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#095 The Well Still Has Water
Common Discourse is a project designed to help others (and ourselves) think through creativity, focus, and intentional work—from Alex Tan & Alice Otieno.
Every Tuesday we share words from a journal, a few ideas, a quote from somebody else, and links worth sharing. On Fridays we invite a guest to share images from their camera roll and a sound that resonates with them. Words from the Journal come once a month.
Here’s a Tuesday care package. Things to think on, chew on, and click on.
A few ideas
Candles have been used to illuminate spaces for the last 5,000 years.
First, they were made using animal fat. When people got tired of the odor it released, they improved them by utilizing beeswax. Not only was it odorless, but it let off stronger light.
By the 19th century, they realized that braided wicks also enhanced the performance of a candle, allowing them to burn nearly twice as long as before.
And today, you can get candles in whatever color, shape, size, and scent. Yankee Candle Co made $1.75B from this discovery 10 years ago.
Candles have come a long way, but it’s important to remember that the electric light did not come from the continuous improvement of candles.
Likewise, jet engines weren’t born from the experimenting with new propellers, horses didn’t eventually give birth to an automobile, and telephones had little to do with the postal service.
Improvements will hit their ceilings while innovation shatters them.
II. BEFORE APPLYING
Maybe useful advice to folks out there while I’ve been spending time with applications for open roles at MW.S this week:
You may be capable of a lot of things, but most employers only need to be convinced that you can do one thing better than everyone else. Focus on your strengths & say it simply.
III. TIME TO DO IT RIGHT
As a kid, I was always told “If you do it right the first time, you wouldn’t have to do it all over again.”
In hindsight, the opportunity to do it all over again was a luxury. Today, the thought process feels more like this:
If you don’t have time to do it right the first time, then how will you ever have time to do it over?
A quote from somebody else
“Your starting position has to be somewhat optimistic or you’ll talk yourself out of getting started. Believing in what you are about to do does not guarantee success, but a lack of belief can prevent it.”
— James Clear
Links worth sharing
🌍 Ancient Earth Globe is a historic visualization of the planet by Ian Webster. See what home looked like up to 750 million years ago.
🪑 Find the perfect work seat with Vitra’s Office Chair Finder
📘 The Book of HOV is a tribute exhibition at the Brooklyn Public Library, Central Branch, recognizing Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter’s extraordinary journey from Brooklyn’s Marcy Projects to global figure.
🗽 Subdivision (American Drift) is a piece of digital art and interactive narrative. Keep clicking.
Thanks for consuming!
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