Why intermittent fasting isn’t for you

dsc_0574Having done intermittent fasting or IF as it is often shorted for probably close to 5 years I find myself quite capable of listing pros and cons and giving advice on whether it is a good idea or not. You could perhaps think that having followed it for 5 years I would recommend it to everyone as I must find it great and useful otherwise I would just have abandoned it, right!?

Well yes and no. I’m not bound by religion to fasting and I haven’t signed my life away to an employer legally keeping me from spending time on eating breakfast – so yes – I can abandon it anytime I see fit – which we will get to. But that does not thereby mean that I think everyone should adopt intermittent fasting. It is absolutely not for everyone. There are very good reasons for following a IF schedule, but there are as good reasons for not.

The primary reason for why you should keep away from IF is because you probably expect it to be some magic pill that suddenly will make you young, slim, muscular and energized.

Yes that is just some of the highlights from the almost mile long list of benefits of IF I have encountered from various sites. Of course if you are looking to make money of products relating to IF and you don’t care that much about your integrity, then you should by no means present a balanced view on IF shedding light on both sides of the arguments. But as I don’t stand to gain anything from your choosing of lifestyle I have no need to present anything else than what I have experienced and believe in myself.

Some of the things advertised as effects of IF are true. BUT if you are looking at doing if because of those, then for 9 out of 10 you are looking for a quick fix for a problem you don’t really want to face and you will not find it with IF either. A lot of the things ascribed to IF comes from “regular” fasting as research in this area has been more thorough than IF. Regular fasting where you fast for several days has been used quite a lot to help heal different types of ailments. But exactly how many of those benefits you can have by say fasting 16 hours out of each day isn’t really that well documented.

Perhaps it is a good idea to somewhat loosely define what constitutes intermittent fasting. The fasting part is quite easily defined – no calories. You can drink water, coffee or tea with nothing in it, that adds calories. There are some strong proponents of what they call “bulletproof” coffee fasting where you put like 5-700 kcal worth of butter in your coffee and still call it fasting because you aren’t eating anything. Well it might be good for your and fit your goals and schedule perfectly, but fasting – it is not. Intermittent implies cycling on and off. You could imply that over a long enough timeframe all fasting is intermittent, it is not like anyone keeps fasting and not gets back to eating – or if they do they won’t be redoing that experiment..

But exactly how you implement this “intermittent” part is up for debate. You could again argue that we already have some sort of intermittent fasting as we don’t eat from dinner till breakfast, which as the name implies breaks the nightly fast. But implementing anything that could be considered daily IF probably start at around a 16 hour fast window give or take. That’s the schedule I have been doing for the past 5 years. There are other implementations where you fast for 1 whole day each week or 2 days a week etc. Again there are many ways to do this, do your research and determine for yourself what you might want – or just ask, I’ll be happy to answer any questions.

The second reason why fasting isn’t for you is if you are considered a “hard-gainer” and are looking to put on weight. If you have problems eating enough by having 16 hours a day to eat, then it sure as hell won’t help to only have 8 hours to do the same. That is not to say that you cannot put on weight while doing IF – I have done it several times, but I am by no means considered a hard-gainer – I have the appetite of a full pack of grown up lions putting their teeth in a zebra after 6 weeks of licking salt from rocks in the baking sun.

I have seen way to many skinny guys wanting to do IF because they have seen guys doing IF that are very muscular and lean and want to look as them. The problem here is linking correlation with causation without taking all factors into play. Yes, they may look that way because of doing IF, but most likely they will have had a different starting point than a skinny kid. Most likely they will already have build quite a bit of muscle mass doing just regular bulking paradigms. Again not to say it is impossible for them or anyone to put on weight with IF, but have a honest look on yourself in the mirror and tell whether you have a hard time putting on weight or not. If you do, then IF probably isn’t the answer.

The final point I will bring in this post is probably one I will cover more in detail later on as I am not really totally settled on the answer myself to be honest, but still deserves a mention is what I will term environment. Not the one you try to save from global warming as I’m pretty sure IF has no play in that, but environment as in work, school, family etc. The environment you live in everyday.

