Categories
Comics Personal Growth

Say what you want

Liked 10 Steps to Becoming Annoyingly Capable by Jessica Hagy (This Week’s Top Ten)

Make your allies proud & your haters butthurt.

STEP 3: Talk about what you want. Don’t assume anybody knows what you’re after until you articulate it.

Good business and life advice: don’t expect anyone to read your mind. Say what it is you want.

IIRC We Should Get Together or Frientimacy talked about this in friendships specifically.

STEP 4: Leave what you know. There are no awesome gigs to take in The Shire.

A good reminder for me right now 😉

Categories
Memoir Mental Health Personal Growth

Read Wintering

Read Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult T…

Sometimes you slip through the cracks: unforeseen circumstances like an abrupt illness, the death of a loved one, a break up, or a job loss can derail a life. These periods of dislocation can be lonely and unexpected. For May, her husband fell ill, her son stopped attending school, and her own medical issues led her to leave a demanding job. Wintering explores how she not only endured this painful time, but embraced the singular opportunities it offered.

A moving personal narrative shot through with lessons from literature, mythology, and the natural world, May’s story offers instruction on the transformative power of rest and retreat. Illumination emerges from many sources: solstice celebrations and dormice hibernation, C.S. Lewis and Sylvia Plath, swimming in icy waters and sailing arctic seas.

Ultimately Wintering invites us to change how we relate to our own fallow times. May models an active acceptance of sadness and finds nourishment in deep retreat, joy in the hushed beauty of winter, and encouragement in understanding life as cyclical, not linear. A secular mystic, May forms a guiding philosophy for transforming the hardships that arise before the ushering in of a new season.

Liked some of this, wasn’t sure about other parts. The second half I liked better than the first. She has a keen eye for observation and describes her feelings vividly. I liked the bits of other places and natural history — dabbling in other people’s cultures less so. I’m not sure it all pulled together for me though I thought she ended it well.

Categories
Lifestyle Personal Growth

Create space for yourself

Liked Creating space for our productivity (indiewriter.net)

I see rest as synonymous with creating space for myself.

Opening space is the key; filling your time leaves your mind no room of its own. I am often guilty of feeding the dopamine machine with more instead of granting myself time to process — finishing one book and jumping straight into the next. This mind garden helps with that tendency, though doesn’t eliminate it entirely.

Categories
Activism Future Building Personal Growth Relationships

Allow room for allies to make mistakes — because we all make them

Replied to we will not cancel us by AdrienneAdrienne (adriennemareebrown.net)

We hurt people.

Of course we did, we are human. We were traumatized/socialized away from interdependence. We learned to hide everything real, everything messy, weak, complex. We learned that fake shit hurts, but it’s acceptable…

Canceling is punishment, and punishment doesn’t stop the cycle of harm, not long term.

We will be accountable, rigorous in our accountability, all of us unlearning, all of us crawling towards dignity. We will learn to set and hold boundaries, communicate without manipulation, give and receive consent, ask for help, love our shadows without letting them rule our relationships…

Shaming and condemning mistakes simply makes others less willing to try or speak up, and less willing to admit their mistakes. This has a chilling effect to keep people in line with what the loudest have decided is right, even when there are valid arguments for other perspectives, and hardly encourages relationship building across identities and ideals. Righteousness is just as unhelpful from the liberal corner as it is from the conservative.

You can hold people accountable without being a dick about it. Not to tone police, but sometimes people on social media talk about others as if they aren’t a person too, and the intensity of condemnation feels greater than the sin. “Nice” is bullshit, but you can be kind and critical.

I guess I’m pretty sympathetic to the choices workers feel they have to make to survive under capitalism. I’m thinking of a disabled person who was cancelled (I think in 2022) when it came out they worked at a military research company for the health insurance and flexible work conditions. Some of the cancelling might have been because they had cancelled others in the past? But that’s just perpetuating the cycle. I’d rather see the conversation “and this is why you shouldn’t cancel people folks” than a dog pile of shame.

We talk about how there is no ethical consumption under capitalism, and I wonder how much that extends to our lives too. It very much becomes a judgment call of what crosses the line to be part of the progressive tribe: ok, working at military companies is out, how about tech companies? Is it only bad if you work on Google’s military contracting projects, or is the whole company tainted? What about working for social media companies that sell our data, if you’re in another department? Is working in anything involving marketing out? How about owning a house, knowing the land was stolen from indigenous people and our treaties with them not honored? How about owning an iPhone knowing that conditions are so bad workers commit suicide on shift? Is catching an Uber home from the airport ok? Is flying ok? Shopping at Amazon?

