The 1973 "An American Family" was the first reality show aired on PBS. *It offered an intimate examination of a single family alongside a powerful critique of American society.
The show was aired from January to March, but it was too realistic for a TV audience accustomed to sitcom perfection.
Today's viewers mostly understand the exaggerated and contrived aspects of reality TV, flooded with manipulative and staged dramas designed to delight or shock audiences. They feature celebrities and offer an escape from reality.
But "An American Family" was different. The producer wanted to force audiences to engage with issues that affected the American condition. He knew an accurate portrayal of an American family would shock audiences.
The producer, Graig Gilbert of "An American Family", explained that the project originated in desperation. Short on work, drinking heavily and trapped in a troubled marriage, he used the idea of using the medium of a "normal" family to explain societal issues Americans faced in the early 1970s.
Viewers watched as Pat and Bill divorces and their son Lance refused to hide his homosexuality. The realisation that a "normal" family had these issues shocked critics and viewers. It survived only 12 episodes and then disappeared, only to be rediscovered by scholars later.
While the program attracted millions of viewers, the criticism from critics and condemnation from the Lauds served to discredit producer Gilbert's work.
We normally have a tense, fidgety attitude towards whatever we are doing. We grasp and lean towards our tasks and exert ourselves unnecessarily, and even things that shouldn’t give us undue stress, end up being stressful.
Our work, whether it’s a report we are making, cooking or on a Zoom video call, can be done with ease, in a relaxed restful manner.
The key is to not do any multitasking and give your full attention and devotion to one task. You'll finish the day feeling more refreshed than before.
To go through the day with ease:
Bruce Lee, the legendary martial artist whose brief existence on planet earth spawned a cult following due to a hidden aspect of his personality: A Zen Master in disguise. His insights on the nature of life made him stand out as a unique philosopher and an integrated individual.
Bruce Lee’s private letters, notes, poems and essays provide an inside view of his mind, and are available in the book Bruce Lee: Artist For Life. He wrote about self-awareness, self-esteem, and provides original insights on the oft-heard term: Resilience.
Bruce Lee explains that we need to be like water and shape-shift to be able to grow in an obstacle-filled world.
We also lack self-awareness and have to rely on others to tell us who we are. Our impulse towards conformity and rigidness is our greatest mistake.
According to Bruce Lee, our misguided grasping at our self-worth is a confusion due to us mistaking pride for self-esteem. Pride is feeling worthy for an external object, position, or accomplishment, but self-esteem is derived from our own achievements.
Pride forms due to self-rejection, and we can acquire self-worth by examining ourselves and attaining self-awareness.
Hurricanes used to be tagged with random numbers, sometimes latitude and longitude numbers, and other times they were named after the place where they came ashore.
Now, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) coordinates with the National Hurricane Center and give every tropical cyclone (hurricanes and typhoons) short, simple names.
Names are easier to remember than numbers and technical terms. It is easier for the media to report on, and for people to pay attention to, than if a hurricane was named, for example, Hurrican Two.
The cue triggers a craving, which motivates a response, which provides a reward, which satisfies the craving and, ultimately, becomes associated with the cue.
Together, these four steps form a neurological feedback loop—cue, craving, response, reward; cue, craving, response, reward—that ultimately allows you to create automatic habits.
R.U.R. was first performed in Prague in January 1921 and was such a success that an English-language adaptation was on Broadway in 1922.
By 1923, the play had been translated into thirty languages. By the end of that decade, the Oxford English Dictionary defined "robot" as "a machine capable of carrying out a complex series of actions automatically."
Karel Čapek first thought of calling his artificial people "labors," but was not satisfied and turned to his brother Josef for advice. Josef suggested the Czech word "robota," which referred to a system of forced serf labour.
When Čapek wrote R.U.R., he was known as one of the leading anti-fascist commentators of the 1930s. His writing, ideas, style, and attitude brought him to the attention of the Nazis, who named him "public enemy number two" in Czechoslovakia.
While monotonous work like making a report is tolerable with your favorite music playing in the background, any kind of creative work can be significantly impaired if it is accompanied by music.
Studies show that certain kinds of music may be ‘paired’ with your kind of work, like classical music which are stimulating and ‘positive’ or ‘happy’ can help us perform certain tasks which require ‘divergent’ or out-of-the-box thinking.
After a problem has been examined and analysed, creative thinkers often hit a roadblock, which is actually an ‘incubation period’ where the brain works in the background to process information at an unconscious level.
This results in an ‘aha’ or a ‘Eureka!’ moment when the solution or idea pops inside the head later when we are not consciously thinking about it.
Certain unthought of combinations, associations, innovations and links between remote objects or ideas can be stimulated by specific kinds of music, provided it helps us focus ‘away’ from the problem rather than focussing more on it.
Most music that one listens to while doing creative work is just a distraction, and rather than helping us, it creates more cognitive load on our brain, which has to block out the sound.
Identify The Problems and address them like a game
Designing the Basic Framework
Assign points every time you accomplish a goal.
Maintain a progress system to help you see your progress to reaching your goals and unlocking rewards.
For 10 minutes, take a notepad and jot down/review your day. Be consistent, noting your achievements, shortcomings, mistakes, and learning.
Meditation, often talked about but rarely practiced, is the key to focus and something that will help us in our endeavors no matter who we are.
Like Meditation, Yoga is the one all solution to all the problems of our body. It is a holistic, and safe way to take care of your body, mind, and soul.
Daily morning journaling helps us to focus our thoughts and stay in the present moment.
Write whatever is in your mind, customizing it as per your liking.
Take 10 to 30 minutes of your time every week, and just see how you feel about the last 7 days, what all happened in the week.
Ask yourself questions about your main goal and how you are moving towards it.
The Six-Spokes Theory divides our life into a wheel with six spokes, where all of them have to be tight and function smoothly. The aim is to lead a balanced and optimal life, and is not tied to the traditional idea of success.
The Spokes are as follows:
The balance of life is temporarily fine if one of the spoke is neglected, but if there is a constant neglecting of a spoke of the wheel of life, one will see the consequences of the same.
Example: Not exercising for a week is a temporary neglection of the ‘body’ spoke, but not exercising at all will lead to illnesses and lack of energy.