The Talent Code

Follow up – January 2019 – As I am.

Follow up – January 2019 – As I am.

February 3, 2019
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I intend to go through my intentions for the year at the end of each month. This gives me a monthly reminder of my intentions as well as ample space for reflection and possible adjustment.

2019. The year when I will…
* have my bodily wellbeing in focus by:

  • continuing with my daily Seven accompanied by burpees: ✅
  • Headspace daily: ✅
  • run a minimum of  75 runs: 3 runs during January.
  • take cold (outdoors) baths as often as I can – and add to this by taking cold showers: 2 cold baths in January.
  • dance Lindy hop as often as I can (taking a class during the spring, and then there’s the social dancing as well!): no lindy hop in January, but come February my dance class starts!
  • continuing to ride my bike and walk as much as possible: walked 70+ kilometers and biked almost 370 ditto.

* have my mental and spiritual wellbeing in focus by:

  • reading at least 75 books, of which 12 in Swedish and 12 in English already have been chosen. These 12 + 12 I will be blogging about: Read 6/75 books. Blogged about The Talent Code which makes for book 1 of 12 in English, and the Swedish counterpart enligt Maria Magdalena
  • learn at least five songs by heart including lyrics on the guitar, which will be made possible by my aim at ten minutes of guitar playing on a daily basis: Played at least 10 minutes a day during January, and am working on learning those five songs by heart.
  • I will let the wonderful book The book of Awakening by Mark Nepo be my daily companion: ✅
  • hold digital 24-hour sabbats at least twice a month:
  • Just one digital sabbat on 26-27 January. Reminding me that what works for me is if I when I do these reflections set preliminary dates for the two upcoming sabbats, so in Febuary I aim for 12-13 samt 22-23.

* have creation in focus by:

  • booking at least four two-day writing retreats during the year: pondering a few ideas about writing retreats, including the possibility of running a digital retreat?
  • keeping up with daily Facebook Lives for as long as there’s energy in doing it: ✅
  • blog daily: ✅
  • start to pod: Concretizing my intention. In February I will release the pod episodes I recorded this summer…
  • additional intention as of 2FEB2019: release (at least) 4 e-books in 2019

* have financial husbandry in focus by:

  • sowing, sowing and sowing a little bit more; on a weekly basis intentionally work on my various income streams: ✅
  • keep tabs on my set invoicing goal on a monthly basis: ✅
  • keep an accounts book on private income and expenses: ✅

And finally – on all levels – experiment and play, experience pleasure and exploring and challenging myself, all the while being gentle to myself: teacher at Newton vocational college in mapping and documenting processes, recording a pod with Caspian for Yet another conversation (Ännu Ett Samtal), my eldest flew to Sydney, Australien for 10-12 months or so, choir practice has started again, Ladies night at Inga-Lill, we’ve had both snow and rain and it’s been absolutely wonderful, and the cold baths at that, those I truly enjoy. Who would have ever thought that I would so love taking a dip in a freezing cold ocean? How fascinating!

2019. Here I come. As I am. Gown off! 

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The Talent Code (book 1 of 12)

January 27, 2019
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in Tip
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The Talent Code. Written by Daniel Coyle. Subtitled Greatness isn’t born, it’s grown. The basis of this entire book is this: Skill is a cellular insulation that wraps neural circuits and that grows in response to certain signals. This is, in other words, a book about one thing: myelin. The fatty layer that wraps around neurons insulating the neural thread, so the signal can travel more rapidly along it.

It’s also a book about three things, which is how the central nervous system generates more myelin:
Deep practice
Ignition
Master coaching

Deep practice“It’s all about finding the sweet spot. There’s an optimal gap between what you know and what you’re trying to do. When you find that sweet spot, learning takes off.”

Ignition is about finding that thing you love. Stoking the fire, wanting to put more fuel on it, daily. And that requires character: “Usually, we think of character as deep and unchanging, an innate quality that flows outward, showing itself through behavior. KIPP shows that character might be more like a skill – ignited by certain signals, and honed through deep practice.” 

Might be more like a skill? No. No doubt in my mind. Character is as flexible and formative as any other skill. Learning to read and write, to dance and sing, to ride the bike and drive a car. Skills that we can acquire. Learning to be kind and generous, helpful and loving, funny and intense. Or for that matter unkind and harsh, mean and petty, jealous and hateful. All skills we can learn, even though these latter are usually talked about as character traits rather than skills. But we can learn them. It’s not a matter of being born with or without. Practice makes perfect (given that the practice is deep of course!).

Master coaching is being this kind of teacher: to get [the student] inside the deep-practice zone, to maximize the firings that grow the right myelin for the task, and ultimately to move closer toward the day that every coach desires, when the students become their own teachers. 

In the words of Robert Lansdorp, professional tennis coach: “If it’s a choice between me telling them to do it, or them figuring it out, I’ll take the second option every time. You’ve got to make the kid an independent thinker, a problem-solver. I don’t need to see them every day, for chrissake. You can’t keep breast-feeding them all the time. The point is, they’ve got to figure things out for themselves.”

Another way to put it is in the words of Thomas Carruthers: “A teacher is one who makes himself progressively unnecessary.” 

I’ve experienced this several times in my professional life, and it is the most rewarding experience I can think of. When I am no longer needed, my work is done, and I can move on. It’s simply the best ever!

The Talent Code is a fast and easy read, shining the light on learning in the most helpful way. 10 minutes of guitar playing a day, is on my list of intentions for 2019. And yup, I will be tweaking it towards more of a deep practice, that’s for sure!


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2019, to read and blog about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, one every other week, books that I already own.

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