What do you do when you lose your iPhone?

Finding the way

Finding the way

It was quite an invigorating night, but one that ended in despair.

Ten minutes after arriving in my house, I found out I lost my iPhone.

That is one of my worst fears. My cellphone is the extension of myself (proof of my life). What’s worse, I knew my cellphone’s battery was dead at the time I lost it. So I couldn’t call, I couldn’t text (I did, anyway).

I was in suspended animation, neither here nor there that night and the next few days, responding to every text with “hu dis?”. It was embarrassing.

Anyway, those were the most disquieting days of my life, but as in everything, here are some lessons learned:

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Is happiness (or being happy) really an advantage?

The simple things

The simple things

Who can resist a show featuring  a Harvard researcher doing research on—of all things—happiness?

I could not. So despite the many minor interruptions (irritations), like the selling and upselling of Shawn Achor’s books and videos, I kept at it.

Here are some of the stuff I learned (and remembered):

1.  Those in Harvard, despite Harvard being Harvard, are not happy. Researcher Shawn Achor says that in his experiment, hapless freshmen are only happy for the first 2 weeks—happy to be accepted and besting a thousand others for the coveted slots, happy to be in Harvard’s hallowed halls and relishing its old world smell, happy to be at the center of the intellectual universe. But when the reality of pressure—ever present, permeating the walls (and their every capillary)— becomes apparent, they get lost into the vortex of competing with themselves, forever justifying (to themselves) that they deserved to be there.

At the end of it all (if Achor is to be believed), the Harvardians are just grateful to be let out alive and to smoke the Harvard pipe (misery, they say, loves company).

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An Inspirational Speech to Graduating Students

 

Snapshots of the Future

My alma mater called and requested that I give an inspirational speech during the graduation rites of its Grade School Department.

Odd.

A week before, I made a self-assessment and determined I wanted more training / experience in public speaking.  Hmmm…  What can I say?  The universe will conspire to get you what you want, when you want it.  That is, immediately, or almost immediately.

Let me share with you the text of my speech.

Beloved director, principal and members of the faculty, proud parents, and above all, the graduates.  My congratulations.

I imagine that you are excited at graduating, a little scared of going to highschool, sad about saying goodbye to friends and teachers, and excited about the summer.  I also felt the same way when I was 12.

Looking at your faces, at this school, at the teachers, I realize that everything has changed.  And nothing has changed.

But let me tell you, tomorrow will be the beginning of one of the most wonderful, memorable, exciting part of your lives.

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How Not to Get What You (Might Eventually) Want

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Sometimes we make things hard for ourselves.

We hate this, we will never do that, we would rather die first, or punctuate our thoughts with “…only if hell freezes over”, allowing ourselves to fall prey to strong feelings of (false) pride, revulsion, aversion or not wanting something to the point of repulsion or loathing.  We do not realize that simply by planting those seeds of thought in our minds, we have placed a behemoth obstacle in our paths.

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