How to Achieve Your Most Ambitious Goals

This seems like a worthwhile topic, given that Election Day 2018 may well be home to the most ambitious political goals of our time.

But even if you aren’t trying to change the world, you and your work and your life can benefit from this TEDX Talk:

Why You Will Fail to Have a Great Career

The title, Why You Will Fail to Have a Great Career, is provocative, to be sure, and so is the discussion that follows in this video. But here’s the thing: What Larry Smith says here is something we all know…and most of us are trying to bury from our consciousness.

Dunno about you, but this TVWriter™ minion is relieved to see what could be just about the biggest problem facing everybody starting out in any career right out there. Can you face it?

Thanks to one of our favorite showbiz experiences – TEDx Talks

Stop Feeling Sorry for Yourself!

Here we go with a message all writers need: 10 Steps to stop feeling sorry for yourself. What? You’re a writer and don’t feel sorry for yourself? How can such an anomaly be? Anyway:

by Henrik Edberg

When you fail, make a mistake or things simply don’t go as well as you had hoped then how do you feel?

Do you feel sorry for yourself? Well, that’s natural in some situations and too an extent.

But do you get stuck in that mental state too often and for far too long?

If that’s the case then this guide is for you.

Because in it I’d like to share 10 steps that have helped me to stop feeling sorry for myself.

Simple habits and techniques that have helped me to reduce and overcome this issue in my life and to stop spending so much time and energy on it.

Now, let’s get started.

1. Breathe.

First, calm your mind and body down a bit to think more level-headedly and clearly.

This simplest way to do that?

Just sit down. Close your eyes.

And then breathe through your nose and with your belly.

Focus only on the air going in and out. Nothing else.

Do that for 1-2 minutes (I like to set a timer on my smart phone so I don’t try to finish early).

This will center you and make you feel more focused again.

2. Zoom out into the world (and then tap into gratitude).

Ask yourself: does anyone on this planet have it worse than me right now?

This question helps me to see things from a wider perspective.

I often follow it up with asking myself:

What are 3 things I can be grateful for but often take for granted?

Well, I can be thankful for many such things.

Thing like:

  • Fresh water.
  • Three steady meals a day.
  • A roof over my head.

Just these first two steps is often enough for me stop feeling sorry for myself and not get stuck in self-pity.

If not, then I move on to…

3. Zoom out in your own life.

Ask yourself this about the situation that has caused you to feel sorry for yourself:

Will this matter in 5 years? Or even 5 weeks from now?

The answer is most usually for me that it actually won’t.

But I’m sometimes a bit hasty to make a mountain out of a molehill.

4. Find one opportunity or lesson in the situation you’re in.

This can help you to see what happened to you in more optimistic and constructive light….

Read it all at Positivity Blog

Bri Castellini: Needlessly Mooney – @brisownworld

EDITOR’S NOTE: Did you know that even award-winning indie filmmakers and web series creators have personal lives? Well, you do now:

by Bri Castellini


Bri: Can I interview you for my blog?

Quinn: Sure.

Bri: It felt less self indulgent than asking you to do a podcast with me.

Quinn: Fair. What do you want to interview me about?

Bri: Our relationship.

Quinn: Oh jesus. [sees me typing] Taking this all down? Ok. [sound of trepidation]

Bri: Are you happy?

Quinn: Meh. Is anyone happy in 2016? I mean since 2016. Edit that.

Bri: No. [beat] I mean in our relationship, obviously.

Quinn: Yeah, of course.

Bri: Why of course?

Quinn: Because you’re great and I love you.

Bri: That’s not a reason.

Quinn: Yes it is. [beat] You shouldn’t do this right after I woke up. I’m needlessly mooney.

Bri: Expand.

Quinn: Uuuuuuuuuhhh….. [pained look]

Bri: What would make you unhappy in our relationship? What would have to change for your feeling to change?

Quinn: I think if, um…. [long pause] I think if either of us were more inflexible it wouldn’t work as well. But as it is I think we both… we don’t take a lot too seriously. And if one of us is being silly usually the other one of us has the good humor to play along.

Bri: Give me an example.

Quinn: When I tell you to go fuck yourself, you laugh.

Bri: [laughs]

Quinn: Cuz you see it for what it is- me being a butt.

Bri: Can you give me a more real example?

Quinn: That is a lot of pressure.

Bri: Why?

Quinn: Cuz all the weirdos are gonna read this.

Bri: Like who?

Quinn: I dunno. Janine.

Bri: Tell them about Janine.

Quinn: [laughs] Janine is my other wife. Or, my other significant other. I can’t remember if we’re married-

Bri: You are.

Quinn: Ok.

Bri: Tell that story as you remember it.

Quinn: I don’t remember it! I hate this.

[fact check: Janine Janine is Quinn’s wife, the mother of his daughter Melissa Janine and currently pregnant with his unborn son Jean Janine.]

Bri: Tell me what you like about the stage we’re in in our relationship.

Quinn: Do we have to do this? If I was just telling you that’d be one thing. I don’t want to be on a blog.

