Ideal You
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Ideal You
Personal growth, lasting change, happiness, skill acquisition, peak performance
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An excerpt from Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit.

An excerpt from Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit. | Ideal You |
  • cravings power habits
  • habits have three components: a cue—a trigger for a particular behavior; a routine, which is the behavior itself; and a reward, which is how your brain decides whether to remember a habit for the future
  • habits are behaviours that create neurological cravings
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Why the world needs introverts

Why the world needs introverts | Ideal You |

Certain habits are specific to extroverts as others are to introverts:

  • exercise (a habit found in extroverts),
  • commit adultery (extroverts),
  • function well without sleep (introverts),
  • learn from our mistakes (introverts),
  • place big bets in the stock market (extroverts),
  • delay gratification (introverts),
  • be a good leader (depends on the type of leadership called for),
  • ask "what if" (introverts).

So could we say that:

  • extroverts focus on the present reality?
  • introverts focus on alternate reality (conceptual reality, like past, future, or any other kind of day-dreaming)?
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What are some uncommon ways to work smarter instead of harder?

  • Get enough rest and sleep, even when you are behind
  • Use a Kanban board
  • Say NO
  • Procrastinate, but not until the last minute
  • Delegate
  • Don't be a perfectionist. Expect the "first draft" of any project to be shitty.
  • Increase your typing speed
  • Use your brain wisely: Brain Rules
  • Use the 80/20 Principle. Analyze the work before you start.
  • Set a deadline
  • Don't multi-task
  • Use a time management system, such as GTD
  • Exercise, even when you think you don't have the time
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Gene Expression » Does brain plasticity trump innateness?

Gene Expression » Does brain plasticity trump innateness? | Ideal You |
  • many human psychological traits are likely determined by innate biological differences
  • it is also very clear that the adult brain is highly plastic and changes itself in response to experience
  • just as for physical traits, closely related people resemble each other for psychological traits
  • most circuits in the brain develop in an experience-dependent fashion: “cells that fire together, wire together” and “use it or lose it”
  • in principle, the right kind of experience can lead to overcome innate tendencies, but in practice, the reverse effect is observed: since our innate tendencies shape our experiences, we tend to reinforce and amplify these tendencies
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Daniel Goldstein: The battle between your present and future self | Video on

  • there are two selves when it comes to the question of temptation: one that just thinks about the here and now and the immediate gratification, and the future self
  • people can setup commitment devices when they have a cool head (ie: a powerful sense of the future self) to influence their margin of action when they have a hot head (ie: powerful present self). Common examples are: bet with friends, public commitments, physical limitations, etc...
  • the problem with commitment devices is that we can't have rules for any kind of behaviour, and also that we can justify violation of our own rules
  • "To abstain from the enjoyment which is in our power, or to seek distant rather than immediate results, are among the most painful exertions of the human will."
  • "We might neglect our future selves because of some failure of belief or imagination." -Derek Parfit (this means that a part of our present self does not really think we are going to be in different position in the future, like being old)
  • when people use applications to make simulations where different strategies lead to different outcomes for the future self, in a visual manner, they appear to get a better feeling of what their habits are causing to their future self
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DAVID GANDY | The Style King

DAVID GANDY | The Style King | Ideal You |
David Gandy, the fashion phenomenon, picked from obscurity and presented to us as the god like face of one of the world leading luxury fashion power houses this...
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Science of Style: Stage 1 – Knowing Yourself – Kinowear

Science of Style: Stage 1 – Knowing Yourself – Kinowear | Ideal You |

Stage 1 is all about getting clear about who you are, what you want to communicate, where you are now, and becoming aware of the changes you need to make to get to where you want to be.

Your image is fully loaded with messages.
A message that not only translates into your attractiveness, but who you are inside.

It’s important that as a foundation to your best style, you need to know who you are, your core purpose, and the type of people you want to attract or build stronger relationships with.

Stage 1 is a very important foundation to building your unique sense of style.
Skipping this first stage is the root cause of many common image mistakes such as being incongruent with your personality, looking try-hard, or merely following trends that come and go.

At first, it’s very hard to avoid incongruity.

Questions to answer

Who are you?
ex: I’m an adventurous, fun, man on a mission, someone who is going places and has his life balanced, etc.

What roles do you play in your life? In your career?
ex: I’m a musician, artist, a student, a father, a businessman, etc.

What do you represent?
What principles do you live by?
ex: Being adventurous, being open-minded, I value excellence over mediocrity, I value taking smart risks, I value hard work, etc.

What is your vision and purpose for your style?
The answer should be emotionally charged and you should connect with it.
ex: Communicating my best self through my image and as a result, being highly charismatic. To have a commanding presence, to display my qualities before I even speak, to define my look, feel great, and enjoy the process, and so on.

