What does the New Year mean to you?
As New Kind’s own David Burney recently wrote, “we at New Kind have a special affection for the celebration of the New Year. Inherent in our name is a promise to challenge convention and the status quo. To remain open and curious. To learn and grow.”
We’ve been curiously reading a variety of articles on the subject of resolutions to explore different approaches to greeting a new year. What’s inspiring people to take on the potential for growth and new creativity in 2015? There’s certainly no magic formula for personal and professional growth. Some take an ‘anti-resolution’ approach, while others search for a “question that’s bold and engaging enough to keep you working on it through the New Year.”
We decided to start by asking a few questions to our team: what are you reading, thinking, and hoping for in 2015? What skills are you building? And what is your “beautiful question” for the year?
Through the rest of January, we’re excited to share some thoughts from this simple exercise that we hope might inspire conversation with all of you about our shared hopes and dreams for the year ahead. We hope you’ll share your approach to taking the New Year by storm. What’s inspiring you in 2015?
So we’ll start by sharing what we’re reading. Because the way we see it, reading widely broadens our perspective and breeds new ideas:
Elise: I Am a Strange Loop by Douglas Hofstadter, which examines the concept of “I.” Doug says, “In the end, we are self-perceiving, self-inventing, locked-in mirages that are little miracles of self-reference.” Perhaps! Also The Omnivores Dilemma, by Michael Pollen—a mind blowing exploration of where our food comes from.
Nation: Factory Man: How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local – and Helped Save an American Town by Beth Macy. Factory Man is about John Bassett III, the company his family founded, and the town that grew up around the factories. At the core, the book is about the impacts of globalization on rural, Southern towns and lives that were impacted profoundly by big policy shifts.
I read multiple books at once so I am also reading Napoleon: A Life by Andrew Roberts which encourages you to reconsider the Napoleon that you grew up with and which shares many of his lessons of leadership; The Language of Food: A Linguist Reads the Menu by Dan Jurafsky which is about understanding the mysteries of the foods that we think we know; and I am about to start Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel which is about a civilization in collapse and the potential of art to save it.
Marie: Currently: Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Story of Paul Farmer. He was a major player in developing the global public health field and important dialogues around it. He led a movement! In line next: planning to dive into some ancient greats on human behavior: Jung, Freud and others!
Tom: Currently: The Innovators by Walter Isaacson (the same guy who wrote the Steve Jobs biography). This book tells the story of the people behind computers and the internet. (Chris is reading this too!)
Chris: Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel for work. For fun, I just finished A Brief History of Seven Killings: A Novel by Marlon James, a fictional account of the events surrounding the rise of Bob Marley in Jamaica and The Noble Hustle: Poker, Beef Jerky, and Death by Colson Whitehead, about one man’s adventure participating in the World Series of Poker.
Hannah: Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation by Michael Pollan. It’s an exploration of the four classical elements (fire, water, air, and earth) and their role in cooking–a subject I know absolutely nothing about
And now we want to hear from you! What are you reading now? What from your reading list inspires you most? Tweet @newkind or share your thoughts on Facebook.