Tag: relationships (page 1 of 2)

The life run by spreadsheet is not worth living

When work is the most significant thing in your life, you optimise for it. When relationships are are the most significant things in your life, you optimise for those.

I find this post by ‘crypto engineer’ Nat Eliason a bit tragic, to be honest. He says he’s almost always working, there’s zero mention of family, and he says that all of his friends are people who are hustling too.

As Socrates didn’t say, “the life run by spreadsheet is not worth living”.

Here’s the biggest thing to keep in mind when you’re reading about my process:

I’m almost always working.

This is not some Tim Ferrissian “here’s how to work 2 hours a day and make lots of money” post. I tried that. It sucks. You’ll get depressed in about two days if you have an ounce of ambition in you. If you’re trying to optimize around working less, find better work.

It doesn’t mean, though, that I’m always doing things that feel like work. It means I enjoy the work that I do, and I’ve found ways to make my hobbies productive.

Source: How to Be Really, Really, Ridiculously Productive | Nat Eliason

Kith and kin

This is a great article about how the internet was going to save us from TV and now we’re looking for something to save us from the internet. What we actually need are stronger and deeper relationships with the people around us — our kith and kin.

We are conditioned to care about kin, to take life’s meaning from the relationships with those we know and love. But the psychological experience of fame, like a virus invading a cell, takes all of the mechanisms for human relations and puts them to work seeking more fame. In fact, this fundamental paradox—the pursuit through fame of a thing that fame cannot provide—is more or less the story of Donald Trump’s life: wanting recognition, instead getting attention, and then becoming addicted to attention itself, because he can’t quite understand the difference, even though deep in his psyche there’s a howling vortex that fame can never fill.

This is why famous people as a rule are obsessed with what people say about them and stew and rage and rant about it. I can tell you that a thousand kind words from strangers will bounce off you, while a single harsh criticism will linger. And, if you pay attention, you’ll find all kinds of people—but particularly, quite often, famous people—having public fits on social media, at any time of the day or night. You might find Kevin Durant, one of the greatest basketball players on the planet, possibly in the history of the game—a multimillionaire who is better at the thing he does than almost any other person will ever be at anything—in the D.M.s of some twenty something fan who’s talking trash about his free-agency decisions. Not just once—routinely! And he’s not the only one at all.

There’s no reason, really, for anyone to care about the inner turmoil of the famous. But I’ve come to believe that, in the Internet age, the psychologically destabilizing experience of fame is coming for everyone. Everyone is losing their minds online because the combination of mass fame and mass surveillance increasingly channels our most basic impulses—toward loving and being loved, caring for and being cared for, getting the people we know to laugh at our jokes—into the project of impressing strangers, a project that cannot, by definition, sate our desires but feels close enough to real human connection that we cannot but pursue it in ever more compulsive ways.

Source: On the Internet, We’re Always Famous | The New Yorker

How becoming a father changes men

It’s Father’s Day today, in the UK at least. My children, who both delight and infuriate in equal measure, spoiled me with some thoughtful presents.

This article touches on something I’ve observed in others and myself: becoming a father really does change men. As the diagram below shows, that happens in terms of testosterone, but in my experience being a dad changes your worldview.

Diagram showing testosterone levels reducing as children are born

New fathers show reduced testosterone, which may help them be more nurturing to their newborn children. Scientists sampled testosterone levels of more than 450 men in the Philippines in 2005 and again in 2009. All the men showed a slight decrease in testosterone levels (morning testosterone levels shown here), which is to be expected as they age. Men with newborn infants showed a much greater drop, however. Their testosterone returned to expected levels as their children grew up.

Source: Evolution of the dad | Knowable