  reflections  self-promotion  slack_time  Slow_Movement  students  sustained_inquiry  thinking  timeouts 
7 weeks ago by jerryking
You’re Not Paying Attention, but You Really Should Be
July 14, 2019 | The New York Times | By Tim Herrera.

I called up Rob Walker, author of “The Art of Noticing.” In his book, Mr. Walker writes: “To stay eager, to connect, to find interest in the everyday, to notice what everybody else overlooks — these are vital skills and noble goals. They speak between looking and seeing, between hearing and listening, between accepting what the world presents and noticing what matters to you.”.... it’s just about trying to carve out and give yourself permission to have this time where you’re tuning into things, listening to your own curiosity and seeing where that leads you,”......Record 10 metaphor-free observations about the world this week. This is deceptively simplistic: Who couldn’t look at 10 things this week and write them down? The trick is the no metaphors hook. You’re just noticing, not comparing, analyzing or referencing. You’re forced to slow down and truly contemplate the world around you, rather than passively breezing through it.

Remember: It’s looking vs. seeing. Hearing vs. listening. Accepting what the world presents vs. noticing what matters to you.

“There’s nothing more important than the stuff you notice that no one else does,” Mr. Walker said. “That’s where every single innovation begins; that’s where all creativity begins. It’s honoring what you notice, what you tune into and what you care about.”
attention  books  focus  listening  mindfulness  overstimulation  pay-attention  noticing  Slow_Movement 
july 2019 by jerryking
How to Get the Best From Your Immune System - Smarter Living Guides
2019 | The New York Times | By Matt Richtel.

**“An Elegant Defense: The Extraordinary New Science of the Immune System.”"

The immune system is much less about exercising power than it is about finding balance. You can help train and maintain it. Here’s how:
(A) What Is the Immune System?
Our great defense system helps ward off the most dangerous of invaders......It is a common misconception that the immune system goes to war with every foreign organism. That would lead to scorched earth, nuclear winter. Instead, the job of the immune system is to take stock, monitor, assess and judge potential threats...if an invader is deemed a threat, the immune system has a narrow job: destroy the threat while doing as little collateral damage as possible. This response from the immune system is called “inflammation.” .....inflammation can feel like a stuffy nose, sore throat, tummy ache, fever, fatigue or headache. Yes, the symptoms of an immune response feel lousy, but you must suffer a little to keep the rest of your body healthy over the long term. And for your health and daily well-being, the key is to keep your immune system from underperforming or getting out of hand.
(B) IT’S ABOUT BALANCE
The immune system, often seen as a ruthless defender, seeks a steady state, not a police state.....a fiercely delicate combination of a bouncer and a ballet dancer. In fact, many molecules in this complex system are designed to send a signal that it should withdraw, pause an attack and stand down. Without these molecules, the state of inflammation that helps destroy threats would lay your body to waste..... Instead of boosting your immune system, you should be supporting it. And you should try to never undermine its delicate structures.
(C) The Immune System and the Beast
Let's take a moment to understand how (and why) our immune system acts in the face of a threat.....Our immune system took shape roughly 480 million years ago. All jawed vertebrates going back to the shark share its key properties. One property is priority setting.....an acute threat, e.g. a lion attack, the body’s network focuses wholly on that threat....the body goes into an emergency state known colloquially as “fight or flight.” During these periods, the body fires off powerful chemicals, including:

Epinephrine, which creates a kind of high for the body to subvert fatigue.
Norepinephrine, which also helps to subvert fatigue.
Cortisol, which helps the body maintain essential functions, like blood flow.

