In her book Frientimacy: How to Deepen Friendships for Lifelong Health and Happiness, friendship expert Shasta Nelson says that when she gives talks, she’ll often ask anyone who feels lonely in the audience to raise their hands.
No one raises their hand.
Then, Nelson does something different. “How many people wish they had more deep and meaningful friendships?” she asks.
This time, nearly every hand raises.
I’m a coach, and I’ve found that so many people who work with me are low-level anxious or tired almost all the time. Here are six things that I’ve come to deeply believe:
1. The opposite of being busy or having “too much” to do isn’t having the “right amount” to do.
The opposite of being busy is having too little to do. The opposite is boredom. Allow me to illustrate:
On the right side of the spectrum, you’re busy and have too much to do. You’ve overstimulated — there’s so much going on! On the left side of the spectrum, there is too little going on. You’re bored. …
Recently I wrote about friendship, loneliness, and why it’s not surprising that you might need a new friend or two.
This week, I wanted to share five ideas about how to actually make those new friends, all from Shasta Nelson’s lovely book, Friendships Don’t Just Happen: The Guide to Creating A Meaningful Circle of Girlfriends. They’ve been helpful for me in my process of making new adult friends, and hopefully they’ll help you, too:
1. Long-distance friends aren’t the same as local friends.
Many of our long-distance friends are very important to us. We’ve known them a long time, and have a deep intimacy with them. …
I’ve had two big moves over the past few years — from New York to North Carolina, and then from North Carolina to California. Both times, after the initial exhilaration of a new home wore off, I looked around and realized I had very few, or no, friends where I lived.
So I started to try to make more friends. I started going to more events, but every time I met someone who I was interested in getting to know more, it seemed like they already had plenty of friends. Why would they want to be friends with me?
I felt kind of needy, as I tried to initiate spending more time with interesting people. …
Here’s a radical question for all of us:
Do you need to feel more bored?
So many of us are chronically busy or stressed. I started to notice that even though my life isn’t crazy-busy — which I’m grateful for — I didn’t have that open, relaxed, spacious feeling as much as I’d like. It often felt like my life was going by fast, and I wondered if that was what I really wanted.
I’ve started to wonder whether boredom is part of the solution. For me, boredom feels like the opposite of busy-ness. When you’re busy, your life is too full. …
It was 8 pm. I’d just gotten home from a walk, and planned to shower and make dinner. But first, I reached for my phone.
What if you didn’t?
It was a small, kind voice inside of me that asked the question. It wasn’t mean or accusatory. But I also knew it was on to something.
Lately, I’d started to wonder if used technology too much. Previously, I had always thought of myself as a “slightly below average” technology user — I don’t follow that many people on social media, I don’t text that much, I don’t get that many emails. …
You’re the most selfish person I’ve ever met.
How did you feel when you read that? How would you feel if someone you cared about said that to you?
Would you feel a clenching in your stomach?
Would you think, Oh god, what did I do? I’m so sorry!
Or, she has no right to say that!
Marshall Rosenberg, in his classic (and really fabulous) book Non-Violent Communication, points out that we have four potential responses whenever someone says something negative to us. We can:
Most of us know as much as we need to about nutrition.
Most of us know as much as we need to about portion sizes.
If you’re frustrated with your eating or weight, it’s probably not because you “didn’t realize” that eating an entire pan of brownies wasn’t particularly healthy.*
Oh golly, I wish I’d known sooner that 4,000 calories of ice cream wasn’t healthy! You don’t say!
And yet, isn’t that what the entire diet industry (and much of the supposed “wellness” industry) is selling us? …
But Katie, if I let myself eat whatever I want, I am going to eat cookie dough until I burst.
I help people learn how to trust themselves around food, and this is easily one of the most common questions I hear.
And I get it, I really do.
Most of us have had pretty scary “overindulgent” eating experiences when we’ve boomeranged OFF of the restrictions we’ve created for ourselves— eating a whole pint of ice cream and a family sized bag of chips in one sitting.
So we’re pretty afraid that we’ll do the same thing again.
And then never stop. …
Restricting Calories Makes You Crazy (No, Really)
You know how as soon as you restrict your calories, all you want to do is eat a whole tray of warm chocolate chip cookies?
It’s not just you.
Let’s talk about a research study that shows the frightening effects of calorie deprivation.
The amazing thing about this study is that it’s not so different from the conditions that we put ourselves under all the time in the name of “dieting.”
It was November 1944.
WWII was winding down in Europe, and the Allies knew that as they entered cities in previously German-occupied Europe, they’d be running into a lot of starved, emaciated civilians. …