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

Lifestyle Personal Growth Society

Toxic self expectations

Bookmarked The straights are not ok (

What I see are wives who are living under the oppressive expectations of what modern family life is supposed to look like — expectations that have only ratcheted up as other demands on women’s lives and time have also gotten more pressing, and expectations that most men were largely raised without.

[I]f I dig in, I feel like a messy house — even an imperfect house — reflects badly on me. He hauls around no such baggage… it’s the wife who feels more pressure to show that she is doing it all and has it all under control — that family vacations are not just planned but deeply enriching; that the kitchen is the beating heart of the house and is welcoming, warm, and ideally well-appointed; that the home is as well-organized as an Excel sheet. Many of us do this without being conscious that we’re doing it, falling into a set of expectations bookended by gender and organized to reflect class status.

These are the sorts of unnecessary expectations I’m trying to root out in myself. They keep popping up! I found myself today jumping up from my project and scrambling to devise lunch when my husband simply asked what the plan was – I felt obliged to provide our meal even though he didn’t ask for it or expect it of me. We’ve even discussed this before where we agreed it’s not my responsibility to bring him food at lunch if he’s stuck in meetings, though I will often offer since I do want him to be able to eat.

Mental Health Personal Growth

Too many pets

Liked How many pets do you have? by Derek Sivers (

I used to have too many pets.

Each time I adopted one, I was fully in love. I was enamored with the potential. Each new pet was meant to be my constant companion. So I would take it home, and love it. But eventually I would discover a new pet, and the process would repeat.

One at a time, reluctantly, I’d set one free, or find it a new home with someone who was really going to give this pet 100% of their love. I mourned the loss of possibility with each one as I said goodbye…

Before, I’d glance at each pet and feel love but guilt for not giving it more time. Now, I picture what could have been, and just enjoy the daydream.

In keeping with the crux of Oliver Burkeman’s Four Thousand Weeks: getting more productive won’t let us do everything we want. We have to choose – and the missing out is what gives the things we do do more meaning for being chosen (hopefully).