When these hormones are at work, we can feel generally O.K.,but .... the release of these fight-or-flight hormones dampens our immune response. ...it causes the immune system to withdraw.
(D) WHY THE IMMUNE SYSTEM WITHDRAWS
During times of real, acute stress — like threat of being eaten by a lion — our bodies can ill afford to waste resources dealing with illness. Viruses and bacteria, while dangerous, pale in comparison to the gigantic beast with razor-sharp teeth chasing us across the savannah. In that moment, our body needs all our energy, non-essential functions be damned. Step one: survive lion. Step two: deal with head cold.
(E) Sleep Is a Magic Bullet
Both you and your immune system need rest. ...If you don’t sleep, you will die — sooner. Studies show that lack of sleep leads to premature death through diseases like cancer and heart disease, and the reasons have everything to do with the immune system,
(F) SLEEP KEEPS YOUR SYSTEM IN BALANCE
This might sound contradictory. How can sleep can weaken the immune system, but also lead to inflammation?

Your immune system does not work as a binary system. It is not either on or off. It is made up of many molecules that send different signals, some urging inflammation and others restraining it. Your goal is to create an environment that doesn’t require your immune system to lose its natural balance.

Sleeplessness tips your immune system out of balance, hinders homeostasis, and turns the once elegant system into reckless pinballs of powerful molecules bouncing off your body’s bumper rails, and sometimes through them.

More concretely, it is a hard pill to swallow knowing there is no pill to swallow. The most important steps to support your immune system require discipline and habit.
(G) Exercise, Food and Meditation
Ward off illness with these three staples of a healthy body. ...the best things you can do for yourself when you’re sick are rest, eat well, don’t turn little things into lions, and remember that your immune system, if given your support, will likely do a darn good job of keeping you at harmony with the world.
allergies  bacteria  books  defensive_tactics  exercise  food  habits  homeostasis  howto  immune_system  inflammation  meditation  mens'_health  mindfulness  priorities  self-discipline  sleep  sleeplessness  steady-state  threats  viruses 
june 2019 by jerryking
Is ancient philosophy the future? - The Globe and Mail
DONALD ROBERTSON
CONTRIBUTED TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL

* Stoic philosophy, of which Marcus Aurelius was history’s most famous proponent, taught its followers not to waste time on diversions that don’t actually improve their character.
* Ryan Holiday and Steven Hanselman’s The Daily Stoic.
* Stoicism offers rational solutions to human problems but it is especially effective in troubled times. Its offer is attractive: It doesn’t matter how crazy the world is, how “bad” others are, you can always keep your cool and flourish.
* Stoicism.....carefully distinguishes between things that are under our control and things that are not. We should learn to take more responsibility for things we do and to be less disturbed by events that happen to us.....Serenity Prayer.....“God give me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”
* it’s not things that upset us but rather our judgments about them. ...modern cognitive therapy... teaches us to become more aware of the role our thinking, or cognition, can play in shaping our emotions.
* Stoic acceptance does not mean passivity....The ancient Stoics sought to reconcile emotional calm with deliberate action for the common welfare of mankind.
* remain committed to improving the world around us without having to become distressed when things fall short of our expectations.
adversity  beyond_one's_control  books  emotional_mastery  metacognition  mindfulness  personal_control  philosophy  Romans  sense_of_control  sense_of_proportion  span_of_control  Stoics 
april 2019 by jerryking
How to Survive the Next Era of Tech (Slow Down and Be Mindful)
Nov. 28, 2018 | The New York Times | By Farhad Manjoo.
We live in unpredictable times. The unlikely happens. Be careful. Go slow. Three new maxims for surviving the next era of tech. I hope you heed them; the world rides on your choices.

(1) Don’t just look at the product. Look at the business model.
(2) Avoid feeding the giants. Manjoo's point that the lack of competition is curbing innovation.
(3) Adopt late. Slow down. Slow your roll--be a late adopter (slow to adopt shiny, new things).
Farhad_Manjoo  howto  mindfulness  Slow_Movement  technology  turbulence  late_adopters  rules_of_the_game  business_models  corporate_concentration  FAANG  platforms 
november 2018 by jerryking
3 Ways To Build A Better Mind-Muscle Connection
Todd Bumgardner
July 20, 2016

1. Cueing Mantras

The meditative "om" is often misunderstood, but it's been used for centuries for a reason: It works. This simple, one-syllable utterance cuts away the outside world and gives a meditator the means to travel inward. We can use the same process to improve our exercise performance and focus.

