Hello fine readers and welcome to my Happy Fucking Mondays Post – a weekly newsletter that attempts to rewrite the narrative Mondays are the shittiest day of the week. (Or at least start it off in a slightly less shit fashion.)
To my regular readers who almost certainly don’t care that I missed last week – I’m sorry – I was busy flying, believe it or not! I did manage to post my monthly roundup though – Notes From My Journal – which can be found here.
This week, to make up for missing last, it contains 5 thoughts from me, 5 quotes from others and 3 things I’ve been reading, watching and/or listening to this week.
As a bonus I’ve finished with one something silly to hopefully make you all smile.
Hope you enjoy!
5 x Thoughts I’ve Been Thinking:
When thinking in terms of being right, you’ve lost. When thinking in terms of trying to learn and be better, you’ve won. This is true regardless of the outcome.
Forcing your views on others doesn’t make you right.
The biggest mistake people make is spending their whole life trying to build up their ego instead of letting it go. If you can learn to do that you’ll be truly unstoppable.
True peace comes from changing your relationship to your own mind. It has little, if nothing, to do with external reality.
One reason why parenting is good for you: You become comfortable covered in piss and shit.
5 x Quotes I’ve been Pondering:
“What an astonishing thing a book is. It’s a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you’re inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, an author is speaking clearly and silently inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people who never knew each other, citizens of distant epochs. Books break the shackles of time. A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic.” – The scientist, astronomer, and author, Carl Sagan.
“Each second we live in a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that never was before and will never be again. And what do we teach our children in school? We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France. When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique. In all of the world there is no other child exactly like you. In the millions of years that have passed there has never been another child like you… You may become a Shakespeare, a Michelangelo, a Beethoven. You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel. And when you grow up, can you then harm another who is like you, a marvel? You must cherish one another. You must work—we must all work—to make this world worthy of its children.” – The cellist, composer, and conductor, Pablo Casals.
“When everything seems to be going against you remember, that an aeroplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” – Henry Ford
“Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.” – Abraham Lincoln
“You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end — which you can never afford to lose — with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality.” – Vietnam War. Admiral James Stockdale
3 x Things I’ve Been Listening/Reading/Watching this week:
1 – This brilliant article : 5 Ways to Build Resilience and Conquer Adversity by Mark Manson. I’ve been a big fan of his writing ever since I read his first book: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life. Both are worth your time.
5 quotes from the article:
Psychological resilience doesn’t come from positive feelings. It comes from leveraging your negative feelings. Resilience is the ability to create positive adaptations to negative events.
The easiest way to overcome that anxiety is not to get rid of risk, it’s simply to make the risks worth something. Find some cause, some mission, some deeper purpose to your actions.
Those who are prepared for pain are the most resilient in the face of pain. Those who expect challenges are the most ready to face challenges. Therefore, an optimal mindset towards life is a dual-sided approach: an outward pessimist — “Life is fucking hard and the world is shit” — but internal optimist — “yet I can handle it, and I’ll be better for it.”
When I think about the most resilient people I’ve ever known, what strikes me about them is that they don’t just invite struggle into their lives, they adopt an identity around their struggles. They allow themselves to be defined by their struggles.
If you are currently suffering, the most valuable thing you can do is reach out and connect with someone, talk about your problems, and share your pain. It’s the most necessary ingredient to coping with any sort of psychological trauma.
2. This insightful Mark Hyman podcast on The Science Of Creating Happiness with Laurie Santos.
Some of my notes from the show:
‘We have become human doers instead of human beings. We forgot it’s in being – savouring the present moment – that we find true peace and happiness.’
‘Studies have shown that writing down 3 to 5 things a day you’re grateful for has been linked to significant improvements in happiness within just two weeks.’
‘Being of service to others – giving more to others – doing charity makes you happier over time because you are connecting often with people less fortunate. This helps you appreciate that what you have is enough.’
‘Never in our history have we had an object so compelling as the smart phone. It’s taking an attentional cost that’s taking us away from presence that we need for our wellbeing.’
‘Rates of depression and anxiety spiked around 2007 (and have stayed there) – this correlates with the invention of the first iPhone.’
‘Post-Traumatic-Growth’ – great way of rephrasing how you responded to difficult periods/trauma in your life.
3. This excellent Tim Ferris podcast with Jim Dethmer on How to Shift from Victim Consciousness, Reduce Drama, Practice Candor, Be Fully Alive, and More.
Some of my notes/quotes from the pod:
“You don’t find peace through understanding, you find peace through acceptance.”
“If we could think our ways out of our suffering we would have done it already.”
“When dealing with suffering often acceptance beats thinking. Be present and allow your emotions to manifest.”
“Blame is always a limiting contracting fault finding energy. It’s always rooted in the need to be right.”
‘The addiction to being right is so strong in us – our ego doesn’t believe it can survive if it’s not. So we find it incredibly difficult to move past our fixed beliefs regardless if they are right or wrong.’
‘You want a life of full aliveness – it is heavily rooted in integrity. In feeling whole.’
‘So many of us destroy our aliveness through pretending.’
1 x Silly Thing To Make You Smile:
For some reason my son has been having a little trouble pronouncing the ‘tr’ at the start of the word ‘truck’, replacing it with what can only be described as a ‘f’ sound instead.
This is particularly strange given he’s never had any trouble with words like ‘tractor.’
Equally he’s taken to dropping the p from the end of the word ‘dump.’
We tried hard not to give attention when we first heard him proudly announce “dum-Fuck” as he held up a toy dump-truck in his hand.
This went well until his grandparents asked him what he was holding when on a Zoom call with our entire family in attendance…
‘Dum-Fuck’ is now his favourite toy and word.
Till next time,
Happy Fucking Mondays Everybody!
P.S. Don’t forget to exercise your silly muscle this week!
One Bonus question for you all:
What’s your favourite toy and word?