The consequences/concerns here are somewhat split into two parts. One is explanation. Even though if you do 16/8 fasting you could probably time it to be when everyone else eats lunch and just not mention you don’t eat breakfast, unless of course you want to talk about it. But you will most likely end up in situations where you will have to explain why you aren’t eating breakfast and situations where you perhaps should consider breaking your fast and just eat. I have mentioned this before both in terms of competitions and in “family-situations” where for instance your grand mother has spend a lot of time on preparing a nice breakfast for you, then just break your fast and eat. Don’t be a over-religious prick.

The other concern is also to do with family. If you live with a girlfriend/boyfriend then he or she should be understanding even though you still can take some days off to serve breakfast in bed etc. but it gets more complicated if you have kids. Because on the one hand you could just keep up your lifestyle and don’t eat breakfast but my concern would be how would this impact the kids general view on food and eating. It could be possible but it could might as well be negative.

As said earlier I don’t have all the answers to this and won’t go into further detail, but just to say that there are some things you should consider before deciding upon IF as the answer to your dieting questions. But all in all it is a great protocol for the right types of people, otherwise I wouldn’t have kept it for all these years. It keeps me lean, sane and performing as I want so no complains here. But once I find myself in a family setting with kids I might take it up for consideration.

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Aristotle on management: Wittiness

dsc_6301_2048leThere are truckloads of books, seminars and courses on the latest and greatest management methods. But is the latest and greatest really what we need or are developments in management theory primarily making the wheels spin for the people who invent them and the institutions that rely on teaching them. Can a man that lived almost 400 years BC teach us anything that is just remotely useful in our fast-paced technological wonder-World?

I sure happen to think he can and I will try to convince you as well. Just because someone lived several hundreds years ago without the technology of today, doesn’t mean that they cannot teach us a thing or two about life. I would almost go as far as to say that exactly because they lived in a world without so much technology fighting for their attention, they will have had way more time for deep thought and contemplation. And lots of our worries, problems and annoyances are the same wine only disguised in new technological bottles.

First let me give a small introduction to who this man actually is. Some of you may have heard his name or learned about him in school, but for those of you who had as high(low) an interest as me in old historical figures during your school years I will just briefly brush up the memory a bit. Of course taken from my deep, deep knowledge and in no way read and paraphrased from Wikipedia…

Aristotle was a Greek philosopher that lived from 384 BC to 322 BC. He was a pupil of Plato (you can look him up as well – I won’t go back through all of these and play Six degrees of separation or popularized as the Kevin Bacon Game to end up linking Aristotle to Kevin Bacon).

Later he tutored Alexander the Great. He spent his life thinking, teaching and writing and in relation to this article, wrote the book The Nicomachean Ethics from which some of the following originates.

Aristotle made a list of virtues listing the mean(virtue) but also either end of the spectrum – too much and to little of each. One of these is represented in the title of this post and is what this piece will be about, namely; wittiness.

Wittiness represents the mean between the bore on one end and the buffoon at the other. But why is this important in relation to management? Yeah, let’s dive into that.

If you have had more than one boss in your working career you have probably already experienced a big difference in management styles, if you have had several years of working you will probably have seen a lot of bad bosses/leaders and a few good ones. We won’t dissect all traits of good and bad leaders, but concentrate on traits related to wittiness.

Let’s start at the buffoon end of the spectrum. Hopefully your boss haven’t been dressed up and acting like a clown, full with red curly hair, nose and large shoes – if so I don’t know what to say. But even without going full retard the buffoon stage is still relevant. Being considered a buffoon as a leader often stems from wanting to be liked and loved too much. People who are not “natural” leaders and has reached the position by seniority rather than merit and skill, will probably easier fall into this “trap”. They will try their best to be liked among their subordinates by acting like “one-of-them”, joking inappropriately in an attempt to get attention, recognition and sympathy. As we will get to, being a leader isn’t about being a total bore either, but being a buffoon inappropriately joking about just about anything, playing one of the guys simply isn’t the way to conduct yourself as a leader.

