How to avoid nodding like Joey ( Friends ) 😊

So there is this episode in which an encyclopaedia salesman sells Joey the encyclopaedia by asking Joey does he often find himself nodding like he knows what is being discussed but really he has no clue.

I have never been an avid reader, coupled with work and life – I feel left out of many conversations about the latest books , management theories.

Any tips on where I could listen to latest trending books and stay abreast of the latest concepts, ideas. 😊

I am so tempted to ask this as anonymous for fear of all of you judging me. πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ

5 thoughts on “How to avoid nodding like Joey ( Friends ) 😊”


    So glad you did not post this anonymously – makes this so much more relatable… and there is no judgement – I know I have been there done that ! πŸ™‚

    Here are the things that work for me:
    1. I have some pet areas of interest – and I often initiate the conversation – and take it that way…
    2. Pandemic I got into listening to a lot of audible… and hence knew most of the latest stuff – post pandemic tho’ it became an issue…so I switched to documentaries
    3. I watch a lot of documentaries now – this has made my world view open up a lot
    4. I make a mental note of what I don’t know and ask a few of my close buddies – we have a whatsapp group – but now I may post on GalaxShe
    5. I do a quick google and speed read the context – in fact the whole Meghan Markle thing I missed – and it came up in a conversation… and I sped read what was happening and formed a point of view
    6. I also walk away from conversations that I find (in my perception) pseudo-intellectual – I have often found people having discussions – not to learn or form clarity – but to show off what they seem to know – I quickly recognise this (and as I find them draining) and walk away

    In addition there are spaces like Blinkist and here are alternatives that give quick summaries to books and such…

  2. Hey Conci, no one knows everything about everything – so you’re far from being alone πŸ™‚ We also live in an info-overloaded world, so everyone needs strategies to keep up.
    Without knowing the exact areas where you want to stay updated, here are a few cheat-sheet suggestions :
    1. Podcasts – Search for the top 20/50, and choose the ones that best fit your subject and time commitment. I’ve found them to be very useful in both superficial and in-depth understanding of subjects, esp. as they allow you to multi-task. All through the lockdown, one of my de-stressing go-tos was listening to a favorite podcast while I did the dishes or cooked.
    2. Tracking twitter trends / google trends for news, pop culture – it will tell you enough to stay current.
    3. Wikipedia is great for skimming the bullet-points about most topics.
    4. Aparna’s suggestions for docus / You Tube and Audible are also great – I think Audible might even have some mags on subscription. But it’s pricey.
    5. For management, subscribe to HBR (the free version) and skim through their newsletters – those are great trend summaries. You can add other newsletters to this list depending on your interest / needs – they allow you to skim relevant details without having to read through long articles.
    Hope this helps!

  3. Since I retired, I don’t really read up on management. Once I stopped training full time, I don’t really follow current events too much either.
    My current interests revolve around food and travel, so these are subjects that I can talk about very comfortably.
    My husband and siblings keep me generally aware of what is going on in the world in the fields of current events, politics, technology and management.
    The point I would like to make, is that : ‘Its OK to not know everything and be totally abreast of all that is going on in the world.’ We live in a time of information overload. You may know so many things that other people have no clue about.
    Don’t feel bad or shy to ask the person initiating a conversation on a topic you are not aware of, to clarify or give you further background. People in general like to talk, so they normally don’t mind expounding about what they are talking about.

    This of course works in a social situation.

    If the conversation is work related though, then it is definitely worth staying abreast of new developments in your field.

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