At first, I thought I’d do a podcast roundup post like I have in the past, and I think will eventually go back to that, but then I sat down to write and realized I only listened to ONE podcast yesterday that was 2 and half hours long. Not much of a “roundup.” Maybe I’ll just summarize? Then I looked up the podcast website to share the link and found he had a good summary and highlights written there. Seems redundant to write my own.

But then again, I know I have my own highlights, insights that came to me while I listened, my own connections. Where will I go? I have no idea. Get a cup of coffee and let’s see.

I started listening to The Knowledge Project podcast  last month and it’s now one of my favorites. He interviews people, mostly people I’ve never heard of, and gets them talking about their work and processes. I haven’t heard a bad interview yet, but this one was extra special.

The title “Core Human Motivations” is what caught my attention. I’d love to dive into that subject. I swear I’m at a loss to explain the motivations of the people around me, as if I’m not human myself and I’m walking among an alien species attempting to make sense of their actions. It’s not true, of course. As far as I know, I am human. And the closer I look around me, the more I realize that I do behave in much the same way millions of other people do. I just THINK I don’t.

So, I keep reading and studying, observing, connecting more dots. Lately, I’ve been wishing I had more opportunity to interact with new and varied people in person, but my location and my temperament limit my prospects. I keep trying though, racking my brain for ideas on how to get out there. I’ve decided to keep my mind and heart open, ready for the opportunity to present itself. It will have to do for now. Something will come up, or it won’t. Either way I’ll be here happily living my life.

I had four pages of notes. Keep in mind, I was driving with a notebook on the center console, pen in hand. When I hear something that I want to remember or have a thought I’d like to expand on later, I reach over and jot it down blindly. I do glance over and to put my pen down in a blank space, but then my eyes go back to the road, so the notes are rather messy, and I have no idea where I was in the podcast, what triggered the thought. Only I can decipher them…mostly. If I don’t look over them that day or early the next, I can lose them completely. They make no sense without the attached memory.

All that being said (yes, I’m rambling a bit, train of thought is my favorite way to blog), here are my favorite thoughts from yesterday’s drive.

Shaming children as they grow up does not teach them to do better, it teaches them to care more about what other people think than to learn what their own wants and needs are.

Convenience doesn’t sell well in cultures that don’t pay by the hour. Time isn’t the driving motivation. It’s like when you are retired and on a limited income. You drive all over town for the great deal or make things completely by hand or from scratch. It’s a cheaper monetary investment but an expensive time investment. We invest what we have.

Things that are “soulful” are generally inefficient. Mediation, admiring a sunset, baking from scratch, quilting…things that feed your soul take time.

Entrepreneurship isn’t the same in every culture. Some people build a dam and wait for the water to come to it. If the water doesn’t come, they decorate it or turn it into something else to attract attention. Others build dams right on existing waterways and syphon off some of what already exists.

In some cultures, money and time are spent on making sure the living room and kitchen are spectacular. In others, it’s the bedroom and bathroom. It an indicator of what you deem important to you. The comfort and enjoyment of guests? Showing your wealth? Or your own personal comfort and satisfaction?

In India they treat their children as assets, they invest in them. They are expected to take care of their parents later in life, and kids expect to do that to the best of their ability. It isn’t a burden for either.

              That’s an interesting take. I’ve always felt that way about my kids. I heard people go on about “four years and then thank god they’re at school.” Or the sentiment that they are a burden on the family until they are 18 and then “See ya! You’re not my problem anymore!” It never made any sense to me. We invest in our time, effort, and money in our family. We’re building something, but we don’t expect anything in return. We do get returns voluntarily in any good relationship. Something to unpack and write more about later.

We live our lives looking for insight and connecting the dots between every experience we have to see the bigger picture. This podcast is a perfect example of that.

              This is how I read. There is no prescribed destination or curriculum to learn. I follow my experiences and learn from them, gathering information, and connect it to other parts of my life. It’s like breathing to me now. I can’t stop.

Shameless people (people who do not feel ashamed of themselves, for not knowing something, or being wrong) are able to connect more dots more quickly.

              Promote places to accommodate that feeling, support others around you in their exploration, and we end up all being smarter and happier.

“Pride” of one’s identity, “Fans” (from fanatic) of one thing or another, are the easiest to trigger or offend.

              This was a great bit, but this line doesn’t do it justice. I’d like to listen to it again and expand on the idea. I think the point is that tighter you hold on to a thing you do or are as an identity, the more likely you are to fight for it. To let it go, or have it challenged, becomes a life-or-death fight.

We tend to copy end states instead of journeys or processes. We see a rich man and copy his car or house instead of looking into how he got where he is and copying those ideas to take us where we want to go.

              We don’t say “What would Jesus do?” because we want to be the Son of God. We say it to remind ourselves to think more like he would think and react in the same ways. We can do that for anyone we admire.

Truth isn’t something that is taught in any public education system. We teach what to think. You get the information and repeat it back to me for credit. Now you are educated. That’s “schooled” not “educated.”

People aren’t more intolerant today, they are running out of processing power.

              Interesting thought related to another podcast I heard. We receive so much more input than previous generations. The statistics on that are staggering, but I’d have to spend some time looking them up again. At some point, we all just yell, “Enough!” Unconsciously, we shut down and let others take over the details. It’s how we end up with tyrants and dictators.

Social media (my favorite subject) has so many places to put your energy, so many conversations, and inputs, that we don’t have the time or the energy to go deeply into any of it.

We skim over the top, like and move on at best. We comment the first thought that come to mind, reactions, and can do some pretty serious damage to each other. This will be our “printing press,” the thing that changed our world, started wars, and devastated humanity, until we can learn to use it in wiser ways. Then look out world! Great things will happen in the aftermath! Maybe even warp drive!

Kids watch the same shows over and over again. Why? They are learning to recognize patterns and make sense of the world. Adults have learned those patterns, so repetitive things bore us. We watch for broken patterns. A joke is a broken pattern. You thought x would happen and it didn’t, y did instead. Every time we experience that, we get a hit of dopamine. It’s why things like TikTok and IG Reels suck you in for hours. It’s addictive to our minds.

              That doesn’t mean it’s bad and should be banned. It means we should learn how to use it, like we do everything else that brings us joy and excitement. And guess what! Fear and humor light up the same parts of our brains. Humor is “Oh shit! A pattern in broken! But it’s ok, adapt, laugh.” It’s practice. Fear is “Oh shit! A pattern is broken! It’s not ok, I must do something, adapt, and live.”

One more. I know this got long but I told you there was so much great stuff!

Intolerant people don’t read or travel. They don’t have the lenses they need to see another person’s point of view, or adapt to a new situation, so they fight instead.

This is why I love to read. It shows me new worlds, new people, and new ways of seeing. Travel is far too uncomfortable for my conservative and timid nature, so I read…probably more than I really should.

And there you go. Wow…that was a lot of words. I hope I didn’t overwhelm you!