Moving on to the aforementioned bore. Where the buffoon perhaps more than anything tries to be “one of the guys/girl” the bore perhaps tries to overcompensate in the other direction. The bore sees the role of a leader as very strict and square with absolutely no personality to it. Showing any kind of emotions could be misunderstood as weakness so instead he or she puts up a total facade keeping them from relating to their subordinates in any way. The bore may or may not be qualified as a leader, but is not totally confident in the position and is very afraid to lose it. Being a total bore is probably better than being a total buffoon, but in the end it isn’t optimal either.

As with almost anything in life the sweet spot is in the middle – what Aristotle called being “witty”. With wittiness comes humor in moderation. The ability to make people smile and feel entertained without acting like a clown. Being the person that people want to sit next to at the table without them worrying about either getting totally embarrassed or bored. The kind of person you can have a light easy conversation with as well as come to with your problems and open your heart to them.

A good leader is confident in his or her own abilities and exude authority both from title and action. Not trying too much to be among equals in relation to subordinates but not trying to stand on top of a pedestal either. Being a good leader means managing and shielding your subordinates from troubles and having them do the best work they can, while relating to them in a way that they feel they can come to you if they are in trouble.

Being witty is being human.

The distraction economy kills happiness

DSC_4692_2048LEI’m about halfway through Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience and as I said in an recent installment of my weekly blogpost, LFK Thoughtful Weekends it is headed to be one of the most important books I have ever read – and I read quite a few. It is said to be the “classical” work on happiness, yet it in so many ways differs from what I would categorize as “books on happiness”. A lot of those try to pull all kinds of crazy advice over your head in order for you to achieve happiness. This book – Flow – doesn’t do that. It draws upon heavy and clever research on how people feel doing different tasks during the day. A lot of the data gathered has come from people carrying small devices that at random times during the day beeps them, and then asks them to answer questions on how they feel and what they do.

The surprising or unsurprising finding, depending on how deep you already are in this type of research is, that people actually doesn’t feel most happy or fulfilled when relaxing, but actually while they are working or submerged in a task that takes their total attention. This state of mind and being is referred to as “flow”. A state where you lose track of time and being and is just totally submerged in the task at hand.

Speaking from personal experience I can totally agree on the fact that this is one of the most pleasurable states of being. But it is also somewhat paradoxical as although pleasurable as it is, it takes quite a lot of mental effort to reach. In order for an activity to qualify as being able to produce flow, it has to involve some part of skill and be mental challenging to the right amount for you. Meaning that if you get bored doing the activity, then it is not challenging enough. On the other hand if it is to challenging you will look for ways to escape the activity to cut the mental strain.

Reading a book is probably one of the easiest ways to obtain “flow”. If it is a good book and you have placed yourself in an distraction free environment you will probably quite quickly get into a state where you lose track of time and is just totally submerged in the book. Watching television or surfing the internet without purpose is on the other hand not very good flow-activities. While you can get submerged in them, they don’t offer enough challenges or involve enough skill to be fully rewarding. A good movie can leave you with thoughts for days, but they still won’t qualify as flow-activities. That is not to say that you shouldn’t watch movies or television, they are great at creating relief after a full day of good work, but they shouldn’t be your prime sources of happiness.

I won’t go in full detail with how work in a “flow” state creates happiness, for that argument you should pick up the book. But if you can stay with me and for now “buy” the hypothesis that “flow” state creates a sense of happiness, then you can probably follow the title of this blog post; “The distraction economy kills happiness”. Because with billions of dollars poured into one universal goal – grabbing your attention, then you can begin to see why it is so hard to concentrate and reach the sought after state of flow.

Reaching flow is not easy. If it was just a straight fight between a pleasant and easy state on the one hand and an as easy and pleasant state on the other it wouldn’t be that hard a fight. But the odds are very skewed. Not only are billions of dollars being poured into the advertising industry, social media etc. they also offer a quick fix of dopamine that feels good – for about half a second, then you need the next one. But getting into flow and reaping the benefits of this awesome feeling takes hard work. You have to do something that is adequately challenging for a sometimes long period of time, before you can come anywhere close to this pleasant feeling, so why not just stay with the quick fixes of dopamine?

Because in flow state you really live. You live on your terms, creating value for yourself and perhaps even for others. We are born with this internal paradox where almost all of us wants to relax more, but once we do nothing we start to feel worse and perhaps even inadequate. Doing can be anything from researching your bloodline, building scale models of old planes or finding cures for rare diseases. The important part is doing. And doing focused work on something that we enjoy for long uninterrupted periods of time.

A lot of research points to the fact that we might call an unfocused mind an unhappy mind. The more time you can spend in flow the happier and more fulfilling the life you seem to live. The good news here is that you can almost turn any activity into flow activity. What matters is that it challenges you, and that you find it worthwhile. What it leads to and whether you only do it for your own sake does not matter.

Focus your mind and get to work.

LFK Thoughtful Weekends 005

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This weeks installment of LFK Thoughtful Weekends will feature 2 articles and a little film clip. They aren’t all that related, but each of them really caught my attention during the past week.

The first one is kind of philosophic and self-examining, but bears a very important message especially in this day and age. With billions upon billions of dollars being spent on advertising the world over, the advertising industry is more than ready to tell you what you want, or should want if you haven’t yet truthfully asked yourself the important questions. Advertisers sells stories, dreams and lives that can be or perhaps rightfully is really tempting. The message here is not whether or not the life and dream advertisers sell is right or wrong. No the message is for you to personally decide what is right for you. You have to decide what you want to want. If not you could end up spending an entire life chasing a goal that is not really yours and end up getting something that you actually did not even want in the first place.

This article spends a lot of time on this aspect and I found it really interesting and important. And don’t be put off by the name of the link, if you are a woman. This applies as much to women as men: http://www.artofmanliness.com/2016/08/15/what-do-you-want-to-want/

The first article was by no means short, but this second one is more digestible though still bearing an important point. It tells you to stop spending so much time in your head. I may find this interesting as I am super guilty of this and there are numerous articles on the same topic, but this just really caught my eye the past week. To add to some of the points that will presented it also falls right in line with what I am reading at the moment by Mihaly Csikszentmihaly: Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience which only halfway through looks to be one of the best and most important books I have ever read and I will probably write at least one post on that one alone. But in that book he also mentions that you cannot think yourself happy. Thinking too much impedes action and for most people actually leads to unhappiness. Which is not to say that you shouldn’t think at all, but the ones who spend too much time in their head probably already know that they are guilty of it – I sure do for my part.

But go read the very good and to the point article here: http://dariusforoux.com/stop-spending-time-in-your-head/

Finally something I found completely by surprise or at least what it also showed apart from the actual topic was quite a fun discovery. Some people are absolute naturals at striking up conversation and make people do exactly as they want. Seeing these people in “action” can be quite entertaining and fascinating. The clip here is from a Youtube channel for photographers, that in these installments give a shitty camera to a pro photographer to test the myth of equipment vs. skill. Meaning that perhaps you don’t always need the latest most expensive gear to get really good results. With the right attitude and creativity you may even be able to get really good results from shitty equipment.

But the surprising element in this clip actually isn’t the pictures in any way. They turn out okay – but nothing special. The thing to just sit back and watch with fascination is the pro photographer at work. I know that he is in the right element and all the people around the venues where they are as a general rule of thumb probably wants to be seen. But the way he works everybody and just strikes up meaningful conversations, not to mention making people do whatever he likes is just so fascinating in my book. If you ever had a hard time striking up conversations with strangers watch and learn from this guy, he is an absolute beast.

And this concludes the fifth installment of LFK THoughtful Weekends. Hope you enjoyed it. And have a very very pleasant weekend!

LFK Thoughtful Weekends 004

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I will do something a little unconventional, if you candy that about something that is only on it’s third installment, but I will only link one article this week. Why, you ask? Is it because I have lost interest and am stepping gradually down – absolutely not. Have I been unable to find more than this one article – not the case either. No the reason is actually that I think the topic/issue is so important that it needs to stand on its own feet. Shouldn’t I then have written a regular blog-post about it instead? – Perhaps. And maybe I will elaborate further on it in the future. I can feel that it is an issue that touches something deep inside of me and something that I have a very clear stand on and lots to say.