The means are simple, and what I like to call "three-letter self-cueing mantras." Think about the most impactful tasks a lift requires: getting into the starting position, finding a good middle position, and performing the lift forcefully. Let's use the deadlift as the example.

You want to start, and finish the lift, tall and tight. You have to reach into a good bottom position before lifting, and you have to drive the floor away for a solid lift. The deadlift mantra, then, is TRD: Tall and Tight. Reach. Drive.
deadlifts  exercise  fitness  gyms  mantras  mindfulness  self-talk  strength_training 
june 2017 by jerryking
Rise Above Your Awful Commute - WSJ
By Sue Shellenbarger
June 20, 2017

MANAGING A STRESSFUL COMMUTE

***To Stay Productive***:

Download work onto your mobile device in advance, in case you lose connectivity.
Charge your devices and carry a backup battery if needed.
Use the commute time to plan your day and set goals.
Schedule a one-hour buffer before your first meeting, in case you’re delayed.

***To Lower Tensions in Crowds***

Consider how other commuters must be feeling and treat them with empathy.
Cooperate with others in finding ways to ease the strain.
Wear light, comfortable clothes and shoes and carry water.
Practice deep breathing, muscle relaxation or visualization to calm yourself.
Download and listen to calming music.

***To Shake Off a Bad Commute***

Take a walk around the block before settling in at your desk.
Engage in a calming ritual such as stopping for a latte at a friendly coffee shop.
Think or write about an inspiring personal value, such as caring for family or being kind to strangers.
Immerse yourself in a setting with plants or natural scenes, such as a park, atrium or room with a nature mural or photos.
commuting  deep_breathing  rituals  transit  mindfulness  complaints 
june 2017 by jerryking
Rules for Modern Living From the Ancient Stoics -
May 25, 2017 | WSJ | By Massimo Pigliucci.

Stoicism is practical and humane, and it has plenty to teach us. The philosophy may have been developed around 300 B.C. by Zeno of Cyprus, but it is increasingly relevant today, as evidenced by the popularity of events such as Stoicon, an international conference set to hold its fourth annual gathering in Toronto this October.

The Stoics had centuries to think deeply about how to live, and they developed a potent set of exercises to help us navigate our existence, appreciating the good while handling the bad. These techniques have stood the test of time over two millennia. Here are five of my favorites.

(1) Learn to separate what is and isn’t in your power. This lets you approach everything with equanimity and tranquility of mind. ...Understand and internalize the difference, and you will be happier with your efforts, regardless of the outcome.

(2) Contemplate the broader picture. Looking from time to time at what the Stoics called “the view from above” will help you to put things in perspective and sometimes even let you laugh away troubles that are not worth worrying about. The Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius made a note of this in his famous personal diary, “The Meditations”: “Altogether the interval is small between birth and death; and consider with how much trouble, and in company with what sort of people and in what a feeble body, this interval is laboriously passed.”

(3) Think in advance about challenges you may face during the day. A prepared mind may make all the difference between success and disaster.

(4) Be mindful of the here and now (i.e. living in the moment). The past is no longer under your control: Let it go. The future will come eventually, but the best way to prepare for it is to act where and when you are most effective—right here, right now.

(5) Before going to bed, write in a personal philosophical diary. This exercise will help you to learn from your experiences—and forgive yourself for your mistakes.

Stoicism was meant to be a practical philosophy. It isn’t about suppressing emotions or stalking through life with a stiff upper lip. It is about adjusting your responses to what happens, enduring what must be endured and enjoying what can be enjoyed.
Stoics  philosophy  Romans  journaling  self-discipline  mindfulness  span_of_control  mybestlife  preparation  beforemath  sense_of_proportion  the_big_picture  anticipating  contextual  forward_looking  foresight  GTD  perspectives  affirmations  beyond_one's_control  chance  living_in_the_moment  Greek  personal_control 
june 2017 by jerryking
Taking Risks in Love - NYTimes.com
FEB. 13, 2015 | NYT | Arthur Brooks.

