🇳🇱✨The Nexialist #0068
Dirty Lines | Consolation Prize | Stresslaxation | 26th Webby Awards | Business Needs New Frameworks | Productizing Yourself | Initiation | Deeply Human | Sacrifice | Palaces
Welcome to yet another selection of links that tickled my brain this week, The Nexialist:
As I’m writing this week’s Nexialist, The Netherlands is celebrating Koningsdag (King’s Day): the streets of Amsterdam are taken by people wearing bright orange, children (and anyone really) can sell whatever they want on the street, the smell of beer and street food is everywhere. It’s as close as it gets to the Brazilian Carnaval so I did allow myself to go out and have some good old fun (how do we even do that after the pandemic??). To start in the Dutch spirit, I’ll start with some dutch content:
It doesn’t happen a lot, so when I get to see Amsterdam on the screen it is quite lovely. Even better if they take it back a few decades and add a layer of sexiness. This show is about the famous sex lines from the 90s, but it’s also about new technologies, sexual education, and some drama/comedy. Also, the naughty dutch I don’t learn in class, I can learn here 😈
A couple of weeks ago MEROL released her new album Troostprijs (Consolation Prize) and I went to see her live here in Amsterdam. It was my first concert since the pandemic and it was a mix of awkward and cute: What to dress? How long before do you have to arrive? How do you hold your pee for so long without missing a song? All these things, I had completely forgotten. But it was a sweet moment!
I’ve shared her work here before because I just love how she can be sarcastic, funny and empowered in her lyrics and performances. She was super sweet live and put on a fun and intimate show. I also have fun feeling like my teenage self when I had to find translations or translate lyrics myself when I was learning English. So yes, MEROL helps me learn Dutch (which I’m officially doing since march). Oh, and girls were throwing bras on stage during the concert, which I think is a great KPI of success.
She comforts, she empowers, she puts her doubts on the table and dances rowdy on the pole. Everything comes together on MEROL's debut album 'Troostprijs', released on April 15, 2022. Nostalgic pop songs are interspersed with catchy statements on fresh electronic synth productions. 'MEROL is the superwoman version of Merel. The album consists of powerful songs that comfort me and take away my own fears and insecurities," said the artist.
The album is bursting with recognition for both millennials and Gen-Zers. Whether you suffer from fomo, are afraid of missing out on a career or are playing with 'red flags' in love; all of these struggles are reflected in songs like 'laatbloeier (late bloomer)', 'geen festje’ (no party), 'Ik was er al’ (I was already there), and 'gemengde signalen’ (mixed signals). MEROL's message is clear: 'We should be a little less perfectionistic. Do it your way. Color outside the lines, set your own bar and walk your own path. Don't participate in that rat race, go for the Consolation Prize!'
Sometimes we overlook what pop culture has to say, but it can be a clear picture of what is happening around us. I have talked about the Age of Anti-Ambition here and this is what she’s talking about. (Sorry about any mistakes from Google Translate)
Read: MEROL Biografie
[You know how much The Nexialist loves portmanteaus, so I had to include this here.] There you are, finally having some time to relax, and BAM: even that is stressful.
Even though stresslaxation is a new term, it describes relaxation-induced anxiety, which has been studied for years. This is shown to happen to between 30% and 50% of people when they try to do relaxing things, causing symptoms of stress (such as rapid heart beat or sweating).
It’s paradoxical, given that people who experience stresslaxation may need to do something relaxing to de-stress. This can turn into a destructive, vicious cycle in which they can’t alleviate the stress they’re experiencing—which could result in having more negative emotions and panic attacks.
It was so relatable to read it because it has happened to me a few times. This Fast Company post gives some ways out of it, depending on the source of the stress. Accepting you’re stressed is usually the first step. Writing down your feelings and thoughts is another one, also thinking outside the box can help: talking with friends and family can also be a source of relaxation, beyond the usual meditation/yoga.
Read: ‘Stresslaxation’ is real. Science explains why it happens and how to get past it | Fast Company
“The Webby Awards is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet.” I must confess that I have a love/hate relationship with awards. I don’t like how they can invoke a toxic level of competitiveness and can be hijacked by those who have more influence/money. However, there are some that can help filter through the noise and select some great content, artists and inspiration, especially if there’s diversity in the judges and the areas that they judge. The Webby Awards are getting pretty good at this, so I’m including this layer more in my research.
