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Personal Journals

Curious Minds: Innovation in Life and Work

Updated 9 days ago

Rank #150 in Personal Journals category

Arts
Society & Culture
Design
Personal Journals
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Learn from inspiring innovators who are rethinking life and work in a changing world. Each week, Gayle Allen discovers how these entrepreneurs, writers, scientists and inventors, achieve their most fascinating and inspiring breakthroughs. Have fun taking a peek into their Curious Minds!

Read more

Learn from inspiring innovators who are rethinking life and work in a changing world. Each week, Gayle Allen discovers how these entrepreneurs, writers, scientists and inventors, achieve their most fascinating and inspiring breakthroughs. Have fun taking a peek into their Curious Minds!

iTunes Ratings

416 Ratings
Average Ratings
299
110
3
1
3

Great podcast with inspiring ideas!

By K.S.M.Phanindra - Aug 22 2018
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The length and the details covered are perfect for me. Very informative discussions!

Awesome show!!

By mjp111111 - Jul 31 2017
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Gayle Allen is a fantastic interviewer!!!! Love this podcast!!!!!

iTunes Ratings

416 Ratings
Average Ratings
299
110
3
1
3

Great podcast with inspiring ideas!

By K.S.M.Phanindra - Aug 22 2018
Read more
The length and the details covered are perfect for me. Very informative discussions!

Awesome show!!

By mjp111111 - Jul 31 2017
Read more
Gayle Allen is a fantastic interviewer!!!! Love this podcast!!!!!
Cover image of Curious Minds: Innovation in Life and Work

Curious Minds: Innovation in Life and Work

Latest release on Jan 20, 2020

Read more

Learn from inspiring innovators who are rethinking life and work in a changing world. Each week, Gayle Allen discovers how these entrepreneurs, writers, scientists and inventors, achieve their most fascinating and inspiring breakthroughs. Have fun taking a peek into their Curious Minds!

Rank #1: CM 102: Morten Hansen On Working Smarter

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What sets top workplace performers apart?

To answer this question, Morten Hansen, Professor at University of California, Berkeley, studied over 5,000 U.S. corporate employees for his book, Great at Work: How Top Performers Do Less, Work Better, and Achieve More. Through his research, he found that top performers engage in 7 key practices that explain 66 percent of the differences in their level of performance.

Co-author with Jim Collins of the highly acclaimed book, Great by Choice, Morten is also the author of the book, Collaboration, and he has been ranked one of the most influential global management thinkers by Thinkers50.

In this interview we discuss:

Why working longer hours is not enough to achieve high levels of performance
How seven work-smart practices can explain 66 percent of the differences between top performers and their peers
Why we need to do less and then obsess to produce exceptional work
How an obsession with sled dogs led one explorer to reach the South Pole before his highly competitive and well-resourced peer
Why Jiro, the famous sushi maker, is one of the best examples of someone who does less and obsesses his way to a Michelin star
The key question employees need to ask their bosses in order to do less and obsess: which of these projects is of the highest priority for achieving our goals?
How a lack of prioritization can be the linchpin to doing less and obsessing over it to provide key value
How a high school principal architected a work redesign that epitomizes what it means to start with delivering value and then determining goals
The value of redesigning our work without spending more or adding staff
Why our goals should emerge from the value we seek to deliver
How focus on fewer work projects allows you to ask deeper questions and provide more value
Why a focus on passion and purpose allows us to contribute more than passion alone
The fact that the goal of collaboration is better performance, not better collaboration
Why we need to avoid over collaborating and under collaborating and, instead, focus on disciplined collaboration to achieve our goals
How small changes can help us achieve big results, especially when it comes to focusing more, saying no to some things, setting better priorities, and collaborating more strategically

Links to Topics Mentioned in the Podcast

Robert Falcon Scott

Roald Amundsen

Jiro Dreams of Sushi

Psyched Up by Dan McGinn

A Flipped School and Greg Green

Hartman Goertz and Tangier Terminal

Berkeley Executive Education

Genevieve Guay

Curious George

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Apr 08 2018

39mins

Play

Rank #2: CM 035: Greg McKeown on Achieving More by Choosing Less

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Productivity strategies do not work if we are focused on the wrong things. What we really need is an effective system for determining what is absolutely essential and the discipline to work on that thing. We need criteria that empower us to select our highest priority, and a strategy for eliminating everything else.

My guest, Greg McKeown has designed this system, and he has written about it in his award-winning bestseller, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less. In addition to his writing and speaking, Greg is CEO of THIS, Inc., a Young Global Leader for the World Economic Forum, and a lecturer at Stanford University. In this interview he shares incidents in his own life that led him to develop this system, as well as the elements that make the system powerful.

In this episode, we talk about:

How we forget our power to choose
How our language shapes how we view the world
How our priority became priorities and what that means for our lives
Non-essentialism as a form of malware that has infected all areas of our lives
How the smartest, most driven, capable, and curious people are the most vulnerable to non-essentialism
Why we need to retire in our roles in order to gain perspective and get our lives back
How a list of 6 can get us to our number one priority
A game-changing way to use our journals as reflective, proactive tools
The power of small wins
The downside of email-to-email living
Why technology makes a good servant but a poor master
What it means to protect the asset in order to lead an essential life
The unimportance of practically everything
How discerning what is essential gives us the courage to push back on what is not
Teaching young people how to focus on what is essential
The three historical waves of non-essentialism or how we got here
Why you want to be an essentialist before the busyness bubble bursts
The trade off between our highest contribution versus what we got done today

Greg also talks about how he is making a deliberate choice to hold off on his second book in order to focus on his highest contribution. He explains how challenging it is to do that and how aware he is of the trade offs he is making along the way.

Selected Links to Topics Mentioned

@GregoryMcKeown

http://gregmckeown.com/

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown

Panem - bread and circuses

World War II

Facebook

Tulip mania

Deep Work by Cal Newport

@JaniceKaplan2

http://www.janicekaplan.com/

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

May 09 2016

45mins

Play

Rank #3: CM 105: Tali Sharot On How To Change Someone’s Mind

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Can facts change someone’s mind? Most times, this approach is a dead end, especially when we try to convince those with top-notch analytical skills. In fact, neuroscience shows that analytical people will tend to use data to find fault with facts they don’t like.

If we want to bring someone closer to our way of thinking, Tali Sharot suggests another way in her book, The Influential Mind: What the Brain Reveals about our Power to Change Others. Tali is founder and director of the Affective Brain Lab at University College London and an associate professor of cognitive neuroscience. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, and the BBC. Tali is also author of the book, The Optimism Bias.

In this interview we discuss:

Why we tend to seek out information that confirms what we already believe
Our attraction to information associated with people who think like us
How bias compounds as we filter for information that aligns with, and people who agree with, our beliefs
How we will avoid getting advice from experts - on something completely unrelated to politics - if they are not aligned with our political beliefs
Why people with strong math and analytical skills can become even more entrenched in their beliefs on a topic
How our brains tend to encode information from people who agree with us and how that impacts the decisions we make
Why starting a conversation by focusing on an area of agreement can help us view one another as more similar than originally thought and help us listen more fully to a different perspective
How our brains can synchronize when we listen to an emotional, compelling speech and how that helps us predict what the speaker may say
How feelings of happiness, sadness, stress, and so on, can be emotionally contagious for others in a family, group or organization
How social media serves as the amygdala of the internet, rousing us emotionally in ways associated with how the amygdala works
How immediate, positive feedback, associated with progress and situated in a social setting, can improve performance
The fact that our phobias arise from areas of our life we cannot control
How our brains view choice as a reward

Links to Topics Mentioned in the Podcast

Tali Sharot

@affectivebrain

Affective Brain Lab

Dan Kahan

Mentalization

How Emotions are Made by Lisa Feldman Barrett

Susan Cain

Uri Hasson

Weizmann Institute of Science

Hospital Hand Hygiene Project

Discovery health insurance

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

May 20 2018

41mins

Play

Rank #4: CM 147: Bina Venkataraman on How to Think Ahead

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How would our decision-making change if we shifted focus from the present to the future?

Instant gratification comes easily to us. But when we delay tackling long-term problems associated with things like, health, climate, or society, we cheat our future selves. Bina Venkataraman, author of the book, The Optimist's Telescope: Thinking Ahead in a Reckless Age, argues that it doesn't have to be this way.

Mining related research from the fields of biology, psychology, and economics, Bina shares steps we can take to make wiser decisions. For example, she invites us to look more closely at the kinds of data we're gathering. She explains, "So often we're measuring a lot of immediate results...And that's true whether you look at our sensors that track the steps we take, small fluctuations in temperature or the stock market, or test scores for kids in school." Yet, she argues that this kind of data is "not always a great proxy of what we actually want to accomplish in the long run."

Instead, she explains that it's when we telescope out that we see what's at stake. But only if we make it a habit to do so. And though it's a habit that's hard to master, Bina believes we have a choice. She shares, "we're actually not cursed to this recklessness...Is it going to be easy in every case? No. Can we do it right away? No. But the book is really a roadmap for how we do that as a society. And I think it's cause for a king of optimism, an engaged optimism." Ultimately, she exults, "we have the power to do things differently."

Bina Venkataraman is the incoming editorial page editor at The Boston Globe. She worked as a journalist for The New York Times and served as senior advisor for climate change innovation in the Obama White House.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by clicking here.

Episode Links

@binajv

Mental time travel

Hal Hershfield

Thomas Suddendorf

Farsighted: How We Make the Decisions that Matter the Most by Steven Johnson

Virtual Human Interaction Lab at Stanford University

Aging booth app

Elke Weber

Dear Tomorrow with Jill Kubit and Trisha Shrum

Vijay Mahajan

Walter Mischel

Implementation intention or if-then and Peter Gollwitzer

Ronnie Bardah

Eagle Capital Management

Pre-mortem

Social discount rate

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Overcast

Oct 28 2019

50mins

Play

Rank #5: CM 076: Lisa Feldman Barrett on Rethinking Our Emotions

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When we get angry or excited, our emotions can seem automatic. But are they?

