“This person is a great worker! He’s drunk all the time.”

Have you ever read a book and fallen in its thrall to such an extent that upon finishing it you turned around and began reading it again?

In my twenties I was so gobsmacked by Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s tale The Chronicle of a Death Foretold that I read it through to the end on a Saturday afternoon . . . and re-read it again Sunday morning.

The narrative was so compellingly told that even though you knew the death was going to happen . . . because Marquez kept circling you around the jealousies and passions and even the death itself . . .  you kept feeling up until the very last page that somehow it would be averted.

I’ve not been that taken with a book since. Until now.

In this case it’s an audiobook. Once finished I started again. 

Sometimes you come to a book because you’re already living out a part of its concept — the author has taken the idea and fleshed it out so thoroughly it’s like seeing how your life could play out.

When you come to a book like that, you’re ready for the message. Hell, you’re living it. Partially. And the author takes you down the path of what it might be like to live it fully.

That’s how I feel with Essentialism. The idea that the best lives are lived by paring away the trivial to amplify what is most significant.

This week’s excerpt comes from that book, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, by Greg McKeown. This is just one tiny nugget from a book that mines deep ore:

In a Harvard Business Review article called Sleep Deficit: The Performance Killer,  Dr. Charles A. Czeisler, the Baldino Professor of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, has explained how sleep deprivation undermines high performance. 

He likens sleep deficit to drinking too much alcohol, explaining that pulling an all-nighter  i.e., going 24 hours without sleep or having a week of sleeping just 4 or 5 hours a night actually induces an impairment equivalent to a blood alcohol level of 0.1%. 

Think about this. We would never say, “This person is a great worker! He’s drunk all the time.” 

Yet we continue to celebrate people who sacrifice sleep for work.

For you 

Evan Griffith
To enjoy an occasional e-letter from The World Is Freaky Beautifulclick here.


The change a question (or two) makes: One Thing Better with Carolyn Cohen

One Thing Better is a weekly series featuring someone I admire  in this case someone I admire immensely  in a one-question interview format.

It’s a simple premise. Each week someone answers The Question.

Here’s how I first heard about Carolyn Cohen. My lover woman wife partner Ann had recently joined a friend for a monthly women’s spiritual night out. It was a small group that met at Carolyn’s home.

After a meeting or three, Ann came home and trilled:

“You’ve got to meet Carolyn! She’s the happiest woman alive.”

A near-death experience after a debilitating illness brought Carolyn into her own as a healer. She hosts a popular Healing Circle locally. And is in demand for her work as an intuitive.

Carolyn holds master degrees in counseling and medical science. She co-hosted The Quest Metaphysics radio show, and is the author of Precious Reflections and I Commit.
Carolyn was featured with her twin sister Marilyn Segal, in the TBS documentary, “The Heart of Healing,” narrated by Jane Seymour
She and her husband Mike Cohen run The Center for Brain Training, helping others to bring their brains back to balance without medication.
She’s been busy . . . though you’d never know it when you speak with her. She’s always gushingly alive for you, no matter what’s going on in her own life.

Over the years she has become a dear friend. Carolyn and Mike meet with Ann and I every six weeks to amplify our visions for our lives, while setting a single overriding goal for the next six weeks.

You can find out more about Carolyn here.

The Question:

What one thing have you been doing recently that’s making your life better?

Carolyn Cohen:

I recently started asking upon rising this question …God where can I make a difference in my life today? 

I end my day with this question … And where did I make a difference in my life today? 

This statement alone has allowed me to be truly present during the day. I am more mindful of my conversations, my actions … which allows me to hear my inner voice say … 

 … Your words just touched that person’s heart … 

… Your words allow that person to feel safe … 

… Your words allow this person to feel understood and not alone … 

Hearing the small voice within brings such inner peace and puts a smile back into my own heart….;o) — 

How much better can it get~

. . . . . . . . . . . . 

For you 

Evan Griffith
Click here for (occasional) notes at the intersection of creativity and spirit. Once a month, maybe.

Would you like to answer the One Thing Better question? Please do! And email your response to me at this address:

TheWorldIsFreakyBeautiful (at) gmail (dot) com

On digital and relationships

Have you noticed this as well? That you read newspapers differently online than you do in print?

When I’m on the road I’ll occasionally read both the print and online versions of several newspapers, from USA Today (for lighting speed froth reading) to The New York Times (for delicious contextual brain food). 

I’ve discovered I read print and online differently.

I steep myself in the paper version. I skim the online rendition — drilling into far fewer articles.

Each medium elicits its own behavior.

Which is why a phone call is far richer than a text message.

I’m not looking for a relationship with my newspaper. I don’t like the daily news. Context is often missing while lurid details aimed straight for my emotional response are overindulged. 

I only tend to read newspapers on the road — but I do want relationships that matter.

Digital is perfect for the quick info bit — I’ll be there at 7 — Skunk Takes Out 3 Drainage Inspectors — but disastrous if a rich nuanced relationship is what I desire.

(Which means I’m going to have to meet more people over ice cream breakfast . . . )

For you 

Evan Griffith
Click here for (occasional) notes at the intersection of creativity and spirit. Once a month, maybe.