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I was wrong about so many things, kickstarter success, meditations.

I was wrong about so many things, kickstarter success, meditations.
By Tom Littler - Notion & myKanban • Issue #44 • View online
Welcome to the 222 new productivity people who’ve joined since last Sunday. We’re now a smart & curious group of 3805!

A few changes in my circumstance have had me reflecting a lot more recently. Reflection is key for growth, but when most people talk about growth they talk about refining existing beliefs, gaining new mental models and perspectives to see the world.
What people don’t talk about is the tough part of growth. The gut-wrenching, agonising process of systematically destroying old parts of yourself. Parts that were either toxic, deluded, or just plain unhelpful.
This week I tried to clarify my thoughts on some aspects of life I was painfully wrong about. I summarised them in this article.
It’s self-indulgent, and more an open letter to myself than anything, but if you are finding that you are becoming a person you never meant to be, you may find some of the insights helpful.
Here’s an extract.
I Was Wrong in Misunderstanding Kindness, and its Importance
Looking at my role models it’s easy to see where the virtues I see as most desirable come from. I admire Kendrick Lamar for his creativity, Steve Jobs for his vision, Leonardo da Vinci for his curiosity, Russel Brand for his charisma. 
Nowhere on this list is a role model I admire due to their kindness. Until recently, I didn’t even think of kindness as a particularly high virtue. The truth is, I didn’t really understand what it meant. I’d swing between associating kindness with ‘being nice’, something I have no intention of aiming towards, or associating kindness with doing what I felt was best for that person.
But this isn’t kindness at all. Kindness is a continuous act, whether that’s words, actions or initiatives, with the aim of doing what is best for somebody, not what you feel is best for them. That’s a subtle difference, it’s not good enough to do what you think is right, you have to know what is right for them.
This is why true kindness is so difficult to pull off. It’s easy to see someone in a tough spot and think ‘this is what I’d need right now’ but this isn’t kindness. Kindness requires true empathy. Kindness requires you to take serious time walking around in someone else’s shoes, and most people aren’t willing to spend the time going through this kind of work. Most people are nice, but few people are truly, deeply kind. 
Kindness is what makes life worth living, it’s the most generous thing one person can do for another. I don’t want to be remembered for being innovative, creative or ‘successful’, just let people say I was kind and I’ll die a happy man.
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I used to love stoicism. Perhaps I still do. But re-reading one of my favourite classics this time around just doesn’t resonate as it should. Why all the emphasis on ‘doing your duty’ on taking responsibility, on remaining cool and collected in all situations.
We are humans after all, and part of our condition is being able to show our true selves to the world, warts and all. I don’t know it just seems the stoics but almost too high a value on virtue.
If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.
myKanban
We’ve had great success with the myKanban launch. We reached our funding target within 24 hours, and are now over 250% funded!
If you got some use out of today’s issue, spread the word by sharing this link with a mate! Keep the subs rolling…
Cheers,
Tom
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Tom Littler - Notion & myKanban

Hey, I'm Tom, a product manager and startup founder living in London.

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