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Visionaries: Tom Ford Documentary

  • there's a language to anything: from architecture to the human body, from a pair of shoes to an accessory: "what does it say?"
  • by putting together all the things you love, you start to develop a vocabulary, a personality. And your brand takes on that personality
  • if you what you love in life, you can have moments of clarity, where you feel rather than think
  • "Nothing, nothing lasts. And that’s in a way the beauty of it all…once you can accept that nothing lasts. And at this point in my life I’m not going to do anything that’s not fun. I only have 30 years left, if I’m lucky, 40…maybe only 5, maybe tomorrow. So if it’s not fun, I’m not going to do it.”
  • "I believe in an enhanced reality with fashion. Fashion creates a bit of a dream. That’s the whole point I think of dressing up…is you feel better about yourself. It’s an enhanced version of who you are.”
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What is the difference between a cognitive bias and a heuristic | Comments by Andrew Cooke

"A cognitive bias may be the incorrect behaviour that results from an imperfect heuristic. But a bias is not a heuristic because they are descriptions at different levels: a heuristic is a low-level recipe while a bias is a description of high level behaviour."

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AIT I/C Guidebook: Culture Shock

AIT I/C Guidebook: Culture Shock | Ideal You |

Causes of culture shock

  • Being cut off from cultural signals and known patterns of communication, especially the subtle, indirect ways of expressing feelings.
  • Living or working over an extended period of time in a situation that is ambiguous.
  • Having personal values (which were previously considered absolutes) brought into question.
  • Being continually put into positions in which you are expected to function with maximum skill and speed, but where the rules have not been adequately explained.

Signs of culture shock

  • Homesickness
  • Withdrawal (i.e. spending excessive amounts of time reading and avoiding contact with local nationals)
  • Chauvinistic excesses
  • Stereotyping of host nationals
  • Need for excessive amounts of sleep
  • Marital stress
  • Loss of ability to work effectively
  • Compulsive eating or drinking
  • Unexplainable fits of weeping
  • Irritability
  • Physical ailments (psychosomatic illness)
  • Boredom
  • Exaggerated cleanliness
  • Family tension & conflict
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Everything You Thought You Knew About Learning Is Wrong

Everything You Thought You Knew About Learning Is Wrong | Ideal You |
  • approach learning a new skillset by interleaving different parts of that skill (not by mastering one after another): interleaving creates a sense of difficulty, which triggers adapatation, and also allows information to be interpreted in relation to other things
  • varying your study location will help recollection in another location
  • we know that if you study and then you wait, the longer you wait, the more you will have forgotten
  • also, if you study, wait, and then study again, the longer the wait, the more you’ll have learned after this second study session: when a retrieval succeeds, the more difficult and involved the retrieval, the more beneficial it is. Ideally, the second occurrence happens when the information you learned in the first session remains just barely retrievable)
  • taking notes just after class, rather than during forces yourself to recall a lecture’s information. The more you work, the more you learn.
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How do I improve my posture?

How do I improve my posture? | Ideal You |
  • model good posture, occasionally but actively and consciously, while doing everyday activities, to get a feel of what it's like to have a perfect posture.
  • put a feedback loop in place, with a strong reward/punishment system, to condition yourself
  • never allow for any exception: if you ever become conscious that you have a bad posture at any given time, then stop and correct it, on the spot.
  • use regular exercise routines to regain flexibility
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The Wandering Eye Spies...International Men of Style: Style: GQ

The Wandering Eye Spies...International Men of Style: Style: GQ | Ideal You |
A round-up of this summer's most swaggering fellas from all corners of the earth...
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Science of Style: Introducing the Highly Awaited Series – Kinowear

Science of Style: Introducing the Highly Awaited Series – Kinowear | Ideal You |

On the surface, men’s fashion seems to be full of rules, contradictions, and vague complexities.

But actually, it’s more about a personal expression than following a set of rules set out by some style expert.

The majority of style advice out there is about what you can fix on the outside.
You can read tips on how to shop for a suit, or what type of shoes you should wear to the office, but within the larger goal of achieving your ultimate sense of style, isolated bits of advice become pretty useless.

The 4 Stages Model

Stage 1: Knowing Yourself

A highly attractive style only comes from having clarity in who you are.
Learning style is like learning a language, and in stage 1 you are building the ideas to express, in the subsequent stages, to congruently and authentically communicate your identity through your image.

Stage 2: Modeling

In this stage you are beginning to practice speaking the language of style, through imitation.
As you get deeper into this stage, you’ll begin to see patterns, as well as begin to expand your “style vocabulary.”

Stage 3: Building Proficiency

Once you can imitate other complete looks with ease, you’re ready to work on your proficiency.
As you have a clear understanding of why the looks you copied in the modeling stage “worked,” you’ll begin to develop your own unique sense of style.

Stage 4: Mastery

This is the stage of style fluency.
You understand how to convey any message, down to the smallest of details.
You are also able to make statements by “breaking the rules”.

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