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It became clear to me recently how important priorities are. There are always a range of values and important ideas we hold at once - but how do we manage the competition and tension between values, ideas, and the things we want to achieve?    What do you do when you can’t have it all? When forced to decide between two priorities that come head-to-head?   This got me thinking about how I rank my priorities. These priorities direct decision-making and the energy which I give to all the different items in my bucket.    I listed some of the important things I value that determine

On 11th June 1963, a Buddhist Monk by the name of Thich Quang Duc did some awe-defying in protest against the persecution of Buddhists by the South Vietnamese Government.    Outside the Cambodian Embassy, he took out a cushion and placed it on the ground.  He sat on it and prayed.    Several of his colleagues covered him in gasoline, and then when he was done praying, he lit himself ablaze.    The crowd screamed in shock and horror, looking on helplessly. Pandemonium erupted from all but one person.    Duc himself.   He did not shriek, nor gasp, nor offer as much as a shudder. He hardly moved a muscle

What you don’t know is that you were born inside a glass prison.    The way you look at the world appears clear to you, it appears that you see what is, but you do not. You cannot.    Your vision appears clear, but you are looking through glass.    If the glass is tinted red, you think the whole world is red, and if the glass is tinted green, you will see the world as green.    You think that the green you see is the same as the green that others around you see, that you are having the same experience. But what if you are

They used to think that running a mile in just four minutes was impossible.    Then a guy called Roger Bannister did it. Then everyone was doing it.    They used to think that travelling to the moon was impossible.    Barring some skeptics, it is now ridiculous to think the opposite.    Jesus of Nazareth asked his heavenly father to forgive the people who brutally crucified him, and Nelson Mandela left prison after almost thirty years with a will to work rather than bitterness.    An Austrian psychotherapist.    An Austrian psychotherapist who was taken to multiple concentration camps during WWII lost his parents, brother and wife in the process, as

I’ve talked about this idea before, but let’s be clear.    A lot of those things you call goals, a lot of your desires are simply heavy, leaky jars. ‘Leaky’ because as Liam Hounsell puts it, you keep trying to fill them but they don’t stay full.    ‘Heavy’ because they take huge energy to carry, to lug around. As such, they burden your existence.    Take the young man who desperately wants to be a famous business CEO.  By holding up such a goal, the boy immediately becomes less than his ideal self. From the outset, he is doomed. All due to his perspective, he must

The Mirror of Erised is a magical mirror from the Harry Potter series of books and films. You can familiarise yourself here.    It does not simply show one their reflection.    Harry’s friend, Ronald Weasley, looks into the Mirror and sees himself achieving sporting and leadership glory at their school, clearly jealous of his older, high-achieving brothers.    Harry on the other hand sees his parents, who died protecting him when he was young, standing beside him. The two can’t make sense of their differing visions.    It takes the intervention of the wise school Headmaster, Albus Dumbledore, to fill Harry in on the mirror’s magic; the

You are used to looking at some people as disabled and others, maybe you, as ‘abled’.    You are used to looking at these people as black, and these people as white.    You are used to thinking that you are not good at sports, but are good at reading books.    You are used to thinking that he is a failure, and that she is a success.    You are used to thinking of people from Africa as poor, and people from Western countries as rich.    You are used to thinking of the world in terms of ‘us’ and ‘them’, and that you are either good at things,

How does one run an Apocalypse Test?    One simply imagines that tomorrow the apocalypse begins - this is an event of catastrophic destruction which interrupts most or all social systems.    We run the hypothetical Apocalypse Test to ask ourselves what still matters when everything we’ve taken for granted is threatened and interrupted.    Things that do not pass the Apocalypse Test.    Social media followers no longer matter, because our digital systems have fallen.    The stock market no longer exists. Your ownership of your assets is now contestable - you will struggle to defend your claim to a single deed of land, as the deeds you signed

Imagine your life one year from now.   You cannot be certain that you’ll have more money than you do now. Incomes rise and fall, markets change overnight, and you never know what is lurking around the corner. Your job can go, the banking system can collapse, and everything you’ve saved and worked hard for can be wiped away in an instant. And you may be sufficiently diversified. You may listen to Ray Dalio, you may have a few piles of gold, and your fat-bellied, horn-rimmed glasses-wearing financial advisor might tell you at your appointments that everything is in order. But even

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