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Narrative invites us to rethink what we thought we knew

Explanation settles issues, showing that matters must end as they have. Narrative raises issues, showing that matters do not end as they must but as they do. Explanations sets the need for further inquiry aside; narrative invites us to rethink what we thought we knew.

-- James P. Carse, Finite and Infinite Games, n. 73

infinite-games narrative

One cannot reach one’s potential without learning to focus

As one achieves focus, the mind quiets. As the mind is kept in the present, it becomes calm. Focus means keeping the mind now and here. Relaxed concentration is the supreme art because no art can be achieved without it, while with it, much can be achieved. One cannot reach the limit of one’s potential in tennis or any endeavor without learning it; what is even more compelling is that tennis can be a marvelous medium through which skill in focus of mind can be developed. By learning to focus while playing tennis, one develops a skill that can heighten performance in every other aspect of life.

-- Timothy Gallwey, The Inner Game of Tennis: The Classic Guide to the Mental Side of Peak Performance (p. 83)

concentration focus peak-performance tennis

Don’t compound the error

Money and habits are not the only things that benefit from the law of compound interest. So do losses, errors, and vices.

From James Clear’s 3-2-1 Thursday Newsletter:

Sometimes in life, you will make mistakes. And when you think back on those mistakes, you may feel embarrassed. That’s a normal feeling. Nobody is perfect and we all make our fair share of mistakes in life.

However, if you do not take responsibility for the mistake and do your best to correct it, then you are committing a second mistake. Do the right thing, even though you may feel embarrassed by your previous actions. Don’t compound the error.

compounding errors habits learning


Without enchantment and fantasy, we face no mysteries, only static things we have not rationally explained yet. Without mystery, there is no humility; and when humility shrinks, societies rot from within and topple like trees hollowed out by disease. The cure is found in networked pockets of flourishing imaginative community.

-- Declaration of Enchantment, Article 13

creativity enchantment fantasy imagination