• some days

    There is not such thing as a repeatable perfect day.

    If you’re working out, you’ll see that some days are different from others, than on some days you need to slow down and accept your limits.

    Show up, do the work, and try again another day.

  • meditate

    One thing I recently realized (again) is the importance of meditation as a way to self-care and mental hygiene.

    I started meditating every morning for a couple of months, and even though I mostly fail my meditation each day (meaning the goal of focusing on my breath for 30 minutes is not something I ever achieve), the benefits in the daily life have been extraordinary.

    Now, why did I stop? How did I stop? Because if such a simple action can have this impact, why would anyone stop doing it?

    To me, it’s the same as washing my teeth. Either we do have a habit in place, a structure that’s sustainable in life, or it doesn’t work, even if the benefits are so extraordinary.

    We are still tricked into thinking that what we actually do in the day to day is more important, but the moments when we pause and take a breath, when we practice some self-care, are even more important, it’s just that we might not see them as such, or we might not prioritize them.

  • magnet

    It’s curious how the smartphone, even if used slightly, can sometimes make you dumb.

    If you think about it, when you use a smartphone for playing, navigating socials, etc, the relatively smaller screen forces you to entirely focus your attention on it.

    An extreme focus that looks and works like a magnet and that clears up any spontaneous thoughts from your mind while using it.
    I’m not denying its usefulness, but as with any tool, we should be aware of the consequences.

    Reducing its usage when we need creativity or ideas might help you, if that’s what you’re after.

  • a broken chain

    I may have touched on this topic already in multiple articles, but since layoffs continue in our time, it’s worth discussing it again.

    Whenever I look at all the announcements of layoffs I see perfectly crafted words to send a message that the company is healthy, that we’re doing it for the good, that we need to be sustainable, etc etc.

    I get it, companies do need to make money and do need to be sustainable in the long run.
    There’s only one thing missing here: Who owns the error? Those people were hired with a vision of the company in mind, with a goal.
    That goal is now clearly broken, since companies are pivoting down their numbers.

    I feel that part of the “problem” with seeing such frequent layoffs is that few, if any, have their CEO (or any other person) take responsibility for the changes. 

    And by responsibility or ownership I’m indicating not only the fact of communicating the sadness of such hard choice, but also have some consequences to them. 

    This would send the message that they’re all in this together, that the change will impact everyone on the chain of command, that there will be hard choices for everyone, that those people laid off are not just numbers.

    If you read any layoff announcements, you might even feel inspired, they’re written in a perfect way, but I wish we could have a little more, go further, show the people that, aside from having the numbers add up correctly, we also do care about the people themselves and that they’re going through this change together.

  • flavours

    The first time I drank miso soup was around 20 years ago. It was in a nice and cozy Sushi bar in Milan. 
    That was my first experience with Japanese food, and I remember that I didn’t like the miso soup.

    Nowadays, I would probably drink a good miso soup every time of the day. Looking back I think that miso soup was actually good, but I wasn’t accustomed to the flavors of the Japanese cuisine.
    It took me some time to feel comfortable with their nuances, their difference in taste and in the structure of food, but I was eventually sold.

    Now, when I look back at that memory I don’t feel, nor I don’t remember, to have had a bad experience. It was good, even if I didn’t like it.
    Food plays a big role in how our memory works. Some foods are like perfumes, they are “comfortable” because they remind us of a warm, protective place. 

    They’re usually food that we link to a specific memory or moment in time, frequently from our childhood. 

    The beauty of this is that we cannot force this experience. We don’t have a way to make a food “enter” the realm of those calm, warm foods that hug us like nothing else. It happens. It happens through life, it happens through fate. We can only embrace that warm feeling every time we eat, or smell, some of those food/perfumes.

  • even when you don’t want

    Keeping up an healthy habit requires you to show up each day, even on bad days when you would prefer doing something else.

    How? On those bad days you can reduce the commitment, the amount of work required, accepting that life (or you) sometimes gets in the way.

    While this might seem like a trick, it is a great way to make habits stick. Starting again is harder than keeping the habit alive when you have low motivation.

  • interactions

    When you look at ChatGPT it’s hard to not be even slightly amazed. It is extraordinary and opens up new possibility.

    But what makes it great? Yes, the outputs are great, yes, it “guesses” correctly most of the time, yes, it works strikingly well.

    If you look at what we had before, which kind of is Google search, there is one missing element there, that makes the difference in ChatGPT: the ability to interact.

    That is probably the most significant change that we all wanted. 

    We all wanted to tell google: Hey, the results you just gave me don’t make sense, can you improve them?

    This deceptively simple question makes a great piece of the benefits. Who didn’t give up after refining a search a few times and not coming to a decent result? The ability to change and adapt, without a predefined “search rule” is part of what makes ChatGPT so appealing.  

  • years

    It’s been 2 years. 2 years and 1 day since the first lockdown in Italy. 
    2 years, since we shut the country down.

    I remember those days. It was warm and sunny, the weather was beautiful, and there was a sinister silence in the streets.

    Even going out to throw the trash felt like violating some law.
    Fast-forward two years, and now it seems like everything is almost ok. Covid is nowhere in the news.

    But while I walk in the city, while I enter some buildings or train, I see signs of its passage.
    I see distancing messages, mask information, “Wash your hand”, separate entrance/exits, etc.

    How long those signs will stay with us? It’s not hard for me to imagine a time, 5 or 10 years from now, when I’ll see, under a rusty plate, the image of a sign inviting us to wear a musk. 
    Or walk into a bathroom and see the instructions to wash the hands properly.

    To me, it all feels post-apocalyptic. As in a movie, where there’s a distant past we forgot.
    But in this case, even 5-10 years from now, it won’t be so distant.

  • not special

    One of the topics that resonated with me about Four Thousand Weeks book, is how to handle expectations.

    When reaching a new level in your job, when switching job, or even in the personal life, it’s normal to look back and think that what we did was extraordinary.

    That, though, implies that there is some kind of non-repeatable outcome, or extra effort needed to get there, while, in fact, you did it because you could do it.

    You had the skills, the preparation, etc. Then, one of the things I often ask myself too is: What if I fail?

    Well, failing is part of every journey, there is no journey without failure, but more importantly, we can’t change that. If we are going to fail because we didn’t have the skills to begin with, it will be almost impossible to fix, and even if we can temporarily make it, we would still face greater problems later on.

    Either we were ok for the place we’re in right now, or we were never ok to begin with. In both cases, we can only accept our condition and do our best. Nothing else is required from us. Worrying about it was not, in fact, part of the requirements at all.

  • do you see what they see?

    It’s common to have a different opinion of ourselves, but are the differences between what we perceive vs what other people think of us enough to justify a reflection?

    This should also include -good things-, skills, behaviors, that people see in us that we don’t see. We might dismiss the words every time they say it “You’re too good”, but if that happens, and we are not recognizing it, then maybe there’s a detachment in our perception and it’s worth exploring.