Schools Zap Kids' Motivation and Mental Health
Intrinsic motivation is the key to discipline, excellence, and happiness. But schools stamp out intrinsic motivation. Is it ever a good idea to send your kids to a conventional school?
How Do You Decide What Projects to Work On as a Scholar?
How do you know you're working on the right projects and not wasting your time? Here are ways to know whether you've taken on the right work, and ways to improve daily task management, too.
How Women Scholars Manage Stress, Goals, and Self-Care—and How You Can, Too!
Is stress from work and life inevitable? How do you reframe goals and success? What do you do when decisions are mutually exclusive and mutually desirable?
Why Homemade Gifts Are My Goto
The best gifts truly delight the recipient—whether you give something homemade or not. Here are examples of gifts I've given and ideas you can use.
Bedtimes with Young Children: How We Skip the Battle and Encourage Sleep
Are bedtime battles inevitable? While they're a staple of evening life for many families, we don't war over sleep—here's what we do instead.
What Is Localism?
Localism prioritizes the local above the distant, the organic above the centrally planned, insisting that local communities be stable, sustainable, and relatively self-sufficient. Here are seven ways localism benefits our communities.
Seven Principles to Guide Development in Kootenai County
Our county faces rapid suburbanization and dramatic change of character as farmland is devoured by big development. Here are seven conservative principles we can use to guide the county’s future.
Book Review: Hunt, Gather, Parent: What Ancient Cultures Can Teach Us About the Lost Art of Raising Happy, Helpful Little Humans by Michaeleen Doucleff
How can we better help children develop helpfulness, responsibility, confidence, independence, and emotional control?
Deep Work for Parents: A Two-Step Strategy for More Effective, Efficient Work
Ever felt overwhelmed and frustrated when trying to work while caring for young children? Here are my top tips for making time, turning off distraction, and ramping up productivity!
How To Consciously Be a Role Model in Creativity, Curiosity, and Crafting for Children
I want my children to be creative and curious, to do projects and work with their hands. How do I deliberately and consciously inspire and encourage them? Here are some ways.
The Farmer's Lament, a Poem
Tolkien recognized the importance of lay poets and musicians. His characters sing and compose verse about the great deeds and events of their age. What about in our world? Here's one attempt, inspired by Tolkien's Durin's Song.
How to Build Self-Discipline: Why Awareness and Intrinsic Motivation Are Key
Self-discipline is the ability to do what needs to be done, to stay in control, to accomplish your goals. How do you build discipline? Here are strategies I use.
Book Review: Designing Your Life: How To Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans
How you can use a designer mindset and iterative improvement to build your way forward to a coherent, satisfying life.
The Tragedy of Marital Strife: Why Marriages Fall Apart (And How To Stay Together)
Two of my friends' marriages fell apart. Why does this happen? And what can we do about it? Here's why I think marriages fail, and the strategies we use to keep ours strong.
Cooperation without Coercion: How to Motivate Children (5 Things to Try)
What do you do when your strong-willed child won't cooperate? Children love cooperating... but they also love showing their independence. Here are 5 things to try.
Life as a Practice: Pursuing Excellence in Daily Life
In a practice, you progress: you level up. If we treat daily life as a practice, what does it mean to level up? Hint: It involves effort, excellence, and virtue.
Why I Left Full-Time Academia and What I Do Instead
A PhD doesn't mean you're stuck with a traditional academic career. Flexibility, family, freedom: Here's how and why I decided to take a different path.
Why You Should Pursue Excellence, Not Success
Pursuing excellence will help you succeed—but pursuing success won't make you excellent. Here's why I follow this life philosophy, and why you should want to, too!
It's Just Fencing: On Approaching Life with Playfulness and Sincerity, Not Seriousness
My fencing coach used to tell me to train hard... but in the end, it's just fencing. It's the paradox of play: real and not real, serious and not serious. Here's how to apply that paradox to the rest of life.
The Best Reason to Have Children
It amazes me that strangers feel comfortable saying to parents 'You sure have your hands full!' 'Why so many kids?' 'Are you expecting another one?' Uh ... it's okay to want and love children!
Recovering Beauty in Modern Life
Beauty is vital to humans, but there's a breakdown of beauty in present culture—in architecture, art, music, more. Why? How can we recover and cultivate beauty?
Dialogue Takes Two: Why Sharing Ideas Matters
Friends have shut down conversations because they disagreed with me. But dialogue is important—for finding common ground, truth, understanding—and it's only possible if everyone in the conversation is willing to talk.
The Nebulosity of Categories and Where the Usefulness of Personal Labels Ends
My identity is multifaceted. Unlike Randy, whose primary label is 'trad Catholic', I don't hold one aspect of myself up as the core. Why not? Flexibility, and room for dialogue and change.
How We Live Debt-Free in a World of Chronic Debt
Debt is ingrained in the modern economy, but it’s not the best way to manage money or build wealth. We live debt-free, paid cash for a house, and can maintain our freedom on $20k/yr. How? Read on.