The world is a crazy place, but that doesn’t mean we have to be sad and gloomy about it. There is so much to be optimistic about there are plenty of ways you can try your best to stay positive even when everything around us is chaotic.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download
Here’s a transcript of our conversation:
Connor: Hey, Brittany
Brittany: Hi Connor.
Connor: So we posted, while back in our Facebook group, if you’re not in our Facebook group, for the moms and dads listening, you can go to Facebook, just search, Tuttle Twins family. I think the group’s called Tuttle Twins, readers Join the Family something like that. So, join the group. We have some fun discussions in there, and I, post some behind-the-scenes sneak peek kind of stuff from time to time. And we asked a question in there, some weeks back about what other topics people might like to, hear about. And today’s topic was a request from one of the listeners. so thanks. And for those of you listening, feel free to reach out on our website, at Tuttletwins.com. You can hit the contact link if you wanna suggest an episode or in the Facebook group, feel free to tag us or comment on that post. We’re always eager to get your ideas. But this was, I think, a great idea because Brittany, I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I, it feels like the world is kind of on fire a little bit.
Brittany: A little bit. Yes.
Connor: Is kind of bonkers. And one of the suggestions for what to talk about is how do you stay positive in a crazy world. 2020 is crazy, but you know, it’s been crazy even before that. It’s just a lot crazier now. And, how do you stay positive? There’s a lot of bad things happening, especially this year, and especially like how combined and quick it’s all happening. you’re a naturally bubbly person, I feel like a lot of times Brittany. So wonder, what’s one way that you try and stay positive when, when the world around you seems kind of crazy?
Brittany: So the first thing I do when I wake up is I have this thing called a five-minute journal. And they actually make one for kids too. They have a five-minute one journal for adults and kids. and every day you write a gratitude three things of gratitude. So it’s kind of a gratitude journal. So that is something that I think has helped me stay, you know, optimistic during the pandemic when things can seem kind of gloomy, especially when we were all stuck in our houses in the beginning. so I like to fill out a gratitude journal, start my day off doing that, and kind of remember right away, oh, you have so much to be thankful for. And it doesn’t even have to be something big, like, you know, my new toy. It could just be something like having a roof to sleep under, having blankets, having, you know, your parents having jobs, things like that. So I think that’s what I do. One thing I do,
Connor: Let me push you further. Why is it that being grateful for things or, thinking about the things that you’re grateful for, why is it that that type of focus leads you to be happy in a crazy world?
Brittany: So, it’s funny you bring this up. I wrote an article about this that I will link to, um, in the show notes years ago, it actually rewires your brain. So they’ve done studies on, psychology patients where they have, some of them go in to try to work through some issues, and some of them keep a gratitude journal and some don’t. And they’ve done like brain scans and things like that. And they’ve been able to see that the patients who were doing the gratitude journaling with their doctors, like were able to create new, like why it’s nuts in their brain. Like they were actually able to rewire their brain for happiness. So there’s a psych, there’s a whole scientific explanation for it as well as it, I think it just puts things in perspective and you can kind of see on paper like, oh my goodness, look at all the things I have in my life.
