Dear 100 Hour Board,
What's a philosophy or point of view that you have recently changed?
Can I tell you a story or two? It’s not strictly necessary, but I feel like it might provide some good context. If you’re in a hurry, skip to the end. I promise I won’t know.
Part 1, in Which Josefina Becomes Weirdly Nostalgic for Her Non-Existent Small Town Upbringing
A few weeks ago, I was hanging out (read: pretending to do homework) with two good friends of mine. One of these friends put on country music to play in the background. Dear reader, one thing that you should know about me is that I am really not a fan of country. I’ve had enough people try and convert me, though, that I finally asked these two country-lovin’ kids exactly what the appeal was.
In response, they took turns telling me about some of their most significant life experiences and which country songs they associated with each. A few of the songs described their youth to a T, but even the ones that didn't were able to remind them of their time growing up through the good values and emotions that they expressed. My friends told me that there is a country song for every situation, so there is a lot of nostalgia associated with the genre. It was really impactful to hear their stories as told through music. It was a great and unexpected conversation; there were tears involved.
By the end of that conversation, I realized that I might not love the sound of country, but I can respect country music for what it does for people. And I might even be coming around to a couple of the less twangy songs (SSSHHHHHHH. Do not tell my friends yet, please. This is going to take some personal rebranding, and I appreciate your respect as I navigate this trying time.)
Part 2, in Which Josefina (Kind Of) Stops Being a Snob About Sports
Another thing I’ve never really been able to relate to is the fandom surrounding sports. I didn't grow up watching most sports, so I’ve always shied away from it a little bit. I just didn’t understand what was so exciting about some guys throwing a ball around. I am ashamed to admit that I may have felt a little above the whole thing.
But, a few months ago, I watched a video by John Green called “On Sharing The Walk” that changed my perspective. In that video, he describes why he feels so passionately about soccer:
“Sports are about winning and losing, heartbreak and joy, grief and celebration. They provide simple narratives when life only provides complicated ones. But more than that, I think they are about celebrating together, and grieving together, and being together. Sports remind us that what we have is not as important as what we share, and that we are never truly alone, not in loss and not in victory.”
And suddenly, I understood the appeal. I can get behind the silliness and hype when I understand the community that it offers. I love that same aspect of many of my own weird obsessions. Communities hold us together, even though those communities may look very different from one another. (A similar sense of community is actually one of the things that initially attracted me to the 100 Hour Board. It has its own mini-culture, and inside jokes, and I loved the respect and even camaraderie that I saw between writers.) So, I've recently recruited my friends to help me understand football. I've even been watching some Sunday night games with them, whenever I can. Trying to follow a football game still feels a little bit like I'm a first-semester language student trying to follow a conversation between native speakers, but I'm getting there.
Part 3, in Which Josefina Finally Gets to Her Point
So, those are the perspectives that I’ve changed: I have never liked country music, or been able to relate to football fans, and now I am one step closer to Getting It. But I think those two things are indicative of something that I need to remember going forward: as it turns out, people generally have good reason for what they do. If I haven’t seen the appeal of something popular, it’s very possible that I just haven’t been paying much attention. This is not to say that it’s always best to just go with the crowd, but it is worth at least looking into things to see what all the commotion’s about.
I apologize for the novel, but this question got me thinking. Also, I didn’t feel like doing my homework.
So for my first few years of college I was all about doing all the things. I felt like it would be the best way to get experience, build a resume, have fun, and make the most of college.
For a while that was true, but then suddenly I was doing too many things. Furthermore, my involvement in the things grew. As a sophmore/freshman I'd switch clubs/activities every few weeks, but now that I had several things I was more involved with I couldn't drop them all as easily because I had commitments to others. I'm involved in too many things to do any of them at the level I want to do them with.
Now I believe it's best to do 1-2 things you really enjoy and put a lot of effort into them. And now I am in the process of dropping things until I reach that point.
Integration into existing teams with one or two people having a specific specialization may be better than forming multiple teams with distinct specializations.
Comic Sans, actually! I used to be a huge font snob, but I learned that comic sans is a really helpful font for people with dyslexia (or other types of impairments that might make reading hard) and since then I've decided to acknowledge my abled privilege and stop being so whiny about something that really shouldn't matter that much to me. I think it probably shouldn't still be used in professional graphic design, but for things like my Relief Society newsletter? Totally acceptable. I'm glad to help ensure that others have opportunities to learn better.
Also, the doctrine on Heavenly Mother. I follow an awesome account on Instagram that has been debunking myths about Her and also this week my Foundations of the Restoration professor said that the idea that She is too sacred to learn about or talk about is a myth that was created by the cultural body of the church and is not a claim supported by doctrine so if we feel like we need to better our relationship with Her we should totally do it. I've never understood that, so this really awakened my soul and I've been trying to learn more about the divine feminine and get in touch with Her love and honestly it has changed everything for me. I'm so glad they changed the young women's theme to say "a beloved daughter of Heavenly Parents" instead of just Heavenly Father. I can't wait to learn more.
Dear Thoughtful Todd,
It's okay to take time for yourself and be gentle on yourself when you're experiencing depression or anxiety. I used to be the kind to keep pushing myself, and so a few months ago when I experienced extreme depression and anxiety I kept beating myself up for, say, crying uncontrollably because I was so anxious about going outside. Turns out these emotions were side effects of my birth control. It's taken a few months and I'm mostly back to normal (besides the odd day of depression, anxiety, and feeling nauseous), and I've realized that I need to be gentle with myself when I'm going through those emotions. While the depression and anxiety don't usually last more than two days, the way I treat myself in that time (such as telling myself I'm a horrible human for being unable to go outside) can negatively impact how I view myself, and that's never good.
Also flu shots. I've never gotten the flu shot and thought I would never need it, until I got the flu two weeks ago and am still sick. Everyone, get your flu shot. The flu sucks.
-guppy of doom