October 9, 2012 at 10:30am • 1 hour 51 minutes
TOPIC: Finding Grit.
This week, Dan and Merlin return to a popular topic from last week: grit.
Why is it we stick with some things but totally abandon so many others? Why'd Merlin give up on learning "Little Brown Jug" on the trombone, then double-down on nailing "Pinball Wizard" on guitar? How come Dan got so good at programming, but can't kick a damned football to save his life? Is there a framework for understanding why we remember hit points, don't travel, can't draw, and forget why every good boy deserves fudge?
Along the way, Merlin accidentally—grudgingly—reveals that he actually knows things about sportsball, Dan breaks down the exhilarating rewards of immediate feedback, and both hosts wonder how Mariano Rivera can keep his cool after giving up a two-run homer.
Also, there's a pseudo-interesting rathole on why Merlin may or may not start spending more time with App.net.
October 2, 2012 at 3:30pm • 1 hour 31 minutes
TOPIC: Grit, Confidence, and Intuition.
This week, Dan and Merlin begin a conversation on what researchers and educators are learning about why students of all ages do or don't succeed. Yes, it's about intelligence and other cognitive skills, but it's also about tenacity, courage, self-restraint, and resolve.
It's really about grit.
See our show notes for lots of links to the stuff that inspired our topic, but definitely tune in for Merlin's slight addendum to the formula: mixing in our growing confidence in our own intuition.
September 25, 2012 at 2:15pm • 1 hour 42 minutes
TOPIC: Anxious about the Change
This week Merlin updates Dan about his schedule changes. They're going to come, but it's probably the anxiety, not the change, that is the problem. Take heart, it may be the change that you need.
While you're at it, take the opportunity to plan your buffers and ramp up times. Your schedule will work better, your vacation may be less stressful, your pie will stay alive.
Bonus: Dan and Merlin's comic book recommendations for new readers.
September 18, 2012 at 1:30pm • 1 hour 22 minutes
TOPIC: One Operational Paper Towel; One Safety Paper Towel.
This week, Dan and Merlin discuss how to use a public restroom.
There's some other stuff, too. But, yeah. Mostly Dan and Merlin discuss how to use a public restroom.
September 11, 2012 at 2:30pm • 1 hour 43 minutes
TOPIC: Superpowers, Madness, and the Pursuit of Interesting Problems
Dan and Merlin talk about the superpowers you have and can't control as well as the demons and drivers that our heroes have and can't control. How sometimes we find ourselves craving the screaming in someone else's head. Because, we surely do love and revere our Beautiful Losers and Genius Lunatics.
Entered into evidence: Hunter S. Thompson, The Incredible Hulk, Sylvia Plath, Brian Wilson, Nightcrawler, Van Gogh, Syd Barrett, Tom Waits, Robert Lowell, Howard Hughes, and Corporate Stooges (n.b.: Dan said that; not Merlin).
The upshot? Try not to get too obsessed with someone else's ether in the convertible or, for that matter, the cake in your own conference room.
Get excited about constantly releasing that "better version of yourself"—and make the world a happy beneficiary of your own particular madness.
September 4, 2012 at 1:00pm • 1 hour 32 minutes
TOPIC: Obsessions, Compulsions, Obsessions, and Compulsions. Also, Obsessions—and Compulsions.
This week, Dan and Merlin lick the doorknob five times, tap their heads with their shoes, and ponder the problem of obsessions and compulsions.
August 27, 2012 at 4:45pm • 1 hour 26 minutes
TOPIC: Capture, Contracts, and Mapping the Territory.
This week, Dan and Merlin talk about keeping an honest calendar and ensuring you regularly review your "contracts" with yourself.
Chock-a-block with practical COM-ponents for making sure your map is up to date with the territory.
¿Spanish question marks? ¡Si!
Zibba-zabba! Fax my gal!
August 20, 2012 at 4:30pm • 1 hour 29 minutes
TOPIC: Honesty and Sociopathy Go to Work
Merlin and Dan talk about the cultural divide between you and your work. Coping with work is a little like being a sociopath so you better make sure you're taking away the right lessons and being honest about the right things. Anything else is a little dishonest.
You don't need to quit your job, but you made want to at least resign your certainty.
August 13, 2012 at 3:45pm • 1 hour 29 minutes
TOPIC: Kicking and Screaming
Merlin has been dragged kicking and screaming into at least two things this week. Sometimes, that works out, and sometimes it doesn't. But, how many of those things do we need? How many can you sign up for? How often do you see Beast coming down the hall?
There aren't that many things you have to do, but how can you see it coming? Well, you know where your cumin is and you haven't checked your MySpace this week. How's that for complicated?
August 6, 2012 at 3:00pm • 1 hour 24 minutes
TOPIC: Adapting to the Danger Room of Life
Dan and Merlin talk about how the protagonist of your story handles change in personal and work environments.
How do you respond in the face of change you haven't anticipated or isn't conducive to who you want to be? What is the worst that could happen? Who can help you except you?