Dan Stroot


Inspiring words. Beautifully expressed.

“Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
“I’ve heard people talk about data as the new oil but for most companies it’s a lot closer uranium. Hard to find people who can to handle or process it correctly, nontrivial security, plus liabilities if PII is involved, expensive to store, and a generally underwhelming return on effort relative to the anticipated utility.”
“There is only one way, that we know of, to discern falsehoods from truths, one way to see if our model of the world has errors. That method is to actively seek evidence that contradicts our beliefs. Finding evidence that supports our beliefs is helpful, but not definitive. Finding contrary evidence, however, is proof that the model in our head is not right and needs to be modified. Actively looking for evidence to disprove our beliefs is the scientific method. It is the only approach we know of that can get us closer to the truth.”
“...it is not the most intellectual of the species that survives; it is not the strongest that survives; but the species that survives is the one that is able best to adapt and adjust to the changing environment in which it finds itself.”
“Each time you open a social media app, there are “a thousand people on the other side of the screen” paid to keep you there — it’s unrealistic to expect users to resist the assault on their time and attention by means of willpower alone.”
“The chains of command that once guaranteed reliability now constrained our pace; the departmental dividers and security clearances that had kept our data safe now inhibited the exchanges we needed to fight an agile enemy; the competitive internal culture that used to keep us vigilant now made us dysfunctional; the rules and limitations that once prevented accidents now prevented creativity.”
“If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”
“Associate with people who are likely to improve you. Welcome those whom you are capable of improving.”
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
“I forgive a man's ignorance for it can be cured with knowledge. Stupidity, on the other hand, is a death sentence.”
“Why, exactly, are we rendered so uncomfortable by concentrating on things that matter — the things we thought we wanted to do with our lives — that we’d rather flee into distractions, which, by definition, are what we don’t want to be doing with our lives? When you try to focus on something you deem important, you’re forced to face your limits, an experience that feels especially uncomfortable precisely because the task at hand is one you value so much.”
“It is a strange, nonintuitive fact of our existence that photons of light have no color, sound waves no sound, and molecules no odor. While we have the overwhelming impression that the greenness of the trees and the blueness of the sky are streaming through our eyes as through an open window the waves of light impacting on the retina are colorless, just as the waves of sound impacting on the eardrum are silent, and scent molecules have no smell. Our brain only receives input as electrical impulses and it creates the world we experience, inside our heads.”
“The will to succeed is important, but what’s more important is the will to prepare.”
“Those who travel with the current will always feel they are good swimmers; those who swim against the current may never realize they are better swimmers than they imagine.”
“People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
“...the more firmly you believe it ought to be possible to find time for everything, the less pressure you’ll feel to ask whether any given activity is the best use for a portion of your time.”
“He taught me religion is a lever. With a slight force at a clever angle: immense power to shift tides of humanity.”
“Conflict is essential to human life, whether between different aspects of oneself, between oneself and the environment, between different individuals or between different groups. It follows that the aim of healthy living is not the direct elimination of conflict, which is possible only by forcible suppression of one or other of its antagonistic components, but the toleration of it — the capacity to bear the tensions of doubt and of unsatisfied need and the willingness to hold judgement in suspense until finer and finer solutions can be discovered which integrate more and more the claims of both sides. It is the psychologist's job to make possible the acceptance of such an idea so that the richness of the varieties of experience, whether within the unit of the single personality or in the wider unit of the group, can come to expression.”
“I will give you childhood, so that you might know innocence. Age, so you will know the prize of youth. Children, so that you will care for the future. Toil, so that you will know the value of a day. The body’s failings, so that you will know its worth. Death, so that you will cherish the bittersweet beauty of life.”
“Truth and power can travel together only so far. Sooner or later they go their separate paths.”
“Whereas culture’s focus leans toward conformity to a common core of behaviors, teams focus on the opposite. Teams aren’t about sameness—they aren’t, at their best, about marching in lockstep. Instead, they’re about unlocking what is unique about each of us, in the service of something shared. A team, at its finest, insists on the unique contribution of each of its members, and is the best way we humans have ever come up with of harnessing those distinctive contributions together in the service of something that none of us could do alone.”
“One of the things we’ve got, though, is this very moment, and we have an important choice with respect to it: We can either spend this moment wishing it could be different, or we can embrace this moment. If we habitually do the former, we will spend much of our life in a state of dissatisfaction; if we habitually do the latter, we will enjoy our life.”
“To be prepared against surprise is to be trained. To be prepared for surprise is to be educated.”
“Time magnifies the margin between success and failure. It will multiply whatever you feed it. Good habits make time your ally. Bad habits make time your enemy.”
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
“... the core challenge of managing our limited time isn’t about how to get everything done — that’s never going to happen — but how to decide most wisely what not to do, and how to feel at peace about not doing it.”
“The basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.”
“Define the outcomes you want from your team and its members, and then look for each person’s strength signs to figure out how each person can reach those outcomes most efficiently, most amazingly, most creatively, and most joyfully. The moment you realize you’re in the outcomes business is the moment you turn each person’s uniqueness from a bug into a feature.”
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
“The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by inferior men.”
“The first casualty of war is the truth.”
“When I set a task for myself, I complete it. Therefore, I am careful not to start difficult and impractical tasks, because I love leisure.”
“Not a word passes between us, not because we have nothing to say, but because we don’t have to say anything — that’s how it is between people who are each other’s first memories.”
“The meaning of life isn’t a ready-made product. There is no divine script, and nothing outside me can give meaning to my life. It is I who imbue everything with meaning through my free choices and through my own feelings.”
“It's hard to show your skill as a sailor when there is no wind.”