“The saddest saddo sailing on the sea of sadness”

There are tons of articles and videos and books that tell us how we can be happier, and regular lists of the “happiest countries in the world”. But as I heard someone say the other day, it’s often easier to avoid things that make us unhappy than it is to pursue things that supposedly make us happy.

So here’s a video from CGP Gray about how you can be miserable. How many can you avoid?


  • “Be the equivalent of a human pile of laundry.”

A good acronym / mnemonic device:

  • VAPID goals vs. SMART goals

To help you study

Here’s a purring cat to help you study for your exams.

A couple of comments some of you may relate to:

“This is so nice to listen to at work when I miss my cat. It really helps me focus, too; it’s white noise without being too “white noise-y.”

“I’m a freshman in college who isn’t allowed to have my cat on campus. Back home, my cat really helped calm me down after a panic attack. Sadly, that happened a few times since I’ve started college, and it has taken me much longer than it should have to calm down. Now, I’m crying listening to this purring cat, because I finally have a way to calm down after a hard day!”

šŸ±Have a purrrrrfect weekend šŸ±

“Colonizing the night”

“How the 24-hour society is stealing time from the night” (from Aeon)

How important is the clock in your life?

Most days, do you feel that time is flying or “walking”?

Do you think people should be paid for doing a task, or by the hour?

How often do you kill time or waste time?

“Time-sickness, the feeling of being harried and hurried continually, is the disease of the age. Lack of time has become a common complaint. For many of us, there are not enough hours in the day to do all the things we want.”

The article offers someĀ solutions to this modern problem. Are they realistic? Can you think of others?

Have you “colonized the night”?

What colors dominate your 100 blocks?

It’s never too late in the school year to reflect on how you manage your time. This post from Wait But Why asks you to think about your waking hours in blocks of 10 minutes. Use the (printable!) grid to write in or color code your average day:

One of the questions Wait But Why asks is: do you spend 3 blocks (30 minutes) preparing dinner or only 1 block (10 minutes) ordering it (or in Tokyo, more likely, popping out to a convenience store for something)? Which is a better use of your time? Which makes you feel happier/healthier?

How many of those blocks are colored Twitter-blue? How many of those blocks are filled with “study” and is it really concentrated learningĀ or is it “study” distracted by something else?

A train story:

I was on the train the other day and saw a high school girl sit down and open a large textbook on her lap. She looked at it for about 30 seconds and then took out her smartphone to LINE someone. She did that for a few minutes and then did something else on her phone. About 5 minutes later, she put her phone away and looked at her textbook again. For another 30 seconds or so. She got her phone out again and was on it for another 5 minutes. She got out a highlighter pen and looked at her textbook again for a couple of minutes but didn’t highlight anything and didn’t turn the page. Then she put her book away and got out her phone again to LINE someone. A few minutes later she got up to get off the train, phone in hand.

I probably sound judgmental just by telling that story, and I don’t really mean to be. She can spend her time however she wants. But if she thinks that she spent her train commute “studying” then there’s a problem with her time managment. I suppose there are lots of people (not just students) who would benefit from reflecting on how they (we: I’m guilty, too) spend time.

We have about 5 weeks left of classes in this academic year. Let’s make the best of them.

And this reminds me of something I posted about a year ago. It’s about how some famous creative people spent (spend: one of them isĀ still alive) their waking hours.