Sam Radford

August 4, 2021

Book Notes – “The Boy from the Woods” and “The Innocent” by Harlan Coben

I was away on holiday last week – hence the lack of blog posts. We had a family trip in a caravan that was a lot of fun. Weather wasn’t amazing, but we enjoyed lots of day trips and had an all-round a good time. And, surprisingly, I managed to read two novels while away. I say surprised because, as I’m sure any fellow parents with youn...
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August 3, 2021

Let us serve love with our strength

One of the books I dip into periodically is called Sounds of the Eternal: A Celtic Psalter by John Philip Newell. It’s a collection of morning and evening prayers for each day of the week. One line, in the Tuesday morning collection of prayers, has been leaping out at me these last few weeks: “Let us serve love with our strength this d...
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August 2, 2021

Just be nice!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard myself telling my daughters to ‘just be nice’ to each other. I can say that it’s a lot. I found myself thinking about that word ‘nice’ today. It’s a strangely bland and yet deeply powerful word. On the one hand, it can feel like a nothing word; a lazy descriptor for something we cannot think o...
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July 27, 2021

A curious idiot

Austin Kleon shares some great thoughts on curiosity in a recent blog post of his. He starts by sharing sharing a quote from Jason Sudekis, discussing his approach to playing the character Ted Lasso: “What if you played an ignorant guy who was actually curious?” Austin then points to another quote, this one by Mike Monteiro: “The secre...
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July 23, 2021

Seven types of rest

I came across an article on the TED website this week about rest. It’s easy to think of rest as something singular. And, not only that, something we merge with sleep. But we’ve all experienced those times when, despite a good night of sleep, or a decent period of what we thought was rest, we don’t feel rested at all. Why is that? It’s ...
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July 22, 2021

Losing track of what we spend

Tim Harford’s recent column for the Financial Times, reproduced on his blog, addresses the challenges of living in an increasingly cashless society. What is the main challenge? How easy it is to spend money! With contactless payments, Apple Pay, Amazon’s one-click payments, it’s never been easier to spend money. Online stores have, oh-...
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July 21, 2021

Generosity and kindness: The true nature of humanity

As some of you may well have picked up, we’ve been isolating as a family for the last 10 days. Today was the first day we were allowed back out following Imogen, my youngest daughter, getting Covid. The main thing that struck me throughout this time has been the kindness and generosity of friends, family, and neighbours. So many people...
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July 20, 2021

How to give advice

Baltasar Gracian, a Spanish philosopher, had this to say about giving advice to others: “When you counsel someone, you should appear to be reminding him of something he had forgotten, not of the light he was unable to see.” I love this! No one likes to feel stupid. Or that they don’t know something. And the truth is, more often than no...
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July 19, 2021

Max vs. Lewis (AKA despair at human nature)

Though I don’t watch much Formula 1 racing nowadays, I do still follow it. And, since we’re currently having to isolate after my youngest daughter tested positive for Covid, I was able to watch the British Grand Prix yesterday. What a race! (Quick aside: before you switch off thinking this is a sports post, it isn’t a sports post – tha...
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July 16, 2021

Easy has a cost

James Clear’s latest newsletter delivers a good reminder that there’s a cost to always taking the path of least resistance: “Strangely, life gets harder when you try to make it easy. Exercising might be hard, but never moving makes life harder. Uncomfortable conversations are hard, but avoiding every conflict is harder. Mastering your ...
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