The word negotiation comes from two Latin words, nec and otium. Nec offers bold and precise instructions: it says no, it reverses the concept that follows. But otium leads to a universe of interesting meanings and painful misunderstandings. Negotium is not only the absence of rest and pause, it is above all a call for committed activity. As a wise tweet from #wisdomalive summarized yesterday, “with the exception of unconditional love, everything else in life involves negotiation.”
When we negotiate we become more human then ever; when we don’t, we become arrogants and lonely.
Disable otiation to enable human nature.
“When you’re 20, you would rather spend more time with your friends. When you’re 35, you want time with your kids. But then when you reach 70, you have far too much time on your hands.”
Even scientists are becoming aware of the irrationality provided by the factory-driven time allocation. This wise words come from Mr. James W. Vaupel who heads the new Max Planck Odense Center for the Biodemography of aging.
Current time distribution comes from the needs of XX century workshops, where Horse Power performances is all what the worker is asked and payed for. These Chaplin-like workers were perceived as animals to be exploited during the first two third of their life, and then left in the lonely and dark corner of the old age.
Why should our knowledge-based activities remain linked to this brutal model? Why sohuldn’t we retire from this absurd tradition in order to design a much better lifelong enjoyment?
Disable usal time distribution to enable the entire life path.
But things can change very rapidly, as soon as we become aware of the power of disabling bad habits. This comes from the UK – just imagine how strong the impact could be for all of us:
Under the Books on Prescription program, UK doctors will begin prescribing books – yes, books – to patients with mental health problems, including anxiety, depression, and panic attacks, the Reading Agency announced Thursday at the British Library. The Agency is a UK charity centered on books and reading. […] In the UK, Books will be prescribed for patients suffering from a host of conditions, including anger, anxiety, binge eating, depression, anxiety, obsessions and compulsions, panic, phobias, low self-esteem, stress, worry, and even chronic pain, fatigue, and relationship problems. […] It’s not the first such initiative. Denmark, Wales and New Zealand already have similar programs, with Wales pioneering the idea in 2003 under the direction of clinical psychologist Professor Neil Frude. “The doctors are already there, the books are already there and so are the libraries. It just needed joining them up,” Frude said of the program. (The entire report is here).
Disable pills, read more books and find yourself able to get out of almost any mental trouble without the help of the chemical poisons.
I was born in Milan and I live in the European Union. Through Latin and Greek I’ve learned to think, through English I’ve learned to work. Where is my so called Italian identity? My identity belongs to Europe, it is rooted in my regional territory and it is not linked to a supposed Italian culture, wich doesn’t exist: Italy is more a geographical doodle than a cultural fact. There is no trace of any “Italian cuisine” (Italian recipes are regional) and millions of people speak beautiful and unintelligible dialects rather than the official language. As a recognizable unity, Italy is very young and Europe is very old. Of course, the borders of Europe are questionables, but borders always are. Italy’s border are not disputed any more, because they are entirely artificial.
Disable states to enable citizenship.
Stafford Beer played an important role within the systems thinking culture. To fight the hilarious futility of statements, specially within organizations, Stafford Beer invented a funny word which is still very popular among constructivists, skeptics and interesting people. The word is POSIWID. It is an acronym and it stands for Purpose Of a System Is What It Does. It’s difficult to say it better, maybe we can try with a “trust what I do, not what I say”.
Disable statements, Missions, Visions, Strategic Principles and Manifestos to enable authenticity and foster reality-driven relationships.
Comfort is a XVIII century invention. It belongs to a newborn mindset, the kind of imaginery not use to perceive itself as the result of a much deeper path. Neither happyness or mindfulness come from comfort, nor meaning or achievement do. To be comfortable means to chose the easiest way, to design the safetiest experience. Commitment comes from obstacles and grows through challenges. Artists don’t care about comfort and we can say that the most interesting artists make art exactly to avoid comfort, as it is highlighted in this Italian book.
Disable comfort to enable experiments.
Because age is a state of mind.
“Now more than ever we need philosophers, especially skeptics like Socrates, Descartes, Thomas Kuhn and Nagel, who seek to prevent us from becoming trapped in the cave of our beliefs”. In spite of John Horgan’s choice (the first thing the name Descartes reminds me is not skepticism), there is little doubt: we desperately need skeptics because we are sorrounded by overceonfidents.
Disable certainty to enable skepticism, which is good for dialogue, respect and improvement.
Private means disable and it refers to the less interesting disability. The word itself highlights a disfunction: private comes from latin privus which says the lack of public. When you take the us off, all you reach is the self. But a self deprived of the us becomes immediately selfish. The selfish is an idiot, somebody who runs his own race without caring for the rest of the world, ending exactly nowhere. The word idiot comes from greek idion which talks about those private citizens who remain separate from the town, like a limb which has been artificially separated from the body. Citizenship comes from us, not from me. Life becomes a game worth playing only through that us – through the poor me life becomes useless, sad and fruitless.
“The default isn’t privacy. The default is community”, also when you’re working, as Yael Cohen says here.
Diable privacy to enable fun and effectiveness.