For decades, scientists have described these feelings as hardwired, beyond our control, and associated with certain parts of the brain. But recent breakthroughs in neuroscience and psychology are upending this classical view, with revolutionary implications for how we understand ourselves and the world.

In her book, How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, Lisa Feldman Barrett, a Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, helps us rethink what it means to be human, with repercussions for parenting, our legal system, and even our health. Lisa received an NIH Directors Pioneer Award for her groundbreaking research on emotion in the brain and has been studying human emotion for over 20 years.

In this interview, we talk about:

The fact that our emotions are not hardwired but are made by our brains as we need them
Old, inaccurate ways of thinking about emotions and the brain, like emotions as associated with specific parts of the brain
How variety is the norm when it comes to expressing and feeling emotions
How having emotional granularity helps us feel, express, and understand our own and others emotions more deeply
The fact that our brains are not reacting but rather are predicting and constantly guessing what will happen next based on past experiences
How the predictions our brains make, based on past experience, yield the thoughts, perceptions, emotions, and beliefs we hold and feel
How the brain of a baby is awaiting instructions for how to wire itself by capturing experiences it can draw on in the future
How baby brains look very different from adult brains because they have not yet had the experiences an adult has had
How our present and future selves are conjured from our past
The fact that our emotions are not universal or identical by have variations and shades based on the situation
How we actually have not one anger but many angers and happinesses and so on
Why we must have knowledge of an emotion in order to experience it
How the easiest way to gain knowledge of an emotion is through emotion words
How an extensive emotion vocabulary benefits us socially and academically and helps us see varied emotions in other people, gives us greater empathy
The fact that we can combine past experiences in brand new ways to create new knowledge if we have not yet had those actual experiences
The fact that emotions are abstract concepts rather than physical properties and that they can guide us toward a particular goal of say using anger to overcome an obstacle
If a tree falls in a forest and no human is there does it make a sound? No!
If we have no concept of a tree then we would not hear the sound of it falling in a forest.
Why we cannot understand unfamiliar languages or music
How our brain is constantly anticipating sights, sounds, tastes and taking in information from the world and our bodies based on past experience
How granularity in color perception is similar to what it means to have emotional granularity
Why staying physically healthy is tied to being emotionally healthy
How awe experiences help us gain perspective and regulate our physical and emotional health
How curating awe experiences daily -- like walking outside, reading something new, taking in nature -- helps make our immediate problems seem smaller and less worrisome
How the physical health of our bodies is intricately connected to the emotional health of our minds
How many gun laws work against what we now know about our predicting brains the the ways past experiences taint our beliefs and what we see and how we act
How understanding how our emotions are made helps us see that we are more in control and empowered than we may think to create the life we want to have
How we are the architects of our own experienc...

Apr 10 2017

45mins

Play

Rank #6: CM 092: Barbara Oakley on Learning How to Learn

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Most of us can learn anything, if we're taught how. Yet few of us find this to be the case. Why? Because we lack the skills we need to deal with the resistance and frustration we inevitably face when learning difficult topics.

Barbara Oakley wants to change that. Author of the book, A Mind for Numbers: How to Excel at Math and Science, and Professor of Engineering at Oakland University, she shares techniques for mastering any subject. And these are techniques over 2 million people have experienced in her incredibly popular MOOC, Learning How to Learn.

In this interview we discuss:

How she made the leap from self-described high school math "flunky" to accomplished engineering professor
What inspired her to make the shift from Russian linguist to engineer
How offering interesting learning hooks can help people learn content more effectively
How a diffuse or relaxed mode of thinking helps us organize what we learn
The importance of toggling between focused and diffuse thinking to learn
The fact that learning difficult things is hard
How sleep helps us build the neural architecture we need to learn new things
How we can be strategic in our approach to learning
Why you actually need content knowledge to become an expert - we cannot outsource it
How repetition, practice, and seeing things from different perspectives builds important neural patterns for expertise
Why conceptual chunking -- memorizing and understanding -- help us create these neural patterns
How our prefrontal cortex relaxes when we know something, so that we can build on that knowledge to solve more complex problems
What it means to have an illusion of competence when it comes to learning
How we can check our understanding by seeing if we can explain it to a five year old
How neural reuse theory, or learning something new by attaching it to something we already know, is a powerful learning tool
Why teachers should emphasize how simple something difficult can be to learn
How interleaving helps us learn when to use one technique versus another
How transfer helps us use learning we have done in one area in a new area and how it is best learned by doing
How we can reframe procrastination by focusing on the process not the product
How breaking the work into tiny tasks helps us overcome procrastination

Links to Topics Mentioned in this Podcast

@barbaraoakley

https://barbaraoakley.com/

The Knowledge Illusion by Steven Sloman

https://www.reddit.com/r/explainlikeimfive/

Bayes Theorem

Negative binomial

Geometric distribution

Pomodoro Technique and Francesco Cirillo

Terry Sejnowski

Lynda.com

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Nov 20 2017

38mins

Play

Rank #7: CM 044: Jonah Berger on Hidden Forces Shaping Our Behavior

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More than 99 percent of our decisions are shaped by others. From the clothing we buy to the cars we drive to the political candidates we vote for, our choices are the results of the invisible influence of those around us. And once we recognize that, we start to see our behavior -- and the behavior of others -- in a whole new way.

Jonah Berger, marketing professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, has spent 15 years studying the ways that influence impacts our lives. He wrote about it in his bestselling book, Contagious: Why Things Catch On, and, now, in his latest book, Invisible Influence: The Hidden Forces that Shape Behavior.

In this fascinating and compelling interview, he shares insights on:

Two reasons why we often overlook the power of influence
What animals can teach us about learned behaviors
When peers can improve our performance and when they can work against it
A common trait among most elite athletes
The power of the Goldilocks Effect when it comes to designing products and services
What cockroaches can teach us about performance and peers
The secret to changing behavior
The power of proximal peers in motivating ourselves and others

Selected Links to Topics Mentioned

@j1berger

www.jonahberger.com

Contagious: Why Things Catch on By Jonah Berger

Livestrong

Monkeys Adept at Picking up Social Cues

The Goldilocks Effect

Segway

The Horsey Horseless

Robert Zajonc and Social Facilitation

Dan Yates and Opower

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Jul 11 2016

32mins

Play

Rank #8: CM 025: Sydney Finkelstein on Leaders Who Move the World

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If you are going to have a boss (or be a boss), make it a Superboss. Why? Because a Superboss leads individuals, teams, and organizations in ways that move the world.

Sydney Finkelstein, bestselling author of Super Bosses: How Exceptional Leaders Master the Flow of Talent, shares these insights in our interview. Sydney is Professor of Management and Faculty Director of the Tuck Executive Program at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth where he specializes in business leadership and strategy.

In this episode, we talk about:

why working for a Superboss may be the best thing you ever do for your career
what sets Superbosses apart when it comes to hiring
why Superbosses dismiss textbook approaches to leadership
how Superbosses leverage collaboration and competition in teams
how losing incredible talent only strengthens Superbosses and their organizations
what you can do right now to become a Superboss
how Superbosses pursue deep passions outside of work

Sydney shares incredible stories from his research and captures how Superbosses often act in fascinating and counterintuitive ways.

Selected Links to Topics Mentioned

@sydfinkelstein

Superbosses: How Exceptional Leaders Master the Flow of Talent by Sydney Finkelstein

NFL, Bill Walsh, 49ers

Lorne Michaels and SNL, Tina Fey, Jimmy Fallon, Mike Myers

Norman Brinker and Chilis, Steak and Ale

Jon Stewart

Ralph Lauren

Larry Ellison

Marc Benioff and Salesforce.com

Julian Robertson

Jay Chiat

Bill Sanders

George Lucas and Skywalker Ranch, Industrial Light and Magic

Pixar

Alice Waters and Chez Panisse

Chase Coleman, III

General Electic (GE)

Harvard Business Review and Why Chief Human Resource Officers Make Great CEOs

Network effect

Thomas Frist and HCA

If you enjoyed the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. Thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Feb 29 2016

48mins

Play

Rank #9: CM 113: Priya Parker on Designing Better Meetings

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Gatherings play a big role in most of our lives. Weekly work meetings. Weddings. Holiday dinners. But over time, our gatherings can have a ho-hum feel. Priya Parker, author of the book, The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters, thinks it doesn’t have to be that way.

Priya is the founder of Thrive Labs, an organization that draws on her training and experience in conflict resolution, organizational design, and public policy to help others create transformative gatherings. From the momentous convening of the World Economic Forum to a light-hearted picnic in the park, she walks us through new ways of bringing people together, including who to invite, how many, and even how to start.

In this interview we discuss:

How the category of a gathering – like a wedding or networking event – should never supersede its purpose
Why knowing why we’re meetings should drive everything else about the gathering
How an innovative justice center in Red Hook, Brooklyn rethought its purpose for gathering in order to solve problems of poverty and crime
Why the New York Times had to replace ritual with purpose in its infamous “Page One” meetings
The kinds of questions we can ask when planning a meaningful gathering
Why “the more the merrier” works against effective meetings
The connection between purpose and the number of people we invite to a meeting
Why we need to think about the ratio of meeting space to number of people attending
The responsibilities a host has once the gathering begins
How we can use simple rules to create the feeling of a temporary alternative world
How to start a gathering (and how not to)
How an activity like “15 Toasts” drives connection
Why the end of a meeting is just as important as the beginning
Why gathering is an act of courage, rather than an act of perfection
Why we need to stop hiding as we plan and lead meetings of purpose 

Links to Topics Mentioned in the Podcast

@priyaparker

Priya Parker’s website

Red Hook Community Justice Center

New York Times “Page One” Meeting

Dean Baquet

Jonathan Cook

The Power of Moments by Dan and Chip Heath

Young Presidents Association

Presidio in San Francisco

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

“I am here” days

Jill Soloway

Transparent

15 Toasts

Ocean’s 11 movie

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. And thank you for listening and sharing!

