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GRANTED: TED, The Real Meaning of Happiness, and Why Women Leave
Just a few weeks ago, I had the terrifying pleasure of speaking on the TED main stage about how to be original. One of my favorite points: doubting yourself is paralyzing, but doubting your ideas is energizing. The talk just went live—watch it here:
The Surprising Habits of Original Thinkers
Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming: some favorite recent articles on work and psychology.
1. The Problem With Best Practices
“Best practices don’t make you the best,” Shane Snow writes. “They make you the average of everyone else who follows them.” Five points for writing an outstanding article—and five for kicking off said article with a story about cookies.
2. Getting to Si, Ja, Oui, Hai, and Da
Confrontation and emotional expression get the global treatment from Erin Snow, who delivers a fascinating and data-rich analysis of negotiation styles across cultures.
3. Fear Is Boring, and Other Tips For Living a Creative Life
"Sometimes passions burn hot and then burn out… sometimes on a very sad Tuesday morning when you didn’t sleep well, the idea of passion just feels so out of reach that you can’t even imagine ever accessing it. And yet curiosity is this faithful, steadfast, friendly and accessible energy that is never far out of reach… Passion demands full commitment out of you… But curiosity doesn’t take anything from you. Curiosity just gives." In 11 paragraphs, Eat, Pray, Love's Elizabeth Gilbert dares us to think differently about creativity. I dare you to read it without getting a goosebump or two.
4. The Seven Habits of Highly Depolarizing People
Election years are good for two things: nominating presidents and feeling at odds with your political opposites. David Blankenhorn shares how to make friends and influence people on the other side of the divide. Or we could just keep muting each other on Facebook...
5. Why So Many Thirtysomething Women Are Leaving Your Company
It's not because of family demands, Christie Arscott finds, but largely for the same reasons as men: looking for higher pay, more learning opportunities, and more meaningful work.
6. What People Around the World Mean When They Say They're Happy
Is it a good mood, a good life, or meaning? Ana Swanson shares some of the illuminating subtleties that go into worldwide surveys on happiness.
From My Desk:
7. How to Pitch an Idea Like Mark Cuban and Reid Hoffman
These two entrepreneurs have made—and heard—a million pitches, so I wanted to explore how they get their own ideas heard. You can watch them pitch here and learn about the three common themes that jumped out at me.
8. Quora Q&A Session
Here's a flurry of Qs from Quora members, and my associated As. My favorite Q: What do you think is likely true, but left out of Originals due to lack of evidence? My A: I think the greatest originals break free from mentors earlier than their peers, because they're itching to start pursuing their own ideas and worried about doing derivative work.
Thanks for reading; I hope you found something that made you happy (in any sense of the word). See you next month, when I’ll be releasing a new book on the risks and rewards of interplanetary terraforming: