Weekly Pulse by William Meller | Week 24, 2023

Weekly Pulse by William Meller | Week 24, 2023
Weekly Pulse is content curation and highlights from readings, books, podcasts, insights, ramblings, and other interesting things I discovered and digested during the week.

So, let's go with some discoveries from the week!

#1 - I'm a Short Afternoon Walk And You're Putting Too Much Pressure on Me
#2 - What Can Coaches Do for You?
#3 - The Mundanity of Excellence
#4 - Master Your Mind with Mindmaps
#5 - Book Notes #76: 21 Lessons for the 21st Century - Yuval Noah Harari

I'm a Short Afternoon Walk And You're Putting Too Much Pressure on Me

Source: McSweeney's
Author: Emily Delaney
Year: 2021

Summary: People have been relying on afternoon walks as a way to cope with the stress of the pandemic, but this article from McSweeney's suggests that we are putting too much pressure on this leisurely activity. The author, posing as an afternoon walk, humorously points out that they cannot solve all of our problems or be our only source of joy and exercise. They suggest that we find other coping mechanisms and not rely solely on them to maintain our mental and physical health.

3 Highlights:

"... When this little routine first started, I thought it was the greatest thing in the world. I was an escape. I was an adventure. I was beloved. But somewhere along the way, I became your everything..."

"... I’ll let you in on a little secret, pal: I have no magical powers. I never have. This isn’t an imposter syndrome thing either, so don’t even start with the, “Oh, come on, everyone knows how magical and talented you are!” I’m telling you right now, for real, I have no magical powers..."

"... How quickly you seem to have forgotten that I actually am a stress reliever and an energy booster. I shoot endorphins throughout your brain like a confetti cannon, for crying out loud..."

What Can Coaches Do for You?

Source: Harvard Business Review
Author: Diane Coutu and Carol Kauffman
Year: 2009

Summary: Coaches work with executives to help develop their capabilities and high potential. Coaching is becoming increasingly popular as businesses recognize the importance of developing their top talent. There is no consensus on how the industry should mature, but it is generally agreed that coaching needs to focus on developing talent rather than fixing behavioral problems. Buyers should look for coaches with experience in a similar situation and clear methodology, and organizational chemistry is essential for a successful relationship.

3 Highlights:

"... There’s no question that future leaders will need constant coaching. As the business environment becomes more complex, they will increasingly turn to coaches for help in understanding how to act.."

"...  Two particular kinds of a shift in focus, though, are dangerous and should be avoided. One is when a behavioralist coach (my term for someone who monitors your behavior) seduces you into a form of psychotherapy without making that explicit. For example, he or she may say that you are now ready to explore deeper issues that keep you from realizing your full potential. The other is when personal coaches morph into business advisers. In these cases, your coach becomes a kind of speaking partner—someone you can bounce strategic ideas off of. That can be just as dangerous because it’s a rare coach who has deep knowledge about your business...."

"... Studies conducted by the University of Sydney, for example, have found that between 25% and 50% of those seeking coaching have clinically significant levels of anxiety, stress, or depression..."

The Mundanity of Excellence

Source: Polygyan
Author: Aditya Khanduri
Year: 2021

Summary: Daniel F. Chambliss studied swimmers of all levels for several years to determine the causes of "excellence." He found that excellence is not the result of personality traits or quantitative changes in behavior, but rather requires qualitative differentiation. "Talent" or "natural ability" is a myth that mystifies the actual factors creating superlative performances. Superlative performance is a synthesis of small skills drilled into a habit. The pursuit of excellence requires maintaining mundanity.

3 Highlights:

"... Excellence is accomplished through the doing of actions, ordinary in themselves, performed consistently and carefully, habitualized, compounded together, & added up over time...."

"... It is incorrect to believe that top athletes suffer great sacrifices to achieve their goals. Often, they don’t see what they do as sacrificial at all. They like it...."

"... There is no secret; there is only the doing of all those little things, each one done correctly, time and again, until excellence in every detail becomes a firmly ingrained habit, an ordinary part of one’s everyday life...."

Master Your Mind with Mindmaps

Source: Article of the Week

Mind maps are powerful visual tools that help organize information, thoughts, and ideas in a creative and structured way. 

They are graphical representations that use branches, keywords, colors, and images to capture and connect various concepts and relationships.

At the core of a mind map is a central idea or topic, which is represented by a central image or keyword. From this central point, related subtopics branch out in a hierarchical manner, forming a tree-like structure. 

Each subtopic can then be further expanded upon by adding more branches, creating a network of interconnected ideas.

Mind maps mimic the way our brains naturally make associations and connections.

Book Notes #76: 21 Lessons for the 21st Century - Yuval Noah Harari

Source: Book Notes of the Week

In our rapidly evolving world, where technology, politics, and society seem to transform at a breakneck pace, it becomes increasingly crucial to pause and reflect on the challenges we face as a global community. 

Yuval Noah Harari, the acclaimed author of "Sapiens" and "Homo Deus," delves into these pressing issues in his book "21 Lessons for the 21st Century." 

Drawing from a vast array of knowledge, Harari offers a captivating and thought-provoking exploration of the complexities that define our present era. 

I did not find this book as enjoyable to read as Sapiens, maybe Harari does an excellent job explaining the past and history, but not the present. However, this is just my opinion.

I am incredibly grateful that you have taken the time to read this post. 

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