This website is the resultant of many internal thoughts and a leading one was motivated by one book.
It’s interesting how a small, innocent-looking book could contain such a powerful message but I have to admit that I’m mesmerised by how much its core message stroke a cord in me. In his book “Show Your Work”, Austin Kleon convincingly explains another way of sharing our world. Beyond successes, people are also deeply interested in process and how other human beings are evolving in their own life and work.
This convinced me to move ahead with building this website.
A Simple, Yet Powerful 10-point List
Austin is in fact very open about his idea and has kindly put on a website (https://austinkleon.com/show-your-work/) the main 10 points which his book expands on:
- You don’t have to be a genius.
- Think process, not product.
- Share something small every day.
- Open up your cabinet of curiosities.
- Tell good stories.
- Teach what you know.
- Don’t turn into human spam.
- Learn to take a punch.
- Sell out.
- Stick around.
Each of these points instantly rang home, especially the first one. Being someone in academia somewhat put expectations on me about knowing everything: I should know the solution to this equation, I should know how to create a course from scratch, I should know how to supervise other junior researchers, I should know how to create an inspiring and successful research proposal, I should know how to navigate and participate in this complex and tentacular organisation which is the university, I should know how to organise my time and prioritize my tasks, I should… I should… I should…
What Austin demonstrates in his book is that there is a way beyond the classic facade of the expert, the one where we share our learning journey with its ups and downs and show how human we are. That’s what connects us to others, rather than the often- scary, authoritative figure of the expert with all the answers and where anyone with any less expertise is supposedly supposed to listen quietly.
This is only his first point. I leave it to you to discover and internalise the nine others 😉
A Journey Together: the Internet and Me
So here we go. The website is up and I’ve set myself the challenge of writing a new blogpost everyday on any topics, mostly my own thought process; with its ups, downs, moments of genius and utter stupidity. I’m convinced this is going to be quite an interesting and rich journey; I’ve already discovered a few things, which I’m sure I’ll share in a future post.
In the meantime, I’m also happy to take comments, feedbacks, or even suggestions for future posts. Can’t promise anything but it could be inspiring to take suggestions from the audience. Thank you for reading this far!
Credits Were It Is Due
I actually discovered this book through another influencer, Ali Abdaal (https://aliabdaal.com/), who went on a quest to discover the secrets of productivity. His YouTube channel is worth a visit, at least for his contagious energy and passion for learning.
On the topic of productivity, other worthy influencers to check out are Dr Amina Yonis (https://www.youtube.com/c/DrAminaYonis/videos) and Jade Bowler (https://jade-bowler.squarespace.com/). Each has their own specialty and offers insightful tips on how to tackle (and enjoy) this crazy ride which is life.