It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them. I was so preposterously serious in those days…Lightly, lightly—it’s the best advice ever given me. So throw away your baggage and go forward. There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet, trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair. That’s why you must walk so lightly. Lightly, my darling.
A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face she inquired, “How heavy is this glass of water?” The answers called out ranged from 8oz to 20 oz. She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If i hold it for a minute, its not a problem. If i hold it for an hour, i’ll have an ache in my arm. If i hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer i hold it, the heavier it becomes.” She continued, “The stress and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them for a big longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed - incapable of doing anything.” Always remember to put the glass down.
This is the rule I always give myself: that nothing new can come from a situation that involves being free or that doesn’t involve suffering.
William Burroughs (with a pumpkin he carved with a hatchet)
"Work is an idol, albeit a fallen one. Its imposition is no longer of a moral or religious kind (‘You shall gain your bread by the sweat of your brow’), but profane and down-to-earth. In some Asian countries, labour is now being disciplined better by the pressure of consumerism than by an appeal…
Once in a while it really hits people that they don’t have to experience the world in the way they have been told to
"I’m afraid of sliding back to a place when I didn’t have the tools to be strong."
I don’t want to go where I’m going - I just want to leave where I am
the patient that puts in the minimal possible effort to do anything for themselves.
"New York is a place for being public, for wanting to be famous. I achieved a degree of recognition in my field and became a public figure and found I didn’t like it. It served me well in launching my Literary Project, but did not serve my soul well…There’s this thing that happens, where I speak to a 20-something or 30-something sweetheart, a Joan Didion who’s moved to New York recently, and I realize at a certain point that their expectations of it are actually very low, compared to my own, because they cannot possibly imagine what it used to be like, the New York of the recent past, of the late 70s, 80s, 90s. They have no idea how far any of it has fallen, how sterile Chelsea, how horrorshow Soho, how lame-ass the LES. All by comparison. I’m not even going to mention Brooklyn, because Brooklyn is nothing but a brand name. Forget Queens…There is the fallacy of nostalgia, and there is the fallacy of the fallacy of nostalgia. You’re not supposed to ever say that something used to be better, because then you are vainly trying to hold that something in stasis, cold in the frame of reference in which you knew it, and this is narcissistic and regressive and cranky and blinder-ed. It is ungenerous to those whose references are framed more recently, to those who we must make way for and learn from: to the young. Those who are making their way in the world, and making the world. Those who could, at this point, be our children, if we had given birth to the children we aborted in high school and college and graduate school…For if it’s never true that things have degraded, deteriorated, absolutely—and of course the same is true of improvement—then there’s never any impetus to halt the degradation. Or to look for something better elsewhere. You’ll keep paying rent until you can’t."
—Rebecca Wolff, “So Long, Suckers”
Ditto. Get me out of here.