Oct 25, 2022Liked by Resident Contrarian

I'm pretty sure I commented on the last article with "ways to destress that work for me, a chronically stressed person", but in case I forgot, here's a bullet point list.

1. Make time for your hobbies, and make sure some of them have nothing to do with your day job. This is my main failure mode every time my stress overwhelms me. "Oops, I've been doing only work and chores and no hobbies for 14 days, NO WONDER my mental health is shit."

2. Go outside a few times per week, touch some grass.

3. Spend less time online, unless it's productive (ie, learning a new skill, doing a hobby*, conversing with friends who don't do phone calls, etc).

4. No doomscrolling or constantly refreshing pages for updates.

5. Ruthlessly cultivate your feed if you use social media. Mine is fire emblem fanart and Pokemon memes.

6. Drag your spouse/family/friends somewhere at least once a month and make a day of it.

7. Get a pet**. Train it to perform deep pressure therapy.

*Arguing about politics does not count as a hobby for this purpose.

**A cat is ideal because they come pre-trained.

Expand full comment

What’s worked for me these past two years to get happier

1) spending money

2) driving the MGB (until it caught fire)

3) riding the Norton (until the crankshaft broke)

4) looking at the Lambretta, MGB, Norton, and especially the Triumph (still doesn’t run quite right yet unfortunately)

5) having a steak and listening to the jukebox at the Pig & Whistle

6) spending time with my roommate when she’s not crying or otherwise bemoaning her fate

7) looking at some of my immensely cool books, wool coats, and shoes

8) both (1992 and 2002) honeymoons with my future and recently married wife, but in retrospect that relationship has been a mistake.

Sadly, while she’s much nicer than when I live with her full time, staying with my wife and the kids on the weekends is more melancholy than joyful for me (to my shame).

Antidepressants don’t work well at all for me, they made me either actively suicidal (Prozac in 1989), changed sadness to intense anger (Wellbutrin in 2021), of did nothing mood altering at all (Mirtazipine and Lithium) with little difference in my mood between the months using and not using them.

Expand full comment

4 sounds like the genre of "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance", which you should absolutely read if you haven't already.

Expand full comment

I'm not on the bleeding edge of what's trendy on the internet, but I do like to keep tabs on cultural / artistic / aesthetic movements that have the chance of going big. Does anyone know of a good "roundup"-style newsletter, blog, or podcast that will keep me informed of what I need to know regarding what microcultural trends might have the serious potential to get out of their containment unit and influence the mainstream? I already read Ryan Broderick's Garbage Day (from which the "containment unit" line comes, it's one of his favorite metaphors). My ideal would be something that doesn't expect me to have been involved with various subcultures and styles, but will tell me why they are important - basically, I want something that will mansplain stuff to me.

Expand full comment

Thank you Mister Contrarian! My self-promotion efforts are not going very well otherwise, so I appreciate the encouragement.

I discussed with my husband whether we really diminish our children's opportunities with our lifestyle. One of the children, a seven-year-old, overheard us and explained:

"Yes, you never have the time to build a hen's house". He wants to be a farmer and he would like to start with a group of hens. So he clearly thought that we reduce his opportunities through not being rural enough.

Expand full comment
Expand full comment
deletedOct 25, 2022Liked by Resident Contrarian
Comment deleted
Expand full comment