Reese R. (@reeser291) - Profile Photo

Reese R.

@reeser291

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I get my inspiration from the fictional world. I'm a social geek.

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What celebrated writers can teach us

George Orwell thought a good sentence means trimming as many words as possible, Virginia Woolf found power in verbs, and Baldwin desired 'a sentence as clean as a bone.'

We can learn from celebrated writers that a good sentence is plain, undecorated and visible. It gets its power from the tension between the ease of its phrasing and the surprise of its thought. Each added word reduces alternatives and narrows the reader's expectations. But up to the last word, the writer can throw a curveball.

Reese R. (@reeser291) - Profile Photo

@reeser291

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Communication

The psychology of complaining

Complaining means expressing dissatisfaction with a negative situation: bad weather, poor economic performance, interfering in-laws.

There are different types of complainers:

  • Chronic complainers: Those who never seem to be satisfied.
  • Venters: They are focused on expressing their own emotional dissatisfaction. By showing anger or frustration, they are seeking attention so that they feel validated.

One major downside to complaining is that it dampens everyone's mood.

Learning a new language

Learning a language is often presented as a task with a one-size-fits-all solution. But learning a new language is working out the goals and strategies specific to you.

Every language is different and presents its own challenges. When you learn a new language, forget about fluency. Set achievable, short-term and measurable goals that will give you a sense of achievement.

Drowned In Information

Our coworkers are often not able to read or understand our messages due to the sheer barrage of information already trying to get their attention. There are text messages, emails, document updates and other notifications vying for eyeballs and mindshare.

To be successful in conveying our message, we need to design it in such a way that can grab people’s attention. Marketers are experts in designing words that, based on research and data, make people stop and take action. Their tricks can be applied to our memos, emails, reports and messages so that your teammates actually end up reading them.

Truth To Power For Writers
  • Whatever your medium of publication, the first five seconds make or break the interest of the reader.
  • Good ideas are easy to write, and if the idea isn’t a good one, there is a likelihood of a writer’s block.
  • Two decades ago, reading a complete book was easier as there were fewer distractions. Smartphones have made people infinitely distracted due to the constant ‘dopamine hits’ it offers. One has to keep the dwindling attention span of people in mind while writing.
  • Brevity is King.
  • One has to be ruthless in the destruction of bad writings.

Great long-term interpersonal relationships (in terms of quality) are based on shared experience but also the ability to share how we are feeling at that time.

And if we are always expected to say positive stuff, we won't be able to reach that level of intimacy that we need in a really good relationship.

How to seize attention

There are four major ways to grab anyone's attention, no matter what you're telling them.

Connect what you're writing to any of these topics, and you will always have people's attention.

  • Self-preservation: The need to satisfy personal wants.
  • Money: The need to achieve power and means to more choice.
  • Romance: The need to feel love and be loved.
  • Recognition: The need to be respected and the need to belong to a group.

It involves working to get the best deal possible for yourself while also working to ensure that your counterpart is satisfied.

The “win-win” negotiators seem to have the most success. 

It doesn’t mean you to split resources right down the middle with a sole focus on being “fair", automatically making a concession just because the other party made one or that you should try to avoid conflict and tension at all cost.

Difficult to convince

It can feel impossible to persuade someone with strong views. This is in part because we look for information to confirm what we already know and avoid or dismiss facts that are opposed to our core beliefs.

However, it is not impossible to sway someone. 

Honesty As A Blind Spot

Since man started observing human behaviour, our focus has been on the studies done on deception, morality, and lying. In the last fifty years, almost no study or research has been carried out on honesty in the philosophical domain.

This is glaring neglect as honesty tops the list of the most important virtues, alongside courage, patience, humility and kindness.

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