But for the exact same reasons it is hard for me to not bring it now that I read it and it just happened to fall right on my own deadline for this weeks LFK newsletter.

The article is written by a guy named Mark Manson. You may very well have heard of him and I would recommend for you to look though his archives. You can also be guaranteed that it is not the last time that I will mention him. He doesn’t write as often as others, but when he does it is usually something really interesting. An approach I really like.

At first glance the article may seem political and trying to pick sides in the American presidential elections, but keep with it as the issue it raises actually doesn’t relate to any one side in politics but more an underlying tendency/problem in our contemporary world.

The issue has to do with our “attention-economy”. I was going to start of with saying that it has both positive and negative sides to it, but to be absolutely honest with you, I am finding it very hard to find anything positive about it. Perhaps a lot of information/services that we would otherwise have to pay for is now free because of the fact that attention has turned into a currency. Then whether the quality of this information/these services is so low that if we were forced to pay for them we wouldn’t use them at all, is probably not missing the mark by much.

Distilling the problems of this “attention economy” is such a daunting task. There are so many ways to attack it, so many ways in and so many everyday things it affects. While the article I will link to does an absolutely brilliant job at highlighting the problems from the ankle he has chose to attack it, there are just so many more angles to left uncovered. But to be true to the article and not get carried away I will add a few words relating to the actual articles angle.

He highlights a very important problem with the media itself. Journalists, even extremely seasoned and recognised ones can end up coming across with a serious perception-related message. I am not accusing any of these of lying. They are probably conveying information that is very truthful and in line with their perception. But in that last word is much of the trouble. As a journalist you generally have to keep up with an enormous information flow. If you are one that gets asked about world politics and affairs you have to digest a hell of a lot of information about this. Read on newssites, follow other journalists, look through Twitter for the latest and most retweeted stories. But herein lies a giant trap. From your perspective the I wouldn’t doubt the slightest that the world seems in total chaos. Newssites needs clicks and attention so they bring stories that attract this, other journalists needs stories that can keep up their facade as people with a finger on the pulse, so again they can get recognition and attention. And Twitter is just the “attention-economy” on steroids with a side order of speed.

The problem is that this is nowhere near the actual reality of the world. Of course these stories happen. A lot of really bad things has happened the last couple of months all over the world. But the problem is that the “attention economy” totally distorts the picture and ends up projecting a picture of a world in total chaos where going outside your door is not just likely but absolutely certain to get you killed before even reaching the sidewalk. As billions of people has experienced this actually isn’t the case. In the world outside the “attention-economy” life is actually pretty damn good. Most people live far better lives than decades ago – but of course this won’t get anything near as much attention as war, horror and click-bait articles. If it was to be broadcasted you probably would want to read a story two days in a row saying that there is quite peaceful in the world. You might hear it one day, but then the next 30 it is back to armageddon.

As said I think it is a very important issue and I highly recommend you to read the article here: https://markmanson.net/crazy-world

Finally just to calm everybody down an breathtaking performance by Ben Howard.

Have a very good and relaxing weekend everyone. Give someone a big hug and remember that everything’s gonna’ be alright.

How to deal with long reply times or no answer

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Ease of communication and hyper-connectivity comes with a myriad of advantages as well as disadvantages. As good as it can be at times, I am probably leaning towards it having dragged along as many new problems as it solved along the way. Not that we shouldn’t have it, but we need to adapt to both the strains and expectations it puts on both us and others. In the Utopian scenario all this connectivity just helps us communicate more, developing closer and deeper relations with others, but in my opinion it really ends up doing the almost opposite. The ease of communication detracts from the quality of the message.

Have you ever tried writing Christmas cards? (If not – then please do. They will make a lasting impression on your recipients unlike anything ever sent or written electronically. But more on that in a later post.) The thing with cards and letters written by hand is that they are really hard to write. You have to think about what you will write. Perhaps even make a draft before putting it permanently on the intended card or paper. With electronic communication you can always just send a message more, back paddle a bit, if your recipient misunderstands you or explain a bit deeper, which all reduces the effort that goes into the text in the first place.

But wasn’t this post about reply-times? How are they related to effort? We’ll get there. Be patient my friend.

