We all eat pizza all the time. In good times and also in the bad times. When she doesn’t want to cook or you don’t want to cook yourself.
Pizza Hut was found in Michigan in 1958 and Domino’s in Michigan in 1960.
They slowly gained customer base with regular innovations and efforts.
In 2010s Domino’s invested heavily in digital infrastructure and slowly overtook pizza hut in terms of revenues.
It invested in digital media for ordering and delivering it’s pizza. It used data gathered this way to its advantage. It gathered ideas from customer feedbacks. It made its digital data driven network.
It won the battle from pizza hut and little outlets.
But then came new startups.
Last mile meal delivery apps.
Ubereats. Zomato. Swiggy. Doordash.
They delivered all types of food that may be ordered daily; as compared to pizza which is eaten once in a while.
And whoosh there is a new battle at the hands.
Hence companies have to adapt continuosly to emerging rapid competition.
They should try to prepare vertically integrated digital data network that benefits from client’s data with time. And hope to become one of the two main competitors in a particular segment of business.
Inspiration – Everybody wants to rule the world by R Wang.
Duopoly in business means that in every business sector; there are two dominant companies who share majority of the revenues.
One is leader with 60-70% marketshare.
Second is a company with 25-30% share.
All other players fight for remaining 20-25% share.
Internet search market has Google and Baidu.
Social media has Facebook and Twitter.
Software App market has Apple and Google.
Retail has Amazon and flipkart.
MasterCard and Visa.
Boeing and Airbus.
Coke and Pepsi.
This pattern seems to emerge in every market.
This is due to winner take it all mechanism that works to slowly focus earnings in one or two bigger pots.
This however may be counterproductive for economy as a whole and for average customer. With time big companies get extremely strong and excercise great control over their earning margins and bargaining power of customers falls.
Here policy makers need to step in to stop unfair practices that sprout as power of giant the companies rise.
A modern human being is obsessed about profits and bank balances and hence, easily forgets about real wealth, that a man can desire and achieve.
A healthy body with a healthy mind is the most precious thing one can achieve.
Everyday, every human on the face of the earth does a thing which is most undervalued and neglected; inspite of being a absolute healer.
Sleep is an automatic and useless thing till we are unable to sleep even after trying or time doesn’t permit for it.
In this article let’s see what is the latest scientific knowledge about sleep and how it can help us .
Every living being on earth has a circadian rythm, which is internal clock set by the Sun over the millennia.
It was shown in plants in 1729. And after two hundred years it was shown in humans too.
It decides our waking and sleeping times. It is controlled by suprachiasmatic nucleus situated just above the point where both optic nerves cross each other.
It controls various rythms in body like temperature, metabolic rate, sugar levels, adrenal hormones and other vital functions.
Circadian rhythm varies in different people. Around 40% are morning type, who go to bed early and get up early in the morning.
30% are night types who sleep late and hence get up late. It includes the author of this article.
30% fall somewhere in between.
There are two main things that control sleeping habits of humans.
1. Circadian rhythm controlled by suprachiasmatic nucleus. It signals release of Melantonin which is a hormone secreted by pineal gland. It signals as a starting signal to the person that dark has arrived and you should try to sleep. It is a signal but it doesn’t help in induction of the process of sleep.
2. Sleep pressure – During wakefulness adenosine accumulates in the brain neurons which creates a pressure on the person to sleep. When we sleep it is cleared and sleep pressure falls to normal
Most important thing is that these two systems work independent of each other.
Types of sleep.
Let’s now come to sleep. It is mainly of two types depending on whether your eyes move automatically in your orbits or not at a particular point while you are sleeping..
1. NREM is non REM sleep in which eyeballs show only slow rythmic movements.
2. REM – Rapid eye movement sleep – in it eyes dart fast in the orbits.
Individual pecularities of both types of sleep.
NREM has 4 stages going from light ( stage 1) to stage 4 ( very deep).
It is believed to be a phase of consolidation of new information and facts. It declutters unwanted and less useful information from the neural connections.
It dominates first half of the night.
