Sep 18, 2022 • 10M

Nothing Will Not Soothe | 9.18.22

The Sunday Edition

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Tyler Knott Gregson
Tyler Knott Gregson and his weekly "Sunday Edition" of his Signal Fire newsletter. Diving into life, poetry, relationships, sex, human nature, the universe, and all things beautiful.
Episode details

Burned out. Exhausted. Depleted. Candle burned at both ends. However you wanna phrase it, whatever you call it, we’ve all been there. Hell, we’re probably all there now. We’re rounding the corner on 3 years of Covid, 3 years of pandemics and strange stock markets and wars and Elon Musk screwing around with Twitter, and a whole host of other nonsense that has collectively combined to wear us the ever-loving f out. We’ve been living off the fumes of the lives we once led for a long time, coasting down the hill hoping we’ve got enough to make it to that magical gas station of our dreams, that we’ll be better, soon, that these thirsts we’ve been ignoring will soon be quenched. Problem is, there’s a problem with that. Gas prices are higher than they ever have been, and we cannot drink if we do not refill the well, we’ll be sucking dirt through our straws. To get a bit Buddhist on you, Nothing, will not soothe. Nothing will not soothe.

The question I keep asking myself, that those I know and love seem to keep asking themselves too is a simple one, but answering it isn’t. How do we keep pushing on when we feel completely empty? Where do we draw from if we feel we’ve given it all away, if we feel we’ve just run out of it all? We’ve established that we’re all pretty damn near empty after all we’ve endured, yet the world keeps showing up on our doorstep, knocking at 2am asking to borrow our last cup of sugar. I could be wrong on the way I feel about this, it’s happened before a time or two thousand, but I don’t believe we can keep going this way, I don’t think we can survive it. We have to find ways to refill our well before we can drink again, we have to find ways to get more sugar before we give away our last cup.

For too long we’ve been victimized by this “hustle” culture, told that if we just grind and grind, eventually we’ll be retiring at 32, sipping PJ on my PJ in our PJs, as Izzy Azalea so eloquently said. We fall into this trap that we must monetize our hobbies, work 90 hour weeks whilst also running a household and a family, that we must turn all our actions into means to a profit. When the things that once soothed us become things that stress us, that empty instead of refresh, what then are we left with? If we turn our passions into jobs, our hobbies into assignments, where do we escape to when the other commitments begin to pile up and overtake? What happens when we just add more noise, to the cacophony that our lives can become?

Sometimes, some rare and beautiful times, the things we love doing find their own niche and market naturally, they become ways to make money, either on the side or as the main source, and we’re able to do what we love every single day and make a living doing so. This is the aim, obviously, but we should never let the pursuit of an aim overtake all things, never let it consume our health, energy, or emotional and mental well-being. This is where I think things have gotten twisted in our society, and this is where I think we’ve all found ourselves marooned and dehydrated. This idea that every hobby is the hobby that will make us rich, that if we can only go viral, get noticed, or explode in fame, we’ll get there, we’ll be ok. We think that the harder we hustle, the more success will find us, and while yes, grit and ambition and drive are all things that can be predictors of future success, I think we need to first define that success in a healthier way. If for no other reason, than to protect ourselves.

Perhaps that’s the place we need to begin, that’s the first step in refilling those wells we’ve all been drinking from for so long. Perhaps if we stop, step back, and redefine success in healthier ways, we’ll be able to step back and stop chasing all the wrong things, for all the wrong reasons. Perhaps success isn’t being a millionaire by 35, but having a small but loyal group of people that can always count on you, and always Be counted on by you. Perhaps it’s not being so rich you don’t know how much money you have, but having enough to not feel afraid, all the time, for the next bill, the next rent, the next medical emergency. Perhaps some of this needs to fall on the shoulders of our governments, perhaps we need to take some of the stressors off our plates in order to be able to redefine that scary word, success, in a better way. If we all didn’t have to panic each month to find the money for health insurance, maybe it’d free us up to calm down, just a bit more, just a bit more often. I don’t know the answers here, but I do know I have the ability to facilitate conversations, and that’s what I wanted to achieve today. I wanted to dive into a tricky topic, and hear from you, all of you wonderful souls, on what we can do to live healthier lives.

Let’s talk, let’s discuss, let’s find ways to refill our own wells whilst refilling those of everyone else. Maybe that’s the way forward, maybe it’s only together can we do so, I don’t know, but I’m willing to try. I am tired of seeing so many that I love and cherish be so worn down and emptied out. I am tired of seeing all your throats so parched, all your skin so dry. Nothing will not soothe, we know this, and yet we keep pushing ourselves until there is nothing left. As we come up on the ending of another year, maybe we need to find new ways, better ways, to make all that nothing turn into something better.

Let’s talk. What do you think?

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Before we can drink

we must first refill the well.

Nothing will not soothe.

Haiku on Life by Tyler Knott Gregson

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