Thank you, as well, to my producer and editor, Rob Mancabelli, and my logo designer, Vanida Vae.

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Sep 09 2018

41mins

Play

Rank #10: CM 038: Dan Ariely Shares the Truth about Dishonesty

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We like to think that cheating is limited to criminals and other wrongdoers. But what if it were true that the majority of people cheated most of the time?

That is exactly what has been revealed in the extensive research of Dan Ariely, Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University. Dan has found that not only do most people cheat, but that it is true even of the service providers that we trust the most, such as our accountants and our doctors. Even more surprising, traditional deterrents, such as harsher punishments, do not have any effect. His work has profound implications for our work, our families and our society.

Founder and Director of the Center for Advanced Hindsight, Ariely is the author of the bestselling books, Predictably Irrational, The Upside of Irrationality, Irrationally Yours, and the book we discuss in this interview, The Honest Truth about Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone -- Especially Ourselves.

In this conversation, we talk about:

How dishonesty is a lot more common than we think
How most punishments do very little to eliminate dishonesty
Why conflicts of interest, like team or company loyalty, make it harder to be honest
The role creativity plays in dishonesty
Why it is so important to get a second medical opinion
The reason the slippery slope of dishonesty is so frightening
How a good cause - a charity or a loved one - can cause us to cheat even more
The important role simple rules can play in keeping us honest

Dan also shares his theory on what may actually have caused the Volkswagen emission crisis, and he talks about the topic of his most recent work - hate.

Selected Links to Topics Mentioned

@danariely

danariely.com

Mensa

Enron

Gary Becker and Simple Model of Rational Crime (SMORC)

Cost-benefit analysis

Mortgage-backed security

Prada

Harpers Bazaar

Signaling

Coach

Donald Sull and Simple Rules: How to Thrive in a Complex World

The Dishonesty Project documentary

Joseph M. Papp cyclist

Volkswagen

Yael Melamede of Salty Features

Pilates

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

May 30 2016

46mins

Play

Rank #11: CM 016: Michelle Segar on Rethinking Exercise and Motivation

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If you are one of the millions of people who struggle to stick with an exercise program, Michelle Segar has a secret for you: It is not your fault; it is a faulty system.

After years of studying the science of motivation, Michelle Segar, Ph.D., Director of SHARP -- the Sport, Health, and Activity research and policy center at the University of Michigan -- has created a framework for rethinking exercise, one that replaces a prescriptive mindset with one more aligned with human behavior and emotion. Filled with practical tips and strategies, Michelle’s bestselling book, No Sweat: How the Simple Science of Motivation Can Bring You a Lifetime of Fitness, is informed by years of putting these findings into practice with people just like you.

In this episode you will learn:

how to short-circuit the vicious cycle of failure
why fitness apps are not enough
why willpower is not the answer
the science of decision making and reward
the power of self-determination theory - initiating behavior because you should versus because you find it meaningful
the more moderate recommendations for physical activity - which are known by less than 1 percent of physical activity professionals

Links to Topics Mentioned in this Podcast

Paulo Freire

Dan Ariely

Behavioral economics

Reward Substitution

Self-determination theory

No Sweat Resolutions Quiz

2015 USA Best Book Awards
If you enjoyed the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. Thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo!

@GAllenTC

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

Dec 28 2015

34mins

Play

Rank #12: CM 096: Olivia Cabane and Judah Pollack on Breakthrough Thinking

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Breakthroughs can take our work to new and exciting places, yet they rarely happen as often as we’d like. Are there ways to prompt these kinds of moments, so we can create them more often?

Olivia Fox Cabane and Judah Pollack tell us how in their book, The Net and the Butterfly: The Art and Practice of Breakthrough Thinking.

Olivia is the former Director of Innovative Leadership for Stanford StartX and bestselling author of The Charisma Myth. She has worked with companies like, Google, MGM, and Deloitte, and she has lectured at Harvard, MIT, and Yale.

Judah Pollack is a former faculty member at Stanford StartX and a lecturer at University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business. He has worked with organizations like Airbnb, IDEO, and the U.S. Army Special Forces.

In this interview we discuss:

How breakthrough thinking requires two systems in the brain: the Executive Network (the net) and the Default Network (the butterfly)
How we need off-task time in order for the Default Network to engage and create breakthroughs
The 4 types of breakthroughs: Eureka, Metaphor, Intuitive and Paradigm
How Eureka Breakthroughs are sudden insights that are fully formed, when everything seems to fall into place
That we are predisposed to certain kinds of breakthroughs and how it helps to honor our natural style
That no one style of breakthrough is any better than another
How Metaphorical breakthroughs help us see topics in new ways
How Intuitive breakthroughs seem like just the beginning and less easy to trust, requiring us to have faith in the process
How Steve Jobs had an intuitive breakthrough that the iPhone needed to be made of glass
That our brains our physical objects that need to build new neurotransmitter receptors in order to construct new knowledge
How our practice with exploring new experiences in the brain affects our ability to make breakthroughs
How surfing the net for new things or watching new movies can help with building the brain plasticity that helps to make breakthroughs
How curiosity enlivens brain plasticity
How fear negativity affects the Default Network and works against us having breakthroughs
Why our best ideas may come to us in the shower
How our inhibitions can cause us to feel like imposters or make us overly critical, either of which can hinder breakthrough thinking
How the placebo effect can be used to our advantage
Ways we can practice failure in order to normalize our feelings about it
Three supertools that can help us achieve breakthroughs
How the journey toward topic mastery create preconditions for breakthroughs
How implementing these practices can affect us down to the gene level
How to find the balance between our fast-paced, hyper-focused work world and the slower, more diffused approach needed for breakthrough thinking

Links to Topics Mentioned in this Podcast

Olivia Fox Cabane

Judah Pollack

The Net and the Butterfly: The Art and Practice of Breakthrough Thinking

The Charisma Myth

Stanford StartX

University of California Berkeley

The Executive Mode Network of the brain

The Default Mode Network of the brain

The Arab Spring

The Revolutions of 1848

Occupy Wall Street

Steve Jobs

Think Wrong

Neuroplasticity

Impostor Syndrome

Inner Critic

Placebo Effect

Meditation

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Jan 14 2018

37mins

Play

Rank #13: CM 003: Bernie Roth on How to Design a Life

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Bernie Roth is a Professor of Engineering and the Academic Director and Co-founder of the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the d.school) at Stanford University. A leader of international workshops on creativity and design thinking, Bernie is the author of the book, The Achievement Habit: Stop Wishing, Start Doing, and Take Command of Your Life.

Bernie talks about what it means to apply design principles to create a life well lived. His focus is on personal transformation and empowerment.

Things you will learn in this episode include:

the importance of how we see the world
the danger of having a reason for doing something
how a bias toward action can overcome fear
the answer to what is holding us back from learning, changing, and growing
how methods for reframing and asking good questions can help us figure out the actual problems we are trying to solve
ways to get unstuck
how the language we use can empower or disempower us
how teams and collaboration help us relate differently to one another and our work
the shift of design thinking from object-centered to human-centered
the origins and focus of his popular Designer in Society course for the d.school
how much physical space influences our mindsets, our relationships, and the ways we work and collaborate

Bernie also talks about how his work has changed the way he teaches. He is always striving to find ways to empower his students.

As always, thanks for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post. Also, please leave a review of the Curious Minds podcast on iTunes. Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! I read every one of them.

Please subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates. Thanks!

Books Mentioned

Improv Wisdom by Patricia Ryan Madson

Make Space by Scott Doorley and Scott Witthoft

Miscellaneous Mentioned

Designer in Society course

The Human Potential Movement

The Iceman Cometh by Eugene O’Neill

Thank you to Clark Nowlin for his sound engineering and to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for creating the Curious Minds logo

Oct 17 2015

33mins

Play

Rank #14: CM 123: Chris Bailey on Overcoming Distraction

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How can we
reclaim our attention in a world that’s increasingly filled with digital
distractions?
Chris Bailey, author of the book, Hyperfocus: How to be More Productive in a World of Distraction, has some answers. He is a productivity expert whose work has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, and Fast Company. His first book was The Productivity Project: Accomplishing More by Managing Your Time, Attention, and Energy.
In this interview, he shares ways we can increase our productivity. These include: multitasking strategically, meditating consistently, and creating a distraction-free environment.
Episode Links
@Chris_Bailey
Deep Work by Cal Newport – Episode 28 interview on Curious Minds
Gloria Mark
Mary Czerwinski
Parkinson’s law
Shawn Achor

Jan 26 2019

47mins

Play

Rank #15: CM 108: Leonard Mlodinow on Unleashing Our Creative Thinking

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In times of rapid change, people who can think creatively are invaluable. Leonard Mlodinow, author of the book, Elastic: Flexible Thinking in a Time of Change, calls this type of thinking elastic. It is a bottom up approach that unleashes new ideas, and he believes anyone can employ it, since it is innate to us.

Leonard’s previous books include Subliminal (winner of the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award), The Drunkard’s Walk (a New York Times Notable Book) and The Grand Design with Stephen Hawking. He’s also written for the TV Series, Star Trek: The Next Generation. During our conversation he shares more about what elastic thinking is, why we need to cultivate it, and concrete ways to do just that.