If we want more love, we must conquer fear. We must take personal risks for big potential romantic rewards. Forget test-driving a relationship for 10 years, or searching for someone so perfectly matched as to resemble a sibling.

Love is supposed to be a little scary because it is uncertain. I remember moments when my own romantic venture seemed doomed and foolish. Courage means feeling the fear of rejection and loss but pursuing love anyway....The second thing love requires is mindfulness — pure focus, and total engagement in the current activity. “While washing the dishes,” the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh teaches, “one should only be washing the dishes.”

But mindfulness goes beyond the mundane; it is also the key to victory in the most audacious ventures. Emerging research shows that practicing mindfulness changes the structure of the brain in beneficial ways that make people more effective in business. Successful entrepreneurs have the uncanny ability to reside in the present moment even while working toward their goal. Lovers need the same mindful focus.
relationships  dating  marriage  courage  focus  personal_risk  romance  romantic_love  valentine  fear  mindfulness  seminal_moments 
february 2015 by jerryking
WWE champ, fitness goddess Trish Stratus shares how she kicks butt - The Globe and Mail
Sep. 21 2014 | The Globe and Mail | COURTNEY SHEA.

Here, some of her other secrets to success.

(1) The calm in the middle of the ring. Take time every day to disconnect is so important for having perspective. For Trish Stratus, hot yoga is her stress-eliminating device.

(2) Preparedness is a weapon. Trish's mentor, Robert Kennedy,the then publisher of magazines Oxygen and MuscleMag, gave her the opportunity to do a photo shoot. He told her about it two months in advance, set her up with a trainer and said, “Go get ready for it.” Trish's formula for success, is "preparedness meets opportunity". Many people are given opportunities in life, but they aren’t able or willing to prepare for them. Opportunities happen more often then you think but you have to be ready for them.

(3) I am woman, hear me headlock. Setbacks occur, but keep busting your butt out there, keep working, keep working, and eventually people will realize and recognize your contribution. Sometimes having to overcome hurdles is also a chance to make a mark.

(4) To get it right, write it down. Take notes. Make (to-do) lists. Keeping track of things can enhance awareness, mindfulness, and even inspiration.

(5) Authenticity matters (even in scripted wrestling). The best wrestlers– the ones that have longevity and resonate most with the audience – are almost always when it’s an amped-up version of the actual personality.
authenticity  calm  disconnecting  fitness  hard_work  hotties  inspiration  journaling  lessons_learned  lists  mentoring  mindfulness  models  note_taking  opportunities  personal_energy  preparation  self-awareness  setbacks  To-Do  readiness  women  yoga 
september 2014 by jerryking
Corner Office - Tachi Yamada and the Importance of Undivided Attention - Question - NYTimes.com
Feb. 27, 2010 | NYT | Adam Bryant's interview of Tachi Yamada,
M.D., president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global
Health Program.
* Don’t micromanage, but have microinterests.
* Every moment counts, be 100 % in the moment.
* Intelligence = complex abstract thinking = human relationships. Look
for people who’ve moved.
* Humour, is an underestimated and important value.
* Leadership, in order to connect with groups of people, requires giving
of yourself.
* Turn battleships by making directional commitments and staying the
course,
* In giving feedback, the positive messages get lost in the one negative
message, and the negative message gets garbled.
* Figure out what your North Star is.
* Be open to new challenges.
* If there are 10 tasks in an overall project, identify the most
critical task among those 10. What is the one thing that everything
else hinges on (i.e. the linchpin)? Invest time in understanding that one thing. Then,
if/when the problem occurs, it usually occurs there.
billgates  philanthropy  CEOs  linchpins  Managing_Your_Career  career  feedback  hiring  leadership  focus  slight_edge  rate-limiting_steps  affirmations  humour  commitments  priorities  bottlenecks  abstractions  moments  attention  North_Star  monotasking  mindfulness  living_in_the_moment 
march 2010 by jerryking

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