Summary of “How to overcome common decision-making obstacles”

Leaders face some common obstacles that get in the way of their decision-making skills, says Richard Horwath, CEO of Strategic Thinking Institute, and author of StrategyMan vs. the Anti-Strategy Squad. Understanding and overcoming them is essential to breaking destructive decision-making patterns and getting to better outcomes.
“The biggest issue that I see when it comes to decision making for managers is this idea of anchors,” Horwath says.
To overcome the distraction of anchors, Horwath recommends writing down the decision you need to make.
Overconfidence, or excessive optimism or belief in your own judgment, is another trap, says Alain Samson, PhD, founder of BehavioralEconomics.com and chief science officer at Syntoniq, a company specialized in assessing biases in financial decision making.
Think through the downside potential and the impact your decision may have on others to give yourself a reality check.
Confirmation bias, in which we look for and interpret information in ways that support what we believe, can be influenced by a decision to be “Right” or wishful thinking, he says.
If you tend to be an impulsive decision maker, impose a “Cooling-off” period before you finalize big decisions.
Reflect on your own personal patterns and motivations in decision making.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How ‘BoJack Horseman’ Got Made: An Oral History”

The email from Raphael Bob-Waksberg to Lisa Hanawalt on March 22, 2010, was to the point: “Hey, do you have a picture of one of your horse guys, by himself? I came up with this idea for a show I’d like to pitch. Tell me what you think: BoJack the Depressed Talking Horse.”
Raphael Bob-Waksberg: The question was: “Could it be sports? Instead of a former sitcom actor, could he be a former racehorse? And what would that look like?” I had some pitches for that, and how the story would change, but I said, “I really like the show-business angle and here’s why “.
Steven A. Cohen: I think one of the great things about Michael is that he’ll come in and try to push something to a certain place – or maybe try just to push Raphael for the first time, to see how much he really believes in this idea.
Raphael Bob-Waksberg: The whole tagline for Secretariat – “He’s tired of running in circles” – came out of that meeting with Michael about BoJack, where we talked about how BoJack is tired of running in circles and he wants to do something else.
The script process, once we hired Raphael to write the script, was also the beginning of knowing how it would be to work with him.
Noel Bright: I love how Raphael tells the story about how the casting went: “Can we get this person?” “Sure!” “Wait – we really can get that person?” And then, all of a sudden, “Yeah, that person just said yes.
The culmination of more than three years of talking, writing, drawing, and animating saw Raphael’s “Depressed Talking Horse” become BoJack Horseman at the stroke of midnight on August 22, 2014, when the series went live.
Raphael could have made that show just a funny cartoon for grown-ups, and it probably would have been fine.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Stop Spending So Much Time In Your Head”

I bet you spend A LOT of time in your head. You know, thinking, worrying, stressing, freaking out – call it whatever you want.
“A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.”
Before I learned that skill, I would spend hours and hours inside my head. Just think about how much you think.
Put your brain to use and think about how you can solve problems.
If you’re constantly thinking, it’s because you haven’t’ trained your mind yet.
You’re probably thinking so much that you’re missing out of life.
If your answer is no, you definitely need to get out of your head. Stop thinking and start feeling.
Now, you might think: “How do I train myself to stop thinking useless thoughts?” Awareness.

The orginal article.

Summary of “It’s time to break up Facebook”

