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Why you are anxious all the time | Philosophers' Mail


Today, like most days, you are anxious. It is there in the background, always present, sometimes more to the fore, sometimes less so, but never truly banished – at least not for longer than an evening. The anxiety appears to be about some very particular things: the party where you won’t know many people, the complicated trip you have to take to some unfamiliar hotels, the direction of your career, the drilling outside, the email problem, the claustrophobic interior of the plane, your digestive system…

But considered from a broader perspective, the problem for us is larger, more damning and a great deal more fundamental. Beyond any specific thing we happen to be worrying about, looked at over time, a greater conclusion is inescapable: we simply are anxious, to our core, in the very basic make-up of our being. Though we may focus day-to-day on this or that particular worry creating static in our minds, what we are really up against is anxiety as a permanent feature of life, something irrevocable, existential, dogged – and responsible for ruining a dominant share of our brief time on earth.

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Dignity, Pride and Shame


Your dignity is something you were born with and you will die with it. Your pride is something that comes and goes. Shame is the flip side of pride. Dignity is essential to life. Pride is extra. Shame is extra. When you are aware of your dignity, you don’t need pride and shame…

Concentrating too much on the big picture means you forget what’s happening in the present. You can lose a lifetime thinking about tomorrow.

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It’s not that I don’t love you. It’s the sound I heard when I was 9 and my father slammed the front door so hard behind him I swear to god it shook the whole house. For the next 3 years I watched my mother break her teeth on vodka bottles. I think she stopped breathing when he left. I think part of her died. I think he took her heart with him when he walked out. Her chest is empty, just a shattered mess or cracked ribs and depression pills.

It’s not that I don’t love you. It’s all the blood in the sink. It’s the night that I spent 12 hours in the emergency room waiting to see if my sister was going to be okay, after the boy she loved, told her he didn’t love her anymore. It’s the crying, and the fluorescent lights, and white sneakers and pale faces and shaky breaths and blood. So much blood.

It’s not that I don’t love you. It’s the time that I had to stay up for two days straight with my best friend while she cried and shrieked and threw up on my bedroom floor because her boyfriend fucked his ex. I swear to god she still has tear streaks stained onto her cheeks. I think when you love someone, it never really goes away.

It’s not that I don’t love you. It’s the six weeks we had a substitute in English because our teacher was getting divorced and couldn’t handle getting out of bed. When she came back she was smiling. But her hands shook so hard when she held her coffee, you could see that something was broken inside. And sometimes when things break, you can’t fix them. Nothing ever goes back to how it was. I got an A in English that year. I think her head was always spinning too hard to read any essays.

It’s not that I don’t love you. It’s that I do.


It’s not that I don’t love you. (via exoticwild)

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"It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them. I was so preposterously serious in those days… Lightly, lightly – it’s the best advice ever given me…So throw away your baggage and go forward. There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet, trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair. That’s why you must walk so lightly. Lightly my darling…"

Aldous Huxley, Island (via purplebuddhaproject)

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