The Fourth of July came and went a few days ago. I don’t do holidays in general, I’m not fond of awkward gatherings with expectations to live up to, and I don’t enjoy the fourth particularly because I don’t like sudden, loud noises. Most of my friends and family enjoy the fourth, and most other holidays. I really don’t understand why holidays are so ingrained in people’s psyches; I’ve been accused of some very disturbing, entertaining from my perspective, but terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad things when people learn that I don’t do holidays. The dirty looks and the dumbfounded questions and the abject horror. Anyway, it was The Fourth a few days ago, and I did something rather than nothing.
I went to my buddy’s house and did another podcast episode. I enjoy going to my buddy’s, I enjoy helping him with his show, and I really enjoy having conversations. This episode was a special conversation, he brought myself and two other guests on and we all, along with Rob The Producer, had a three-and-half-hour conversation about several topics.
It was pretty entertaining. It was pretty all over the place. It was pretty hard to follow. It was pretty bro-rific!
The episode will be up on YouTube and Spotify and Podbean within the next fews days, we’re still working on a good workflow solution, and I will post a link when it’s up, but until then I’d like to at least proffer my thoughts on the experience.
First and foremost, I still suffer some pretty intense social anxiety. Sometimes it’s hard for me to spend time with my loved ones, people I’ve known for years, people who know things about me that I lie to even myself about, people who have demonstrated over and over and over that they do in fact love me as I am and will not stop. I still have an irrational fear of being rejected by these people, I still feel immense pressure to be perfect in front of them. It’s challenging, but I always find that there is a reward if I stick it out and allow myself to be with people who enjoy spending time with me. I recognized this pretty distinctly in this situation, I was uncomfortable and anxious and not having the greatest time for the first hour or so. Then, all of a sudden, I realized I was having a good time and I felt good about myself. This happens to me a lot, and I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about how best to deal with it, I don’t like sitting around doing nothing, but sometimes it’s just too overwhelming to go out and do anything. The only thing I’ve been able to come up with is just to challenge myself to do things, even though I may feel like I don’t want to, I know that I’ll be much happier if I get up and go out.
This episode was fun for me because I had the opportunity to challenge my friends on some of their views. I prefer not to rely on labels to describe or define people and their ideologies, but in this case we’ll settle and say that I’m pretty far left and my buddies are either firmly planted in the center or fairly far to the right on many social and political issues. There were mostly silly topics brought up, but there were a few of a more serious nature. In retrospect I wish I would have been a little more assertive at a few points in this three-hour round-table discussion, we all said things at times that either were, or could be seen as, problematic. I do feel good about it though, I feel like demonstrating how to have productive conversations, how to cooperate with a person you disagree with to come to a more robust understanding of the issue, is more virtuous than pushing my own personal views.
Doing this episode in particular, but spending more time helping my buddy with his show overall, has really made me want to do more. I spend a lot of time thinking about things. Sometimes I’ll focus on something and I won’t be able to think of anything else for a week, sometimes I’ll run through things almost too quickly to even understand what it is I’m thinking about. I write, sometimes, but not as much as I used to and not as much as I want to. I get caught up and carried away and lose sight of my goals. I get overwhelmed by all the things running through my head and I work myself into a state where I can’t do anything other than, essentially, panic about the fact that I’m not doing enough! This is a terrible way to manage my goals and my time and I really need to find a solution, I suspect I already know what it is and I just need to stop allowing myself to justify my laziness.
I really appreciate all of you who take time out of your lives to consider the things I offer up here for your consumption. I really appreciate all the people who spend time thinking about and talking about and trying to find ways to deal with the issues that concern our society and how to make it better. I hope all of you are having a good weekend, that you all are happy and healthy and where you want to be in life, and I hope that you all keep coming back when I have more to share.