Anxiety: A Continuum

I don’t know what the experts say for sure, but I believe anxiety, like a lot of feelings exist on a continuum.

Maybe all feelings are like this? Probably so.

In this way then, part of coping with anxiety is realizing this common trait exists, and then you can identify some lessons that might be useful.

Anger, Happiness, Frustration, Excitement, Fear, Calm, Anxiety. These are some of the feelings that come to mind; powerful indeed, feelings that can drive us forward, slow us down to “smell the roses”, or stop us cold, frozen in our tracks.

It comes to mind for me that the different feelings, the different emotions have varying affect on us; perhaps it’s more the negative feelings — or those generally thought of as negative — are the ones that stall us out, freeze us…and then the thought follows…

Why do we let the “negative” feelings affect us differently…? Why not just recognize it for what it is, process it, and then move on?

Why indeed…easier said than done. But it’s worth a try, right? It’s worth a try to NOT let the anxiety and the fear and the self-doubt get the better of you. I am filled with those negative feelings at times, seemingly to the very brim, and it’s up to ME to change how I deal with it.

These negative feelings, they are on the continuum with all the other emotions. And if you’re like me, for some reason, we give them more power over us…but we don’t have to.

So let’s try that simple strategy, and master lesson of how to cope with the anxiety and the fear and the doubt: Recognize, Acknowledge, and Go Forward.

GO. FORWARD.

Lyrics Post: “Guns and Ships“

“Guns And Ships”, another from the musical, Hamilton. Reading the words, I can hear the song in my head, some of the lyric so swiftly delivered, even with the words in front of me I can’t keep up the pace. So GOOD.

[Burr:]
How does a ragtag volunteer army in need of a shower
Somehow defeat a global superpower?
How do we emerge victorious from the quagmire?
Leave the battlefield waving Betsy Ross’ flag higher?

Yo. Turns out we have a secret weapon!
An immigrant you know and love who’s unafraid to step in!
He’s constantly confusin’, confoundin’ the British henchmen
Everyone give it up for America’s favourite fighting Frenchman!

[Company:]
Lafayette!

[Lafayette:]
I’m taking this horse by the reins makin’ redcoats redder with bloodstains

[Company:]
Lafayette!

[Lafayette:]
And I’m never gonna stop
Until I make ’em drop
And burn ’em up and scatter their remains,
I’m

[Company:]
Lafayette!

[Lafayette:]
Watch me engagin’ ’em,
Escapin’ ’em!
Enragin’ ’em.
I’m

[Company:]
Lafayette!

[Lafayette:]
I go to France for more funds

[Company:]
Lafayette!

[Lafayette:]
I come back with more

[Lafayette and Ensemble:]
Guns
And ships
And so the balance shifts

[Washington:]
We rendezvous
With Rochambeau,
Consolidate their gifts

[Lafayette:]
We can end this war in Yorktown, cut them off at sea,
But for this to succeed,
There is someone else we need:

[Washington:]
I know

[Washington and Company:]
Hamilton!

[Lafayette:]
Sir, he knows what to do in a trench
Ingenuitive and fluent in French, I mean

[Washington and Company:]
Hamilton!

[Lafayette:]
Sir, you’re gonna have to use him eventually
What’s he gonna do on the bench? I mean

[Washington and Company:]
Hamilton!

[Lafayette:]
No one has more resilience
Or matches my practical tactical brilliance

[Washington and Company:]
Hamilton!

[Lafayette:]
You wanna fight for your land back?

[Company:]
Hamilton!

[Washington:]
I need my right-hand man back!

[Women:]
Hamilton!

[Lafayette (men):]
Ah! Uh, get ya right-hand man back (Get your right-hand man back!)
You know you gotta get ya right hand man back (Your right-hand man back!)

[Lafayette (women/men):]
I mean you gotta put some thought into the letter (Hamilton!)
But the sooner the better (Hamilton! Hamilton!)
To get your right hand man back! (Ha ha)

[Washington:]
Alexander Hamilton
Troops are waiting in the field for you
If you join us right now, together we can turn the tide

Oh, Alexander Hamilton
I have soldiers that will yield for you
If we manage to get this right
They’ll surrender by early light
The world will never be the same, Alexander….”

By Lin-Manuel Miranda

Jerry Rig

Jerry Rig or jury rig, is the practice of making due with what you have on hand to repair something or otherwise solve a problem. Making due, that’s a good life lesson.

