This week I've been spending a lot of time clarifying my vision for both YouTube and blog content. I've realised how important it is to have a clear message and to make sure the it's clear what the audience should expect of me.
The high-level vision that all content will be based around is 'Evidence-based advice'. The evidence will be from scientific papers or books by experts in their fields. This vision allows me to dip into neuroscience, productivity, cardiovascular health and diet. My ultimate hope is to help those that watch to feel happier and healthier.
I hope that you will find the content born out of this vision to be useful and interesting. Have a great week!
🗓 This Week
How Non-conformists Change the World | Originals by Adam Grant
Originals by Adam Grant explores the common misconceptions of the most successful people in history. Here's what I learned. Read the blog post here.
New Neuroscience Reveals 4 Rituals That Will Make You Happy (Blog)
4 rituals that will make you happy, backed by neuroscience:
- Ask yourself: 'What am I grateful for?' Gratitude causes release of the same neurotransmitters that common antidepressants target, without the side effects.
- Label Negative Feelings. fMRI studies showed that labelling feelings reduced the emotional reactivity of the amygdala (a part of your brain that processes emotion). Putting feelings into words reduced their impact.
- Make That Decision. Creating intentions and setting goals engage the pre-frontal cortex in the brain, reducing anxiety and worry. Settle for good enough, rather than always optimising for best.
- Touch People (but keep it appropriate). Social isolation activates the same circuits in the brain as pain. By touching people, you stimulate the release of oxytocin which activates painkilling endorphins and can help to mediate the amygdala.
Why Do Founders Love René Girard? - Johnathan Bi (Podcast)
This conversation is a great introduction to René Girard, somebody that I have heard a lot about but never looked into. Here are a few notes I had on this conversation.
René Girard is most famous for saying that our desires are often driven more by the what an object says about us, than the utility of the object itself. For example, a Ferrari is undoubtedly fast, but we aren't buying it for its speed—we desire it because of the unspoken status that it projects.
This leads to the mimetic drive where we identify people who represent the values and life that we would like to have, therefore we mimic their values and actions. We identify them as models and allow them to dictate what we should desire.
While we allow metaphysical desire to dictate how we converge on certain trends or actions, we also diverge from trends and actions that we don’t want to mimic.
There’s a modern train of thought that conformity towards the group is inauthentic, this has caused a inverse reaction where divergence is seen as authentic; based on Gerard‘s thoughts this divergence is as mimetic as the convergence that they aim to get away from. In other words it isn’t more authentic to diverge. This is mistaking originality for authenticity.
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