119 // Seized the Day

What does your mind need right now?

This was an email subject line from the marketing team at Headspace—a meditation app I’m an avid user of. The email itself wasn’t very interesting, but the subject line did catch my eye. It made me wonder what does my mind need right now?

At that moment I didn’t know the answer, but I did know I was in deep need of something. So, I spent the day working out what I needed instead of wasting energy giving others what I thought they wanted of me.

Today I wasn’t as outgoing. I didn’t laugh or talk as much. I didn’t get sucked into conversations or cares that didn’t serve me and what my mind needed today.

I read. I wrote some. I deleted all my tweets older than one year on a whim. I ate. I took my medication. I drank water. I walked in the sun and I talked to my wife on her lunch break. These are things that bring me joy and fill me with a sense of purpose. I filled my day with them and made this day a good one.

It feels good to have some control over my mood and my doings. Tomorrow may be totally different. Tomorrow will probably be totally different. I may have fewer choices and chances to make what I will of my time, but the fact that I saw the opportunity today and seized it is certainly something to be proud of.


Today was a good day, like, a really good day! The HR department is back in the office at work and my promotion has finally been made official! In addition, it’s very possible that the raise I will be offered will be much, much more than I had expected. I am ecstatic! I am elated! I am so happy and optimistic for the future and all the things I’m going to be able to do now I feel I’m about to explode! This is what I’ve been waiting for. This is what I’ve been working for and it’s finally happened.

I only wish I could go out and celebrate. This news calls for a couple dozen oysters, a bottle of wine, and a rich dessert. Instead, I’m stuck at home settling for whatever liquor we have in the cabinet and a bland dinner I planned a week ago. I know this lockdown is the best thing, the right thing, but damn is it a bummer.

Still, this is amazing news. I feel suddenly more valid and worthy than I did just this morning when I woke up. I’ve known for weeks I got the position, yes, but to have it become real made me feel more real. I shouldn’t wrap so much of my worth up in my work, but I have been feeling so useless and so unseen these past weeks. I needed this and right or wrong it feels good and that’s all that matters.

Interestingly, as I was celebrating this momentous win and thinking about all the ways my quality of life was going to improve, I was also listening to Laurie Santos’s lectures in The Science of Well-Being and realized that the happiness I feel right now is temporary. Chances are, in a year or two, this won’t be enough. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not—it’s certainly a very human thing—but, if I could, I’d for it to be enough, or at least be exciting for a good while longer than that.