Archive | January, 2013

Why You Will Fail To Have A Great Career

25 Jan

Reality is bitter, but reality is true.

A great TEDx talk by Economics professor, Larry Smith.

Commitments, Not Resolutions

3 Jan

New year resolutions have a bad reputation of being broken. The most common resolutions are losing weight, saving more, being healthy and fit, quitting smoking, and spending more time with family. A research study shows that only 8% of Americans successfully achieve their resolutions. “New year resolution” has a negative connotation (meant to be broken), is vague, and means something too distant in the future to be seen clearly. One year is a long time. I have been guilty of making and breaking resolutions every year.
New Year ResolutionsThis year, I’m going to use “new year commitments” instead of “new year resolutions”. The word “commitment” seems more positive, is a promise, is near-term, and indicates something to be started immediately. Is the choice of a new word just a superficial word play? Or will it have any impact on my “resolutions”?

My new year commitments for 2013:
(Update, Jan 10: I’m already changing my commitments today. Changing is better than not achieving because Jeff Bezos said that people who were right a lot of the time were people who often changed their minds.)

  1. Be a better person. To have more patience, be more forgiving, and be more loving. To keep negative feelings at bay.
  2. Be a better dad. To have more patience with the kids, yell less at them :), and be more accepting of their limitations because the only thing that matters in life is being a great dad.
  3. Design an adaptive learning product for school children to learn science and math. Science and math, usually taught in abstract terms, can be difficult to understand. Using examples from the real world and framing questions around them and taking into consideration the kids’ existing knowledge and misconceptions, it is possible to help the kids understand concepts effectively.
  4. Focus more, procrastinate less. At home or in the office, create to-do lists for each day, and act on the tasks.
  5. Run 1,000 600 miles. On the treadmill and road. Complete the flying pig half marathon in May 2013 under 2:15 hours. (Added on 1/10/13) Lose most of body fat and gain lean muscle.
  6. Learn something new. Not finalized yet, but php programming, may be.

Related readings
Just 8% of People Achieve Their New Year’s Resolutions. Here’s How They Do It
Google has already charted the failure of your New Year’s resolutions

Reading List – 2012

2 Jan

My target was to read 50 books in 2012. I actually read only 37.

  1. Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation by Tim Brown
  2. The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth: Popularity, Quirk Theory, and Why Outsiders Thrive After High School by Alexandra Robbins
  3. The Laws of Simplicity (Simplicity: Design, Technology, Business, Life) by John Maeda
  4. The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work by Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer
  5. Brilliant, Crazy, Cocky: How the Top 1% of Entrepreneurs Profit from Global Chaos by Sarah Lacy
  6. The End of Illness by David B. Agus
  7. Too Big to Know: Rethinking Knowledge Now That the Facts Aren’t the Facts, Experts Are Everywhere, and the Smartest Person in the Room Is the Room by David Weinberger
  8. Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions by Guy Kawasaki
  9. The Little Black Book of Innovation: How It Works, How to Do It by Scott D. Anthony
  10. Rebooting for the New Talent Economy by Andrew Rosen
  11. Design Is How It Works: How the Smartest Companies Turn Products into Icons by Jay Green
  12. Unleashing the Killer App: Digital Strategies for Market Dominance by Larry Downes and Chunka Mui
  13. Whoever Tells the Best Story Wins: How to Use Your Own Stories to Communicate with Power and Impact by Annette Simmons
  14. Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer
  15. Reality Is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World by Jane McGonigal
  16. The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander
  17. This is a Book by Demetri Martin
  18. The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield and Shawn Coyne
  19. Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World by Tony Wagner
  20. The 100 Best Business Books of All Time: What They Say, Why They Matter, and How They Can Help You by Jack Covert and Todd Sattersten
  21. The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement by David Brooks
  22. 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People by Susan Weinschenk
  23. 10 Pounds in 10 Days by Jackie Warner
  24. The Hummer and the Mini: Navigating the Contradictions of the New Trend Landscape by Robyn Waters
  25. Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace by Gordon MacKenzie
  26. Differentiate or Die by Jack Trout
  27. Abraham Lincoln by James M. McPherson
  28. How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen
  29. The Monk and the Riddle: The Art of Creating a Life While Making a Living by Randy Komisar
  30. Now You See It: How the Brain Science of Attention Will Transform the Way We Live, Work, and Learn by Cathy N. Davidson
  31. In Pursuit of the Unknown: 17 Equations That Changed the World by Ian Stewart
  32. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg
  33. How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character by Paul Tough
  34. You Are Not So Smart by David McRaney
  35. Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind by Al Ries and Jack Trout
  36. All Marketers Are Liars by Seth Godin
  37. The Apple Experience: Secrets to Building Insanely Great Customer Loyalty by Carmine Gallo

Reading List – 2011