Microsoft founder Bill Gates once gave a speech in Beijing, China. A boy named Jia Jiang listened to the speech and was impressed. So much so that he wrote down a plan to become a successful entrepreneur. He even planned to buy the entire Microsoft company someday.
Dreams don’t always work out as planned. Jiang and his family emigrated to the United States when he was 16 years old. He ended up working in the marketing department of a company. He was unhappy in his work and still wanted to become a successful entrepreneur.
Jiang left his corporate job and…
The old gentleman knew that more years were chasing him than remained. His beloved Betty had passed away last December. It was awful.
He awoke that chilly winter morning and found her in his art studio, on the floor. A teacup shattered beside her frail body. And in her left hand, his recent painting of daffodils.
It comforted him immensely. That in her final moments, she had picked up his little flower painting. Betty loved the garden and especially daffodils.
“They don’t ask anything of nobody. You just put them in the ground. In decent soil. Then let them do…
The sergeant walked into the report writing room and dropped three pieces of paper over my desk. They fluttered down and came to rest on top of my hands.
I recognized two of the papers as my recently submitted vandalism report. The third paper was a photocopy of various vandalism sections from the penal code.
“You used the wrong vandalism section in your report,” the sergeant said in a snide voice, adding, “I photocopied and highlighted the correct section.” Before I could say anything, he spun around and walked back to his office.
“A teacher who is attempting to teach…
Libraries used to be silent. I know because back in high school and during my university days, I loved the monastic ambiance of the library.
Nowadays, libraries aren’t so quiet. The one I used to visit in California hosted open room meetings. Kids were laughing and horsing around after school. People didn’t whisper, and the librarians abandoned the “Shush!”
Have you ever thought you were right, even when presented with strong evidence to the contrary?
People tend to hold their beliefs and opinions closely. Particularly when those beliefs and opinions are grounded in some kind of moral or ethical viewpoint.
There’s nothing wrong with having strong religious and/or political beliefs, but our attachment to them can dilute our open-mindedness. We become susceptible to confirmation bias, and less willing to grapple with counter-arguments and inconvenient facts.
If we’re not careful, we can fall victim to “monkey trap thinking.” An article in Psychology Today explains:
“In a physical monkey trap, a…
It snowed early this morning, but the dogs insisted on a walk anyway. We made the usual rounds in the neighborhood, sidestepping puddles and ice.
Sunshine glinting off pockets of snow peppered the distant mountains. Dark and light grey clouds hovered overhead. There was a chilly but invigorating breeze.
Sometimes I spot a flock of birds, departing in mass from the branches of a barren winter tree. It always feels like a sad event to me.
Where once the birds seemed to provide warmth and company to the tree, now they are gone. Like departing souls of those we have loved and lost.
The branches, stripped of their leaves, are abandoned and alone now. Not unlike people, still of sound mind and limbs, but devoid of warmth and color.
In 1990 Henna Inam graduated with an MBA and took a job with Procter & Gamble, which provided the foundation of her corporate career. Then she joined Novartis, which led to eight assignments across four divisions, three functions, and four locations over 13 years.
Inam had amazing sponsors, mentors, and experiences in her corporate career, but something was missing. After she turned 40, she experienced a mid-life crisis.
On Inam’s website bio she shares the following reflection:
“My corporate career had been mostly about achievement and climbing the corporate ladder and now I wanted to find my own way to…
Roger Berlind was a successful man, despite several setbacks in his life. He majored in English at Princeton University and was involved in the Triangle Club, which put together musical productions.
Berlind served in the U. S. Army until 1954. He was a fluent pianist who played by ear. He pursued songwriting, but was unable to sell his music to publishers.
Despite knowing little about the world of finance, he interviewed for various positions on Wall Street. After many rejections, a firm finally picked him up.
Berlind would go on to create a small investment firm with friends. The firm…
The dispatcher’s voice startled me. It was 3 AM and I was parked in a lonely, empty lot in the north end of town. I liked parking there because it was quiet, and I could get my reports done.
“Code 7 at Oak Tree Villa,” the dispatcher continued over the radio. In other police agencies, Code-7 meant “lunch break.” Unfortunately, in my department’s radio vernacular, it meant “dead body.”
Oak Tree Villa was our town’s only retirement and assisted living community. A local firefighter once called it “Croak Tree Villa,” which was awful but not inaccurate. …