Five Links #052
redhead octopuses; hyped-up colonial planning
Colonial comedy ..
This five minute set really made me laugh. It might be an English-Colonialism thing, but I suggest you give it a go.
Committing to remain flexible ..
The first of two longreads in this issue, I got a lot from this walkthrough of how Taylor Pearson approaches his life goals. A few weeks ago there was a common riff among newsletters I read on the way pilots supposedly check and recalibrate their flight path, as tiny deviations over the journey can mean they end up many miles away from their target destination. I suspect it had something to do with the end of the financial year.
But whatever the reason, there was some great stuff written and linked to about life goals and life planning. I felt this one in particular just kept hitting me with the good stuff.
At the same time, you hear terms like agility, pivot, and adapt. Everyone recognizes that as the external environment and markets shift and shake at a faster and faster cadence, there’s a pressure to keep up.
The solution is optionality. The mistake most people make is they try and use their intelligence or knowledge to figure out the “right” thing to do in advance. Instead, you should generate a lot of options (and opportunities) and simply exercise the profitable ones when the conclusion is obvious.
It has been a while since I’ve had a TikTok to link to.
I’ve uninstalled the app from my life as it really pulled me in, and I didn’t like the picture it was reflecting back at me. But that means I’m missing out on great stuff, like this guy.
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(via Tim Urban)
The Hype Scale ..
Given all that has been going on (going down?) these past few months, this feels particularly prescient.
Level 4 : Magical Thinking
The technology has left grounded reality and takes on magical properties. The problems it is expected to solve simply by existing are growing in number and scale while criticism gets ignored as minor hurdles, to be overcome soon.
With magical thinking concrete predictions are becoming less and less important, though the development might still be expected at a fixed date.
The Octopus that brings the Chef to you ..
The second longread of the issue, and somewhat related to the first.
In this 52nd issue I knew I wanted to link to another Wait But Why article. The Your Life in Weeks Article continues to be the best performing link of this newsletter, and the one most people thank me for putting in front of them. But Tim Urban has put out so much great content I wasn’t sure what to link to this time.
In the end, I went with this outline for evaluating potential career choices. Many people talk about the importance of finding the right career. The importance of ‘finding your passion’. But few people are ever able to help you with that. Sure, it’s important - but often you’re on your own.
This article does a good job of providing a framework that might help you get there.
It’s not perfect - and it goes a bit overboard with the metaphorical animal helpers - but it’s the best I’ve found so far and between this and the Taylor Pearson link up above, I actually think these might be some of the best links I’ve collated in a while. If you have the time to get through them that is.
Then time happens. And we end up on a path. And that path becomes our life's story.
At the end of our life, when we look back at how things went, we can see our life's path in its entirety, from an aerial view.
For most of us, a career (including ancillary career time, like time spent commuting and thinking about your work) will eat up somewhere between 50,000 and 150,000 hours. At the moment, a long human life runs at about 750,000 hours. When you subtract childhood (~175,000 hours) and the portion of your adult life you'll spend sleeping, eating, exercising, and otherwise taking care of the human pet you live in, along with errands and general life upkeep (~325,000 hours), you're left with 250,000 "meaningful adult hours." So a typical career will take up somewhere between 20% and 60% of your meaningful adult time ...
… you kind of just have to read the article to get the hang of it..
And so that it! That’s 52 issues - two years straight of putting out Five Links every second Friday. I’ve given myself some leniency when it comes to the Friday requirement. Sometimes it’s AU time and sometimes it’s US time .. but I’m sure it’s been Friday somewhere around the world for most issues.
Thanks to everyone that has been regular readers throughout the journey. I’m still enjoying it - and I also quite like to look back over past issues to get a feel for what might have been happening when I sent them out.
I’m a bit worried that soon links will start to break, as the things I’ve linked to might fall off the internet. If anyone has a solution to that problem please reach out and let me know. But, oh well, if links start to fail then hopefully there will be plenty of others that live on.
Here’s to another 52!
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