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Let’s switch it up and be petulant AF
Daydreaming is good, but so is saying all the things you keep silent in a day
In the spirit of my 2023 project to explore all the feelings I haven’t let myself have for the last two decades, I’ve been doing a lot of writing and thinking about — ugh — emotions.
I’ve already written about daydreaming more to help with the crushing inevitability of existential despair in the 21st century and encouraging your resentment as a way to clear your mind and your energy and protect your boundaries.
Now I want to tell you about the other secret weapon I’ve discovered: pitching a little hissy fit.
Before I take my forced five minutes to daydream every day, I take five minutes first for something more important: pitching a fit.
It’s pretty much just like it sounds. Go outside, or somewhere away from any other humans, and say all the shit that ran through your head today that you couldn’t say out loud. If you’re in an office, write it all down.
Be petulant AF. You’re as tired as a toddler in need of a nap, I know you are. Pitch a fit the way they do when they’re tired because their socks are scratchy or their toast isn’t cut right.
All the times you didn’t say the snarky responses that floated through your brain. All the times you bit back your retort to the gaslighting or the condescension. All the times you swallowed your pride and your ethics because you need a job and you’re exhausted and there’s no other way to live.
Let it out.
If I had a dollar for all the mean words and anger I’ve swallowed over the years, I’d be richer than Jeff Bezos and every kid in America would have food to eat.
Learning to feel resentful and angry has not been easy; I’m allergic to conflict and I tend to think arguments and fights are too hurtful to be around, much less to participate in.
But I’ve realized that just ignoring all the tiny hurts throughout a day ends up with me being angry to the point of tears over stupidly unimportant things, usually when I least expect it and often when my kid’s around. I don’t want to literally cry over a snagged skirt or a dirty kitchen or a stubbed toe or a slow car in the fast lane anymore.
So if you’ve found yourself today getting unreasonable road rage or crying over a small thing or needing five minutes alone to breathe after your kids left their dirty laundry in the hallway for the nineteenth time…
Go be petulant. Let that shit out.
Anger - even the petulant, childlike, ridiculous kind - is just teaching you to know when your boundaries are in danger.
Be petulant AF. Pitch a little hissy fit. You’ll be surprised how much better you feel.
And when you pair it with a daydream right after, you’ll notice that even your dreams are different, that when you get the anger and frustration out of your system first, you dream of different things - not escapes, but experiences; not running away, but running toward.
⭐ Try something new, it might surprise you
One small new thing, implemented well
After my month of burnout in March, I’m feeling a little like a fawn on new legs, wobbling around and learning to walk while everyone else is running.
I’m down to a regular person’s 40-hour workweek and I have no idea what to even do with all this time. I have a lot of emotional processing & strategy work to do, and fun new things to write, but I’m trying my best to take it slow, to let myself rest before I rush to the next thing.
Instead of sitting at the desk where I do all the work, though, getting out of my space is helping me get out of my head.
Last week I went to a coffee shop I used to love, that’s also a flower bar, and sat surrounded by beautiful things and listened to conversations that weren’t mine and breathed in coffee and sugar, and it helped open up my brain and my heart in a way I couldn’t have accessed at home. I went to a nursery an hour away instead of the local market for plants and wandered around a magical place full of plants.
Whatever you do, if you’re looking for a way to get out of your head, try getting out of your house or your office. We weren’t meant to be this stationary. You can’t get creative without new inputs – you’re just running the same program over and over when you try.
💭 One real philosophy idea
Philosophy wasn’t developed so you could find better ways to be more productive
Action leads to happiness.
When you’re stuck, when you’re lost, when you can’t see a way forward — one step at a time.
One action, in the right direction.
There’s very little that keeps us truly stuck. Often, it’s the things we can’t bear to change that keep us there, but that doesn’t mean they’re not changeable.
Just that we, for the moment, aren’t changeable. And that’s okay.
But one small step takes us closer to change.
Tiny steps, every day.
💖 Words to try living by
A downloadable and shareable reminder, every issue
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