Hidden Genius by Polina Marinova
How some of the most interesting people think and work
Polina had a successful career as a journalist chronicling stories at CNN and Fortune. She left her career in the middle of the pandemic to set up a subscription-powered newsletter that discusses how successful people build their category of one. She is a great example of the passion economy and the side hustle revolution. Her latest book talks about 10 key ideas that we will discuss today. Let’s get started.
Start by thinking about the most original endeavor you can think of. Chef Grant Achatz developed stage 4 tongue cancer that made him lose his sense of taste. He had to build a new foundation for his restaurant Alinea which has often been rated as the best one in the world. Every meal at Alinea feels like a chapter out of a novel. You don’t need to replicate Grant, but something can be learned from his audacity to dream big amidst constraints.
Introduce moments of “elective hardship” into your week. Some people have a detox day where they put themselves through deliberately difficult endeavors and avoid any pleasures. The idea is to become progressively more resilient and learn the art of enduring pain and discomfort for long periods of time.
Arthur Brooks writes, “We don’t want to suffer — we hate it, in fact. Yet it is suffering that often brings personal improvement. Not all pain is beneficial, obviously. But researchers have consistently found that most survivors of illness and loss experience “post-traumatic growth.” Not only do many people find a greater emotional maturity after suffering; they are even better prepared to help others deal with their pain. That is why after a loss we turn for comfort to those who have endured a similar loss.”