The obvious conclusion at this point would be that I’m trying to say that reply-times are related to effort – but that is not the case actually. I think they carry a history together, but it is not the end point of this blog post, we will get to that.

People are generally quite good at recognizing effort and feel a somewhat internal responsibility to acknowledge it. People will generally have a harder time ignoring something that a lot of effort went into as opposed to something that clearly hadn’t had any effort. If you gift something you have made yourself to someone, then taking aside the quality and aesthetic properties of the item, people will have a harder time turning down a gift that you clearly have put a lot of effort into as opposed to something you clearly just developed with two strokes of a very big hammer. Even if both are turned down, you can be pretty sure that the “effort-heavy” one was making the recipient think harder about turning it down.

Now as said earlier the point here is not that long reply-times or no answer at all is directly related to effort of electronic communication, but I do think that the ease of communication has made us feel less of a strain when not replying or replying late to something. The world quickly moves on.

But then how do we as individuals actually deal with this perceived long response times and perhaps even no response at all? For all my life I have been somewhat bad at managing this. I have gotten a lot better, but still catch myself getting a bit to wound up for unimportant reasons.

First of all there as I see it 3 categories of people each deserving their own distinct approach. Friends, business contacts, and prospects. Friends is pretty obvious as to whom it includes. Business contacts contains all people that you for one reason or the other are “forced” to be in contact with, so it doesn’t have to be business related. Prospects cover people you would like to be/come in contact or closer contact with, both personally and business wise.

Common for all is that you need to start by taking responsibility for the contact/interaction and realize that the problem resides with you. You are the one getting angry, you are the one thinking up scenarios as to why the other party isn’t answering. You are the one with the problem – not them. Handling these late replies and no replies then differs for each of the 3 categories as we will get to. But start by taking responsibility for the anger and problem, by doing so you are in control.

As a general rule people treat you the way you “let” them. This of course is more relevant to friends and “business contacts” as these two categories generally involve more rapport between you. Being super assertive and dominant with people whom you are trying to get in contact with, might not be the best strategy of the line. But what I’m trying to say is that if you always have been the type of person who has just smiled and let it pass without any confrontation each time friends has stepped over your line, then they will “learn” this behavior and inadvertently know that if they find themselves in a situation where it is between stepping a bit on your toes and another who clearly states his or her boundaries, then you are most likely to draw the short straw. If you hate it when people don’t answer your texts within a day then let them know! Don’t expect people to sit waiting to write you back every 5-10 min. But within 24h most people, not counting vacations, illness, family trouble etc. should have had a chance to write a text, maybe just saying “Sorry, super busy – will get back to you in a few days.”

But then how do we handle friends that keeps crossing these lines and ignore our texts/calls/whatever? If you have already confronted them as written above, then take the hard consideration as to whether you would like to keep them in your life. They can be super busy people so perhaps you need to order your friendship around that and only see them a few times a year, but in the end YOU need to decide whether the value they bring to your life outweighs the negatives of them willfully or not bringing conflict into your relationship. This of course is a balancing act. As said earlier don’t be the 10 yo child that can’t handle a few hours of delay on a reply. Or you could be – of course you make the rules in your life, but if you then end up with no real friends around you then perhaps the problem isn’t as much with them as with you.

Now “business contacts”. This is a bit different as you don’t necessarily have the same amount of control about whether to have them in your life or not. The point about people treating you as you allow them to do applies. But as well as you not being in as much control about leaving them, they will also know that they probably can get away with quite a lot more than otherwise if your business together relies on the fact that you communicate. So again. Don’t be a 10 yo child! Communicate with respect and write in neutral but form language that their late responses of total lack of responses is not to your liking and that it has the consequence of x,y,z to your relationship or business. If you out anger into it, they will most likely respond with anger. Don’t try to force people into something, convey objectively and explain your point.

Finally prospects. Here your expectations should be really low. As a rule of thumb expect no answer at all. If you do not know people and have close relations to them, then don’t expect anything. They can have a thousand other close relations to cater to so why should they potentially risk any of those just to answer you. So don’t expect anything. But wrapping up the point from earlier, a minimal amount of effort put into the inquiry will most likely help. Write something that is clearly personal and aimed at them but without trying too hard. Give them an easy way out and be precise in what you try to accomplish with your message. This as said in the beginning of this paragraph by no means ensures an timely or even an answer at all, but it should increase your chances.

