William Liao @williamliao

Taiwanese American, daily blogger of ideas about impactful work in service of others, photographer (ephemera.photography)

William Liao last shared their writing performance
My piano teacher once shared with me what it was like to watch a former champion of The International Chopin Piano Competition prepare for their performance. 

For 6–8 hours each day in the week leading up to the competition, the competitor would pick apart different sections of music from...
William's Pantry
🍺 38 Beers
🍵 46 Teas
🥟 43 Dumplings
🧇 27 Waffles
🍪 25 Cookies
🍣 34 Sushis
☕️ 37 Coffees
🍫 38 Chocolate Bars
🍍 30 Pineapples
🥓 31 Bacons
🥚 31 Eggs
🥩 25 Steaks
🍊 41 Tangerines
🍓 24 Strawberries
🥃 24 Whiskeys

believing is...

In a 2011 study led by Dr. Alia Crum, participants were given a milkshake that was around 380 calories on two separate occasions. 

On one occasion, participants were told that they would be consuming a 620-calorie ‘indulgent’ shake. 

On the other occasion, participants were told that they would...
2022-03-02 05:02:33

your barbaric yawp

In the 1989 film Dead Poet’s Society, there’s a scene where an English teacher, John Keating (played by Robin Williams), asks his student, Todd Anderson (played by Ethan Hawke), to read aloud a poem that he was supposed to have prepared before class. 

Todd, a somewhat nervous and self-conscious...
2022-03-01 04:56:21

is this belief serving you?

While beliefs don’t always immediately alter circumstances, they do profoundly influence how you experience and respond to a situation. 

It’s one thing to see a challenging project as dreadful, and another thing entirely to see it as an opportunity to learn and grow. 

It’s one thing to see...
2022-02-28 05:49:08

fragility & strength

I almost ran a red light yesterday. 

I had this inexplicable blip in attention that, had it happened just a moment later, easily could’ve resulted in a tragic outcome. 

All I could think to myself in the moments after emergency braking was, “wow, how fragile is life.” 

2022-02-26 17:31:57


Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine has left over 100,000 in counting children, fathers, mothers, friends, coworkers — fellow humans — stranded and without essential resources. 

As of this writing, there are reports of over 130 civilian casualties since Thursday’s invasion. 

The degree of suffering and growing need for...
2022-02-26 08:36:36


Charlie Munger has a famous quote, “mimicking the herd invites regression to the mean.”

Another way of translating his words is: “copying what most do will give you the results that most get — average results.”

Average, by the way, isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Average is actually a good...
2022-02-25 01:26:02

singing your songs

Henry David Thoreau is credited with writing his book Walden: “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with songs left in them.” 

Here’s the thing, he never actually said that. 

Thoreau actually wrote, “the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.” 

2022-02-24 04:24:22

can or can't

Every new challenge puts you at the same fork: 

Either you think you can or you think you can’t. 

In the case of can, you generate the confidence to try in spite of fear. And in trying, you create the opportunity to conquer the challenge or, at the...
2022-02-23 02:31:23

prioritize with your actions

Declaring that something is a priority doesn’t make it a priority. 

You can say a project, goal, or relationship is important to you, but if you’re hardly spending time on it, then the reality is that it’s not as important as you’d have yourself believe. 

Priorities are made...
2022-02-22 02:41:31

everyone is figuring life out

Everyone is in a perpetual process of figuring their life out. 

Even the most seemingly well-put-together (whatever that means) individuals remain in a mode figuring life out — ever curious, and ever in search of challenge and meaning. 

This is important background because so many social circles and...
2022-02-21 05:00:56