“We live in America, which has a strong and proud tradition of breaking up companies that are too big for inefficient reasons,” Wu told me on this week’s Vergecast.
“We need to reverse this idea that it’s not an American tradition. We’ve broken up dozens of companies.”
“I think if you took a hard look at the acquisition of WhatsApp and Instagram, the argument that the effects of those acquisitions have been anticompetitive would be easy to prove for a number of reasons,” says Wu. And breaking up the company wouldn’t be hard, he says.
Breaking up Facebook could be simple under the current law, suggests Wu. But it could also lead to a major rethinking of how antitrust law should work in a world where the giant platform companies give their products away for free, and the ability for the government to restrict corporate power seems to be diminishing by the day.
Making a case for breaking up these companies will rely on showing a different type of harm than high consumer prices – something like anticompetitive practices, or that innovative businesses get suffocated when they’re absorbed by their gigantic acquirers.
Won’t getting bigger and bigger lead companies like Facebook and Google to make mistakes, become slower, and create opportunities for new challengers? That has largely been the belief of the tech industry, which has seen the fortunes of companies like AOL, Myspace, and Yahoo dramatically rise and fall.
“A whole generation of companies – Google, Facebook, some of these early companies – they don’t owe everything to antitrust, but they owe a sizable debt to the antitrust law,” he says.
“If you wait long enough, maybe 100 years, they’ll go away. But we could very well have Facebook – an inefficient, ineffective, obsolete company – hanging around for another 20 years,” says Wu. “I’m just not really sure that’s what we need.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Fundamental Attribution Error: Why You Make Terrible Life Choices”

The second type of fundamental attribution error occurs when things go well.
The researchers’ believe students who viewed things in a more self-serving way were more motivated and optimistic about their futures.
While the fundamental attribution error has some benefits, it also has a downside when it comes to how we think about others.
Remembering how many things outside of our control had to go just right, can help us feel more grateful and reminds us of how lucky we are that so many things we had nothing to do with went just so.
Research shows we are more likely to fall for the fundamental attribution error when we make quick judgements of others.
Humans seem to be hardwired to make the fundamental attribution error.
There are ways we can fight this tendency and live a happier more empathetic life.
Discover other reasons you make terrible life choices like confirmation bias, hyperbolic discounting and distinction bias.

The orginal article.

Summary of “A history of happiness explains why capitalism makes us feel empty inside”

A new book entitled The Happiness Fantasy by Carl Cederström, a business professor at Stockholm University, traces our current conception of happiness to its roots in modern psychiatry and the so-called Beat generation of the ’50s and ’60s. He argues that the values of the countercultural movement – liberation, freedom, and authenticity – were co-opted by corporations and advertisers, who used them to perpetuate a culture of consumption and production.
I spoke to Cederström about how this happened and why he thinks happiness ought to be seen as a collective project that promotes deeper engagement with the world around us.
Although Sigmund Freud didn’t think human beings were especially designed for happiness, there were other figures who emerged from that movement, people like the Austrian psychoanalyst William Reich, who popularized this idea that happiness was connected to free love and free sexuality.
As you note in the book, our idea of happiness has been transformed to make us better consumers and producers, and that’s not an accident.
So is there any way for us to truly change our collective conception of happiness without also changing the underlying economic structure?
There really is no way to accurately compare happiness today with happiness 50 or 100 years ago, but this mania for individual satisfaction and this idea that buying and collecting more stuff will make us happy has produced a spectacularly unequal world, and it has, in my opinion, left people less fulfilled and more empty inside.
Sean Illing Your book is focused on the Western world, but do you think the East, with its very different religious and cultural traditions, in general has a better view of happiness that the Western world?
Sean Illing You said earlier that we need to reimagine a new happiness fantasy, one that is less self-involved and more grounded in the world around us.

The orginal article.

Summary of “What Is Your Intent? Reminding Yourself Why You Do What You Do.”

