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Forge
A publication from Medium on personal development.

Growth

In Forge. More on Medium.

New language for a new time

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For many of us, the last year was a major turning point. The Great Pause, and the painful fifteen months that followed, illuminated where life is letting us down, where the stories we tell ourselves are proving insufficient, and even where our dearest relationships are failing. …


20 statements to help you see things differently

Photo: Ravi Roshan on Unsplash

Unless you’ve been off the planet for the past five years, you’re probably aware of the importance of adopting a “growth mindset” — or at least you’ve heard the term. Researcher Carol Dweck’s influential TED Talk and her book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success emphasize the importance of the growth mindset. But simply adopting this way of seeing the world is easier said than done. Integral to a growth mindset is an acceptance of neuroplasticity — the brain’s ability to make new connections and reorganize synaptic connections.

A growth mindset is about adopting an outlook that says “I can…


What watching my kid play baseball taught me about life

Filtered image of a young kid hitting a baseball with a bat.
Filtered image of a young kid hitting a baseball with a bat.
Photo illustration; Image source: Shoji Fujita/Getty Images

“Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.”

— Babe Ruth, Babe Ruth’s Own Book of Baseball

Watching your child play baseball can be a highly stressful experience, especially when they get up to bat. Your pulse soars and hands tense as you wonder whether they’ll triumph or return to the dugout in defeat.

Last season, my parental nerves grew increasingly agitated when my son adopted the strategy of not swinging in hopes of earning a walk. While it worked often, his coach pushed him to be more aggressive so he could gain the confidence…


Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Contributor/Getty Images

Most of us enter January on the life equivalent of a Red Bull high: amped, but in an intense, jittery way that inevitably leads to crash.

In almost everything else, some kind of slow, measured warm-up is considered good form — you rehearse before a speech, train before a marathon, tinker with an email before hitting send. You don’t start a year cold if you want to do it right. Which is why Mollie Chen, the founder of Birchbox, recently suggested a small calendar tweak in her newsletter: Think of January as the staging area for the year, a time…


Ryan Holiday’s recommendations for a better understanding of the year ahead

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I will say this about 2020: It provided plenty of inspiration to read more. Every month, it seemed, there was a new or deepening crisis in a subject that became vital to learn more about: leadership, pandemics, civil rights, elections. It was one of those years that sent you to, well, I would say “the bookstore,” but you know.

Actually doing the reading, of course, was a different story. I read a lot in 2020. But I know a lot of people who couldn’t, who found their focus too shot and their mental energy too drained to actually make it…


Ask yourself the ‘Miracle Questions’

Photo: Klaus Vedfelt/Getty Images

Often, when we’re feeling stuck, it’s because we can’t see beyond what’s in front of us. Our brains fall into the same old ways of thinking, which can continue indefinitely — unless we find new ways to challenge them and interrupt the pattern.

Through studying solution-based therapy, which helps people solve problems by focusing on the present rather than looking to their past, I learned about the power of the “Miracle Questions,” a set of questions that can help you uncover your greatest values and desires, and find creative ways to live in alignment with them. …


Success isn’t linear

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Every year around this time, the same piece of motivation makes the rounds: If you want to do something new and you practice it regularly, you’ll get a little bit better each time. You may have heard of it as the “1% rule” — the idea that continuously improving by just 1% makes a dramatic difference over time.

It sounds great. For anything you’re attempting, the promise of steady, incremental improvement can be a powerful incentive. But it’s also often unrealistic, especially if you are already skilled to begin with. For example, try telling someone who currently deadlifts 500 pounds…


Photo: Eugene Mymrin/Getty Images

I learned at my high school job handing out towels at the YMCA—where the “New Year, new me” crowds noticeably thin out around the third week of January — that resolution-keeping is a fickle enterprise. For most of us, the flipping of a calendar does not create a new person. At best, we get a slightly wiser version of the same one.

However! One unsung benefit of a full year’s added wisdom is learning how to set better goals and make better promises to yourself than you did the last time around. You can do that by auditing your priorities.


Life-changing words for every situation

Woman writing on a bright orange wall.
Woman writing on a bright orange wall.
Photo: Gabriel Mitchell/EyeEm/Getty Images

We needed all the wisdom we could get to make it through this year. Luckily, we got a ton of it from the writers at Forge, who shared words that inspired us, comforted us, and made our lives better. Though we all might have some version of “coronabrain,” these nuggets of advice have stuck. Here are 20 pieces of wisdom to carry into 2021 and beyond.

Life

When you’re feeling overwhelmed by a challenge, tell yourself a story from the other side. kelly corrigan suggests a mental exercise: Imagine that the challenging thing already happened and you nailed it. …


The psychology of post-traumatic growth can help us understand why some people become stronger, braver, and more creative after the worst moment of their lives

Photo: Justin Paget/Getty Images

It’s been 29 days since I lost my partner in a swimming accident. And for the 29th day, I’m awake at an ungodly hour writing. Writing about his life, and mine. Writing about everything I learned and how deeply we loved in our too-short time together.

The last time I experienced a surge of creativity like this was three years ago, when my divorce was finalized. This wasn’t one of your run-of-the-mill separations where we tried to work it out but couldn’t. This divorce came on fast and hard and necessarily. But while I fully expected to fall apart, I…

Forge

A publication from Medium on personal development.

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