In this interview we discuss:

Elastic thinking as a way of making new or breaking already-established rules, as well as framing or reframing problems
The fact that we need elastic thinking now more than ever in a world of rapid change
How bottom up thinking serves as the basis for artificial intelligence and machine learning
Why humans, with our 100 billion neurons, still outdo computers when it comes to elastic thinking
How our point of view can preclude us from solving a problem, so that we constantly need to challenge our hidden assumptions, in order to see things differently
Ways to broaden our thinking include asking about the least popular dish at a restaurant and then trying it, talking to people not normally in our social circles, questioning a strongly held belief, and thinking about times we made a mistake
How giving our brains down time to make associations, generate ideas and relax our mental filters can improve our problem-solving abilities

Links to Topics Mentioned in the Podcast

@lmlodinow

http://leonardmlodinow.com/

Encyclopedia Britannica

Wikipedia

Caltech

Ellen Langer

The Net and the Butterfly by Olivia Fox Cabane and Judah Pollack

Natural neural networks

Google translate

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Doolittle Raid

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Jul 01 2018

33mins

Play

Rank #16: CM 131: James Clear on Making and Breaking Habits

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We all have
trouble changing our habits, but the problem isn’t us, it’s our systems.
Whether we want to adopt good habits or avoid bad ones, we need to think beyond willpower or setting bigger goals. Instead, James Clear, author of the book, Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones, argues that the secret is designing a system of small, repeatable habits. He challenges us to ask ourselves, “How can we make these small changes that we layer on top of each other – these little 1% improvements or tiny advantages – and in the process of integrating them all into a larger system, end up making some really remarkable progress?”
Through compelling stories and brain research, James teaches
us how to design game-changing habits and sustainable systems. In addition, he
shares ways we can leverage environmental factors and addictive tendencies to
our advantage. Finally, he helps us see how a commitment to daily habits leads
to the identity we seek: “Every action you take is like a vote for the person
that you want to become. Doing one push up or writing one sentence or reading
one page, it’s not going to transform you right away. But it does cast a vote
for being that kind of person, for reinforcing that kind of identity.”
James is an author and speaker focused on habits, decision-making, and continuous improvement. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Time, Entrepreneur, and on CBS This Morning.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@JamesClear
James’ article on British cycling and marginal gains: This Coach Improved Every Tiny Thing by 1 Percent and Here’s What Happened
James’ article on identity and habits: Identity-Based Habits: How to Actually Stick to Your Goals This Year
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
Hooked by Nir Eyal
The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson
Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason Currey
Point and Call safety system in Japan (video)
Habit Scorecard
James’ article on habits and environment: How to Improve Your Health and Productivity Without Thinking
Stick with It by Sean Young
James’ article on motion versus action: The Mistake Smart People Make: Being in Motion vs. Taking Action
Simple Ways to Support the Podcast
If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you’ll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You’ll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You’ll be helping listeners find their next podcast.
A Short List of Places to Find Curious Minds
Spotify
iTunes
Tunein
Stitcher
Google Play
Overcast

Apr 15 2019

59mins

Play

Rank #17: CM 050: Julia Shaw on the Science of Memory

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Can you trust your memory? Probably not.
Research shows that we can be convinced fairly easily that we are guilty of a crime we did not commit. We not only misremember information, but we can misremember information about the wrong person. Add to that the fact that when someone else tells us how they remember something, it can alter our memory of that same event, person, or situation.
These insights, along with many others from memory research, are changing how we think about law and order, learning, and what makes us human. False memory researcher and criminal psychologist, Julia Shaw, is one of only a handful of experts in the field. A senior lecturer and researcher in the Department of Law and Social Sciences at London South Bank University and author of The Memory Illusion: Remembering, Forgetting, and the Science of False Memory, she works with members of the military and law enforcement. She is also a regular contributor to Scientific American.
In this interview, we talk about:

What the blue-gold dress phenomenon revealed about how our brains work
Why we need less evidence to convict someone who looks less trustworthy
Why we form stronger memories when others are same race, age, or gender
Why we reminisce most strongly about moments from our teens and 20s
Why we have rosy memories of most of our firsts in life
What actually happens in our brains when we form a memory
How memories get stamped in our brains
The fact that we simply cannot multitask - it is humanly impossible - and why
Why it is that whenever we remember we also forget
How to get someone to think they saw Bugs Bunny at Disneyland
Why we should write things down rather than try to remember them
Why understanding how unreliable our memories can be is liberating
How attention is the glue between reality and your memory
The vital importance of sleep to build lasting memories
How we all suffer from overconfidence when it comes to our memories
Why there is a right way to ask questions when we need to gather information
How to avoid asking leading questions that may create false memories
How photos can prompt false memories
The fact that we implant false memories in each other all the time
How creating memories with others may ensure more accurate memories
How social media can result in muddled memories
Why we need to continually update memories to learn
Why the flexibility of our brains -- and our memories -- is a beautiful thing
How we can convince people they committed crimes that never happened
How false memory research can change the legal system
How we can mistake the false memories of others for lying

Selected Links to Topics Mentioned
http://www.drjuliashaw.com/
@drjuliashaw
London South Bank University
The Dress
Own race bias
Reminiscence bump
Rohypnol
Retrieval-induced forgetting
The Honest Truth about Dishonesty by Dan Ariely
If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!
Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!
www.gayleallen.net
LinkedIn
@GAllenTC

Aug 22 2016

37mins

Play

Rank #18: CM 061: Susan David on Emotional Agility

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It is essential to achieve our goals, yet few of us practice it.

It is emotional agility -- the ability to navigate the thoughts, feelings, and stories we tell ourselves as challenges arise. This does not mean ignoring how we feel or wallowing in those emotions. And it is certainly not about just being happy all the time. It is about recognizing that the monologue inside our heads is not in control of us but, rather, we are in control of it.

That is something Susan David knows a lot about. Author of the book, Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life, she is a psychologist on the faculty of Harvard Medical School, Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Institute of Coaching at McLean Hospital, and CEO of Evidence Based Psychology. Her writing has been featured in numerous publications, including Harvard Business Review, Time, Fast Company, and The Wall Street Journal.

Insights from our interview:  

How we deal with our thoughts and emotions impacts our well being
In a time of unprecedented complexity we need to be agile and responsive
We get hooked when we treat our thoughts and emotions as facts
How we can be blind to what is right in front of us
The fact that we will look for information to support the stories we make up
We engage with thought blaming when we give too much power to our thoughts
We need to let go of our need to be right
Between stimulus response, there is a space where we can choose
When we bottle emotions our emotions, we miss out on what they can teach us
When we brood or give too much space to thoughts and emotions, we get stuck
Brooding prevents closure and moving forward
Our consumer culture can make us feel that we are not good enough
When we extend compassion to ourselves we are more open to change
Constant comparison to others sets up a never ending competition
Giving language to our emotions helps us make plans and solve problems
Journaling thoughts and feelings for just 20 minutes a day can be life changing
When we walk our why, we are more resilient and focused
Walking our why helps us overcome social contagion
The value of tweaking our emotions from have to to want to
Making the shift from have to to want to is about prioritizing our values
Have to language makes our brains rebel and is about obligation and shame
Our brains are wired to make us comfortable - the unfamiliar feels unsafe
Aim for a state of whelm, rather than over- or underwhelmed
Emotional labor is the difference work demands and how we feel
How many workplaces are operating out of old industrial models?
How to raise emotionally agile children? Help them identify and label emotions.
Courage is not the absence of fear. Courage is fear walking.
Faced with complexity, we are less likely to collaborate, innovate or relate
Complexity requires we develop inner skills

Selected Links to Topics Mentioned

Susan David

@SusanDavid_PhD

Emotional Agility article in HBR

Victor Frankl

Charles Darwin

James Pennebaker

Take Pride by Jessica Tracy

NYTimes article - Teaching Your Child Emotional Agility

The Quiz - Emotional Agility Report - Susan David

How Levis Is Building Well-Being Programs Where They Matter Most: In Factories by Adele Peters

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Nov 07 2016

59mins

Play

Rank #19: CM 098: Jon Kolko on Igniting Creativity in Organizations

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What if you are creative, but your organization is not?

Many of us have worked in places that have tried to adopt more creative practices, and we know that it doesn’t always produce the desired results. In fact, if we introduce creativity, it can even seem to backfire.

But Jon Kolko has devised a formula for injecting creativity into resistant organizations. Author of the book, Creative Clarity: A Practical Guide for Bringing Creative Thinking Into Your Company, Jon is a Partner at Modernist Studio and Founder of Austin Center for Design. He served as VP of Design at Blackboard, has worked extensively with both startups and Fortune 500 companies, and has written four additional books on design.

Jon shares insights for achieving creativity and innovation in even the most resistant organizations. In this interview we discuss:

Why attempts at introducing creativity into organizations can make things worse
The role framing plays in the creative process and how it helps with innovation
How leading with a creative strategy changes can yield more innovative solutions
Why summary problem statements are so important
How to push through complexity to arrive at simplicity
Why creative people work best a flow state of uninterrupted blocks of time
Why embracing a creative culture means embracing uncertainty
The role of feedback in a special kind of meeting called a critique
The two reactions to avoid when receiving feedback
How creative approaches differ in small versus large organizations
The three types of ownership of ideas
The one skill that every instructor needs to teach students in creative fields
What mentors are invaluable
Why teaching design thinking is inseparable from teaching of design

Links to Topics Mentioned in this Podcast

Jon Kolko

Creative Clarity

Frog Design

Ideo

Flow

The Swoop and Poop

Design Thinking

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Feb 11 2018

40mins

Play

Rank #20: CM 068: Michelle Segar on Exercise for Life

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If you struggle with exercise, Michelle Segar has a secret for you: Stop blaming yourself! Blame the system!

