Know the difference so you can support your loved ones! Empathy typically provides far more support and healing for a person than sympathy does. I briefly posted this yesterday but wanted to clarify some of the wording. Compassion is another step above sympathy or empathy in that it directly offers support, "how can I help you?" Sympathy, empathy, and compassion may all be combined together such as with, "I'm sorry you're feeling that way, I went through a similar thing recently and feel your pain, how can I help?" Sympathy by itself is not necessarily bad, it just often comes off as distant even though the person giving it may care a lot. Words are powerful so know how your support influences those around you, even the slightest change of words can make a major difference in a friend's life.
Today I have a million tasks to complete. While the power of thought has been amazing for the human race's advancements, it is also the primary sources of depression, anxiety, and other forms of mental suffering - not to mention accomplishing much less. Today I will act with speed and certainty.
We are all probably working too much in this system that we never asked to belong to. Slow down, go have some fun or do something nice for yourself. That is natural and you'll enjoy your working hours all the better.
Been making myself feel real awful thinking about what I do not have, what I have lost, and what I want. These thoughts bring me no closer to what I desire, so I must take action. Money, love, friendship, fame, what are you doing to get it? As is quoted from the Buddha, "Craving and desire are the cause of all unhappiness."
Healing from emotional wounds takes action, but I often get stuck in the fear or laziness of taking that first step - even though I know I'd feel way better if I did something. It's good to remind myself that inner conflicts don't just go away, they require communication, therapy, totally changing my life by moving or traveling, meditating, finding forgiveness, eating differently - they require me to take action. I want to feel good in this life, so I do the work on the road to recovery. And I can't just try once and then give up, I have to keep going and trust that working through the initial discomfort will eventually lead to feeling better. Sometimes multiple conversations are needed, sometimes switching therapists or trying multiple jobs is necessary - the healing is there, it just takes effort.
Out of a survival instinct, our brains often lie to us and make false assumptions. I have to remind myself, even if I'm feeling anxious, even if I believe it will be terrible, even if I cannot - where there is a will there is a way. Failure is the first step to success, so I try against all odds and learn and grow with every step. I can I can I can (even if I cannot initially, or my mind says no no no no no). Try. You'll surprise yourself.
These things should be general rather than specific - mortal creatures are too impermanent to rely on with their emotions and tendency toward death. I say that with some snarkiness, but still, it's true. My list contains: good lighting (especially sunrise and sunset), being immersed in art, cuddling people I like, having long conversations (in particular with new people), and sitting in nature (preferably around ancient trees).
Cat knows what's up. You are always capable of changing your situation for the better. Quit a job. Move. Think a little differently. Overthrow your shitty overlords. It doesn't matter how old you are or where you're at in life, today is a great day to embark on a new path.
I ended last night feeling sorta depressed about life, and I knew exactly the reason why - but that one reason became a series of negative thoughts digging me deeper into a place I certainly do not want to be. Today's goal is to not think about it too much and work on righting the problem. Thinking about it more would only bury me in a negative mind state, so staying out of those thoughts and taking action is the better way forward. Step one step two step three here we go.
Community is the cornerstone of good mental health - it is a safety net that will catch you if you are willing to take the effort to create connections in your social sphere. Of course, it's not always an easy task. It requires a devotion to particular communities and friends and showing up for them in a meaningful way. 2019 has been a bit up and down for me, and in those dark places I really don't know how to forge on until my community comes through - I contact people to spend time with, or better yet people randomly reach out to me, or someone puts on an exciting event and thinks to invite me. I've been so grateful for the many times thinking, "oh well I guess I'll just stay in for another night" and then a connection I've fostered comes through. There have been times that I've lost communities, or have been in situations where there was no one I could trust, so having this level of support now feels quite amazing - it did take a lot of work though, and I know will continue to require regular intention to build lasting bonds.
Hi! My name is Sage Liskey, the founder of the Rad Cat Press. I grew up seeing a lot of the disturbing, toxic, and unhealthy sides of American culture, and decided I wanted to do something to change it. Since 2010 I have been writing books and zines (booklets) focused around uplifting lives and reimagining society, with a primary focus in mental health and empowerment. I believe a better world is possible, so I hope you feel inspired and a little more fulfilled from what you find here. Read on about my mission.
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My Books and Zines
November 10th, 11AM - 6PM - Eugene, OR, Tabling at Euzine Comics and Zine Fest