Praise or criticism

Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee. Proverbs 9:8 At a networking function a few years ago, the developer of a product related an incident where he was offered feedback. The person giving the feedback asked the developer if he wanted praise or the truth. The implication was both daunting and clear: do you want me to tell you how great the product is, or do you want me to be honest? The developer of the product responded that he wanted the truth. Then, he said, he braced himself for the …
Continue reading…

Confusing facts and opinions

It is not things that disturb us, but our interpretation of their significance. Epictetus 55 – 135 A.D. Often, changes happen in our lives. When these events occur, too many of us automatically assume that a specific outcome is bound to follow. In essence, we give our opinions the weight of fact, thereby influencing the subsequent events. Consider an example. A person loses his job. As a result, he assumes that he faces financial ruin. Financial calamity isn’t yet a fact; it’s an opinion. It is one interpretation of the consequences of a factual event. But when we give our …
Continue reading…

Want to improve your luck?

I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it. Thomas Jefferson 1746 – 1826 I’ve always believed that luck was totally random, not something you could control. But it seems I was wrong. Professor Richard Wiseman of the University of Hertfordshire has devoted a lot of time and effort to studying luck and sheds some light on how to improve your luck. As part of his studies, he placed ads in newspapers in the major cities of England asking people who considered themselves consistently lucky or unlucky to contact him. …
Continue reading…