After years of studying the science of motivation, Michelle Segar, Ph.D., Director of SHARP -- the Sport, Health, and Activity research and policy center at the University of Michigan -- has created a framework for rethinking exercise that swaps out prescription for meaning. Filled with practical tips and strategies, Michelle’s bestselling book, No Sweat: How the Simple Science of Motivation Can Bring You a Lifetime of Fitness, is informed by years of putting these findings into practice with people just like you.

Some of the things we discuss in this interview:

How systems determine our success in sustaining physical activity
Why exercise is about so much more than weight loss
Why finding the right whys make all the difference in our health and wellness
How reflecting on how we feel when we move can help us sustain activity
Why relying on willpower is such a short-sighted strategy
The important role of emotions and decision making in activity for life
Why meaning trumps should every time when it comes to changing our behaviors
How we approach eating following a workout we enjoy versus a workout like work
How exercise recommendations became so prescriptive
Fewer than 1 percent of American adults know how much exercise is recommended
How small of a role logical and rational behavior play in our choosing to exercise
Why we need a new kind of fitness prescription based on how we live and feel
How we help others when we prioritize our self care
How a go-to activity resource prevents us from wasting time and energy
Why reflecting on the immediate benefits of physical exercise fuels us long term
The importance of finding exercise we love
Getting past the idea that movement only counts when we sustain it for periods of time
How awareness of our current situation empowers us to take ownership for what we want it to be
Why negotiation skills can reap big benefits in helping us create time for physical activity

Links to Topics Mentioned in this Podcast

@MichelleSegar

http://michellesegar.com/

Paulo Freire

Dan Ariely

Behavioral economics

Reward Substitution

Self-determination theory

No Sweat Resolutions Quiz

2015 USA Best Book Awards

SHARP at the University of Michigan

If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it on iTunes - your ratings make all the difference. For automatic delivery of new episodes, be sure to subscribe. As always, thanks for listening!

Thank you to Emmy-award-winning Creative Director Vanida Vae for designing the Curious Minds logo, and thank you to Rob Mancabelli for all of his production expertise!

www.gayleallen.net

LinkedIn

@GAllenTC

Dec 26 2016

34mins

Play

CM 153: Janelle Shane on How Artificial Intelligence Works

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What happens when you teach an AI to write knock-knock jokes, recipes, and pick-up lines?

It's a rare week that goes by without someone talking about the power, and the perils, of artificial intelligence. But if you're not an expert in machine learning, how do you separate fact from fiction? That's where Janelle Shane's expertise comes in.

Janelle is the author of the book, You Look Like a Thing and I Love You: How Artificial Intelligence Works and Why It's Making the World a Weirder Place. As she describes how an AI learns, she reveals the gap between what researchers strive to do and what's currently possible. Janelle explains, "The AI in science fiction is almost exclusively this kind of human level, general AI, that's really smart, at least as smart as a human, and then the stuff we have in the real world is a lot simpler."

Janelle runs amusing AI experiments, in order to learn how machine learning works and where its limits begin. She shares stories of what happened when she trained AIs to tell knock-knock jokes, invent new recipes, and write pick-up lines. Along the way, she describes the ups and the downs of working with AIs to solve problems: "The pro is you might get an answer that you didn't expect. The con is also that you might get an answer that you didn't expect."

Janelle's work has appeared in publications like The New York Times, Slate, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and many more. In addition, she keeps readers up to date on recent projects and AI hilarity on her website, aiweirdness.com.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer and Editor, Rob Mancabelli, here.

Episode Links

aiweirdness.com

Erik Goodman

Artificial You: AI and the Future of Your Mind by Susan Schneider

An AI Expert Explains Why There's Always a Giraffe in Artificial Intelligence

GPT-2

An Artificial Intelligence Predicts the Future

On the Life Cycle of Software Objects by Ted Chiang

If You Enjoyed this Episode, You Might Also Like:

Kartik Hosanagar on How Algorithms Shape Our Lives

Susan Schneider on the Future of Your Mind

Adam Waytz on the Power of Human

Kat Holmes on the Power of Inclusive Design

Caroline Criado Perez on Invisible Women

Simple Ways to Support the Podcast

If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you'll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You'll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You'll be helping listeners find their next podcast.

Where You Can Find Curious Minds:

Spotify

iTunes

Tunein

Stitcher

Google Play

Overcast

Jan 20 2020

43mins

Play

CM 152: Wendy Wood on the Science of Habits

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What if our success was less about channeling willpower and more about building sustainable habits?

Too often, when we think about goals we've failed to achieve, we blame it on a lack of willpower. Yet research has shown when we rely primarily on willpower, we're bound to fail. Willpower takes energy, and it's when our energy stores are at their lowest that we need it the most. That's when we default to our old habits, the ones we most want to change. They require a lot less energy because they've become automatic. 

If that's the case, what can we do?

Wendy Wood, author of the book, Good Habits, Bad Habits: The Science of Making Positive Changes that Stick, can help. Professor of Psychology and Business at the University of Southern California, she's studied the science of habits for decades. 

To begin, Wendy argues we need to give ourselves the time we need to develop new habits. We need time for our habits to become unconscious. She explains that, "People who have high levels of self-control, they don't report being distracted by temptations. They don't even see the temptations anymore because they are on autopilot."

Drawing on decades of research, Wendy shares concrete ways we can form new habits. One of these involves environment, especially proximity. For example, researchers found that people who drove around three miles to the gym went five times as often as those who traveled five miles. Wendy shares, "It's not like the people who went five times a month were necessarily more motivated. The big difference here is the distance they had to travel. So making it easy for you to repeat a behavior seems to be key."

Wendy has written for The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times, and her work has been featured in The New York Times, Time magazine, and on NPR.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer and Editor, Rob Mancabelli, here.

Episode Links

@ProfWendyWood

http://goodhabitsbadhabits.org/

Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey

If You Like This Episode, You Might Also Enjoy:

James Clear on Making and Breaking Habits

Chris Bailey on Overcoming Distraction

John Zeratsky on Creating Time for Things that Matter

Laura Vanderkam on Getting More Done

Morten Hansen on Working Smarter

Sean Young on the Science of Changing Your Life

Simple Ways to Support the Podcast

If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you'll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You'll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You'll be helping listeners find their next podcast.

Where You Can Find Curious Minds:

Spotify

iTunes

Tunein

Stitcher

Google Play

Overcast

Jan 07 2020

49mins

Play

CM 151: James Clear on Making and Breaking Habits – Rebroadcast

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We all have trouble changing our habits, but the problem isn't us. It's our systems.

Whether we want to adopt good habits or avoid bad ones, we need to think beyond willpower or setting bigger goals. According to James Clear, author of the book, Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones, we need to design a system of small, repeatable habits. James challenges us to ask, "How can we make...small changes...little one percent improvements...and in the process of integrating them...into a larger system, end up making some really remarkable progress?"

In this interview, James shares findings from the latest research, in order to teach us how to design simple systems that support game-changing habits. In particular, he explains how we can leverage our environments and even our addictive tendencies to our advantage. And he helps us see how a commitment to daily habit change, no matter how small, can lead to a new identity: "Every action you take is like a vote for the person you want to become...doing one pushup or writing one sentence or reading one page...cast[s] a vote for being that kind of person, for reinforcing that identity."

James is an author and speaker focused on habits, decision-making, and continuous improvement. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Entrepreneur, and on CBS This Morning.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer and Editor, Rob Mancabelli, here.

Episode Links

@JamesClear

Identity-Based Habits: How to Actually Stick to Your Goals This Year

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

Hooked by Nir Eyal

The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason Currey

Point and Call video

Habit Scorecard

How to Improve Your Health and Productivity Without Thinking

Stick with It by Sean Young

The Mistake Smart People Make: Being in Motion vs Taking Action

Simple Ways to Support the Podcast

If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you'll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You'll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You'll be helping listeners find their next podcast.

Where You Can Find Curious Minds:

Spotify

iTunes

Tunein

Stitcher

Google Play

Overcast

Dec 24 2019

1hr

Play

CM 150: Marc Brackett on Permission to Feel

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How can recognizing, understanding, and managing our emotions contribute to our happiness, success, and well-being?

Emotions play a big role in our lives. Yet, for most of us, they're viewed as something to ignore or overcome. For these reasons, we often have little experience identifying our feelings. We say we're stressed out, when what we may actually be feeling is frustration, anger, or even disappointment.

While the distinction between stress and frustration may seem slight, it's actually enormous. Marc Brackett, author of the book, Permission to Feel: Unlocking the Power of Emotions to Help Our Kids, Ourselves, and Our Society Thrive, explains: "Imagine how many of us...don't really have clarity about what we're feeling, and feel uncomfortable talking about those feelings, don't know how to regulate them. It's a disaster really. It's why so many people are unhappy."

Marc shares a tool to help us more accurately identify our emotions, so that we can work with them more effectively. This tool is part of a framework he's developed to help us live fuller and happier lives. He shares that his bigger goal for this work is to "create an emotion revolution," in order to "ensure that everyone has permission to feel."

Marc is the Founding Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and a professor in the Child Study Center at Yale University. He's published over a hundred scholarly articles on the role of emotions and emotional intelligence in learning, decision making, and performance, and he consults regularly with organizations like Facebook, Microsoft, and Google.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer and Editor, Rob Mancabelli, here. 

Episode Links

@marcbrackett

marcbrackett.com

RULER

Mood Meter

Emotional Agility by Susan David

Simple Ways to Support the Podcast

If you enjoy the podcast, there are three things you can do to support our work. First, subscribe so you'll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family about the podcast. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. 