It is main sleep after a long period of sleep deprivation.
EEG in it is slow wave.
During this dreaming occurs. Muscles loose tone. Eyes dart fast. It is believed to be responsible for integration of new data with other data and old information available in brain’s neural connections.
It is hence place for creativity and innovation as it connects different fields of information which are unrelated.
It is important for brain development of infants and kids. Hence REM sleep is more in early age and reduces as we age.
Quality and quantity of sleep reduces as we age.
Factors affecting sleep.
1. Caffeine – It competes with adenosine binding sites in brain and reduces sleep pressure. It’s half life is 6-7 hours. So avoid consuming caffeine during second half of the day.
2. Alcohol – Fragments sleep and disrupts REM sleep. Restorative power of sleep falls.
3. Temperature – Fall in the core temperature of the body helps in inducing sleep. Shower helps. Cool room helps. Excercise just before sleeping disrupts this effect.
4 Jet lag – Confuses circadian rhythm.
Areas of sleep generation.
Mid frontal cortex just above nasal bridge is site of the origin of sleep. And it spreads backwards towards occipital lobe. These are the areas which are earliest to degenerate as we age.
What happens if we sleep less.
Decreased memory, retention and reproduction of the facts. Increased chances of diabetes, infections and cancers. Increased emotional liability and obesity. Increase incidence of psychiatric illness.
Increased incidence of accidents.
Do sleeping pills help.
No . They produce unnatural sleep. They have addictive potential. Rebound insomnia can occur. People taking pills have increased mortality over next two and half years.
Normal length of sleep
Generally eight hours of good quality of sleep is recommended. It follows J curve like water consumption and food intake. After 9 hours, benefits of sleep start to reduce again.
New enemy of sleep
Blue LED light reduces Melantonin secretion by 50%. It also reduces REM sleep. Hence reading a paperback is better than reading on an ipad near the bedtime.
At last what helps us to sleep
1. Stay away from caffeine, alcohol and nicotine.
2. Stick to a sleep schedule. Try to go to bed at same time and get up at same time.
3. Excercise but not close to the time of sleeping.
4. Avoid day naps after 3 pm.
5. Avoid medicines that disrupt sleep.
6. Avoid large meals near bedtime.
7. Wind down before sleeping. Do something that relaxes you.
8. Dark room. Cold room. Gadget free room. Keep the clock away. Comfortable bedding.
9. Taking Bath before sleep can help lower your body temperature.
10. Get cozy with sunlight. Get one hour sunlight exposure in morning and dark indoors in the evening.
11. Don’t stay in bed if you are not sleeping. Do some relaxing stuff like reading a paperback. And return to the bed when you feel sleepy.
He researched on agricultural plants and animals. He wanted to find, effect of body size on metabolic rate of the organisms, a thing that was useful in cattle industry.
Cattle industry owners saw potential in his research, as he could predict how fat their cattle will grow and how much bounty they can get by serving them to carnivorous masses.
Working over this, he stumbled upon a pattern, which is called kleiber law.
He noticed that as organisms grow in size, they slow down.
A rat has faster beating heart; as compared to an elephant. A bull’s heart beats slower than a cat, when he munches his grass.
He applied his mathematics knowledge, to analyse it and he found that it follows, “negative quarter power scaling.”
That means something; that blasts mind of every guy, who didn’t like maths at the school.
But, we can only know that if we take mass of an organism and do its square root and do square root of result obtained again; we will get approximate idea of its metabolism. Metabolism is 3/4 th power of its mass.
That means we do sqaure root twice.
By these ratios, we can predict relative metabolism of two animal species.
For example, if we take a cow and a rat. Let’s assume if cow is x times heavier than it; then cow’s heart will beat x times slower than rat and it will live roughly x times longer.
Scientist Geoffrey west took it further, when he applied this law to non living things like cities, creativity and ideas.
It applied well to cities when we saw cable length, petrol stations, factories etc.
But when he applied it to Idea generation and innovation it was not applicable.
As size of cities increased, number of ideas generated increased exponentially.
