Hard Cares

What do you care about? Go ahead and rattle off your initial list – the people you know, doing a good job at work, making a positive difference in the world, etc. Then dig deeper. What are your high-risk cares? What do you care about internally but never share because you might be judged for…

Guaranteeing a Certain Kind of Year

One thing I love about interesting commitments is that they can guarantee that I’ll have a certain kind of year. This requires that I pick a commitment that’s close to 100% under my direct control, so there are no significant risky external points of failure. This year I guaranteed that I’d do a lot of…

Thriving Without a God

In your favorite models of reality, do you include a god or gods? Have you tested models and frames that are god-free to see how well they work for you? I grew up learning models of reality that include a god, in that case a Christian version of one. Later I went atheist, and I…

Fragile Objections

Suppose you’re sitting in a Toastmasters meeting where members are practicing their speaking skills. Suppose there are about 20 members in the room, which would be pretty typical for a Toastmasters club. Now suppose you hear a fellow member give a speech that you find objectionable, and it bothers you to hear such words spoken…

Fragile vs Resilient Relationships

My relationship with Rachelle is very anti-fragile. Even when one or both of us is at our worst or when there’s a lot of turmoil going on around us, there’s little risk to our relationship. We can say or do the stupidest things, and we still stick like glue. We have plenty of freedom to…

Framing Yourself Into a Corner

It’s good to be aware of the potential risk of framing yourself into a corner when you’re faced with a tricky situation. Suppose you’re in a relationship, and you catch your partner kissing someone else. How do you frame that situation? It may depend on the details of course, like the type of kiss or…

Journaling Conversations

Many of my journal entries take the form of conversations, similar to a discussion, debate, or interview between two parties. Most often I use the interview approach. I play one role, usually as myself. I assign the other role to a different perspective, such as my future self, the universe, or the spirit of a…

I Registered to Vote

After decades of never voting in any election, I finally registered to vote for the first time ever. My registration is nonpartisan. I’m not a member of any political party. Some would say that I should have remedied this long ago. Why did I wait so long? Partly I’ve been stuck with an old frame…

Sparky Questions

Recently I was pondering ways to generate ideas that feel more fiery or sparky. I always have a lot of options for what to do next, and it’s easier for me to feel bored than stressed, so I often want to explore paths that offer some extra stimulation and challenge. Here are the questions I…