Rajeet enjoys mixing cocktails and bombarding strangers with philosophy. (Aspiring) Polymath. London

It takes mere seconds for someone to make their mind up about you

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Photo by jasmin chew from Pexels

This universally-known quote couldn’t be more true. Once you’ve made a first impression, that’s it, the other person’s already formed an idea of who you are. This notion of who you are, the one built in their minds from your first meeting, stays with them for a long time.

Researchers found the mind quickly builds an idea of the person you’ve just met and then expects that person to be consistent with your idea of them in future. If they go against your initially formed expectations when you meet again, those experiences are seen as ‘expectancy-violating’ examples by your brain. They’re regarded as exceptions to your idea of who they are, not as additions to it. …


The brain chemistry of death, dreams and hallucinations

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Image by Speedy McVroom from Pixabay

Humans have an irresistible curiosity about what happens when we die.

After all, we know it’s where we’re all (eventually) headed, and no-one can come back and tell us what dying felt like or what’s on the other side.

Those who’ve had near death experiences speak of walking into the light, and there have been enough unconnected accounts to suggest ‘the light’ might be a thing.

Well, any experience of an afterlife; heaven, hell, reincarnation, whatever any religious text says, could be to do with a little substance called DMT.

DMT

DMT, or N,N Dimethyltryptamine, is probably the most potent hallucinogenic compound known to man. …


You’ll be smiling like Bezos

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Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon. Image from Wikimedia Commons

Method 1: Create or Produce Something a Large Proportion of Humans will Use

When we think of ‘billionaire’ names like Jeff Bezos ($181.4 Billion), Bill Gates ($118.4B), Mark Zuckerberg ($99.1B) or Elon Musk ($104.5B) might spring to mind (for the names of all billionaires, have a look here). These are all people who have gone down the ‘classic’ route and produced something which a large proportion of humans use.

It might sound obvious to say ‘make something everyone needs and sell it’ but it’s not quite that simple, if it was the world would be full of billionaires.

Creating something everyone needs is often a very difficult thing, because most needs already have something readily available to fill them. If they didn’t, the world wouldn’t turn. It’s obvious we all need food, clean water and shelter, and if early opportunity-seizers hadn’t built houses, farms or water treatment plants, we would’ve already found other ways to fill those needs. …


RIGGED ELECTION! The ravings of a lunatic

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Screenshot of Donald Trump’s Twitter profile

I live in the UK, so this whole Trump thing has mostly been a comedy for me, from his first campaign all the way through to his recent loss.

I can’t laugh too much though — in 2016 the UK voted to leave the EU, which was our version of hostile, non-thinking, emotional politics. The ‘leave the EU’ campaign had an ‘us vs them’ focus, just like the Trump campaign did, which divided the country down the middle, just like Trump did.

I made a video back when he got elected, which was mostly do with his vitriolic rhetoric; how it stoked the fires of hatred and nationalism in many Americans, but also how he united a global mob against him in the face of sheer stupidity. …


The mere sight of a beautiful woman impairs a man’s thinking

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Photo by Jernej Graj on Unsplash

I love people watching. I find it fascinating how humans interact; how body language, intonation and micro-expressions give away so much of what a person feels or thinks.

A few years ago I discovered meetup, a platform where people create events to find like-minded people with shared interests. Events exist for language exchanges, programming marathons, public speaking classes, polyamory discussion groups — almost anything you can think of.

After a few excursions to some meetups I quickly discovered many were meat-markets under the guise of social events or ‘make new friends’ mixers. …


Loss is an inevitable part of it

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Photo by Jed Owen on Unsplash

Today is my dad’s birthday. As I write I sip a pint of John Smith’s — my dad’s favourite beer — and realise he would’ve turned 69 today.

Looking back I find it amazing how quickly, and slowly, the time has gone. Nine years is a long time, but it also isn’t.

I remember the day vividly, much like you remember what you were doing when 9/11 happened (if you’re old enough to recall).

It was a Sunday and we were all at home. My mum was happy and relaxed because a few weeks earlier dad had finally come home from the hospital. …


Gender differences in forward planning

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Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

Some years back I was at the beach with my (then) girlfriend, enjoying the glorious sunshine and the beautiful ocean breeze in Cyprus. It was approaching 5pm, we’d had a dip in the water and sat at the beach bar in our still-wet swimwear.

The weather changed slightly as we were sipping an ice-cold beer; cloud covered the sun and the ocean breeze turned into more of a wind. It became noticeably colder, exacerbated by the fact we were drinking a cold beverage and our beach attire was still wet from swimming.

As I’m from the UK and naturally used to the wet/cold I was able to endure it. My lady friend, however, who was originally from a warmer climate, wasn’t so well equipped and was almost shivering. She then said something which stuck with…


How to make money from money

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Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

The world of investing; stocks, real estate, currencies, precious metals can seem intimidating or confusing to the uninitiated. It needn’t be though — anyone can invest in today’s day and age, and all it takes to begin is understanding some simple principles.

1. Invest in Yourself First

Money is not your biggest asset and nor will it ever be. Your biggest assets are your time and your mind.

Use your time to improve your mind. Money comes and goes, but with knowledge — and more importantly, the practical application of knowledge —you’ll gain valuable experience and money will come far more often than it’ll go.

A sharper mind leads to better decisions and better investments, which in turn will lead to more money. …


Essential reads to broaden your horizons

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Image souce: author.

One thing the world’s most successful people have in common is that they read, endlessly. And, since you’re on Medium, I can safely assume you enjoy a good read too (just like those ridiculously successful people).

The following books aren’t just excellent reads — they provide immeasurable insight into life’s essential skills. From persuasion and conflict resolution to financial wisdom and understanding oneself.

Read these carefully; the power and understanding they’ll give you will change the way you view the world and how you successfully navigate it.

1. Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, Robert Cialdini

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The seminal work of psychologist Robert Cialdini is a deep, insightful study into the underlying psychological principles which make us human. These are also the exact same principles which come into play when others persuade us, or when we want to persuade others. …


We are born knowing compassion, but somewhere along the way we forget it makes us human

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Photo by Matt Collamer on Unsplash

Note: The following occurred before COVID, before social distancing and the need for masks etc.

I’m part of a large group of good friends who meet for dinner every month or so; as there’s so many of us it’s sometimes a bit of a job finding a day when everyone’s free, and that’s before the headache of finding a place everyone actually wants to eat.

I’m happy to go with the flow, but my personal preference seems to gravitate toward the simpler end of the spectrum. Give me a burger, a cheeky Nando’s or a pizza anyday and I’m happy.

The dinner was organised for a Wednesday at a fancy-ish restaurant in Central London. The type of place where prices are around 1.5 …

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