You know that feeling when someone contradicts you, or says something you believe is wrong, or ignorant, or offensive?
If you pay close enough attention, you can literally feel it: your jaw tightens, your breath becomes more bated, your heart rate might go up, and you may crinkle your face, or tense your shoulders.
This is the physical . . .
In basketball, the scorecard is easy: Whoever scores more points in 48 minutes wins the game.
In cooking, the scorecard is slightly more complex. It includes price (how much did the ingredients cost?), time (how long does is take to make?), health (is it good for you?), and deliciousness (does it taste good?). When you master all four . . .
11 rules for modern people
1. As a general rule, put your phone away during meals with other people. Not on the table. Out of sight, sound off.
2. For a further challenge, put your phone away during meals alone. Read, listen to a podcast, or just eat and notice your surroundings.
3. If you are expecting a truly important and time-sensitive call or text . . .
Us humans have weak minds.
We stick to the status quo when we should be making a change.
We hardly ever change our minds, even when we're wrong.
We make terrible, and easily avoidable, financial choices.
And we're scared of sharks, even though 733X as many humans are killed by freshwater snails.
But it's not all bad news . . .
We are studious in high school so we get into a good college.
We study and stress in college so we get a degree.
We use our degree to get a good job.
We work hard at our job so we can make a lot of money.
We make a lot of money so we can retire!
And then ...
It turns out, there is nothing special waiting at the end.
. . .
Approaching Life with a Beginner's Mind
Have you ever heard someone say one of the following phrases? Have you ever said them?
"That's the way we do things around here."
"That's the industry standard."
"We can't do it that way."
"That's just the best way to do it."
Almost all of us hear these phrases or ones like them. Not infrequently, but daily.
The more we hear them, . . .
cultivating everyday awareness
In Michael Pollan's book Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation, he shares one of the lessons he learned during his journey from industrial eater to home cook:
When chopping onions, just chop onions.
There is nowhere else to be. There is nothing else to do. Just chop the onion.
It's always been hard for humans to do one thing at a . . .