Thursday, May 28, 2009

What's interesting?

On twitter jay_lake writes: We admire the strong, but the conflicted are more fascinating.

I don't find conflicted people fascinating, except in the way a snake might fascinate a mouse. I might find the conflicts interesting, but I want to resolve them, not wallow in their complexity. Maybe there's no resolution: accept the ambiguity of the situation and figure out the best next action. There's nothing to admire in being conflicted, especially if it also means stuck; decide and move on.

I'm far more curious about exploring strong people. Why are they strong? How'd they get that way? What kinds of situations have they faced? Was it learned or have they always been strong? Do they have any lessons useful to me?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Apparently the "academic women bloggers" are writing advice to young girls.

There's lots of good advice, though some of it is frivolous. What I told my sons when they were preteen and through their adolescences was that this is a great time to learn how to manage feeling bad. What helps when you're angry? What helps when you're sad? How can you take care of yourself when you're ill?

Maybe it's happy music, or a favorite book or movie. Maybe it's a walk outside. Maybe it's cleaning, maybe it's cooking, maybe it's eating a favorite meal or treat. Figure out what makes you feel better and keep it in mind for when you need it.