TN50#155_Happenstance, Or Not_04 March_2024

Hi Team,

Occasionally I find myself with a confluence of things that I want to share with you, that could only be described as intentional-happenstance; or randomness that, on a deeper level, doesn’t seem random.  This week is one of those times.  5 things, in no particular order, that I consumed in the last 7 days.  If I try to explain this anymore, I’ll just mess it up so let’s just dive in.

Happy Monday and welcome to The Next 50 #155. I like to think of personal performance in 3 components: physical, mental and emotional.  My frameworks focus on 4 Buckets: Eat, Sleep, Move and Think.  This blog is my sandbox for sharing information that you might find useful for your personal performance.

ITEM 1: Here’s a passage from C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity, which is captured in a devotional called, A Year with C.S. Lewis, for 2 March.

“Morality, then, seems to be concerned with three things.  Firstly, with fair play and harmony between individuals.  Secondly, with what might be called tidying up or harmonizing the things inside each individual.  Thirdly, with the general purpose of human life as a whole: what man was made for: what course the whole fleet ought to be on: what tune the conductor of the band wants it to play…

Almost all people at all times have agreed (in theory) that human beings ought to be honest and kind and helpful to one another.  But though it is natural to begin with all that, if our thinking about morality stops there, we might just as well not have thought at all.  Unless we go on to the second thing – the tidying up inside each human being – we are only deceiving ourselves.

What is the good of telling the ships how to steer so as to avoid collisions if, in fact, they are such crazy old tubs that they cannot be steered at all?  What is the good of drawing up, on paper, rules for social behavior, if we know that, in fact, our greed, cowardice, ill temper, and self-conceit are going to prevent us from keeping them?  I do not mean for a moment that we ought not to think, and think hard, about improvements in our social and economic system.  What I do mean is that all that thinking will be mere moonshine unless we realize that nothing but the courage and unselfishness of individuals is ever going to make any system work properly.  It is easy enough to remove the particular kinds of graft or bullying that go on under the present system: but as long as men are twisters or bullies they will find some new way of carrying on the old game under the new system.  You cannot make men good by law: and without good men you cannot have a good society.”

ITEM 2: Here’s an episode of The Drive Podcast with guest, Walter Green.

Walter Green is a remarkable philanthropist, mentor, author of This Is the Moment!, and founder of the impactful “Say It Now” movement. (from the show note)

ITEM 3: Here’s a passage from Epictetus quoted in The Daily Stoic, for 3 March.

“These things don’t go together.  You must be a unified human being, either good or bad.  You must diligently work either on your own reasoning or on things out of your control – take great care with the inside and not what’s outside, which is to say, stand with the philosopher, or else with the mob!”

ITEM 4: Here’s an episode of The Joe Rogan Experience Podcast with guest, Dr. Phil.

Dr. Phil McGraw is an author and psychologist. He is the host of “Dr. Phil Primetime” on Merit Street Media and the podcast “Phil in the Blanks.” His newest book is “We’ve Got Issues: How You Can Stand Strong for America’s Soul and Sanity.” (from the show note)

ITEM 5: Here’s an episode of The Lex Friedman Podcast with guest, Tucker Carlson.

Putin, Navalny, Trump, CIA, NSA, War, Politics & Freedom (from the show note)

Consuming all of this is a big ask, I appreciate you considering it.

Who do you know that could use this information?  I bet you can think of a couple of folks before you click the next email!

As always share the post with your team and anyone who might find it useful and let me know what you think!

Have a good one, Alex

  1. Do you have a Performance question I can answer? Let me know:

PPS.  If you’re new to First Principles Performance Coaching, here’s a one stop shop for all my stuff.