1802-allergorican-map

Feckless Youth is Not a New Problem

I see a lot of young men and boys who seem to be having trouble getting engaged in the world these days. They have a lot competing for the time, like video games, sex and drugs, and a lot of things keeping them from getting engaged like high unemployment, and the risk of failure. As this 1802 Allegorical Map demonstrates, youth alienation is not a new thing. It was thought that if youth could avoid dissipation island, and spend a bit of time on penance island, they could chart their course for new lands, happiness, and success with the help of this map. I suppose this is coaching at it’s best in Napoleonic Times.

 

 

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A coffee company chief recovers from ‘CEO’s disease’

Toronto bipolar psychotherapy

(From Crains Chicago Business, by Shia Kapos)

Tony Dreyfuss, co-founder of Metropolis Coffee, and his wife were celebrating Mother’s Day with their infant child in 2006 when he got a call about a broken coffee brewer.

“I said, ‘Gotta go.’ And I left on my wife’s first Mother’s Day. I wasn’t taking stock,” Dreyfuss recalls. It was a low point for them, but not low enough to make him pull back from the long hours building his business. Six years and two more children later, his wife, Karen, pulled him aside and said something had to change.

Dreyfuss saw a doctor and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder type 1, a mental illness that led to an intense attention to work. The disease often is referred to as manic depression or sometimes “the CEO’s disease.”

“I simply ran manic for years. I got a lot done, but it deeply affected my relationships. I wasn’t present with anyone,” he says. Though he didn’t exhibit other common symptoms of the disease—“I didn’t spend money, sleep around or drive like a maniac”—“I just worked, worked, worked.”

The Chicago businessman, 41, grew up in Madison, Wis. He was a skateboarder who took up juggling and photography. Since he was a child, “he’s had a limitless imagination,” says Tony’s father and business partner, Jeff Dreyfuss.

Tony Dreyfuss says he was prone to making life-changing decisions on a whim. His career began while he was driving a cab as a student at the University of Wisconsin, where he earned a philosophy degree. He pulled over one night for coffee and was so struck by that particular cup’s flavor, he decided right then to make the drink a career.

To him, that meant running a coffee shop. “At that point I wasn’t thinking about roasting it,” he says.

He and his wife moved to Portland, Ore., which along with Seattle is the epicenter of specialty coffee. He took a job at a Peet’s Coffee & Tea, working his way up from bean-scooper to management before taking a pay cut to become a taster and “fill a knowledge gap.”

His parents, both linguists, had moved to Seattle, and his father also had become a coffee connoisseur. While attending a trade show in Seattle, father and son purchased a coffee-roasting machine with the idea of going into business.

‘JACKED UP’

“We were jacked up on caffeine after drinking a dozen espressos. It was like drunk people getting tattoos,” says the younger Dreyfuss, who already was planning to move to Chicago, where his wife had grown up.

Dreyfuss found retail space in the city’s Edgewater neighborhood for a coffeehouse and roasting facility. That was in 2002.

By 2003, the Dreyfusses were in business and counted Hopleaf Bar and M.Henryrestaurant among early clients.

Today, Metropolis has 400 wholesale customers in Chicago and 200 beyond and expects revenue of more than $7 million this year. The company still operates its only cafe on Granville Avenue, and it employs people with disabilities through nonprofit Aspire.

After his diagnosis in 2012, Dreyfuss told his staff he was taking a three-month leave. The response, he says, was “Oh, thank God!”

Bipolar disorder, he continues, “makes you completely incapable of understanding how your actions affect other people. You have great ideas and you just dump them on other people and move to the next thing.”

With counseling, medication, dietary changes and at least eight hours of sleep a night, Dreyfuss says he’s as healthy as he’s ever been. He carves out open time on his calendar, which allows him more time to think creatively. The company has thrived as a result, he says.

Karen Dreyfuss calls the change at home “miraculous,” adding that the diagnosis explained a lot.

“When you start out in marriage, you support all the meetings and all those fires that have to be put out,” she says. “But year after year there will always be more fires and more meetings and if you don’t draw that line, it will consume you.”

On the patio of Metropolis’ new headquarters in the Avondale neighborhood, Dreyfuss’ phone goes off midconversation. He pulls it out and turns it off.

“Three years ago I would have answered it,” he says. “I really try to be present with who I’m with. That’s what I’ve learned the most.”

Read the full article at Crains:

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creativity1

The First Ten Minutes of Your Day

As someone who loves to cook, I am totally in line with the logic of mise en place. Thinking of it in the first ten minutes of your day makes perfect sense to me. Putting everything in it’s place is a way of getting organized for your day. Even if it’s just putting out the things you will need for your day, it helps get your mind ready for the day to come. Read the rest of this article from Psychology Today…
If you’re working in the kitchen of Anthony Bourdain, legendary chef of Brasserie Les Halles, best-selling author, and famed television personality, you don’t dare so much as boil hot water without attending to a ritual that’s essential for any self-respecting chef: mise-en-place.The “Meez,” as professionals call it, translates as “everything in its place.” In practice, it involves studying a recipe; thinking through the tools and equipment you will need; and assembling the ingredients in the right proportion—before you begin. It is the planning phase of every meal, the moment when chefs evaluate the totality of what they are trying to achieve and create an action plan for the work ahead.

For the experienced chef, mise-en-place is more than a quaint practice or time-saving technique. It’s a state of mind.

“Mise-en-place is the religion of all good line cooks,” Bourdain wrote in his bestselling Kitchen Confidential. “As a cook, your station, and its condition, its state of readiness, is an extension of your nervous system….The universe is in order when your station is set.”

Chefs like Bourdain have long appreciated that when it comes to exceptional cooking, the single most important ingredient of any dish is planning. It’s the “Meez” that forces Bourdain to think ahead, that saves him from having to distractedly search for items, and that allows him to channel his full attention to the dish before him.

Read the rest of the article here…

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