it’s your turn

it's your turn

[book links to amazon – where i got the image]


al gave me a copy. it’s lovely. good timing. deep gratitude. al. seth. et al.



p. 5:


we want to know how to pigeonhole every idea and every book so we can move on and click. please, wait. let it simmer. it might not be for you, but at least this time, postpone the relief of resolution. this is your opportunity to make something that matters.

p. 13:

broken escalator theory… this book is about…. realizing that it’s your turn, always your turn, and understanding that once you see the opportunity, it’s yours. most of all, it’s about freedom and our almost automatic insistence of avoiding it at all costs.

p. 15:

liberate yourself from the need to be right.

p. 17:

the fear of stupidity… a scientist make work ten years on solving a problem of math or logic or biology. or a lifetime. and until the problem is solved, she’s stupid. and then she isn’t. which is all fine, actually. the problem comes with the emotion that we’re supposed to feel when we feel stupid: fear. we are supposed to be afraid of stupid, to get stupid over with as soon as we can. change, of course, makes everyone fell stupid, because change breaks all the old rules, inventing new ones, rules we don’t know (yet).

utopia of rules

p. 34:

a bird in search of a cage… so much freedom, so much choice, so many opportunities to matter. and yet, our cultural instinct is to find a place to hold us, a spot where we are safe from the obligation and the opportunity to choose. because if we choose, then we are responsible, aren’t we? the cage keeps us in, certainly, but it also keeps everything else out. it protects us from a world that we’e decided offers pitfalls, not opportunities. Kafka wrote about the cage in search of a bird, a trap that was incomplete until it had found something to trap. but the revers is more true, and sadder still. we’re often birds that are unhappy until we find a cage that takes away our freedom.


p. 35:

we fail to notice because we’re busy keeping busy. we fail to dream because dreaming implies that we have to take a risk to realize our dream. we fail to connect because we might get rejected. and we fail to do because we haven’t noticed, we haven’t dreamed, and we haven’t connected.

detox as detox

p. 41:

… if you need reassurance, you will certainly suffer.

antifragile ness

p. 50:

that delay, the hallway, the moment of indecision, the time when we get it and don’t get it at the same time, that’s what freedom feels like.

p. 51:

resolution relieves tension, and we’ve been taught that tension is a bad thing…. we want, most of all, for the silence to end… the silence of sitting and wondering. the silence of ‘what happens next?’ it’s been replace by the cheap thrill of ‘what happens now?’…. what happens to your work if you’re able to wait a little longer?

p. 53:

we’ve been so terrified into believing in the importance of preparation that it’s spilled over into that other realm, the realm of life where we have no choice but to be unprepared.  if you demand that everything that happens be something you are adequately prepared for, we wonder if you’ve chosen never to leap in ways that we need you to leap.

no prep ness

the book that will most change your life is the book you write.

commonplace book – document everything ness. a book you are always writing.. but/and it will never be written…

p. 57: turns out that the misfit, the fifth hammer (pythagorus finding tone from 4+1 hammers) was the secret to the entire sound. it worked precisely because it wasn’t perfect, precisely because it added grit and resonance to a system that would have been flaccid without it. .. the harmonies of crosby, still, nash and young worked best because of neil young. because his voice wasn’t quite right. because he’s a loose cannon his sound is not quite right, so it works….. the fifth hammer is the one that’s not proven, obvious or beyond discussion.

p. 79:

a genius is the one most like himself – thelonius monk… don’t play everything..

eu\daimon\ia ness

p. 80:

there’s a fundamental difference between being ready and being prepared. you are more prepared than you realize. you probably aren’t ready, and you can’t be ready, not if you’re doing something worthwhile. because we always do our best work and take our turn before we’re ready.

p. 101:

… the productive artist refuses to incur an artistic obligation. she acts as though the audience doesn’t owe her anything, and forgiving them in advance gives her the freedom to make the work she needs to make. the flipside, though, is also true. the productive artist *must act as if she owes the audience, and in unlimited measure.

or rather.. *she can’t not.. because (via Seth in linchpin) if it’s truly her art – she would do anything to give it away.

p. 103:

the nature of a gift. the best gift requires little of the recipient… here, i made this. do with it what you will.

radical econ ness

p. 105:

… mutual promises drive our culture. but this transaction focus robs us of our ability to crete true gifts, and worse, it gives us a place to hie. we can say, “they don’t get it, they won’t do it, they didn’t come through.” most of all, we say, “they don’t deserve it.” and so we back off and start complying instead of creating…. miles davis sometimes performed with his back to the audience- he was letting them go, forgiving them, playing to play, not for applause. …. you got to make it. that’s your compensation. you got to take your tun. you dared. that’s enough.

p. 109:

we don’t need badges… we need thirst.

p. 112: thing that separates successful students from unsuccessful students.. being thirsty enough

spot on – but with caution to citing this within student/teacher/school/parent/child relationships.. because it matters who decides what you’re thirsting after..  ie: the 99% of those that signed up for and quit a mooc were thirsting for learning – and (perhaps) lost that thirst when they found it was still a packaged/compulsory deal..

p. 118:

.. of course, it’s true, dorothy, you’ve had the slipper on your fee all along, haven’t you?  – oz

p. 123:

there is a moment between the time it’s good enough and the time you ship. that is the hallway, as you walk from the dressing room to the stage. .. your willingness to use this moment to put your full self into the most generous, vulnerable work you’re capable of creating.

p. 124:

why trade away certainty, certainty that’s so incredibly difficult to find? people who are open to uncertainty are the pathfinders for the rest of us…. we stare at them with admiration and shower them with opportunities and gratitude… not because they take big risks, but because they are willing to live with not knowing.

embracing uncertainty, vulnerability in context

p. 127:

wouldn’t it be great if we lived in a world where insecurity and desperation made us more attractive:  – broadcast news

p. 145:

to be an artist is be on the hook.. to take your turn.. to do things that might not work.. to seek connection.. to embrace generosity first.. to take responsibility.. to change someone.. to be human…

art. free art\ists

p. 146:

you don’t do improv once you figure out what to say. you do improv and then you are able to say something.


p. 150:

don’t listen. your customers teachers and peers don’t actually know what they want. if they did they’d build it or buy it instead of waiting for you to show up and take your turn. steve jobs didn’t listen to customers asking for the ipod and the iphone. they’re weren’t any. .. when we listen, we’re giving ourselves a safety net, doing work that’s easy to excuse, because, of course, it was someone else’s idea.. we need your idea, please.

of listening to the human heart in the first place.. and ongoingly…   2 needs ness.. deep enough. but also seeing .. that many people are intoxicated (manufacturing consent ness), without their shell, so that they don’t know what they’re seeking to fill the hole. ish. perhaps.

regardless of who knows what.. the best thing you can be (for the world) is you. you’re the only one that can do that. listen to that.

always wait thirty minutes after swimming. tell the others.


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