Bri: Too bad. What’s one piece of advice you’d give another couple based on our relationship?

Quinn: I mean “communicate” is such a trope, but… Have a level of trust with that person that enables you to… how do I say this? [stressed out sigh] I’m trying to find a long-winded way of saying “don’t be an asshole to them. And if you are gonna be an asshole to them, make sure they know you’re joking and you’re willing to give it back.” That’s what I like about us, that we have a back and forth and I’ll never be as good at it as you but we both try.

Bri: I like that.

Quinn: I guess if I had to make it short- have good banter but also be excellent to one another…. you’re not actually gonna publish this are you? It’s absolute fucking drivel. It’s basically Ambien blogging.

[editor’s note: Ambien blogging is a reference to Rosanne Barr’s Ambien tweeting]

Bri: My advice is that you should be able to fart in front of each other.

Quinn: You know, in not so many words that’s what I was saying too. You gotta keep it cool and not hold your significant other to an unreasonable standard. People fart. They do gross shit. That’s just how it is. And they can do that and still be beautiful flowers of humankind also.

Bri: What’s the worst thing about dating me?

Quinn: I mean, you asking me to do this takes the cake 100%.

Bri: That feels like a good place to end this blog. I love you.

Quinn: Why do you do these things?

Bri Castellini is an indie filmmaker and Community Director at Stareable, our favorite web series hub. Watch the remarkable Ms. Castellini’s award-winning web series, Brains, HERE. See Sam And Pat Are Depressed HERE. This post first appeared on Bri’s wonderfully refreshing blog.

Bri Castellini: It’s Not About Belief – @brisownworld

by Bri Castellini

I think as liberals, especially liberals who are well-educated about discourse and rhetoric and identity who could be considered the “intellectual elite”, we often get the idea into our heads that if we just won the argument, those who disagree with us will finally come around. I can cite endless clips from comedy and straightforward news programs alike where a liberal reporter or correspondent interviews people on the street with simple questions designed to make them think about their preconceived notions differently. Like most viewers of these programs, I held my breath waiting for just one interview subject to notice how absurd they’re being. Spoiler alert: it neverever works. And so we all feel superior and smug and work on new thought experiments to try again. But in watching the endless and yet also far too brief Supreme Court hearings these past few weeks, I remembered that that’s not how it works. It’s not that these powerful men don’t believe Dr. Ford. Even if the FBI investigation had been allowed to run its full course, the decision makers wouldn’t be any more or less convinced. It’s not about belief. They just don’t care.

People who voted for Trump were not unaware of his history, or his hateful rhetoric, or the disgusting way he speaks to and about women. They didn’t care. There are lots of other reasons they voted for him, but it comes down to the fact that they cared about someone with enough boxes checked in favor of their beliefs being in power. And yet during the election liberals pretended that if we could just show those voters what an awful man he was, we could swing them back to reality. But it wasn’t that we just hadn’t showed them the right news clip or the right audio clip or the right densely-cited thesis on all the ways Donald Trump being in power is the most toxic thing we could do to ourselves. They. Don’t. Care.

And that’s terrifying. And makes me, clutching my degrees and my 6 years in competitive public speaking, feel absolutely powerless and unprepared. How do you combat hate if not with logic? How do you convince the hearts and minds of half the voting public that Russia influencing our elections and perpetuating hate crimes at the Mexican border are not “better than having a Democrat in the presidency” without a well reasoned argument?

One of the most interesting and alternatively most upsetting articles I’ve ever read and then kept bookmarked for occasions such as these is the one about Derek Black, a boy raised in white supremacy who over the course of several years was convinced that maybe people of other colors and backgrounds weren’t so bad after all. That article details how a group of Black’s college peers took him under their wing to slowly but surely get him to a place where he wasn’t just convinced that white people weren’t inherently better, but he cared that they weren’t. That’s the interesting part. The upsetting part is that obviously that’s not a replicable strategy for half the voting public. And it’s all well and good to feel like changing one person’s mind is something we should all strive for, that means nothing when half the voting public elected a man who in public stated an alleged child molestor was better for public office than a Democrat.

I don’t have a nuanced take on all this. I don’t have a solution. I do think it’s worth us all recognizing that the better argument doesn’t win. Power does. And I don’t know how to change that. I don’t know how to look someone who doesn’t care about rape culture in the eyes and say anything that will change his (of course it’s a “his”) mind. I Don’t Know How To Explain To You That You Should Care About Other People. I don’t know how to do anything but argue and present arguments and do research and present thought experiments with obvious answers that apparently don’t mean anything.

For whatever it’s worth, the image on this post is one I took when I attended a McCain/Palin rally with a press pass for my High School newspaper. Palin mentioned “Joe The Plumber” 11 more times than she did the economy. What a thing to be nostalgic for.

Bri Castellini is an indie filmmaker and Community Director at Stareable, our favorite web series hub. Watch the remarkable Ms. Castellini’s award-winning web series, Brains, HERE. See Sam And Pat Are Depressed HERE. This post first appeared on Bri’s wonderfully refreshing blog.