Terrifying Longing

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings argues that their primary competitor isn't HBO or Disney+.

It's sleep.

In a world with unlimited content, there are no longer barriers to finding amazing books, articles, movies, podcasts, and TV shows to fill your time. Now the constraint is the amount of available time you have to experience it.

Once you've filled your time, it's tempting to start sacrificing your sleep. But that's not a sustainable solution when your options are bottomless.

Instead we have to pick the things that most resonate with us, and let go of the rest.

David Brooks gives us a strategy for making these curatorial decisions:

If you want to win the war for attention, don’t try to say β€˜no’ to the trivial distractions you find on the information smorgasbord; try to say β€˜yes’ to the subject that arouses a terrifying longing, and let the terrifying longing crowd out everything else.

That longing is a useful guide for making decisions in many other areas as well.


Reflections on creating systems to sustainably grow your impact on the world.
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