Sunday Wisdom No. 55

Arijit Singh is a popular Bollywood singer. Why are all his hit songs so similar? Also, why are all talkshow and sitcom formats the same? Why are franchises more popular than standalone films?

Hi, I’m Abhishek. Each week, I’ll introduce you to multidisciplinary wisdom—in the form of original essays, bite-sized lessons, book reviews, article recommendations, quotes, and more. If you are loving Sunday Wisdom, consider buying me a coffeebecoming a patron, or sharing this newsletter with a friend.

Welcome to Issue 55!

When things are not my way I get easily disheartened. It doesn’t mean I give up (although that thought appears quite often). It means that I start feeling low. Sometimes very low.

I don’t need to have a clear way out of the mess right away to be okay, but I do need a new angle or a perspective to look at the problem. Without that I remain hopeless.

My only strategy to solve a tricky problem is to attack it from as many angles as possible. The problem can be as small as solving a tricky maths problem, or as big as marketing a product. 

Is this the same with you, or do you have a different strategy? I would love you hear your thoughts. 

— Abhishek


Arijit Singh is a popular Bollywood singer. Have you wondered why all his hit songs sound similar? Also, why are all talkshow and sitcom formats the same? Why are franchises more popular than standalone films?

In this essay I discuss why it’s a good idea to be original, just not too original.

— The Novelty-Familiarity Gap: Be Original, Just Not Too Much

I realised there are bunch of people (among my friends) who love my ideas, but hate reading my essays. Turns out all of them love watching videos. Here’s a treat for them and all my true fans (who love both my essays and videos): an impromptu repurposed version of the essay in video format.



“A key feature of active learning is interaction. But too many online classes have students listening to one-way monologues instead of having two-way dialogues. Too many students are sitting in front of a screen when they could be exploring out in the world.”

— Kids Can Learn to Love Learning, Even Over Zoom


“One little blog post is nothing on its own, but publish a thousand blog posts over a decade, and it turns into your life’s work.”

— 15 Years of Blogging


Note-taking should be more spacial and should work more like an operating system for your life. Right now, there is too much context switching between apps. As long as note taking remains separated, users constantly have to switch back and forth between different applications, which is not ideal.

— What’s The Digital Equivalent of Sticky Notes?


“We are obsessed with work and productivity. The poor need to work for survival but the rich work because it’s either tied to their identity or they are in an ultra competitive business which demand more and more work.”

— Neoliberalism and Nootropics


“Today’s math curriculum is teaching students to expect — and excel at — paint-by-numbers classwork, robbing kids of a skill more important than solving problems: formulating them. In his talk, Dan Meyer shows classroom-tested math exercises that prompt students to stop and think.”

— Math Class Needs a Makeover


“When children aren’t given the space to struggle through things on their own, they don’t learn to problem-solve very well. They don’t learn to be confident in their own abilities, and it can affect their self-esteem.”

— Sir Ken Robinson, Creative Schools

👋 That’s All!

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