The actionable, curated newsletter to help you make positive change.
Welcome to this special Halloween edition of Intelligent Tuesday, from the Intelligent Change Team (creators of The Five Minute Journal,Productivity Planner, and My Commitment). This is a weekly list of resources that enhance our lives. We want to share these with you to spread joy, productivity, and self-fulfillment.
“Life’s waters flow from darkness. Search the darkness, don’t run from it.
Night travelers are full of light, and you are too: don’t leave this companionship…
The moon appears for night travelers, be watchful when the moon is full.”
An Ode to Embracing Your Weirdness
By Kevin Evans, editor of Intelligent Tuesday
I love Halloween because it’s the one socially acceptable day to let your freak flag fly. Costumes, acting out characters, binging on candy like you are 5 years old...I love it.
And then November 1st comes around, and it’s back to acting “normal” again - time to put away your weirdness and act like an adult.
When I first started at Intelligent Change, I remember UJ saying that we were different. Reading self-help books, meditating, journaling, wacky diets, hacks...all weird.
In my social circle, I was the odd duck. I tried to hide this part of me. I’ve taken dust jackets off of self help books while commuting, so people on the train would not see the title I am reading. I’ve opted for the pasta dish at a restaurant when I would much rather have had a kale salad. The list goes on.
Many of us try to hide the weird parts of us, thinking that if we fit in, we will receive the love and acceptance we crave. And yet, we “know” the imperfections, the weirdness...that’s what makes us human.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Lady Gaga, and Steve Jobs were not popular because they fit a cookie cutter mold. They defy convention. Interestingness, innovation, and uniqueness all lie in the edges.
I dropped out of film school to become a rare books dealer to then work for a self-improvement company after reading a book how to do so. I do float tanks, meditate, take cold showers and, listen to the spectrum of woo woo and super scientific self help people. Organizing my home makes me happy, and I like treating myself to green smoothies. I am weird.
While Halloween is just one day, my wish for you is to embrace the edges that make you different beyond October 31st.
As Marianne Williams said, “As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
To work through Anxiety, Bring Your Inner “Monsters” to life
Mere descriptions of general anxiety, depression, and other mental illnesses do not capture the stronghold these feeling can have on us. Enter artist Toby Allen who decided to draw mental illnesses as monsters to help himself and others look at them in a comical way, thereby lessening their power.
Often used in art therapy, drawing your inner critic helps you get distance from the situation and allows you to see your uncomfortable emotions from a different perspective.
To begin, grab a piece of paper, a pen, and/or colored pencils to bring your inner monster to life. Close your eyes and notice how your inner critic feels in your body. Now open your eyes and begin drawing this “monster.” (Don’t worry about your artistic skill, scribbles and crude drawings are perfectly fine). To see examples, Steve Chapman whose Ted talk we featured previously, created an entire gallery devoted to people’s drawings of their inner critic.
If You’re Going To Binge On Sweets, Binge On Dark Chocolate
We don’t need to tell you that eating handfuls of candy is not good for you. But, if you do (let’s be honest, binging on Halloween candy is likely to happen), opt for dark chocolate. The Mars company sponsored hundreds of studies showing the benefits of cocoa. Since Mars might be slightly biased, we dug deeper and found other reliable independent sources also showing the benefits of dark chocolate.
So, does that mean you can eat 10 chocolate bars and count it as eating “healthy”? Not quite. We default to sage advice: “eat in moderation.”
The Best Way to Smile on Halloween - Watch (and do) The Pumpkin Dance
Video (1 minute) - This is one of our favorite videos on the Internet. if you have not seen the pumpkin dance, prepare for your mind to explode and a smile to erupt from your face like a volcano. Productivity can wait.
Thank you for reading and have a great rest of the week,