Look for Curious Minds on:

Spotify

iTunes

Tunein

Stitcher

Google Play

Overcast

Dec 09 2019

36mins

Play

CM 149: Jamil Zaki on the Science of Empathy – Rebroadcast

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In a world where empathy is in decline, how can we learn to care more?

If you sense we're less empathetic today than decades past, you're right. Studies show there's been a 48 percent decline in empathy between 1979 and 2009. Though human beings are wired to care about each other, we need the right conditions for those feelings to grow.

Jamil Zaki, author of the book, The War for Kindness: Building Empathy in a Fractured World, argues that a shift to online interactions and urban living has made relationships more "narrow, transactional, and anonymous." He explains that in this kind of environment, it's "really not great soil for empathy to grow."

But there is hope. Jamil's research reveals that empathy is a skill we can develop through training and that this training can leave us feeling not only more empathetic, but also kinder. Dedicated practice can also change the brain. Jamil shares that it can grow "parts of the brain...associated with the experience of empathy."

Jamil Zaki is Professor of Psychology at Stanford University and Director of the Stanford Social Neuroscience Lab. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, and The Atlantic.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds' Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer and Editor, Rob Mancabelli, by clicking here.

Episode Links

@zakijam

The Influential Mind by Tali Sharot

Carol Dweck

Tania Singer

London taxi drivers and brain science

Gordon Allport

Contact hypothesis

Emile Bruneau

Nicholas Epley

When Cops Choose Empathy by Jamil Zaki

Jason A. Okonofua

Elizabeth Levy Paluck

Jeremy Bailenson

Eve Ekman

Kari Leibowitz

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Nov 25 2019

56mins

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CM 148: Adam Waytz on the Power of Human

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What if the very tech that connects us is taking away our need to interact?

Technology connects us to more people than ever before. Yet, as Adam Waytz, author of the book, The Power of Human: How Our Shared Humanity Can Help Us Create a Better World, points out, the data shows we're interacting with one another a whole lot less.

We can turn to our apps for restaurant recommendations and our social media platforms for insights into our friends' lives. And we can do all this without ever having to directly communicate with anyone. Adam believes this lack of human interaction is taking its toll. He contends that, "...people are becoming less engaged with each other, which then manifests in things like income inequality, political polarization...treating people as more members of a market economy...versus members of a community."

To counter these tendencies, he believes we need to bring more meaning to work. In particular, he recommends, "Getting people to think about the way their work impacts other people..." Doing so helps people "...feel like their work matters and ultimately make[s] them feel more human, even as we see automation creeping around us." 

Adam is an Associate Professor of Management and Organizations and a social psychologist at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. 

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds' Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by clicking here.

Episode Links

adamwaytz.com

What Money Can't Buy: The Moral Limit of Markets by Michael J. Sandel

Social Empathy: The Art of Understanding Others by Elizabeth Segal

Mistakenly Seeking Solitude by Nicholas Epley and Juliana Schroeder

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Nov 11 2019

42mins

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CM 147: Bina Venkataraman on How to Think Ahead

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How would our decision-making change if we shifted focus from the present to the future?

Instant gratification comes easily to us. But when we delay tackling long-term problems associated with things like, health, climate, or society, we cheat our future selves. Bina Venkataraman, author of the book, The Optimist's Telescope: Thinking Ahead in a Reckless Age, argues that it doesn't have to be this way.

Mining related research from the fields of biology, psychology, and economics, Bina shares steps we can take to make wiser decisions. For example, she invites us to look more closely at the kinds of data we're gathering. She explains, "So often we're measuring a lot of immediate results...And that's true whether you look at our sensors that track the steps we take, small fluctuations in temperature or the stock market, or test scores for kids in school." Yet, she argues that this kind of data is "not always a great proxy of what we actually want to accomplish in the long run."

Instead, she explains that it's when we telescope out that we see what's at stake. But only if we make it a habit to do so. And though it's a habit that's hard to master, Bina believes we have a choice. She shares, "we're actually not cursed to this recklessness...Is it going to be easy in every case? No. Can we do it right away? No. But the book is really a roadmap for how we do that as a society. And I think it's cause for a king of optimism, an engaged optimism." Ultimately, she exults, "we have the power to do things differently."

Bina Venkataraman is the incoming editorial page editor at The Boston Globe. She worked as a journalist for The New York Times and served as senior advisor for climate change innovation in the Obama White House.

The Host

You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by clicking here.

Episode Links

@binajv

Mental time travel

Hal Hershfield

Thomas Suddendorf

Farsighted: How We Make the Decisions that Matter the Most by Steven Johnson

Virtual Human Interaction Lab at Stanford University

Aging booth app

Elke Weber

Dear Tomorrow with Jill Kubit and Trisha Shrum

Vijay Mahajan

Walter Mischel

Implementation intention or if-then and Peter Gollwitzer

Ronnie Bardah

Eagle Capital Management

Pre-mortem

Social discount rate

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Oct 28 2019

50mins

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CM 146: Lindsey Pollak on the Multigenerational Workplace

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How does work change when we have five generations in the workplace at once?

For the first time in history, there are five different generations working alongside one another in the workplace. In some organizations, that makes for a potential 60-year age difference among employees and, for that reason alone, it makes sense that there might be generational divides and misunderstandings.

Lindsey Pollak, author of the book, The Remix: How to Lead and Succeed in the Multigenerational Workplace, is quick to point out that being born to a particular generation doesn't necessarily mean we'll feel the way we're depicted. In fact, she argues, "It doesn't guarantee that you will behave that way or that will be your personal preference." Yet she argues that the likelihood is high they'll hold similar perspectives because of the era in which they entered the workforce: "[there] will be common understandings."

Lindsey challenges us to rethink millennial stereotypes and reflexive views of older workers. For example, she talks about how leaders can reframe knee-jerk reactions to millennials' career aspirations, in order to respond more effectively. They can ask, "What are you eager for? Maybe it's leadership skills which I can help you get elsewhere without the next job. Maybe it's more learning and I can help you engage in training and development."

Lindsey has served as an official ambassador for LinkedIn, a Millennial workplace expert for The Hartford, and as chair of Cosmopolitan's Millennial Advisory Board. Lindsey is also author of the books, Getting from College to Career: Your Essential Guide to Succeeding in the Real World and Becoming the Boss: New Rules for the Next Generation of Leaders.

The Host

Head here to learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli.

Episode Links

@lindseypollak

Wisdom at Work: The Making of a Modern Elder by Chip Conley

The 100-Year Life by Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott

Neil Howe and William Strauss -- Generational Theory

Lindsey Pollak TEDx Talk: It's about Time We Stop Shaming Millennials

Project Oxygen: re:Work

User Manuals and Workplace Teams and How to Create a Personal User Manual

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Oct 14 2019

56mins

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CM 145: Susan Schneider on the Future of Your Mind

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What does artificial intelligence mean for the future of machine consciousness and the human mind?
Every week, artificial intelligence is playing a bigger role in the products that we use. Think of Siri, Alexa, Netflix and Spotify. But are we seriously considering what the future holds when it comes to the role AI will play in our lives?
Susan Schneider, author of the book, Artificial You: AI and the Future of Your Mind, asks the questions that companies often don’t. Among those discussed in this interview are: Could AIs become conscious? and, What does it really mean for humans to merge with AIs using brain implants or other devices? In this interview, she shares her concerns: “If you enhance your brain in radical ways would you still be you, or would you basically be changing yourself in such incredibly radical ways that you are no longer the same person you were before?”
Susan believes we should be asking these kinds of questions now, before these technologies become mainstream. She argues that if we don’t, important aspects of human life may be decided by people who design first and ask questions later. She says, “Think of Anthony Hopkins’ character in Westworld. In a way he’s a consciousness engineer. He made decisions, together with other characters, to create or not create sentient beings.”
Susan Schneider is a philosopher and cognitive scientist. Currently, she’s the NASA Chair at the Library of Congress and the Director of the AI, Mind and Society Group at the University of Connecticut. Her work has been featured in the New York Times, The Financial Times, Scientific American, and Smithsonian. Her books include The Language of Thought, The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness, and Science Fiction and Philosophy.
The Host
Head here to learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli.
Episode Links
@DrSueSchneider
Singularity
Transhumanism
Ray Kurzweil
Philosophical zombie
John Searle
Chinese Room thought experiment
NASA, Astrobiology and Paul Davies, Seth Shostak, and Steven Dick
A Human's Guide to Machine Intelligence by Karthik Hosanagar
Superintelligence by Nick Bostrom
Derek Parfit
The Postbiological Universe by Dr. Steven Dick, NASA
The Mind is the Software of the Brain by Ned Block
Merging with AI Would Be Suicide for the Human Mind by Susan Schneider, FT
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Sep 30 2019

37mins

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CM 144: Sari Wilde On The Connector Manager

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Is there a certain type of leader whose management approach gets more from their teams?Gartner, a research and advisory firm, recently conducted a study of thousands of managers and employees. They wanted to find out if there were certain types of management practices that had the greatest impact on employee growth and development. In this interview, Sari Wilde, co-author of the book, The Connector Manager: Why Some Leaders Built Exceptional Talent – and Others Don’t, shares their findings.
Sari explains that what the researchers learned surprised them: not only did one management type have an outsize impact, but it was also a type they never would have predicted. They named it the Connector Manager. According to Sari, this type of leader not only provides targeted feedback and coaching, but also readily “connects employees to others, either within the team, or across the organization, who might be better suited to provide the right kind of coaching and development.”
Sari also shares key characteristics of Connector Managers, as well as some of the tools they use in their work. For example, she describes one tool managers can use to assess employee motivation. It’s one Sari found so insightful that she used it with her team. Today, it frames how they do their work: “[The team’s] top five motivators were things like growth, achievement, transparency, inclusion, so that has changed the way that I communicate, the way I run my team meetings.”
Sari is a
Managing Vice President at Gartner where she leads global teams focused on
creating research and products to improve outcomes. She’s been studying
organizations for more than 15 years, advising executives at hundreds of
Fortune 500 companies on their leadership and talent management practices.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
The Fearless Organization by Amy Edmondson
Sari Levine Wilde
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Sep 16 2019

