Just a little patience

This Week’s BIG Idea

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I have different systems in place for most areas of my life. I’ve developed a series of habits around health, relationships, reading, and writing, for example. I’ve discussed most of those habits here. Now, even when I have all those systems in place, there’s something that I’ve been struggling with, patience.

Whether you’re reading this article on Substack or the website, both platforms have seen nothing but growth for the past few years. That said, I’m always chasing more. This is the so-called hedonic treadmill, a psychological theory that says that even when our external circumstances change, we always go back to a base level of happiness. This means that even if you get things like money or fame, you’ll feel happy for a moment and then go back to the same level of happiness you had before. This is dangerous because before you know it, you’ll start moving the goalpost. This means that you’ll never get where you want to be.

I think a solution to this problem is to enjoy the process. This is simple but not easy. Instead of waiting for an elusive goal that might happen, enjoying the process is all about being right here, right now. As I said before, patience is a superpower and the person who is patient has an advantage over those who aren’t. Yet cultivating patience in a world that’s always moving fast is difficult. The rewards for doing so though are tremendous. This article is to alert others of the risks of running all the time, but also a reminder to myself. Sometimes, it pays off to breathe, think about where you’re going, and head in the right direction.

What I’m Working on

For the last couple of days, I’ve been working on a summary of Feel Good Productivity. This is a book I’ve been waiting for ever since it got announced. I certainly took my time with the summary because I wanted to get it right. Now that I’m done, I can say enjoyed my time with the book and I see myself rereading it soon.

What I’m Listening to

Kavinsky – Nightcall: I’ve been taking a break from podcasts, so I find myself listening to music often. A couple of days ago, I forced myself to watch a movie called Drive, a neo-noir thriller with Ryan Gosling. I usually struggle with entertainment in the sense that whenever I sit to watch a movie, I feel like I’m wasting my time. To solve this, I created some simple rules. Once I’ve taken care of the most important habits and I have free time, I can watch any movie I want. If you haven’t watched Drive and you’re remotely interested in its simple premise or stellar cast (Ryan Gosling, Ron Pearlman, Carey Mulligan), you should check it out. The movie’s a modern gem and the booming soundtrack is enough to give it a chance. 

What I’m Reading

Beyond Belief by Jenna Miscavige Hill: I promised myself that I was allowed to go down any rabbit hole I wanted. The only catch was that I could do that by watching documentaries or reading books. Before, I would lose hours reading Wikipedia articles and blogs, but I’d forget everything soon after. With that in mind, I collected several books on topics that interested me. The first of those books is Beyond Belief, a memoir where Jenna Miscavige Hill tells what growing up in the Church of Scientology was like.

What I’m Watching

How to Read Like Marcus Aurelius (And Ryan Holiday): there are innumerable benefits to reading books, but few people can articulate those like Ryan Holiday. In the video, Holiday talks about the benefits of reading books and how this habit can change your life. As usual, the author views this idea through the lens of Stoicism. 

This Week’s Quote

“You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read. It was books that taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, who had ever been alive.”

James Baldwin

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