Self Improvement

how to become a polymath

I recently read a post which stated that the days of the polymath are numbered. A polymath (Greek: πολυμαθής, polymathēs) is a person of wide knowledge or learning, one whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas.

But this definition applies to everyone today, right?

Politics, world affairs, human rights, economics, stock markets, business, productivity, motivation, solving crime – everyone knows about everything. Is the polymath really dying?

source: Times Union

Do you know the lady in the above photo? (credit)

No? Well, you should.

She is Bonnie St. Johns.

Bonnie was sexually abused between ages two and seven. At age five, doctors amputated her leg. She got an artificial leg and had to learn to walk again. Her mother was a single working woman, and the family was stuck in poverty. Bonnie said they always had ‘month at the end of money’.

simplicity vs complexity

We live in interesting times.

Complex is simple, and simple is dauntingly complex. We applaud intricacy, and scoff at simplicity. The latter has no place in this modern, technological sound world.

Yet, achievers – the giants among men – worship simplicity with undying fanaticism. Dive deeper into the lives of maestros, and you’ll find they produce work at astonishing levels by following simple techniques.

how to help someone with depression or other mental health issues

#Letstalkaboutit

This hashtag starts trending each time we hear someone succumbed to depression or mental health disorders. Up go videos, social media updates, newspaper articles, blog posts, and more.

But like other horrific events, these tragedies make the headlines for a few days before they lie forgotten.

You hate reading about it, don’t you? Why did they give their lives up? Life, which is precious and rare! It may not be a bed of roses. Hell, it may have a hundred thorns for every rose. Yet, it’s beautiful. And they gave it up.

how successful people are different from the rest

‘Success’ is probably the most lusted-after term today. Everything else, we believe, follows it. Wealth, love, sex, fame and happiness.

The media hypes success. But it doesn’t show what occurred behind the scenes. Rarely, if ever, do we hear about the struggles, trials and tribulations of achievers. We think they had it easy, and we can too.

The truth couldn’t be farther.

how to read more books in less time

“Man’s mind, once stretched by an idea, never regains its original shape.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes

Admit it.

You enjoy reading books. You want to read more often. But you’re always stretched for time with more important (read urgent) tasks. As a result, the time you spend reading is about ten percent of what you want to.

On the other hand, wildly successful people incorporate reading as a mandatory part of their daily routine. Warren Buffett reads 500 pages a day. Bill Gates reads one book each week. Oprah discusses her favorite books with readers each month in the popular “Oprah’s Book Club 2.0”. Stephen King reads for a whopping five hours a day. In fact, he’s been spotted reading at Red Sox games too. When Elon Musk was asked how he learned to build rockets he answered, “I read books.”

how habits are formed

When the announcer said his name, he stepped on the starting block and then stepped down, like he did before every swimming race. He swung his arms three times, like he had done before every race since he was twelve. The, he stepped on the block and took his stance. When the gun went off, he dived.

Instantly, he knew something was wrong. Moisture seeped inside his swimming googles. He hoped things wouldn’t turn bad. But by the third and final lap, he couldn’t see anything. Water had filled his goggles.

It was the 2008 Olympics held in Beijing. Most swimmers would panic if they lost sight during an Olympics race.

how to achieve goals successfully

Another week has passed. Take a minute to reflect on your goals. You want to earn more money. Or learn a new skill which will skyrocket your career. Or pursue an unrelated hobby. But you accomplished nothing worth mention last week. You didn’t take any significant steps to achieve your goals. You just couldn’t find the time or motivation.

Someday, you’ll find time. Someday, everything will fall in place. Someday, you’ll smile, satisfied with your lifestyle. Until then, you’ll wait. You’ll do whatever comes your way – at work, at home, and in life.

But deep down, you know the truth. You’ve played the waiting game for far too long, and it isn’t working. This frustrating pattern has continued for longer than you remember. It’s as predictable as Monday Blues. You’ve come to a silent, informal agreement with it. This frustration is now part of your everyday life.

not-having-an-opinion

It looks like you’ve matured,” he said.

I hope so,” I smiled.

He was one of the most knowledgeable people back then. He knew about everything happening around us. And since my friends and I knew nothing, we would listen to him wide-eyed. When he spoke, we were like kids who surround their grandmother when she tells them stories.

life-skills-list

Admit it. You’re frustrated.

Each day, a lot happens around you. It’s enough to drive you crazy. You do your best to keep up with it all. And you do a commendable job.

But it doesn’t make you happy. Why?

Why do you experience the tug of dissatisfaction? Why does it feel like you were meant to do more? Where is the peace and happiness your parents promised you would get when you grew up?