Ecological philosophy for the curious. Semi unscripted podcast/video episodes about things that should matter more. Knowledge + Experience = Wisdom will inspire your mind and stimulate your journey to enlightenment. Unlike typical follower-hungry influencers, Knowledge + Experience = Wisdom offers a fresh voice for free-thinkers starving for a more intelligent discourse.
If you’ve watched a few KEW Episodes you’ll know I have codependent, people-pleasing tendencies. This week I share what I’ve learned about codependency and narcissism. I’ve spent a decade working on my personal issues, and these two personality ‘situations’ seem to be incredibly common. Maybe some of my stories will help. Here’s a preview: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=2500346136935365
The need to make the ‘correct’ decision in any situation can literally paralyze us into not making any decision at all. It could be ‘needing a minute’ at the restaurant because you can’t decide what to eat, or whether you should quit your job to pursue an acting career. Both decisions are driven by so much pressure, stress, and societal input that it’s hard to find ourselves.
So we analyze. Instead of committing to something we ‘think about it’ too much. Sometimes we even forget what decision we were trying to make in the first place.
Here I share what I’ve learned from my personal suffering. I’m no guru, and don’t profess to have ‘figured it out’, but people smarter than me have shared their knowledge and I’m just passing it on. Add that to my personal experiences and maybe there’s a chunk of wisdom in here:)
Gratitude is touted as being able to improve an array of human problems. Anger, depression, anxiety, dieting, and other stressful issues have decreased in people who practice out being grateful with some regularity. Psychologists, neurologists, and therapists suggest being grateful as part of any self-improvement plan.
But what is it about ‘feeling thankful’ that produces calm, peace, and satisfaction where before there was anxiety, anger, and suffering?
I’m sure I don’t know, but this week I talk about gratitude and my experience with very brief gratitude practice.
In short, I think practicing gratitude, at the very least, shows us how we can manipulate our emotions ourselves. Asking yourself to be grateful is actually a practice in changing your perspective. Also, expressing gratitude feels good.
I’m no guru, and by no means have mastered this technique but I am starting to believe it’s more than snake oil.
Good time to revisit this Episode. For me, anyway because I’m constantly stalking old beliefs to try and change them. Old Beliefs are what you think is you. They’re the program running in the background of you ‘mind’. They’re the Matrix. But I’m here to tell you that the Old Beliefs are NOT YOU.
I think true mastery of the human condition involves rewriting your Old Beliefs so you can live New ones. But first, we have to figure out what they hell is going on. Because most of this operating system was installed when we weren’t paying attention.
Doubt is tricky. A little bit is a good things. Too many of us think we’re right all the time – and that simply can’t be true. A little bit of doubt is healthy and says, ‘hey, i may be wrong here’.
Admitting you may be wrong, and doubting your ability to ‘know the truth’ is healthy. However, doubt can become a lifestyle. Take it from me. I used to fancy myself as a ‘Cartesian thinker’ or one who ‘thinks, therefore, I am’. I told myself that I ‘doubted things until I couldn’t prove them untrue’. Just typing that out sounds horribly pretentious and is embarrassing to admit.
Not only was I delusional about my scientific or philosophical prowess, I allowed my doubt to grow in to cynicism, and even pessimism. You see, it’s easier to be negative than it is to be positive, and doubt can push you toward negativity real quick like. Or at least it did me.
I realized during the recoding of this podcast that my ‘healthy cynicism (doubt)’ had grown into a negative pessimism. And all I was trying to do is remind myself that I could be wrong. So remember to keep your healthy doubt in check!
Many of us bought into the dream of the previous generation; our parents, family, teachers, and other adults in our young lives. We were taught to follow the linear path of good grades -> good college -> good job -> good retirement -> successful life. Then we hit some point in or 30s, 40s, maybe 50s where we question what the hell we got ourselves into.
That was a great idea for the post WW2 generation who lived through truly sucky times. And many of those folks followed that dream, got a fat pension, retired at 55, and lived a little before settling down into old age.
I’m not so sure that works any more, and probably hasn’t worked very well for quite awhile.
I often say that ‘retirement is wasted on the old’ because a lot of us nowadays feel like we have to work into our late 60s or maybe forever to continue to make ends meet. Pensions went away and were replaced by 401ks that sometimes work but sometimes don’t. Health care costs went up, especially for the older folks. We live longer and are pressured into more expensive lifestyles during middle age and just can’t, or don’t, save as much.
Anyway, here’s my take on the great American midlife pivot where we re-define our dreams and try like hell to change course midstream and make it happen.
Seriously. WTF? Habits are really hard to change. Trying to exercise? Eat better? Cleaning up your potty mouth? It ain’t easy. And the crazy thing is, as hard as habits are to change it seems like picking up bad habits is easy. Changing habits is hard stuff. And I’m not just talking about physical addictions or bad habits. Besides just habitual behavior we also have emotional and intellectual habits that could use some modification. I overthink to the point of anxiety – I’d like to change that habit! I have an addiction to nicotine – that one needs to go. I habitually prioritize my family’s needs over my own – this one is HUGE, and I STRUGGLE to even modify it a little. In this episode I’ll discuss my own issues and demonstrate how the struggle to change habits is universal. I don’t have much advice to offer, except that changing habits is probably a slow process that will require some effort – there’s no magic bullet.
My therapist posed the question to me once, “Would you rather be right, or happy?” and I have thought about it ever since. At the end of the day, I’d rather be happy.
Our desire to be right, to win arguments, or impose our beliefs and values on to others is contributing to the ‘us vs. them’ mentality so prevalent in today’s society – especially in the U.S.A. where I live.
This week I discuss how to deal with this situation and ask you for your input.
Eliza Schuyler finally tells her husband’s story in Lin Manuel Miranda’s “Hamilton”. But we’ll never really know Hamilton’s story, because he isn’t around to tell it. And, really, did he even know his story? Do you know yours?
Here I argue that it is an important goal of human life to understand who we are and why we do things. To ‘know thyself’ by the time we die. No one else can know us as well as ourselves, and any ‘history’ or ‘her story’ told about us is necessarily inaccurate as it is filtered by someone else’s lens. Only one person can know the ‘truth’, and that’s you.
And, really, it’s not the knowing but the journey toward knowing. Making the decision to know yourself is how you learn. I wonder how many people care enough to make that effort?