I’m Back & Weekly Inspiration

Well, I’m back. I’ve been thinking about doing this again for quite some time. Things are settling down as Thing Two approaches the two year mark. It is time to refocus on health and positive change. The format will be close to what it was before, but fewer deep research articles as I don’t have as much time.

But that doesn’t mean no science! I love science! I’ll still be writing on tons of science around personal change, habits, fitness, and how the brain works. That means articles on whatever I’m learning from the books, articles, and papers I happen to be reading at the time, or any great podcasts I’m currently listening to.

I’ll also be posting about what inspires me and other areas of life in general.

Also, there will finally be outside contributors! I’m especially excited about this last part.

Without further ado, here is what inspired me this week:

[Podcast] How to Launch a Behavior-Change Revolution

I’ve written about Dr. Angela Duckworth before when I recommended her book Grit (It is such a great book). These days she is putting together a dream team of social scientists to find out why people “repeatedly make decisions that undermine their long-term well being” and figure out how to fix this problem. There are sneak peeks into the review process in which some of the best scientists and academics from around the world were invited to ask questions and poke holes in their research. It was a fascinating listen.

[Podcast] “I Wasn’t Stupid Enough To Say This Could Be Done Overnight”

Indra Nooyi is the C.E.O. of PepsiCo. She took over the company right before a financial meltdown, and right at the time the world’s perception of junk food began to take a turn. The company has thrived under her leadership and it is interesting to hear her talk about her leadership style, parenting, and shifting away from having a product line consisting of only toxic junk food to a healthier product line. I loved this interview. Also, if you’re interested in why they made those new “Doritos for Women” she actually discusses the science on that decision here.

[Book] The Education of a Coach

Bill Belichick will probably go down as the greatest coach in NFL history, and maybe even all of sports. He has a deep passion for football and a drive that is unmatched. But what molded Bill Belichick into the greatest coach of all time and what can be learned from it? Pulitzer Prize winner David Halberstam set out to answer some of these questions in this book. I’m about halfway through the book and it has been an excellent read so far. If you are into sports, leadership, or high-performance I’d give this book a read.

[Person] Maurice Clarett

For those of you who don’t know who this is, Maurice Clarett was a football star at Ohio State and helped them win the National Championship in 2002 as a freshman. However, things took a turn for the worst for Clarett in 2006. After some terrible choices, he was arrested in his SUV wearing a bullet proof vest and having four loaded weapons. More times than not, this is where the story ends (or gets worse).

As Clarett spent time in prison, he began “blogging” by writing and and then reading it to his mom over the phone to post online for him. The posts were about his education in prison and how prison was making him a better person. I was skeptical. I thought maybe he was using his name to try to buy sympathy from the public.

After Clarett was released from prison he began to show real change. These days he is running his own business, he is a public speaker speaking to kids about his mistakes and what he has learned, and he runs charities such as his comeback foundation that provides a home “free-and-clear” to worthy families getting their lives back in order.

This morning, I saw his tweet above and thought, one day, when my kids have a particularly rough patch later in life, his is a story I can tell them to show that no matter where you are, you have the power to choose the actions that lead to better outcomes. He has been a fine example of that.

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