How to Human

Posted on July 10, 2024 0 Comments

BEING HUMAN IS HARD! And that’s written in capital letters for a reason, folks. Being human is a mishmash of boredom, elation, failure, disappointment, success and going with the flow. There are also challenges each of us has to surmount, from big things like housing and food insecurity to little things like, “Why are my fingernails growing so fast?”

…Must be all that vitamin A.

As a fellow human, I admit my life is blessed and I am very grateful. But you know what? Just because life isn’t getting me down on its own doesn’t mean I’m not capable of tripping myself up and finding out what concrete tastes like. Spoiler alert, I do not recommend.

The trials and errors of life are why we host the “How to Human” show. For those of you unfamiliar, every two weeks, my co-hosts, Sam Basu and Jeff Strauss, and I invite guests onto a livestream to talk about all things Human. Some topics we’ve discussed:

  • Changing Careers
  • Culture Shock
  • Tech on the Autism Spectrum
  • Balancing Motherhood with Work
  • Implicit Bias
  • Raising Kids with Special Needs
  • The Art of Resiliency
  • Managing ADHD in the Workplace
  • and more.

To see previous shows, you can check out the playlist on the Progress YouTube channel.

Now, why does Progress let us spend our time doing shows like this? Namely, because the company cares about, not only its people, but humanity as a whole. Progress is committed to charitable acts around the globe, donating funds, providing scholarships, offering volunteering opportunities and trying to help make this world a better place.

Oh! And it also sells fantastic products. Can’t forget that part.

Within the organization, we even have specialty groups and teams dedicated to human-centric work. For example, there is a team that sets up calls with employees to hear about their work stresses and our potential areas for improvement. There is another team that connects employees at every level of the organization to our top-level leadership. There are even mentorship programs and extracurricular fun activities too, like gardening! Did you know work just gave me time in my day to build an herb garden with a group of peers? I am now the proud owner of oregano! As an Italian, I’m surprised it took me this long, honestly.

All to say that, at Progress, we strive to be better humans and help others in their life-journey, too. We’re in this together. We are never truly alone.

After 31 episodes, it’s hard to pick out what my favorite takeaways have been, but here’s a short list of those that come to mind.

Managing ADHD in Professional Environments – “Imagine humans are behind a screen, and life is throwing things at you – work, phone calls, emails, getting groceries, picking up kids, etc. Each of these tasks is like a dart. They hit that screen, and neurotypical humans look up and pick one at a time. Having neurodivergence means you have no screen, and the darts are hitting you all at once.”
-Alyssa Nicoll (LinkedIn, How to Human episode)
Culture Shock – “Living in different countries, if it comes from your own desire to explore, can be a great lesson and teach you many things, but it starts with the mindset. If it’s an external force (parents, company, job or other) you can still make the most of it, but it won’t be the same as you planning it and wishing it for yourself. If you’re doing it because you want to experience the world, you will never be disappointed, because you will have learned so much about yourself and others.”
-Tomislav Rashkov (LinkedIn, How to Human episode)
Tech on the Autism Spectrum – “This is not a disease; it is a disability. If you have a disease, there are usually two scenarios: you get treated and you are not sick anymore, or, after medication and treatment, you can prevent being sick in the future. Autism can’t be cured. You’re born and it’s there. You can have adjustments to feel better or behave better, but not to cure.”
Dennie Declercq (LinkedIn, How to Human episode)
Implicit Bias – “Biases in general are thought processes. They are a way that our brains process information, stimuli, memories and things happening around our world. One thing our brains are good at is picking up patterns. Sometimes those patterns we’re actively picking up…and sometimes they emerge without us knowing or seeing their connection. The classic example: if I see peanut butter, and I live in America, I’m probably going to think of jelly. But in my country, Bulgaria, peanut butter is a relatively new thing. Also – what does jelly have to do with peanut butter?
The tricky thing about our brain processing information is that it’s trying to save time. We can’t be actively involved in every pattern that emerges, or that would be all we’re doing all day. The brain creates shortcuts and associations, however sometimes those associations create errors. If we go on autopilot, we’re not allowing the time to assess the actual situation consciously. This is very personal, cultural, and sometimes based on things we can’t control, are aware of, or even agree with.


Biases are neutral, but it's our ability to recognize and manage them that makes a difference."
-Mariyan Vasev (LinkedIn, How to Human episode)

This show has so many things to learn and – let’s be honest – a lot of jokes, too. I even wear costumes!

No, seriously. You may see me as a dinosaur. 🐱‍🐉

So, come check out the “How to Human” show every other Friday at 10 a.m. ET on Code it Live. Join the chat, make fun of our hosting prowess and learn from the experiences of others. We can all be better at Humaning. And yes, that is now a verb. You’re welcome.

Show announcements can be found on the Progress Community Corner as well as sprinkled around social media. Remember, to see previous shows, you can check out the playlist on the Progress YouTube channel.

Have an idea for a show or want to be a guest? Email and let us know what’s on your mind.

Have a wonderful day and remember to be kind to yourselves and each other.

With love,

Nichol, Sam, and Jeff


Nichol Goldstein

Nichol manages the online Support Community for many of Progress’ products. She works closely with key areas of the business, ensuring fresh enablement content is readily available for her users as well as working with moderators to keep our forum discussions active and helpful. She is a keystone to the Community platform, also hosting additional opportunities to connect with peers such as contests and games. Be sure to check out the Progress Community here.


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