Category Archives: Psychology

The upside of being busy

Being busy – being full, having a lot to do, filling your calendar to the brim — can be overwhelming, tiring, exhausting. Sometimes we're busy for busy's sake. And answering "busy" to how have you been is, well, annoying.

But sometimes there's an upside to being busy.

When you've got a handful of projects to work on, you don't have as much time to worry about whether or not they'll work out — you're busy making something new instead and learning from the results.

When you're focused on learning new material, you don't have time to worry about what people think of you, what you should do next, or how to spend your time.

You're too busy doing.

Emails don't stick or sting too much because you don't have the time to think about it for another second.

There's a reason people say "if you want something done, ask a busy person." Busy people get things done.

Up to a point, busy can actually be helpful.

Maybe the answer isn't thinking more, but doing more. Maybe getting a little busy will help you out of your next rut.

Have you ever lost your temper?

This is an excerpt of an essay from my twelve-essay short series on Grace and Gratitude. Each day, I send a story with a nugget, an idea, and a practice — everything from losing your temper, to finding small happiness, to practicing meditation. The program is here; or just enjoy the essay below as aContinue Reading

Ship. Iterate. Improve. Repeat.

How do you make something great? Start small. Build something that you can do today, this week. Ship a little piece of it. Stop holding on to it. Maybe keep the idea big, but just start with something so small you can’t not do it. Make the smallest version possible. Give it away. Share it. SellContinue Reading

When you fall down, break your routine, or stop writing: notes on re-starting.

The rhythm breaks. The routine falters. You write, so diligently, and then a week slips by. Getting back into the structure of things — writing — is even more challenging when traveling, moving, changing. I can make a million excuses; writing and making time for writing is and always seems so hard. It’s easier when I’mContinue Reading

How to practice saying no.

I walked into the restaurant and something didn’t feel right. The prices were too high, the waiter a little stuffy and dismissive, the air a little cold. I can’t tell you exactly what it was, but I do know that my body was decidedly uncomfortable. While none of the particulars was enough to make a fuss—shouldContinue Reading

Why are stories so important?

The world is overcrowded with information. We’re wired to tell stories because it’s how we make sense of the world around us. Stories let us distill large, complex ideas and important messages into sticky, memorable pieces that we can carry forward with us in our minds. In the absence of a person or a phenomenon,Continue Reading

Words to fill your mind: the power of a mantra.

The words that fill our minds… We all have words that we cycle on repeat in our minds—from worries about being late to songs we sing or words we repeat. Don’t be late, don’t be late, don’t be late, we repeat to ourselves as we rush from subway to office to meeting to appointment. Gotta finish, gotta finish, gottaContinue Reading

Hustle is a dial, not a way of being.

There are appropriate times to hustle in your business. Sometimes you’re hustling for a year or two on the side, creating your escape route and freedom business to jump ship from your corporate job. Sometimes you stay up late and hustle the night before a course launches, or when you’re putting the final tweaks onContinue Reading

Project hangovers, self-criticism, and the necessity of making messes.

I have a confession. Sometimes–more nearly like every time–after finishing a project, I hate it. My writing class? Sucks, obviously. Last week’s essay? Good God, that could have been better. All those open and empty drafts waiting to be finished? Seriously, could have worked harder to get those done.  And on and on… My brainContinue Reading

Easy?

When did someone sit down and promise you that it was supposed to be easy? Or better yet, fair? It’s not guaranteed to be easy or fair, and the people who get what they want go after it–in spite of and because of–each and every advantage or disadvantage they are thrown.Continue Reading