Happy communicating, and remember to always think the best of the other party. No one is by default mean or aiming to hurt you. They can have a thousand struggles in their life you know nothing about, so don’t judge them.

LFK Thoughtful Weekends 003

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To start of the third issue of this newsletter/series we have Kirkegaard as it is spelled with no use of our Danish characters. Kirkegaard is such an obvious choice for so many reasons. Like me, he is/was Danish and like me he was quite fascinated with philosophy. He can be quite hard to read and some people writing about him gets further into the mess by discussing what his already somewhat cryptic language could mean in the context of his contemporary time etc. That is fine for philosophic circle-jerking but for practical purposes it has no real value. But luckily there are others who feel the same way and instead of further complicating his writing and message, works to deconstruct and extract practical advice from it.

The first article is exactly such a case. It deals with “busyness” and Kirkegaards thoughts on the subject. Busyness has by all means developed into the default state of humans trying to convey importance to the world. Being busy is a badge of honor. You and your time are sought after. Not being busy is like being of no value. Being busy becomes the end-all goal to show in a pursuit that leads nowhere. Busy could or should not be the end goal anymore than being not busy. Being busy is fine if you are busy because you get actual important things done, if you aren’t then being not busy is just as fine. There is absolutely nothing wrong with either as per se. But as a quote from the article points out:

“The unhappy man is always absent from himself, never present to himself,” he wrote. In other words, obsessing over future goals, and keeping frenetically busy with an eye to some far-off date, is a way of distracting oneself from present reality.

It is not a long read, but sure as hell an important topic. As an entrepreneur I find myself falling into this trap quite often. You can always excuse yourself with being busy, but how often are you really, and how often are you just busy because you have spent too much time pretending to be busy and to little time actually getting important stuff done?

The article: http://qz.com/663552/150-years-ago-a-world-famous-philosopher-called-busyness-the-sign-of-an-unhappy-person/

The second article is perhaps not as much and article as an actual press release, but it still deserves it place – and no I don’t have any shares or economic interests that might skyrocket from the few people who read this 😃

I have always been extremely fascinated by people who dream really, really big and is ready to put their money where their mouth is. In our time one of those who most clearly epitomizes this is Elon Musk. There are others that perhaps has dreamt bigger or achieved more, but just call me naive – in my opinion Elon seems to be one of a very few who does it for the right reasons. There is an honesty about the guy, or a sole candidate who should take all Oscars the next 10 years for straight A performances, if he turns out not to be. There are several amazing documentaries about him and his various endeavors, which everyone of them tells an amazing story. The fact that he in the popular meaning of the word had made it after Paypal and then invested almost all his cash back into Tesla is just beyond belief! Starting Tesla, he left out some cash to keep himself secure, which by all means is understandable. But some years later when Tesla almost went bust – he invested almost all his remaining winnings from Paypal into it. If that is not a leader of a company I don’t know what is.

Oh well back on track to the link I am about to post. It has quite a lot to do with the prospects of dreaming big. As said earlier I really enjoy people who dream big, I love to read about it and I love to be surprised at things I had never thought of myself. This is exactly what I get from reading this press release from Tesla appropriately named “Master plan, part deux.” There are so many aspects of it that will help humanity moving forward. If people make enormous amounts of money of helping humanity then absolutely fine with me! I love this as much as I love space exploration, which will probably be a topic for a future post. I have a theory that big goals help unite countries and perhaps even a whole world. Not having any leads to focussing on unimportant things.

But to the point. Here is the actual press release: https://www.tesla.com/da_DK/blog/master-plan-part-deux?redirect=no

As I have already written almost too many words in my opinion I will end it with only 2 links. But as it is friday(and to cheat into leaving 3 links) I will actually end it with a piece of music. Whether here in Denmark is fabulous at the moment, I had a hard and not that good week, so I need something to kick me in the but and get my mood in check – this fits exactly that mold.

Have a nice weekend everyone!