Category Archives: Advice for Life

Why gyms don’t want you to workout

Because I move around a lot, I have used many different gyms. Golds Gym, the YMCA, Lifetime Fitness, I have been to them all. Several years ago I started to feel something in the back of my mind. It seemed to me if you really wanted to workout, most gyms were not designed for you. Despite being marketed as a place to workout, they often made it hard to actually complete that workout. It seems like I was right.

Continue reading Why gyms don’t want you to workout

Tomorrow it Rain Money

Do you trouble saving money? Well, if you spoke Chinese you might have an easier time with it.

Chinese is one example of a future-less language, whereas English is a futured language, we make clear grammatical separations between the past, present and future. This talk from Keith Chen is just one example of the several great chapters to this weeks episode of the TED Radio Hour. In it he explains how the way we think about time has a great influence on our ability to make decisions concerning both future payoff and punishment.

The third chapter with Paul Piff is the most interesting to me. In this time of increasing inequality in America, it is important to think about how these changes affect us. One example from this talk is an experiment involving a rigged game of Monopoly. At the start of a game the two players would flip a coin, the winner of the flip would start the game with twice as much money and get to use two dice as opposed to one. As explained in his talk, the winning players in this rigged game begin to act very differently and also start to forget that the game is rigged to begin with.

All five speakers from this episode examine the way we look at money and the underlying reasons to explain our reactions. I highly recommend you listen to the whole talk or subscribe to the TED Radio Hour on iTunes.

Sum Up the Courage

I couldn’t agree more with Ben Saunders in this clip.

Ben is actually a prolific TEDster. He has given three talks on his experiences “dragging heavy things around cold places.” These experiences include skiing to both the North Pole and the South Pole. He offers tremendous insight into the importance of reaching out and seeking more. You can find his most recent TED talk here.

This episode of the TED Radio Hour came at a great time for me because I had just finished watching Wanderers, a new short film floating around the internet. No doubt Sagan would count these individuals among his “restless few.”

The other speakers on this episode continued with the high standard of exploration set by Ben. One near to my heart is Bill Stone. Bill has explored some of the deepest caves on Earth and is now trying to use that knowledge to set up an exploration mission to the moon.

Roz Savage decided it would be a good idea to try and cross the Atlantic in a row boat and after completing the journey thought, why not the Pacific?

Finally, Philippe Petit tells of the day in 1974 when he walked between the twin towers on a tight rope.


Everyday Leadership

This little snippet is one of the best commentaries on leadership that I have ever heard.

The last act of this 45 minute podcast from NPR’s TED Radio Hour, Drew Dudley delivers hilarious stories and profound truth about the way we approach leadership in the world. His full talk can be found here. This episode of the TED Radio Hour is entitled Disruptive Leadership and it offers many diverse ideas about what leadership is about and how to find it in others and yourself.

General Stanley McChrystal talks about his experiences of leadership in Afghanistan, you can find his TED Talk here.

The controversial Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg discusses her book, Lean In, and how both men and women are responsible for the problems our society has in dealing with roles of the sexes. Her full talk can be found here.

The final installment came Bunker Roy who discusses his experiences in teaching grandmothers to be engineers.

You can find the entire podcast and all of the others from the show at their website.

What Are You Doing?

If you listen to podcasts, especially anything from NPR, you have probably heard of StartUp. Alex Blumberg, formerly a part of This American Life and Planet Money, has decided to leave NPR, start his own business and make a podcast about starting that business. I found episode one great not just because I love the way Alex tells stories, but because of the bearing I felt it had on my life. Though I am not starting a business, I did recently decide to leave my job and start a new career. The series of exchanges on this excerpt is the kind of conversation that every job seeker needs to get into their head before they start talking to a potential employer.

I highly recommend the full podcast and the entire series which you can find at