The Real You.

Getting Past the Ideal to the Heart of Who People Are

How well do you really know people? Is your picture of them true to who they really are?

I have this habit of creating really high expectations for people—especially those who I admire or feel strongly about. I put people up on a pedestal and mentally create an idealized version of them and how they fit into my life. When people don’t meet that ideal, I’m disappointed, but that’s when I start to really get to know them. Some people have lived up to the ideal I have created for them, but not exactly in the way I had envisioned. For some rare people, my ideal becomes a dynamic between us that I continue to pursue. It’s based on the potential I see in them and for their relationship with me and not any commitment or promise they’ve made. Ultimately, these idealized versions of people are my creations and my responsibility. Sometimes, I transfer the disappointment I feel when people don’t live up to this standard I’ve created for them, but I know that isn’t fair. It’s important to be aware of how we perceive people and that our perception is likely not the whole picture.

Read More
Work-done. Making a break from routine.

Going to Work Versus Getting Work Done

So much of the modern approach to work is based on an antiquated model that is very narrow in scope. You show up in the morning, you work for eight to ten hours, and you go home. Five days a week. The problem with this model is that very few people can actually be productive for that long of a stretch and be consistent for several days in a row. We end up with many people finding ways around this challenge. They break up their days into chunks of time when they are more or less productive, creative, and social. Then they schedule their days accordingly, so that they are not just doing the same thing (or failing to do the same thing) for the whole day. Of course, some people don’t have that luxury and have to do the best they can and try to muscle their way through the day. It’s not ideal.

But what if we considered a different approach? One that takes advantage of the ebbs and flows of individuals’ energy. One that isn’t tied to specific times during the day. One that focuses on the work instead of on the time spent working.

Read More
Divisions

Divisions—Finding a Way Back from the Brink

Social media is bad for society.

Oh, sure, it has resulted in some good outcomes. Families are able to keep in touch more easily and share pictures of their latest adventures. Old friends can reconnect and have a sort of correspondence, when otherwise they might not have. People are able to be creative and share their creations with the world. But people can also group into like-minded factions, feed on each other’s fears and paranoia, and only acknowledge the information that supports their own perspectives. Social media has supported and sustained the divisions that exist in our society. It has so much potential for good, but social media is like any other tool—it’s only as good as the people whose hands wield it.

Read More
Reality. A perception of reality. Agsandrew.

Your Life Is Yours—Creating Your Own Reality

Reality is a squishy thing.

Our perception and interpretation of the conditions and events in our lives are what drive our reality—even more so than the conditions and the events themselves. That’s why certain people living in what most would call trying conditions appear to thrive, while others who “have everything” are depressed and anxious. There are also people that will fight reality every step of the way. They can’t accept certain events or conditions, so they don’t. Most people live on the very surface of reality, while others are able to delve into their reality and truly understand their place in the universe. If you can do this, you can start to influence and even create your own reality based on your life force and your influence. 

Read More
Fret Less. Fretless bass.

Fret Less — Living Between the Notes

When you’re playing a fretless instrument, such as a fretless bass guitar or a violin, it’s easy to be slightly sharp or flat as the note depends on the exact placement of your fingers. While musicians are careful to play with as much precision as they can, it can be fun to play off the note a bit, whether it be in a vibrato (the rapid pulsing or wavering of a tone), in a glissando (a slide upward and downward between notes), or through an intentional (or unintentional) departure from playing exactly on the note. With a fretted instrument, the fret bars keep your playing to those specific notes for that fret.[1] They are certainly easier to play and provide more precision, but they limit the player to only those specific notes.

I recently bought a fretless bass and am having a great time playing with these dynamics. The ability to play expressively when I’m not limited by frets has given me a newfound sense of freedom and has allowed me to play in a way I’ve never played before. It has also made me think about the continuous range of tones being symbolic of how people live their lives.

Read More