More than Positive

I love this so much, on how “just be positive” isn’t a complete strategy.

Exorbitant positive thinking is not the way that most people have solved issues. I’m more of a fan of being pragmatic. You hope for the best, but you work for what’s real. But a lot of people just hope for the best without working and that decreases your motivation because your brain thinks you’ve gotten done what it is that you’re constantly yearning to do. You have to envision things going positively but also envision the roadblocks that may be ahead—then you can mentally prepare yourself for how you are going to respond to that.

Joe Holder

Visualize the successes, and the failures, the let downs, and how you’ll bounce back. Apart from that, it’s taking a damn second to even visualize anything, without me looking at my phone, watching a video, or mindlessly scrolling through Instagram which is, oddly enough, where I discovered Joe.

Get Rejected, but Keep Moving

Great quote from ‘Publishers will reject your best ideas.’

All this to say If you’re going to make books, you’ll need to embrace rejection or at least get used to it. Everyone goes through it. Neither your first book nor your tenth are immune. Rejection in publishing is relentless, but then out of nowhere someone gets what you’re trying to do and when you least expect it… bam, you’ve got a book.

Christopher Silas Neal

I feel like you could replace books with a lot of things, notably JOBS, and it’d still work. I recently got work from out of the blue, when I least expected it.

(via Andy J Pizza)

The Myth of Willpower

Came across this response to “Can Brain Science Help Us Break Bad Habits?” over at the New Yorker.

The biggest myth we’ve been sold is that success is due simply to willpower.

Joe Holder’s Instagram Story

This aligns with James Clear’s book “Atomic Habits.” It’s not about saying “I can’t smoke,” it’s about “I am a person who doesn’t smoke.” Building systems, from the basic beliefs and creating new habits, is core, not just the white-knuckled facade of “willpower.”

It’s easier for me these days to avoid mindlessly snacking on junk food because of a belief. I no longer buy bags of Oreo’s or chips at the grocery store because I am a runner. That’s not to say I don’t snack, or that runners CAN’T eat those things, but I have a bad habit of buying those things then eating the whole bag in a day.

So my plan to not devour a bag of Oreo’s in a day is not WILLPOWER.

It’s belief, identity. Those things keep me from putting those items in my grocery cart nine times out of 10.

We Can Work With This

Met up with an old friend for lunch recently. We met via our faith, more or less, something we’ve since walked away from. We’ve been through some low points and – at least for now – we’re seeing some good stuff.

The bad times don’t last forever, and dammit, we just enjoy the good stuff when it’s front of us.

“And hey, is everything perfect right now? Nope.”

So much isn’t perfect, but we can work with it. And that’s what we’ll keep doing.

Choosing the Positive

Enjoyed this episode the Love Drive, “How to Change Your Life with Dr. Jeremy Goldberg.”

The one thing that stuck out for me was choosing your outlook. If you think the universe is conspired against you, that nothing is going to work out, generally that’s sorta gonna happen. I had that mindset for a few years, with clenched fists and carrying lots of stress in my shoulders and face.

Then I started running, because being mad wasn’t getting me anywhere. Running led to autonomy, dignity, self-respect, achievement. Things that a grumpy attitude weren’t able to provide.

So like Dr. Jeremy Goldberg spoke in this episode, if you can choose the negative, you can also choose the positive. If the negative can lead to the grumps and “nothing ever works out,” then the opposite must be true, right?

It’s what I believe, and it’s led me to some pretty damn good times.

Make the Time

There’s an app on my phone that tells me how much time I waste on social media, which is why I know I can definitely take 20 minutes and go for a walk.

For me, that’s positive. It’s movement, fresh air, and gets the blood flowing. Twenty minutes worth of inspirational Tweets ain’t gonna do that.

Tiny choices, seemingly small decisions, made and re-made over months and years and decades gets you to where you are.


via Cleo Wade Instagram

I think I found this via someone’s Instagram Story, but just like all of social media, it’s hard to remember sometimes, right?

When feeling anxious, I tend to remember to pull everything back to the present moment. It’s easier in the car, since paying attention is imperitive, but really to shake off the feelings of terror and dread, and replace them with “right now nothing is happening.”

I’m not being attacked, or mauled, or threatened. In this very moment I am alive, breathing, and handsome. Hey, it’s my self-talk, dammit!

But it’s so true, as Cleo Wade points out, above; the anxiety is not you. It’s a feeling, and we aren’t our feelings. I credit the Headspace app with a lot of help with that in my life.

Wade’s new book “Where to Begin” looks pretty great, BTW.

Less Photos

Derek Sivers (he founded CD Baby many moons ago) wrote about traveling without a phone.

I appreciate a moment more when I know I’ll never see it again.

I have a zillion photos from Italy and Norway and Hawaii and I don’t remember the last time I looked at them. I’ve thought about those places, and talked about them, much more than I’ve looked at at the actual digital files. I wonder if I’d remember more if I took a zillion less photos?

Reminds me of this episode of the Morning Shakeout Podcast with Sally McRae. She talked about being at her mom’s side when she was passing away. It wasn’t about the things or the photos or the house in those finals hours, it was the people.

Capitalism at Any Cost

This just blew my brain wide open, from “Misogyny, male rage and the words men use to describe Greta Thunberg.”

At a deep level, the language of climate denialism is tied up with a form of masculine identity predicated on modern industrial capitalism – specifically, the Promethean idea of the conquest of nature by man, in a world especially made for men.

Naomi Schalit

Via Aaron Davis

Capitalism depends on obedience, blind trust. From churches, to politicians, to wall street, the message is TRUST US. Don’t question, don’t doubt, don’t stray.

And then Greta Thunberg comes along, or anyone that doesn’t conform, or fit the capitalist narrative, and men everywhere lose their collective shit. As if it’s a threat to very lives.

Here’s to Moving Forward

What’s the saying? The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results? Got a nice reminder today in my inbox that moving forward sometimes taking a fresh new step.

“Remember, if you want to see new results, you need to start changing factors in your fitness routine,” says Matty. “Maybe it’s not everyday, but consider ‘graduating’ from those 5lb to 10lb weights!”

Peloton Output Newsletter

Heavier weights are heavier. More strain. Same with so many things in life, right?

The only way to get out of the spot you’re in is to do something that feels unreasonable, that’s unreasonable in the short term, that a similar person in a similar situation would say is unreasonable.

Seth Godin

Staying at 5lbs, or running three miles, or not taking that chance with a new client, or speaking up – it’s all reasonable. Stay in your wheelhouse, right? But without some risk, without being “unreasonable” as Seth Godin puts it, we can get stuck.