On changes

The below is an excerpt from my weekly letter for my newsletter.

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Hello, beautiful people —

I want to mention some side effects of writing that I didn’t expect: someone came up to me wanting to discuss a certain idea that I brought up, and some others think we could become good friends because we share some similar ideas.

Writing has increased my accountability over my own thoughts, and whenever there’s accountability there’s risk involved. It’s uncomfortable to push that “publish” button knowing that anyone can see them, and will always see them, but it’s getting slightly easier, and I start to look forward to being proven wrong by myself or others in the future. The largest reward from content creation is to elevate people while improving oneself. I want to encourage more friends to start doing so as well.

A friend recently told me they read so many news and followed podcasts, but they still felt like they couldn’t catch up — the pace at which the world is moving was causing her much anxiety. I want to share a couple things I keep in mind when thinking about change:

1/ Become comfortable of being wrong and be aware of the lies you tell yourself.

Being wrong is embarrassing, but experts are wrong all the time, and it’s often because they’re experts on an earlier version of the world. Be playful about being wrong, and show vulnerability. It’s a great way to build deeper relationships as well as getting closer to the reality of the world.

2/ Consume older things in the intellectual domain.

Non-perishable things such as books are likely to outlive newer ideas and books. On the other hand, for perishable objects, the less likely it is for the old to outlive the new. For example, a 90-year-old human being is less likely to outlive a 40 old-year-old human being. Same with companies.

3/ Don’t take the news too seriously and don’t believe in the stories journalists tell.

We are a post-truth species, and our power depends on creating and believing fictions. Ever since the Stone Age, self-reinforcing myths have served to unite us. Fake news and over-dramatic writings from the press are myths of our time. I believe wholeheartedly in the magic and necessity of stories, but I'm equally weary and spend some effort investigating the sources of my information.

All the things I mentioned above might sound obvious, but practicing these in real life is difficult. I’m still trying to get better.

Change is accelerating. Ideas mate with ideas and beget ideas. That’s not a recent trend; change has been accelerating since the stone age. Instead of seeing change as a journey of stress, how about if we see it as a way to become a different, and hopefully better self. Just like the world around us, we won’t remain static. Don’t get too fixated on who you are today, look forward to who you will become tomorrow.