It is easy to judge others’ choices but defend our own hypocrisies and compromises, instead of helping people recognize the harm they are causing, acknowledging and making up for ours, and working to change the systems that force people into hard choices (like advocating for universal health care and fixing our disability qualifications). I’m not naming or excusing any choices here, and also not supporting social punishment.

The lines I draw for myself are different from everyone else’s, and may change over time with my perspective and circumstances. I have the privilege of owning a home, being married to someone whose job gives me health care, and having a good savings and no student loans; that gives me the ability to make choices others cannot. Physical ability, wealth, family support, obligations and debts, and mental health all shape our decisions.

Maybe some of my perspective here comes from years of being a vegetarian. Many people took my personal calculus to be a judgment on their choice to eat meat, but it really was a personal decision; all I wanted from others was for there to be literally anything I could eat if they hosted (I usually just brought something). Now, for a variety of reasons I’ve become pescetarian. Maybe one day I’ll go veg again, or maybe someday I’ll start eating meat 🤷‍♀️ We can’t necessarily predict how our circumstances will change our choices.

Systems of oppression and those in power acting unjustly should be the main targets of action, while we offer solidarity to workers doing their best to get by, even if sometimes they screw up. It’s easier to attack or ostracize a nobody than to speak truth to power — but it’s a poor outlet for emotional pain and frustration. Purity and ideological perfection are dangerous social concepts, and I would rather have people feel safe enough to make mistakes than withdraw from community for fear.

See also:

The addictive nature of Twitter

Cancel Culture

Categories
Meta Personal Growth Resources and Reference

Template spreadsheet for tracking reading diversity

Bookmarked Introducing the 2023 Reading Log! (bookriot.com)

The 2023 reading log is here! It can help you track your reading stats and generate infographics to help you achieve your reading goals.

👀 This could be handy for tracking my reading.

Categories
Lifestyle Personal Growth

Why are you speeding?

Liked And then? by Alan Jacobs (blog.ayjay.org)

My question about all this is: And then? You rush through the writing, the researching, the watching, the listening, you’re done with it, you get it behind you — and what is in front of you?

The whole attitude seems to be: Let me get through this thing I don’t especially enjoy so I can do another thing just like it, which I won’t enjoy either. This is precisely what Paul Virilio means when he talks about living at a “frenetic standstill”…

I also get the urge to push through and finish things for the sake of finishing them, but I try not to yield to it; I want to separate my personal pleasures from the accomplishment mindset.

It’s hard to be patient in an accelerating, sense-stunning culture, with our media becoming faster paced and our attention withering as writing gets shorter and pithier and video and audio replace writing.

I think growing our patience and resisting instant gratification are more ways to reclaim our lives from capitalism. Accepting some friction if that means interacting with other humans instead of using technological replacements or supporting companies designed to eliminate humans. Investing time in looking for interesting things on my own and experimenting with media I might not like instead of accepting ‘good enough’ stuff fed to me by the algorithm.

See also:

Read Rest is Resistance

Time is a Tool of Capitalism

Mechanical Time vs Body Time

Wonderful Wasted Time

Categories
Mental Health Personal Growth

Listen to yourself

Liked Taking a break from personal projects: Mental health and coding by James (jamesg.blog)

[I]f you feel anxious or worried about progress on personal projects, don’t feel that you have to continue.

👏 A good reminder that personal projects are not obligations, and sometimes quitting a project is the right choice.

Categories
Future Building Lifestyle Personal Growth

Learning to live in community

Liked Themes of a Year (2022) by Anne Helen Petersen (Culture Study)

You’re trying to shore up your own life raft. Putting on your own oxygen mask and worrying about others’ later. But there is no such thing, not in this moment, as amassing enough capital to actually feel secure. You reach one foothold and start scrambling for the next, always focused on you and yours, forgetting that what you really need is a safety net. You need community that won’t immediately use you as a footstool and bitterly and violently sack all you’ve diligently amassed…

It’s so annoying, isn’t it, that the weightlessness and safety we crave requires more work. That to remember we are beloved, we must also do the labor of loving. It is particularly annoying to those of us obsessed with conceptions of fairness that there is no scoreboard to community, either, and that reciprocity is never straightforward, and rarely takes place within a designed period of time. We’re not talking about Giving Tree self-abnegation here, we’re talking about the real difficulty, when you’ve spent your life trying to get ahead, with letting go of keeping score.

Emphasis mine.

See also:

Gifting art

We Should Get Together

Categories
Personal Growth

Let the year end pass through you

Liked Litany Against Resolutions by Greg Moore (blog.gregmoore.me)

I will face my year’s end.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.

Categories
Lifestyle Personal Growth

More personal measures of time

Liked Patrick Rhone (patrickrhone.micro.blog)

One day, I hope not to measure my days in minutes or hours, but in miles walked and pages read.

See also: more personal measures of life:

2022 wrapped