That is why cities serve as centres of growth and innovation.
As different ideas collide; they generates new combinations.
Hence, although kleiber’s law can help in comparison of heart rates and life-span of different species, it doesn’t apply everywhere as a basic law of energy distribution in nature.
Let’s stop here. I don’t see too many fans of mathematics, who scroll on social media.
Inspiration – Where the good ideas come from Steven Johnson.
A lot of things are infinite. They continue. Waiting for their end, leads to early obituaries. Eyes dry out, before comprehending corners of these things.
There is no end to a few things. There is no permanent winner or looser. Only finite moments of disturbances followed by a continuous flow of the time. Flow; that is continuous.
Life is such a thing. A little part of infinite flow of time. It ends and no body notices after sometime. Then new biomass loaded with consciousness, wriggles on earth and this flow continues unabated.
Life is part of an infinite stream that continues; come what may. Life ends but game of the life continues. Till last living cell is destroyed, it will continue and even after that; there is always a chance of resurrection of biology.
So why do we want finite durations?
Why we want business quarters?
Why we want annual reports?
We know business continues till owners live , so why is focus on the short term? Long term things should have long term strategy.
So, for a brand to last for decades; we need infinite mindset.
Infinite mindset means – That business is an infinite game; that is to be played with long-term targets in vision.
For example, USA thought Vietnam war was a finite game but after loss of life and big fortune; they realised that it was an infinite game, if they continued to play it.
Microsoft wanted to defeat Apple, which was a finite game mindset. Apple focused on satisfying the customer and recently on the privacy of customers. Hence Apple was clearly playing infinite game right from the start.
Lego wants game to continue. Hence it has been around for so long.
Even if Apple knew that iPhone will kill the ipod, they went ahead with it.
Similarly gym to gain fitness is an infinite game. If you stop following diet and excercise schedule after few months, you endup regaining all the weight you shed with so much effort.
So take life as an infinite game.
Qurters, annual revenues, flowcharts- all are artificial constructs to keep shirt term goals in perspective, but too much focus on them may jeopardize long term prospects of the business.
Infinite game is positive and inclusive.
It needs reselience and it has a just cause.
It avoids too much focus on the short term results, as long as long term progress is positive.
Hence next time you see an CEO too much submerged in three monthly results, assume that he has got a finite mindset.
Talent is a peculiar thing. It is so abundant sometimes; that you see it everywhere. It is more accurate description of social media personas, we encounter daily.
With acceptability of self boasting as a new normal trend, we see people floating their talents on social media.
Talent has multiplied many folds. With no judge or critic, people produce things ( posts), using their talents and push it down the throats of other similarly talented people, in exchange of ever elusive likes and shares.
It’s like apes scratching each other. If Socrates or epictetus somehow visited instagram pages prevelent in present times, they would be bewildered to see infinite sea of talented people on the planet earth.
They might like to take a wordpress SEO tutorial, for their teachings to beat average blogger followership.
That was the idiotic babble at the start of the article.
Now let’s see few basic concepts, that help in keeping talented person afloat.
1. Practice till your subconscious accepts the skill and you could make an omlette, while doing that work.
2. Find a mentor. Yes that one person who dies lesser number of mistakes as compared to his younger self. And who wants you to be a success.
3. Get inspiration. If not enough steal ideas. But give credit to the original creator.
4. Learn both hard skills like plumbing and softskills like boardskating, writing etc.
5. Don’t try to label yourself as child prodigy, as most of them fail as they grow into the adulthood.
6. Learn from mistake. Don’t burn the toast each time. Also don’t burn the toaster.
7. Increase difficulty level during practice time. On field things will appear easier, if you have done more difficult things.
8. To learn a new move, exaggerate it like the helicopter shot of mahander Singh Dhoni.
9. Take notes and also remember to read them before throwing them into the trash.
10. Practice immediately after the performance. That is the time when muscles are hot and motivation engine is running.
11. Visualise your performance or better watch your performance video.
12. Keep you big hairy audacious goals secret from the world.