Once you’re clear about your deepest desires, you can start thinking about the ways that you can achieve it.
An intent is who we aspire to be – as individuals, members of our community or citizens of our planet.
An intent represents our deepest desires – those emotional and spiritual yearnings that we ask for when we are honest and authentic.
What desire will that fulfill? Remember to be honest with yourself – this is a personal exercise.
In the morning, before you start work, set an intent just for today.
My intent is to express gratitude to my coworkers today.
Once you’re clear about your deepest desires, you can start thinking about the ways you can achieve them.
Once we know our intents, we get more comfortable expressing our desires to ourselves, to our loved ones and to our community.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Things They Lost in the Fire”

In the days afterward, they dwelled mainly on the things they left behind.
“The first things you grab are your file box and your dog; those are the things you grab,” says Haleigh, on the verge of tears, struggling to understand how her pets could have been left behind.
Some things simply can’t be carried away, no matter what they mean to us.
The truth is we need some things to survive-clothing, medicine, identification.
For him, talking about the things he didn’t think to bring has become a way to talk about other kinds of loss.
The idea of gaining something from a fire chafes against a key lesson that we’re taught about disaster: that it can only take things from us.
That idea is built on another, which casts our belongings as parts of us, propping up the scaffolding of our identities through lists-the things we like, the things we surround ourselves with, the things we choose to remember.
Memories of the things Butler, Stoltzfus, and the McWhirters left behind wouldn’t sting so exquisitely.

The orginal article.

Summary of “100 Things I Learned Reading The Same Book 100 Times Over 10 Years”

I would also become what Stephen Marche has referred to as a “Centireader,” reading Marcus Aurelius well over 100 times across multiple editions and copies.
In Book Four, Marcus reminds himself to think about all the doctors who “Died, after furrowing their brows over how many deathbeds, how many astrologers, after pompous forecasts about other’s ends.” In black pen - somewhat recently it looks like - I added “Or plotters, schemers and strategists, outsmarted, outmaneuvered and destroyed.” I suppose that was a dig at myself and other smart people.
Marcus writes “Mastery of reading and writing requires a master. Still, more so life.” I wrote “Tucker, R.G” in the margins next to that passage.
Marcus reminded himself: “Don’t await the perfection of Plato’s Republic.” He wasn’t expecting the world to be exactly the way he wanted it to be, but Marcus knew instinctively, as the Catholic philosopher Josef Pieper would later write, that “He alone can do good who knows what things are like and what their situation is.”
One of the most practical things I’ve learned from the Stoics is an exercise I’ve come to call “Contemptuous expressions.” I love how Marcus would take fancy things and describe them in almost cynical, dismissive language - roasted meat is a dead animal and vintage wine is old, fermented grapes.
In his excellent book The Inner Citadel about Marcus Aurelius and Stoicism, Hadot did original translations for the passages he quotes - but sadly he died without publishing a full translation of Marcus for wider consumption.
Years later, one of my readers created and sent me two 3D printed busts of both Marcus and Seneca which sit in my library.
In Book Six we find one of the strongest encouragements that Marcus gives himself.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why Do Men Fight?: An Interview with Thomas Page McBee”

In his new book Amateur: A True Story About What Makes a Man, journalist and memoirist Thomas Page McBee trains for a charity fight.
In his first book, the Lambda Award-winning Man Alive: A True Story of Violence, Forgiveness, and Becoming a Man, McBee writes about surviving being mugged by a man who had killed other men in similar attacks, making the decision to transition, and facing off with the stepfather who had sexually abused him as a child.
As a trans man who has also reckoned with violence at the hands of other men and who struggles to create for myself a path toward a feminist expression of masculinity, I was eager to catch up with McBee to discuss these issues and how we as trans men might be uniquely poised to witness masculinity for not only its flaws but also for its potential for positive change.
Yeah, though I think, again, that nobody is really off the hook as long as white men enjoy the status we do in culture.
I think early stories I’d heard from trans men compounded that fear for me, too.
Do you think there’s a way in which the concept of beginner’s mind might be at odds with the aims of memoir as a form? In other words, do you think the genre of memoir pressures us as writers “To know” or to arrive at a conclusion that one may not have yet, or to ignore that the questions are perhaps more important than answers?
I think being a man can be a lonely thing, especially when men choose to remain hemmed in by the societal status quo.
I think about boxing every day, but I haven’t been back in the ring since the fight.

The orginal article.