42mins

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CM 143: Paul Tough on How College Makes or Breaks Us

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Does college have a greater impact on the lives we lead than we ever imagined?
Is college still a tool for upward mobility or is the system engineered to advance the wealthy? Paul Tough, author of the book, The Years that Matter Most: How College Makes or Breaks Us, answers this question and more. For example, he explains differences in how many rich and poor students choose their colleges and how those choices impact lifetime earnings. He also discusses how financial aid really works: “College wants us to think that financial aid is this very linear process where colleges decide who they want to admit, and then they give them the aid that they need and it’s a very straightforward process….But that’s not true.”
Though he
discusses how the system of higher education is broken, he also offers insights
on how to fix it. He explains that a hundred years ago, the U.S. government saw
how technological advances made it necessary for young people to have a high
school education to compete for jobs. They tackled that problem by creating a
system of free, public high schools. Paul sees parallels today: “Clearly a high
school degree is not enough to compete in the current labor marketplace….Kids
need more education. But we have not … pulled together to say well we’re going
to solve that problem. Instead we’re saying to these young people, you’re on
your own.”
Paul is a contributing writer to New York Times Magazine where he’s written extensively about parenting, education, poverty, and politics. His writing has also appeared in the New Yorker, the Atlantic, Esquire, and on the op-ed page of the New York Times. Paul’s previous books include: Helping Children Succeed: What Works and Why, and How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@paultough
Raj Chetty and article about him: The Economist Who Would Fix the American Dream
Caroline Hoxby and articles on her work: The College Board Tried a Simple, Cheap, Research-Backed Way to Push Low-Income Kids into Better Colleges. It Didn’t Work and The Nudges That Didn’t Work
Anthony A. Jack and his book: The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges are Failing Disadvantaged Students
Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Perez
David Laude and his interventions to support college students at the University of Texas
The High School Movement in the U.S.
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podcast.
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Sep 09 2019

55mins

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CM 142: Steve Magness on Finding Your Passion

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What if advice we get to “follow your passion” is more complicated that it seems?
Steve Magness is co-author with Brad Stulberg of the book, The Passion Paradox: A Guide to Going All In, Finding Success, and Discovering the Benefits of an Unbalanced Life. Steve coaches some of the world’s top distance runners and has propelled numerous athletes to Olympic trials, world championship teams, and the Olympics. He has been a featured expert in Runner’s World and the New York Times.
When faced
with the choice of what to do with our lives, we’re often told, “follow your
passion.” Steve believes this advice can be overwhelming, incomplete, and,
ultimately, defeating. That’s why he and Brad decided to study the topic. They
wanted to demystify it. Along the way, they learned that passion not only fuels
big accomplishments, but it can also be problematic. They share that, “passion
and addiction are close cousins.”
In this
interview, Steve shares ways to develop our passion and insights on how failure
can play a role in our search. He also gives tips on how to sustain our passion
for the long haul by doing things like focusing on what we can control, rather
than what our competitors are doing. He contends, “We can’t control what other
people do and where that bar is. But what we can control is making the
comparison point a previous version of yourself.”
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net
Episode Links
@stevemagness and https://www.scienceofrunning.com/
@BStulberg and https://www.bradstulberg.com/
Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein
Instead of “Finding Your Passion,” Try Developing It, Stanford Scholars Say
Les Passions de l’Ame: On Obsessive and Harmonious Passion
Shalane Flanagan
Obey the 24-Hour Rule
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Aug 19 2019

40mins

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CM 141: David Robson on the Intelligence Trap

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What if our IQ
scores reveal far less about intelligence and reasoning than we think?
We often assume that people with high IQ scores are more intelligent. We may even believe they’re able to think more critically and make wiser decisions. But is that true?
In this interview, David Robson, author of the book, The Intelligence Trap: Why Smart People Make Dumb Mistakes, reveals that people with high IQ scores can actually be more prone to mental mistakes and that they don’t necessarily make wise decisions. He compares their intelligence to a car with a fast engine and tremendous power that, without “…a GPS, and good steering and reliable brakes…could actually be quite dangerous. It can drive you in the wrong direction. It can drive you off a cliff. It could just drive you around in circles.”
David explains the origins and limitations of IQ testing, particularly how it overlooks other forms of intelligence, like creative, practical, and cultural intelligence. He also shares the evolutionary dynamics that explain poor decision making, as well as the advantages of measuring people’s ability to engage in wise reasoning: “The wise reasoning scores were actually very good at predicting how happy [people] were, how likely they were to suffer from depression, whether they were satisfied with the people around them – you know all of these really important things in their life.”
David is an award-winning science journalist who specializes in psychology, neuroscience, and medicine. He was a features editor at New Scientist and is currently a senior journalist at BBC Future. His writing has also appeared in The Guardian, The Sydney Morning Herald, and The Atlantic.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@d_a_robson
davidrobson.me
Kary Mullis
Lewis Terman
Flynn effect
Robert Sternberg
Cultural Intelligence and Soon Ang
Keith Stanovich and dysrationalia
Daniel Kahneman
Dan Kahan
Curse of knowledge
Farsighted by Steven Johnson
Igor Grossmann and wise reasoning
Philip E.Tetlock and superforecasting
Silvia Mamede
Adam Galinsky
Richard Feynman
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Aug 05 2019

54mins

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CM 140: Elizabeth Segal on Why We Need Social Empathy

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How is our lack of social
empathy affecting millions of people in surprising, unexpected ways?
To maintain and deepen our relationships with other individuals, we need empathy. To craft policies that effectively serve entire groups, we need what Elizabeth Segal, author of the book, Social Empathy: The Art of Understanding Others, refers to as social empathy.
Yet for most of us, social empathy is a blind spot, one with often devastating consequences when it comes to public policies in areas like, education, healthcare, and politics. For example, Elizabeth points to Hurricane Katrina as an example of how a lack of social empathy delayed fixing the collapsed levees: “The public policies were never put in place because the people who had the power to make those policies didn’t live in those neighborhoods, particularly the poorest neighborhoods.”
To
counter this blind spot, Elizabeth explains that we need to understand what
social empathy is and how it operates. In this interview, she shares how our
biology and experiences influence and shape this capacity, along with what we
can do to cultivate it. For example, she describes a teaching experience that
sparked social empathy in her students: “They started to learn in a small way
that life is different when you’re poor than when you’re not.”
Elizabeth is Professor of Social Work at Arizona State University. She’s also author of the book, Social Welfare Policy and Social Programs: A Values Perspective, and co-author of Assessing Empathy.
The Team
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
Outgroup Bias
The Power of Human by Adam Waytz
The War for Kindness by Jamil Zaki
How Toyota Turns Workers into Problem Solvers by Sarah Jane Johnston
Social Empathy Center
Support the Podcast
If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you’ll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You’ll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You’ll be helping listeners find their next podcast.
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Jul 30 2019

39mins

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CM 139: Kat Holmes on the Power of Inclusive Design

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What if you design a product or service that prevents certain people from using it?
These kinds of mismatches are everywhere: a computer mouse that works only for the right-handed; credit-card-only payment systems that exclude those without credit; and even game controllers for gamers who can’t use their hands.
Inclusive design advocate, Kat Holmes, explains, “The design of the controller is an indicator of who gaming is for and who it is not for…to think that one little piece of plastic shaped in a particular way is a gateway requirement to who can and can’t participate…starts to become a really absurd idea.”
When this kind of exclusionary design scales, it can shape entire industries and markets. And for many designers, these outcomes are unintended. That's why Kat Holmes, UX designer and author of the book Mismatch: How Inclusion Shapes Design, is a champion of inclusive design. In fact, she's developed a framework for design teams, so that more people can participate.
Kat argues that inclusive design should be a priority, not an afterthought. In addition to all the ways it helps people, it’s often been a smart business decision. To that end, Kat shares all the ways design teams can make this an ongoing part of the creative process: “…whether it’s the team…the work environment, the tools…the assumptions, all of these things are…opportunities for either balancing towards exclusion or towards inclusion.”
Kat served as Principal Director of Inclusive Design at Microsoft and in 2017 was named one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business. Today she serves as Director of User Experience Design at Google.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@katholmes
The Laws of Simplicity by John Maeda
World Health Organization on disabilities
John Porter, UX Designer at Microsoft
Susan Goltsman and the Emergence of Inclusive Design
A Brief History of Closed Captioning (it all started with Julia Child)
Pellogrino Turri and The Technology of Compassion
Vint Cerf
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Jul 08 2019

50mins

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CM 138: Caroline Criado Perez on Invisible Women

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What’s the
cost when women are left out of healthcare, education, and public policy data?
Data drives decision making in critical areas. Yet, in most cases, as Caroline Criado Perez, author of the book, Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men, points out, women are simply absent from the data.
Why is this?
Because we operate in a world where deeply ingrained cultural biases treat men
as the data default and women as the exception. Caroline explains, “If we look
at politics . . . news media . . . films, women represent about 20 percent of
the people we see and hear about. . . we are taking in that information and
thinking that this is what the world looks like. . . it creates this sense in
our heads that we don’t have to collect data on women.”
This data gap
leads to bad decisions with devastating consequences. What’s even more shocking
is that these gaps are hidden in plain sight, in places where it would seem
like gender couldn’t possibly matter.
For example,
when one Swedish town studied which roads got cleared first following a
snowstorm, they were surprised to learn their decisions were based on male
commuting patterns. The result was that women were getting hurt, and the town
was losing money. Caroline reveals that . . . “the cost of the accident and
emergency admission was three times the cost of the winter road maintenance.
And just by doing this simple switch of the order in which they do the snow
clearing, that cost went down dramatically.”
Caroline Criado Perez is a writer, broadcaster, and feminist activist and was named Liberty Human Rights Campaigner of the Year. Her first book was titled, Do It Like a Woman.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
Pierre Bourdieu
Why Sweden Clears Snow-Covered Walkways Before Roads by Angie Schmitt
The Work that Makes Work Possible by Anne-Marie Slaughter
Women Lack Access to Private Toilets Around the World
Do the Math: Include Women in Government Budgets
Gender Budgeting in OECD Countries
Why Women Are No Longer Catching Up to Men on Pay by Ben Casselman
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Jun 26 2019

