Updating My Position

27 Apr

I love Malcolm Gladwell’s work. The first book I ever read by him was The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference which led me to read Outliers which led me to read David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants. He is a brilliant thinker and writer, and if you’re looking for something in the social psychology realm, you should definitely check him out.

I was listening to excerpts from an interview he gave, and one of the things he said really stood out to me:

“I feel I change my mind all the time. And I sort of feel that’s your responsibility as a person, as a human being — to constantly be updating your positions on as many things as possible. And if you don’t contradict yourself on a regular basis, then you’re not thinking.”

This is the story of my life. I’ve changed my political party. I’ve changed my views on marriage. I’ve changed my style. I’ve changed the state in which I lived. I even changed my stance on David Hasselhoff (he’s dead to me now).

Research shows that stagnant water is dangerous as it’s the perfect breeding ground for parasites, bacteria, and disease-transmitting mosquitoes. Flowing water doesn’t offer the same opportunity because the steady movement “cleans house” if you will.

I think this is an excellent metaphor for people. We thrive when there’s some forward momentum in our lives, when we’re allowing new life to be breathed into us on a daily basis.

There were many things that led up to me writing my last post. In my personal life I was struggling: with work, with eliminating certain people from my life, with crippling self-doubt, with a seemingly incurable loneliness. There was also something that happened last year here on WordPress (it requires its own post) that made me the undeserving target for a few very delusional, clearly unstable human beings.

So I quit. I quit certain people. I quit Facebook. I quit this blog. Essentially, I took all of my mental and emotional baggage, wrapped it up in a garbage bag, and threw that shit over a cliff. Then, as we all do when we don’t have any other choice, I got on with my life.

I took a vacation (that kind of turned out to be a nightmare).

jurrasic park, humor, dinosaur, jen and tonic

I hung out with my homegirls.

golden girls, bea arthur, betty white, stay golden, thank you for being a friend, humor, jen and tonic

I searched for hidden treasure with a few close friends.

goonies, goonies never say die, movies, treasure, humor, jen and tonic

I met a nice young man who helped me get dressed.

mrs robinson, the graduate, movies, humor, jen and tonic

I enjoyed being an American.

chuck norris, american, america, 'murica, murica, amurica, humor, jen and tonic, flag, guns

During that time things changed for me. I began to process and digest everything that had happened to me. I let the anger and sadness and emotional exhaustion wash over me, and I was left with little life lessons I could keep in my pocket for future use.

Slowly, I began to miss this blog. This thing I had been so ready to burn to the ground was now something I wanted back into my life badly.

“Can I do that?” I must have asked myself that a dozen times. I’d be seen as a hypocrite, or as an attention-seeker, or someone who was too weak to stay away.

Then I realized I had been asking myself the wrong question. It wasn’t a matter of could I do this, it was a matter of why couldn’t I do it.

And that’s why I’m here. I challenged myself, and decided to update my position.

A lot has happened in the 6+ months I’ve been away, and I am not the same Jen today that I was then. I stopped wading around in stagnant water, and the new flow helped change my perspective on so many things. I’m looking at the world through an entirely different lens, and I can’t wait to share what I see with all of you.

74 Responses to “Updating My Position”

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  2. Summer Solstice Girl 08/01/2015 at 4:41 am #

    I love Malcolm Gladwell as well. I swear by him

  3. inboundtech.co 05/17/2015 at 4:08 pm #

    I change my mind on parties all the time:)

    • Jen and Tonic 05/18/2015 at 9:01 am #

      Especially when election season comes around and they’re all saying particularly bizarre things…

  4. Flop til you drop "FTYD" 05/15/2015 at 7:48 pm #

    New friend here- hoping you post soon! There are only a handful of interesting blogs I enjoy reading and I liked the few posts I’ve read of yours.

    • Jen and Tonic 05/18/2015 at 9:01 am #

      Thanks! Glad to have you on Team Tonic.

      I’ll be checking out your blog 🙂

      • Flop til you drop "FTYD" 05/18/2015 at 9:03 am #

        Well, hopefully, I won’t disappoint. I turned another friend to you, as well. Ever searching the blog-o-sphere for like-minded individuals- ones with sense of humors. cheers!

  5. Safe77 05/06/2015 at 10:48 am #

    Thrilled to see you blogging again, Miss Jen. I found your blog after you had gone under deep cover and have read your entries a hundred times each. I can’t wait to be afforded the opportunity to drink in more of your inimitable wit and insight.

    • Jen and Tonic 05/06/2015 at 2:08 pm #

      Ah, I hate it when I find someone I like and then they disappear (story of my blogging and dating life). Glad to have you in my corner now that I’ve found my way home 🙂

  6. Main Street Musings Blog 05/05/2015 at 6:03 am #

    Well said, Jen. Blogging is a journey. Enjoy the ride.

  7. Jami 04/30/2015 at 5:44 am #

    Happy to see you’re back, Jen. I applaud you in doing what feels right to you, and I’m curious to hear more about your experiences!!

    • Jen and Tonic 04/30/2015 at 7:54 am #

      Thanks, Jami! You’ll definitely be hearing about the stuff I’ve been up to.

  8. Dawn Quyle Landau 04/29/2015 at 10:30 pm #

    SO happy to see you back, Jen! I visited Melissa/Psychobabble in Ptown recently, and we both were saying that we’d missed you! Glad you took the time you need to clear out the demons and come back engaged and ready. I totally get that! Some of the WP stuff that went down took us all for a wicked ride, and then life is just full of… more stuff. I’m in the midst of reshuffling the deck too… Welcome back and peace in the journey!

    • Jen and Tonic 04/30/2015 at 8:19 am #

      Oh! You were in Portland and I didn’t even know. I’m glad you were able to meet up with Melissa. Hopefully the weather cooperated enough that you had a good time.

      “Reshuffling the deck”…I like that!

      • Dawn Quyle Landau 04/30/2015 at 9:09 am #

        I knew you were laying low, so decided not to pursue a visit… but I’ll be back. 😉


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