Computer :(

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Practicing Stress Free Living

Something has changed in how I live my life the last three or four years. I've gone from being an incredibly independent person able to handle damn near anything thrown at me to someone who struggles with the day to day.

Like I hinted in my last Weekly Review, I've been having a really tough time dealing with my stress lately. I've been teetering on Burnout lately, and doing everything I can to fight that. The worst part is that my work stress is only a part of the pile of stresses that I've been trying to manage lately, and that means that simply taking a week off from work and playing with personal projects in a hotel in Redding or Big Sur isn't going to make my situation much better.

I've been trying to dive in to some real ways to destress that aren't simply superfluous or self-harming things like drinking.

  • Working towards the problems I'm facing is a big piece of course, but those are long slow battles.
  • Fresh air is a big help for me. Going out in the world and seeing other human beings reminds me that my problems aren't unique, that the world is full of people who are also just trying to do their thing.
  • Embrace friendships in my life. Not nearly something I do enough, but I want to spend more time with my friends. My friend Patrick just ejected to San Francisco, and he's someone that I would like to hang out with some more now that he's out here. He is sort of a bridge between a handful of social circles of mine and that is pretty great. EmacsSF has been a great outlet for meeting new people, as well, though I do wish more of my current friends were active in the group.
  • Actively practice empathy. Put yourself in others' shoes, even if it's a struggle and goes against everything you think you know. Treat people like humans. Talk to homeless people, say hi to neighbors. Converse with your Uber driver.
  • Pet dogs. Dogs make me really happy, and I am so close to getting a pet of my own. It'd give me an excuse to leave work earlier, get up earlier, go excercise around the lake, and generally be more healthy.
  • Improve your craft. Practice things that are enjoyable to you, make sure it's not about work. I've been planning to go through SICP for a while now and I am going to start doing that.