A Q&A about emotional intelligence in these trying times.
Lol! Good play on words with the title! :-)
So many points resonated deeply with me in this. I will try to share a few thoughts that popped up in certain spots.
“when people are already triggered, it is probably not worth the energy trying to connect or get through to them [with facts and figures] The “not giving up ground” part of the question is probably part of the answer: to be able to be together, but agree not to discuss religion/ideology or politics if this triggers each other! One of the issues, however, is how every topic of conversation has become political.”
Yeah that’s a big challenge, it does feel like EVERY topic has become political. I am also of the opinion that this due to the powers-that-be fomenting them on purpose, as part of classic divide-and-rule tactics.
On Liv Boeree and her thoughts on win-win (or Game B) and Moloch -
I have not heard/watched this particular interview, but I watched her discussion with Daniel Schmactenberger and they spoke about this. My impression from that one, and other conversations he has had with various people, is that the whole system, the whole way our modern society and civilization has been set up is Game A, win-lose. Working on separate little bits of problems (trying to fix the big-pharma perverse incentives problem, trying to fix the degradation of our environment, poverty/wealth distribution, you-name-it, etc-etc)… each time we work on one, the solution causes problems in another area. The very way we solve things is problematic. But to move to a Game B world … a complete paradigm shift of how humans organize themselves. Anyway I will watch this one next!
“I think the biggest change in our era is that online interactions aren't merely an additional layer on top of regular human-to-human interaction, can be an alternative, especially for those who lack friends & family.
Online social engagement can provide some of these needs, but can not replace it completely, because it is missing some important “nourishing” elements, such as body language and touch”
So interesting that your choice of words coincides with an analogy I use in my own thoughts – online interaction is the junk food version of social contact. I think for some people it seems ‘ok’, and I wonder if it’s the case that if a person already has a good, well-developed fulfilling social life IRL, lots of deep meaningful connections, it’s like having a diet that is 90% super-healthy, so a bit of junk food on top of that is fine. But for a person who is completely alone, no social connections IRL at all, using on-line connections as their only source… not healthy. It would be like living 100% on junk food, which, since it doesn’t truly give your body the nourishment you need leaves you wanting more and more. And of course, the more you get, the worse off your body is. For me personally that has been the case with online interactions; since I don’t have a good base of connections IRL, I know I need to limit on-line interactions to a very very limited small amount. When I get sucked in to too much of that I can feel it being bad for my mental health the same way I can feel too much junk food being bad for my body.
In terms of the discussion about being in fear, that seems to have been a huge part of my experience, mostly due to my situation with having lost my husband, being alone in the world, feeling that because I had always counted on him to be my source of security I never learned how to be my own. But then, the way many people deal with that, as you mention, is “I’ll empower myself and do something about this, I’ll fight in whatever way I can”. And back to the first point, I Iearned far too well, in a completely different situation, the lesson that when people are triggered, facts Do Not change their minds. So being a ‘warrior’, trying to persuade and convince people by throwing stats and data at them, trying to red-pill people… for me at least, putting my time into ‘fighting’ in that way was not a good way to spend my energy. And I came to that same conclusion, if the person on the other side of whatever issue is in question is someone you still want to have a relationship with, the best way is to agree not to discuss that issue any more at all.
Your last point, referring to needing the dopamine/adrenaline fix, going down rabbit holes… During the height of the ‘persecute the unvaccinated madness’ I got to a point where I was doing nothing but reading substacks and watching related videos all-day-every-day. At some point, probably a month or two before I paused my own stack, I just let go of a huge amount of that. Chose about 3 or maybe 4 stacks and let the rest drop, shifted the type of videos I watched and limited time spent on that, and narrowed my focus to personal-work. The novel I’m working on became my primary focus during the winter, (first draft just about done), trying to improve the one actual IRL relationship I do have, and the past two months I’ve been able to add a focus gardening. All that has been immensely helpful for me in terms of my mental-health. Still a challenge mind you, but I’m definitely in a better place now than I was 18 months – 2 years ago.
Thank you Gabriel and Gary for this excellent post.
Thank you, Gabriel, for this introduction to Gary Sharpe, who I recognize from common comment threads but haven't read directly. Excellent questions and what an extremely valuable perspective you bring, Gary. There are many thoughts I have in response.
Iain McGilchrist's interview with Russell Brand is one of the first things I responded to in my YT: https://youtu.be/KFXxrARtIkc. I continue to go back to the right/ left brain analogy in looking at the rational/ intuitive, masculine/ feminine and the essential interplay between the two in the same person. This later episode looks at it: https://thirdparadigm.substack.com/p/imagination-seeks-attention and at Jill Bolte Taylor's My Stroke of Insight.
Another reference on the loss of face-to-face, early on, was the book Bowling Alone.
I'll read Gabriel's recommendations with interest. Oh, and Gabriel, I'm doing another episode on our buddy Malone today looking at 'what's a little depopulation between friends?' I think you'll like it.
You are definitely in my life for a reason, in more ways than one. bet everyone on here knows that on some level.
Thanks, Gary, I stayd home today in fear and not aware as to why, Then I am worried about my son who was warned when he was 17 by his cardiology that he does not register pain. My son told me last week the UCLA doctor told him not to worry about his pain and it was nothing. They know of his his heart surgeries and why they put him off like that must have been bothering me to a point of feeling scared. He hates to talk about it but then brings it up lately. I need to remind him cautiously to assure he gets an echocardiogram as the true test.