Reframing giving

Scott Harrison, the visionary founder of Charity: Water, reframed giving in a beautiful way.

Rather than using guilt and “obligation” as tools to encourage people to donate, he makes it fun.

The story he tells is that we have this AMAZING opportunity to give and make an impact. it’s gift that we don’t need clean water, shelter, food. It’s incredible that we GET TO do good in the world.

It’s just a little tweak, but it feels different. As a donor, I’ve noticed it.

Charity: Water is doing trailblazing work. Not only bringing clean water to those in need, but rethinking what charity could be.

Studying the journalist

Once you have learned how to ask questions – relevant and appropriate and substantial questions – you have learned how to learn and no one can keep you from learning whatever you want or need to know. – Neil Postman

I find it fascinating to listen to interviews with journalists. Their job hinges on their ability to build rapport and ask questions.

When you consider how critical asking questions is not just to journalism, but to life in general, you start to realize how little time you spend developing the skill.

Tomorrow, think about questions a little more intentionally. What’s your best question to get know someone? What questions do you ask when learning about a new subject?

Exponential life

We live in an exponential world. Population growth, computing power, Carbon dioxide and more. Change is increasing at an increasing rate.

But what about education? Are people learning exponentially faster in 2018 than they were in 1918? It doesn’t seem like it. School still takes the same amount of time even though the curricula haven’t changed drastically.

What would it take to make education exponential? Technology could definitely play a role, but only if it’s main job is to help students have moments of insight and help educators focus on the important work of connecting.

Watching your lecture on YouTube may have benefits, but it’s still a lecture. Transformation happens through action. Exponential growth is driven by continuous action and reflection. How might we use technology to help force that issue?

Do you need a manifesto?

What words do you live by? What do you read when you’re feeling down?

Where do you turn when you need to be grounded in your beliefs? Maybe you need a manifesto. A mantra. A set of phrases you can internalize to pick you up when you’re feeling down.

If you had to write it, what would it say? You’re probably feeling okay right now, but what would you tell yourself when you’re feeling down? Put it on paper. You never when you might need it.

The quiet launch

Not everyone needs hooplah. The first night shouldn’t be too big because we’re still figuring it out.

We’re in no rush to get the masses to our space because we know it will only get better next time.

If you’re on the path of constant improvement, maybe the quiet launch is right for you.

Preaching to the choir

Sometimes it’s a good idea.

Especially if the choir doesn’t have a place to sing.

Or doesn’t know their lines.

Drawing your lines

When you love the work, it can bleed over into other aspects of life. Finding inspiration in unforeseen places is amazing. But, finding stress around every corner is not.

The work is a part of who you are, but it’s not all of who you are. There are layers upon layers of you-ness. Embrace the complexity and explore your lines.

Starting with snooze

What time does hitting snooze set for the rest of your day?

I don’t know.

You decide.

Running and running

As someone who isn’t a runner, I went on a run today. When it got painful as it inevitably does, I asked myself, “What if this was peaceful?”

What if the pounding of my sneakers on the pavement was therapy?

For some it is.

And for a few minutes, I tried it on for me. I like to think it made things easier. Why not try it out?

Austin’s butterfly

A famous example of iteration and feedback.

An elementary school students attempts to draw a scientifically accurate butterfly. His first attempt looks like a doodle of a butterfly. Two rounded wings with a body in between and antennae on top.

After a few rounds of feedback, he gets the wing shapes right. Then, by the 6th iteration, he draws an impressive depiction of the butterfly. Stunningly accurate for a 7 year old.

Here’s the image:

How good could you get if you were willing to publicly share 5 versions just to get peer feedback?