51mins

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CM 137: David DeSteno on Emotions that Lead to Success

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What if
achieving our goals is not about willpower but about gratitude, compassion and
pride?
It’s natural
to experience negative emotions, like discouragement, frustration, and even
fear when we’re working on something hard. And every time these feelings arise,
we may be tempted to overcome them with willpower. But rather than dismissing
our emotions, what if we put them to work on our behalf?
In this interview, David DeSteno, author of the book, Emotional Success: The Power of Gratitude, Compassion, and Pride, explains: “Emotions push people to do hard things. And if we’re not utilizing those tools in the right way, we’re kind of fighting this battle with one hand tied behind our back.”
In
particular, the three emotions David champions are gratitude, compassion and
pride. He explains that they not only fuel perseverance, but also “…reduce
people’s blood pressure. There’s evidence they will help you sleep better at
night. They will increase immune responses. In general, they basically act to
destress the body.”
David is a Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University and a Fellow of the American Psychological Association where he served as editor in chief of the journal, Emotion. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Atlantic.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@daviddesteno
http://www.davedesteno.com/ and his Social Emotions Lab at Northeastern University
Psychologist Walter Mischel
The Grateful Don’t Cheat: Gratitude as a Fount of Virtue by David DeSteno, Fred Duong, Daniel Lim, and Shanyu Kates
Hal Hershfield
Episode 124 with Liz Fosslien on Emotions at Work on her book
Tom Denson, Professor at UNSW in Sydney; he studies aggression
David Brooks and resume vs eulogy virtues
When Students Feel They Belong, They Thrive by G. M. Walton and G. L. Cohen
Classroom Belonging and Student Performance in the Introductory Engineering Classroom
Nilanjana Dasgupta, Social Psychologist at UMass Amherst
Simple Ways to Support the Podcast
If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you’ll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You’ll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You’ll be helping listeners find their next podcast.
Some Places Where You Can Find Curious Minds
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Overcast

Jun 13 2019

55mins

Play

CM 136: Jamil Zaki On The Science Of Empathy

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In a world where
empathy is in decline, how can we learn to care more?
If you’re sensing
that people are less empathetic today than decades ago, your instincts would be
right. We are. Though human beings are wired to care about each other, we need
the right conditions for those feelings to grow.
Jamil Zaki, author of the book, The War for Kindness: Building Empathy in a Fractured World, argues that an increase in online interactions and urban living has made relationships more “…narrow, transactional, and anonymous.” He explains that in this kind of environment, it’s “…really not great soil for empathy to grow.”  
His research
reveals that empathy is a skill we can develop through training and that this training
can leave people feeling not only more empathetic, but also kinder. In
addition, Jamil shares that this kind of training can change the brain, that it
can grow “…parts of the brain often associated with the experience of empathy.”
Jamil is Professor of Psychology at Stanford University and Director of the Stanford Social Neuroscience Lab. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, and The Atlantic.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@zakijam
The Influential Mind by Tali Sharot
Carol Dweck
Tania Singer
London taxi drivers and brain science
Gordon Allport
Contact hypothesis
Emile Bruneau
Nicholas Epley
When Cops Choose Empathy by Jamil Zaki
Jason A. Okonofua
Elizabeth Levy Paluck
Jeremy Bailenson
Intensive Care Nursey UCSF
Eve Ekman, Ph.D., MSW
Kari Leibowitz
Simple Ways to Support the Podcast
If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you’ll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You’ll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You’ll be helping listeners find their next podcast.
Look for the Curious Minds podcast on:
Spotify
iTunes
Tunein
Stitcher
Google Play
Overcast

Jun 03 2019

55mins

Play

CM 135: David Epstein On Generalists Over Specialists

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Can we achieve greater success in life by choosing to generalize rather than to specialize?
If you want to be the best at something, the story goes something like this: Begin as early as you can. Focus on nothing else. And practice as if your life depends on it. It’s the story we associate with sports heroes and chess grandmasters.
But David Epstein, author of the book, Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World, argues that this story is incomplete. It never mentions the fact that activities like chess and golf take place in “kind” learning environments, where learners have perfect information, operate with clear goals, and experience immediate feedback. In contrast, most of us operate in what are called “wicked” environments. There, as David explains, “…not all information is clear. People don’t wait for each other to take turns. . . Goals may be unclear. Feedback may be intermittent, nonexistent . . . it may be inaccurate and it may be delayed.”
David also reveals that many top performers were not, in fact, specialists from an early age. They were generalists who took the time to explore multiple paths, and many delayed choosing a focus until they found the right fit: “They pinballed around . . . They didn’t focus on the long term . . . Instead, they said here’s who I am right now, here are the skills I have, here’s what I want to learn, here are the opportunities in front of me right now…”
David has worked as an investigative reporter for ProPublica and a senior writer for Sports Illustrated. His first book was the bestseller, The Sports Gene.
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
David Epstein and Malcolm Gladwell on 10,000 Hours vs The Sports Gene
What the Childhood Years of Tiger Woods and Roger Federer Can Teach Us about Success by David Epstein
The Two Settings of Kind and Wicked Learning Environments by Robin M. Hogarth, Tomas Lejarraga, and Emre Soyer
Gary A. Klein
Daniel Kahneman on adversarial collaborations
Flynn effect
Does Professor Quality Matter? Evidence from Random Assignment of Students to Professors by Scott E. Carrell and James E. West
Recent Research on Human Learning Challenges Conventional Instructional Strategies by Doug Rohrer and Harold Pashler on spacing, interleaving and testing
Structure Mapping in Analogy and Similarity by Dedre Gentner and Arthur B. Markman
Integrated Science Program at Northwestern University
Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader by Herminia Ibarra
Beware the “Inside View” by Daniel Kahneman
Here is What It Takes to Become a CEO, According to 12,000 LinkedIn Profiles
How Scientists Think by Kevin Dunbar
Drop Your Tools: An Allegory for Organizational Studies by Karl E. Weick
You Don’t Want a Child Prodigy by David Epstein on headstarts and falling behind
The Darkhorse Project
What You’ll Wish You’d Known by Paul Graham includes concept of premature optimization
Research: The Average Age of a Successful Startup Founder is 45 by Pierre Azoulay, Benjamin Jones, J. Daniel Kim, and Javier Miranda
Jhumpa Lahiri on Writing in Italian by Cressida Leyshon
Simple Ways to Support the Podcast
If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you’ll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You’ll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You’ll be helping listeners find their next podcast.
Look for the Curious Minds podcast on:
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iTunes
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Overcast

May 27 2019

1hr 9mins

Play

CM 134: Brian Gunia on a Fresh Approach to Negotiation

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What if we entered
negotiations with the goal of benefitting both sides, not just ours?
For many, the word negotiation conjures up images of a heated exchange, of master manipulators, expert wordsmiths, and of winners and losers. Victors earn the spoils by outsmarting opponents and preying on their weaknesses. It’s a daunting picture.
But Brian Gunia, author of the book, The Bartering Mindset: A Mostly Forgotten Framework for Mastering Your Next Negotiation, shows that this mindset is not only short-sighted, but can also be ineffective. He argues that we’d be much more successful – and enjoy the negotiation process more – if we spent as much time thinking of the other person’s needs as our own. He encourages us to “…think about negotiations not as opportunities to fight with the other side about one fixed outcome, like money, but as the opportunity to find issues to trade things with the other side that benefit both of us at the same time.”
Brian is an Associate Professor at Johns Hopkins University’s Carey Business School. His research has been featured in publications like Fast Company, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The New Yorker. In this interview, he shares his five-step process for applying a bartering mindset to our next negotiation and explains why it works: “…negotiators who spend more time and make more of an effort to figure out what’s going on in the other side’s head, tend to do a lot better.”
The Host
You can learn more about Curious Minds Host and Creator, Gayle Allen, and Producer, Rob Mancabelli, by visiting @CuriousGayle and www.gayleallen.net.
Episode Links
@briangunia
Mindwise by Nicholas Epley
Distributive versus integrative negotiation
Double coincidence of wants
Multiple equivalent simultaneous offers (MESOs) and their benefits
Simple Ways to Support the Podcast
If you enjoy the podcast, there are three simple ways you can support our work. First, subscribe so you’ll never miss an episode. Second, tell a friend or family member. You’ll always have someone to talk to about the interview. Third, rate and review the podcast wherever you subscribe. You’ll be helping listeners find their next podcast.
A Short List of Places Where You Can Find Curious Minds:
Spotify
iTunes
Tunein
Stitcher
Google Play
Overcast

May 16 2019

42mins

Play

iTunes Ratings

416 Ratings
Average Ratings
299
110
3
1
3

Great podcast with inspiring ideas!

By K.S.M.Phanindra - Aug 22 2018
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The length and the details covered are perfect for me. Very informative discussions!

Awesome show!!

By mjp111111 - Jul 31 2017
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Gayle Allen is a fantastic interviewer!!!! Love this podcast!!!!!