This edition’s winners just came out on Monday, so I haven’t been able to look att it, but I recommend taking a look at the winners, nominees, and honorees. You can look at Websites/Mobile sites, video, advertising/media/PR, apps/software, social, podcasts, games, virtual & remote and special achievements. Enjoy!
Trendwatching/Business of Purpose shared their beautiful toolbox full of gems and frameworks in their newsletter. “We will start by looking at some general, all-encompassing frameworks and tools that focus on the entire business. After that, you'll see frameworks and tools to improve your business on three specific topic areas: Sustainability, JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion), and overall workplace Wellbeing. The aim here is to give you a nice round-up of a diverse set of resources you can further dive into. It's a living document as we plan to expand this list in the future.”
I recommend adding this to your own toolbox (or favorites bar). Mine is a bit messy and not so neatly sorted but it’s here, if you want to see it.
As the basic structures underlying our current economic system are further breaking down, one thing becomes crystal clear: the business world needs new frameworks & tools! That's why this month's issue is all about that. Lots of useful resources that will help you structure your organization for sustainability, inclusiveness, and wellbeing. Let's dive in...
Thomas Klaffke brings us some examples of people aand platforms who are turning their knowledge into a source of passive income. From No.tion templates to expert advice for shopping, there’s this whole world of fragmentation of our skills in the online world.
I went to the theatre this week to watch LeineRoebana’s STORM and I could not stop paying attention to the ritualistic elements of the music and the choreography: repetitiveness, togetherness, circles, elements, synchronicity, emotions. It was mesmerizing and beautiful to watch. It made me think a lot of Byung-Chul Han’s The Disappearance of Rituals. It also made me think about how art does this: manifesting things we’re missing, or truths that need to be seen. It connected my mind to other things (music videos, art and pop culture) I have been seeing that borrow different elements and imagery from rituals, perhaps even fetishizing it. The next day, the algorithm showed me this video, another signal to prove this perception.
By the way, Röyksopp is releasing a new album, Profound Mysteries and releasing ten tracks, with ten original short films with ten different directors, together with Bacon production. So far I’m loving the project.
Juan found this amazing podcast and sent it to me and it’s my new obsession. “Why do you do what you do? Exploring our loves, fears, habits and hopes, Dessa Darling takes a look at the new podcast Deeply Human.” Episodes are short and talk about things that I love: how our brains work, from love to accents, to death, to nakedness, music and dance. Of course, the episode about Dance brought strong a dose of rituals and I had to bring it here. Highly recommended.
Just another signal of the ritualistic elements I was talking about and a video I love. This time a bit darker, mixed with voguing, dark eyes, levitation and some kind of queer futuristic witchcraft, which I love.
Flume is releasing a new album next month and the videos/lyrics videos he’s releasing are weird and lovely with these digital colorful birds. After the second minute, it’s a complete trip, which I suppose AI was involved in the making.
🫀If anything made your brain tingle, click like, and please share it with your friends. It helps The Nexialist to reach more curious minds.
🥰If someone amazing sent it to you, tell them you love them, and you can subscribe at thenexialist.substack.com.
❓If you want to know what a Nexialist is, click here.
💌Your feedback is highly appreciated, you can e-mail me or fill in this short survey. Thank you! 🙏🏻
I truly believe innovation comes from bringing improbable areas together, and that’s why I called this project The Nexialist. Some sectors are known to be self-referencing and hermetic. Sometimes teams are on autopilot mode, focused on the daily grind, which hinders innovation. As a Nexialist, I like to burst these bubbles, bringing references from different areas, and maintaining teams inspired and connected to the Zeitgeist.
I offer inspiration sessions, called Brainsparks, creative desk research (Zeitgeist Boost), Plug’n’Play deals for workshops and sprints, and other Bespoke formats. If you want to know more about this, send me an e-mail with your challenge(s) and we can figure something out together. Check out my website and some work I’ve done below: