Mark Foryth, author of the fascinating new book The Etymologicon: A Circular Stroll Through the Hidden Connections of the English Language, takes an “unruly” look at the English language
Designer Jonathan Adler on why you should keep other people’s opinions out of your creative process. Paul Graham admonished against the same thing and Woz famously advocated the creative value of working alone.
Frank Partnoy on the science of delay and the useful art of procrastination.
Tony Fadell, who designed the iPod and iPhone, on setting constraints, ignoring experts, and embracing self-doubt.
What ends up happening in the world, on a very, very large level, has a lot to do with what people believe will happen. Because these things are self-fulfilling — when enough people start to believe in a certain future outcome, their subconscious ends up acting on their behaviors, and that outcome ends up kind of happening. And so I think it’s so important to put forth beautiful, and also believable, visions of how things can be in the future, because then many people will believe in these things, and then those things will begin to come true.
And, conversely, this is why it’s so dangerous to do this kind of fear-mongering, cynical hopelessness you see every time you turn on the cable news or open up a newspaper — because if people are exposed to that enough, that’s what they will believe the future is going to be like, and they’ll start to act accordingly, and that’s what we’ll get.
1. Space (“You can’t become playful, and therefore creative, if you’re under your usual pressures.”)
2. Time (“It’s not enough to create space; you have to create your space for a specific period of time.”)
3. Time (“Giving your mind as long as possible to come up with something original,” and learning to tolerate the discomfort of pondering time and indecision.)
4. Confidence (“Nothing will stop you being creative so effectively as the fear of making a mistake.”)
5. Humor (“The main evolutionary significance of humor is that it gets us from the closed mode to the open mode quicker than anything else.”)