Things don’t always go as we’d like; sometimes to get some result close to what we want, we have to make due, make the best of the situation as it is.

Opportunities arose for this practice all the time. It promotes compromise and resilience and fortitude.

Don’t be afraid to jerry rig something if need be to accomplish your goal. Be resourceful. Make it happen.

Oh yea, and if you want to learn more about the term and it’s history, see below.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jury_rigging

The Power of Prayer

This passage was posted by Francis yesterday. Seems like it should be elevated. The power of prayer is real.

Give it a try.

“Each day that begins, if welcomed in #prayer, is accompanied by courage, so that the problems we have to face no longer seem to be obstacles to our #happiness, but rather appeals from God, opportunities for our encounter with him. #WorldHappinessDay” -Pope Francis on Twitter”

Amen AMEN.

Shanty Town

It’s not near Cape Town or Karachi, not even Skid Row— nothing like that scale or density of population, but in this home town of mine, San Jose, California, homelessness has over the years become a societal problem on the rise.

The pandemic has only made it worse.

Vast disparities of income versus the cost of living is part of it. Mental health issues are part of it. And with the pandemic, pretty suddenly many whole could just make it, can’t anymore. And so they live in their car, maybe, or under an overpass, or in a shanty.

In this wealthiest of regions in this wealthiest of nations, how can this be so? And how can we fix it?

Can we agree that it should be fixed? That we are better than that, that we can do better than that. Let’s figure it out. Let’s make it better.

We can do this. We are called to do this. Love your neighbor as yourself. love your neighbor as yourself.

Stripped Down Week

Not sure why, seems I’m frequently battling these days. Battling with tasks at work; battling with conflicting priorities; battling my moods, working to keep things on the up.

So stripping down this week, taking the minimalist approach, working on the basics. If grand insight presents itself, you’ll hear about it, no doubt; but not looking for it. Striving instead to as efficiently and effectively as possible, put one foot in front of the other.

Expecting some bumps as the week starts, so one foot in front of the other I think is the best approach. Yes, one foot in front of the other. Here we go…through it all, and all the same though, the same mission:

MAKE IT GOOD.

People Helping People

It’s a simple idea. People helping people. It’s a simple act. Anyone can do it.

It’s an easy choice. If someone needs help and you can help them, do so.

If each of us took this approach, things would be different in our neighborhoods, in our communities, states, countries, different for the better, in our workd

People helping people. An example? A handful of people with an understanding of where there is excess food, and how the redistribute it, to people in need, people who would otherwise be hungry…those handful of people provided for near 200 families today.

It was inspiring; it was humbling to be a part of that effort today. It was simple. People helping people.

Let’s all do a little more of that. Amen. AMEN.

Compromise 2

The way forward.

Compromise.

“Not every disagreement on every issue requires a war; that’s not reasonable; that’s not responsible leadership.

We elect our leaders to govern; we expect our leaders to govern.

If you’re not protecting our people and moving our society forward, you’re not governing. You’re not doing your job.

The Gang of Six, 2018.

The Gang of Eight, 2013.

The Grand Bargain, 2007.

Consider the art, the duty, of compromise. I believe it’s a fundamental trait we humans possess, and must adhere to, to co-exist in the world. We are a social species, which means we are meant to live together.

To live together, in this world, in this country, in our community, in our family, we must hone the skill and willingness to compromise.

Compromise: the path forward.

Lists

I’ve been making lists for a long time. The practice likely parallels my efforts in school, work, and life to be more organized. It’s been a mixed bag of results.

But the lists go on!

I prescribe mostly to the idea that having one (or at least only a couple few) master list(s) is a good idea.

At least, better not to use the backs of envelopes, loose/scrap paper, post-it notes to keep track of things. White board at home? Ok.

I end up making a few lists: grocery; work (at least a couple, different places, tactical, strategic; personal, those tend to be the most stagnant.

But make ‘em all the same, chase ‘em too. Every day. Do so. Let’s GO~

House White Board

Up and Down

Up and down things go, every hour, every day. Moods, fortunes, progress, or lack there of.

Sometimes, maybe frequently, the best we can do is keep going. Sometimes the best we can do is take the step forward.

Let’s do that today. Up or down, when things settle, go forward. Let’s go forward together.