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Peter Koehler

Shoshin (初心)

Approaching Life with a Beginner's Mind

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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, . . .

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August 09, 2016

Just Chop Onions

cultivating everyday awareness

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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 . . .

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July 05, 2016

Compound Yourself

 

When it comes to investing your money, one of the first principles to understand is compound growth. 

We often hear things like:

"The biggest money mistake I ever made was not starting to invest earlier."

"Start investing even a tiny amount early, and you can be a millionaire by the time you retire."

and

"If you save just . . .

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June 25, 2016

Execution

how to be sustainably productive

This is Part 5 of 7 in my productivity week series.

If this is the first post you're seeing, please also check out Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4.


There is no separation between mind and body.

It's all one connected organism.

It took me a long time to realize that.

I wish I had realized it sooner.

Over the last few parts of this series we have . . .

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June 24, 2016

What is Productivity and Why is it Important?

WHAT IS PRODUCTIVITY?

Welcome to Productivity Week Part Two.

In Part One I shared my frustration with the silver bullet approach to productivity that is so pervasive these days.

Now I want to talk about what productivity means and why we should care about it.

I think there is some confusion about what productivity is and what it is not.

For . . .

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June 21, 2016

Rethinking Political Power

Do a quick mental exercise:

Imagine for a moment that you can hire a staff of 17 full-time people, control a multi-million dollar budget, and a have wide range of influence over a variety of valuable resources.

Your mission: Affect positive change in your city.

What would you do?

Who would you hire?

What would they do?

How would you and your . . .

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April 28, 2016

How I Organize & Prioritize

 
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I think one of the most valuable skills I've learned so far in my career is the power of effective prioritization.
 
While I am certainly no master, I am way better than I used to be at understanding the Pareto Principle (also known as the 80/20 rule).
 
If you can figure out what the most . . .

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April 19, 2016

Archive