Welcome to the second edition of the Effective Living newsletter. I’m Tom North.
I hope you’ve all had a good week.
What I’m writing
This week I posted two new articles to the site. They’re both about the same topic: decision fatigue. It isn’t a new topic to many people, but I think it’s still overlooked as a cause of why we aren’t more productive. If we could overcome decision fatigue, we’d have much more energy, more free time, and less stress.
The two articles take quite a different approach. The first is more theoretical, and presents a comprehensive framework for beating decision fatigue. The second is a list of 50 tactical ways to combat it. My hope is that you would read the first before the second, but that’s up to you!
Read Article 1 > A five-step framework for beating decision fatigue
Read Article 2 > Fifty specific ways to fight decision fatigue
What I’m reading
I’ve done very little book reading this week. But over the last few days I’ve broken my news fast to consume all of the coverage of the fall of Afghanistan to the Taleban.
Having lived and worked in Kabul for more than two years, it’s upsetting to know that many of the people I worked with are in grave danger. And that women, girls and the LGBTQI+ community are all going to have their lives transformed for the worse.
Of course we all want to believe that the Taleban have changed. We hope against hope that there won’t be reprisals against those who have worked with the international community. And we hope that they won’t crush the dreams of girls, minorities and anyone else who doesn’t fit into their worldview. But it’s hope rather than expectation.
What I’m listening to
With the Premier League season starting again, I’ve been listening to some football-related podcasts. But more on the usual theme, I’ve been listening to my first few episodes of The Partially Examined Life on Derek Parfit on Personal Identity. Whilst they did a reasonable job of describing what Parfit says, it was disappointing they didn’t go further into the ethics of personal identity, which is a hugely important topic.
However, I did enjoy the episode of 60 Songs That Explain The 90s on Pulp’s Common People. As a Brit, I thought it did a pretty good job of explaining the class dynamics to an American audience.
What I’m doing
Unless you count going on the world’s longest tunnel slide, I haven’t done anything particularly cultural this week. I’ve been trying to catch up on the social life I missed in the first half of the year, and seeing friends that I won’t see once I start travelling in September. Between that and the coverage of Afghanistan, it’s made me pretty worn out, so that’s all for this week!
All the best for the week ahead,
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