If you – like someone else on the Spring team :coughSandicough: – recently welcomed a dog into your home and are now suddenly A Person Who Has Time for Podcasts, our reading list this month has a beautiful series about Fred Rogers that’s perfect to start the new decade with. If you like the first episode, check out this one on Helping the Helpers too.
When you’re back home and ready to read with your eyes instead of your ears, this month’s list includes a masterpiece on the tradeoffs we make in life, ideas for ethical consumption, including a reminder that with great (purchasing) power comes great responsibility (thanks Spidey), and a moving and practical reflection on inheritances from our friend Jason Heath, who recently lost his mother much too soon.
Other entries to this month’s reading list include how to give an inheritance today while you’re still around to enjoy the act of giving, how to read in a way that opens you up to new ways of thinking (instead of reinforcing your existing mindset), an anecdote from Jason Zweig’s overconfident youth that, uh, left us feeling a bit seen, and interesting research out of the University of California on the power of direct cash transfers in alleviating poverty.
From Shane Parrish
“If you feel like you’re always behind on some area of your life, it’s probably a sign to reconsider tradeoffs. If you feel like you’re always running in place without making any serious progress on anything you care about, you’re probably making the wrong tradeoffs. We often end up allocating our time, and other scarce resources like money, by default, not in the way that gets us what we want.”
Read the full article here.
“The plain and simple fact of the matter is that the most ethical form of consumption is sparing, rare. When you make fewer decisions to buy things, you can be more intentional about those decisions, more deliberate in how and what you buy….
“Ethical consumption is generally a goal for the privileged among us. And while we should all do what we can when it comes to preserving the environment and shutting down exploitative labor practices, the key phrase there is what we can. Some of us can do more than others.”
Read the full article here.
You can read this month’s entire list below, and browse through past lists here.
“What made Fred Rogers, a sweet kid from Pennsylvania who played with puppets and spoke to his fish, the most important children’s performer of all time. And why are turning to him now, in 2019 when the world feels dark, for a kind of clarity that we can’t seem to find elsewhere.
The answer turns out to be, like Fred preferred, simple and profound.”
On gifting cash or assets during one’s lifetime as an alternative method of distributing your wealth and possibly avoid taxes at the time of death.
“If you only pick up books you know with certainty you’re going to like you’ll confine yourself to reading the same authors on the same topics. It gives fresh oxygen to confirmation bias and limits your ability to connect the dots between different fields and different cultures.”
“I try not to be sure of much, but I am sure of this: The only thing more ridiculous than a know-it-all is a know-it-all who doesn’t know how ridiculous he is.”
“A wealth of research suggests that when families are given the power to decide how to spend it, they manage the money in ways that improve their overall well-being.”