Brain candy

Do you ever get in those moods when your brain feels like a sponge and you crave inspiration, or a change of perspective, or just simply having your mind blown?

Here’s a carefully selected list of 11 of my favorite articles, videos and podcasts that have done exactly that for me. May they pull, expand and blow your mind like hubba bubba bubble gum!

∴CREATIVITY∴tumblr_lvwttyZPZn1qdmz3oo1_400.jpg1Advice To The Young – Patti Smith

I am so inspired by this incredible woman! Her words are filled with so much hope and it comes across in such a real, genuine and authentic way.

2. Choosing Curiosity Over Fear – Elizabeth Gilbert

“Passion is a tower of flame, but curiosity is a tiny tap on the shoulder — a little whisper in the ear that says, “Hey, that’s kind of interesting…Passion is rare; curiosity is everyday. Curiosity is therefore a lot easier to reach at at times than full-on passion — and the stakes are lower, easier to manage. The trick is to just follow your small moments of curiosity. It doesn’t take a massive effort. Just turn your head an inch. Pause for a instant. Respond to what has caught your attention. Look into it a bit. Is there something there for you? A piece of information?”

3. Can Slowing Down Help You Be More Creative? – Adam Grant

The surprising benefits of procrastinating… “procrastination gives you time to consider divergent ideas, to think in nonlinear ways, to make unexpected leaps.”

SOCIETY
Screen Shot 2016-12-18 at 9.15.06 pm.png 4. Your Lifestyle Has Been Redesigned – David Cain

Great perspective post-traveling thoughts on Western life and consumerism. “The 8-hour workday is too profitable for big business, not because of the amount of work people get done in eight hours (the average office worker gets less than three hours of actual work done in 8 hours) but because it makes for such a purchase-happy public. Keeping free time scarce means people pay a lot more for convenience, gratification, and any other relief they can buy. It keeps them watching television, and its commercials. It keeps them unambitious outside of work…. Can you imagine what would happen if all of America stopped buying so much unnecessary fluff that doesn’t add a lot of lasting value to our lives?”

5. How Millennials Are Changing Travel – Amanda Machado

“Studies indicate that millennials advocate strongly for work-life balance, and have few qualms about leaving jobs that don’t meet their expectations. A 2012 Net Impact survey found that young workers are more concerned with finding happiness and fulfillment at the office than workers of past generations… Travel creates time to reflect on these priorities and decide how our career choices can accommodate them. We understand that bumming around in our twenties for too long is irresponsible, but we also find it irrational to work unfulfilling jobs only to feel legitimate. And if we have the financial resources to pause, travel, and reassess, then why not take advantage of that privilege?”

6. This Is Water – David Foster Wallace

“But of course there are all different kinds of freedom, and the kind that is most precious you will not hear much talked about in the great outside world of winning and achieving and displaying. The really important kind of 7 freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day. That is real freedom. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default-setting, the “rat race” — the constant gnawing sense of having had and lost some infinite thing.”

7. The ‘Busy’ Trap – Tim Krieder

“Busyness serves as a kind of existential reassurance, a hedge against emptiness; obviously your life cannot possibly be silly or trivial or meaningless if you are so busy, completely booked, in demand every hour of the day.”

∴RELATIONSHIPS∴
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8. It’s complicated: Why Relationships and Dating Can Be So Hard – Mark Manson

“our unconscious is wired to seek out romantic interests who it believes will fulfill our unfulfilled emotional needs, to fill in the gaps of the love and nurturing we missed out on as kids. This is why the people we fall in love with almost always resemble our parents on an emotional level… our dating and sex lives are inextricably bound to our emotional needs, and when we get into potentially intimate or sexual situations, these experiences rub up against our prior traumas causing us anxiety, neuroticism, stress and pain.”

Anyone who has been in love will likely find this interesting. “Romantic love is one of the most addictive substances on Earth.”

∴PSYCHOLOGY∴
il_fullxfull.757420086_bkgc.jpg10. Altered States: Self-experiments in chemistry – Oliver Sacks

This is absolutely fascinating. Sacks, a famous neuroscientist, takes hallucinatory drugs and reports back on his experiences. “So one Sunday morning I counted out twenty pills, swallowed them with a mouthful of water, and sat down to await the effect. Would the world be transformed, newborn, as Huxley described in “The Doors of Perception,” and as I myself had experienced with mescaline and LSD? Would there be waves of delicious, voluptuous feeling? Would there be anxiety, disorganization, paranoia? I was prepared for all of these…”

11. This Year, Change Your Mind – Oliver Sacks

“Whether it is by learning a new language, traveling to a new place, developing a passion for beekeeping or simply thinking about an old problem in a new way, all of us can find ways to stimulate our brains to grow, in the coming year and those to follow. Just as physical activity is essential to maintaining a healthy body, challenging one’s brain, keeping it active, engaged, flexible and playful, is not only fun. It is essential to cognitive fitness.”

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