Connor: That’s super interesting. I really like that. And, I may just have to go start keeping my own gratitude from. I like that idea a lot. It’s, interesting. I’ve kind of been reflecting on what my own answer is, to this cuz, I’m not the bubbliest of personalities, but I am kind of an optimist. I, you know, I’m positive about the long-term outlook, for our world or for our society. But, you know, I, am, as part of my day job, often focused on problems, I’m, dealing with people’s issues and government overreach and violations of people’s freedom. and, you know, my wife, will remark from time to time, you know, shaking her head like, I don’t know how you do that all day. Like, you know, she’ll jump into one Facebook, you know, thread of, people commenting and people are nasty and, you know, or whatever. Or she’ll see a news interview that I’m in or our organization is in. And then, you know, people in the comments are, you know, being all critical and crazy and, just the steady stream of, you know, problems and people’s complaints and so forth. And so she’s not the only one. I’ve actually had a number of people in my life be like, I just don’t know how you do that all day. Yeah. I couldn’t stand doing that. And, there’s a lot, like if you focus on, there’s a lot of reasons to be, kind of down and depressed about stupid people and horrible things and, you know, natural disasters and everything else. so as I’ve tried to reflect, like, part of it is I, think I just kind of have thick skin and so, I don’t, you know, I kind of let things, roll off my back, and don’t really focus on them, but I have an answer that I, think for me, rings true. And that is that I try and study history a lot. And, so why does that matter? Well, you know, the world has been a mess throughout world history, there’s always been problems. And, people have dealt with them. People are resilient. In other words, they kind of bounce back. They figure how to get through, the problems and move on with their life. And there’s always, you know, job losses and economic crashes and natural disasters and, you know, plagues and deaths and, you know, all kinds of things. And the world moves on and people’s lives move on. And you, dust yourself off, you know, shake yourself off and, and get up and move forward. And, that’s not to say there won’t be challenges. There’s not to say that there’s no reason to complain. There, will be, there are, there totally is, but I think what’s helpful for me about learning history is that I can put things that are happening today in context. What I mean by that is I, can better make sense of, them. for example, this is a little bit of a tangent, but on, Twitter for the parents and older kids, there is a Twitter account called the Pessimists Archive. Yes. and so you can go look up or even just Google Pessimists archive, I think they even have a website. And what I really like about these guys is what they do, they go back into a really old newspaper archives and so forth, and they will find doomy, gloomy, you know, predictions and complaints and all these things from history, you know, oh, these new fingered radios, kids are, you know, being antisocial now. And you know, we need to stick with newspapers, right? Like cameras,
Brittany: We’re gonna steal your soul. That’s another one that’s on there.
Connor: Yeah, Yeah. You know, people are writing these bicycles through the park. This is horrible. you know, there’s always people complaining, there’s always, predictions of, you know, the world is gonna fall apart. There’s always, you know, these calamities that are happening. And I, like that cuz it’s kind of a fun little silly thing to be like, look, people have been wrong before and they’ve, they’ve made a bigger deal out of things than they actually are before. And so maybe that informs us today about like all the naysayers and all the people on the media and everyone kind of trying to make us more scared than we should be. And, you know, and also even recent history. So when I wrote the book feared them, I was doing a lot of research about how the government and the media tries to make us scared. And it was so interesting. You think of past health problems, you think of swine flu, right? you think of the all these things that have happened where everyone’s scared everyone’s alarm, we’re all watching the news, there’s an outbreak. Things are crazy. and, we all need to be worried. And then it just kind of goes away and you move on and, you know, covid 19 is lasting a little longer than some of the
Connor: But they always kinda ebb and flow and then you move on. And so, do we really wanna spend our time just depressed all the time and doom and gloom and worried and fearful? or can we kind of, again, put in context that, yeah, okay, coronavirus is a real thing and yeah, it’s not great and some people are suffering, but let’s put in context the bigger picture that, you know what, the vast majority of people are gonna be just fine. You know the world is gonna move forward, the economy’s gonna move forward, so let’s just understand that that’s gonna happen. And then I think gives us a lot more like faith and confidence to move forward and say like, by and large things will be okay, some people are gonna suffer. That’s just life. anyways, the, so studying history for me, recent history, past history is a helpful way, to better understand what’s happening right now. Or maybe better deal with what’s happening, right? Right now. I’d be like, look, we’re gonna get through it. It’s gonna be right.
Brittany: I also like to look at, people like Steven Pinker, the book, enlightenment Now, I believe is what it’s called. It just, I think that’s the title. I just started reading one of the audiobooks. I believe that’s the title. we just kind of look at all the good things that are going on in the world. Now. This was written pre-Covid, so I know that it’s kind of hard to say that, you know, the world is different now, but I still think it puts a lot of things in perspective of, just the progress we’ve made in the world. It’s not that it’s, this terrible place. We’re always gonna have things we’re dealing with, kind of like you said, but history, rebounds, you know, the human, the human species is very resilient. Resilient. Not just physically against, you know, illnesses and diseases, things like that. But just the human spirit is very resilient too. So I think that I think we’ll be okay.
Connor: I totally agree with that. Especially as you look at younger kids, right? By, their nature, they’re resilient. They, tumble down, they’re hurt and,
Brittany: get right back up.
Connor: Yeah. They forget about it and move on. I remember I’m trying to remember the name of this, comedian, I think it was the Louis CK guy, or however you say his name, but yeah, he was on a late-night show years ago at one point, and he was, you know, talking to the host and he is like, yeah, I was on the plane the other day.
Brittany: I love this one. Yeah,
Connor: He’s like, I’m sitting next to these people and they’re all grumpy and everyone’s scowling and no one’s happy. And the slightest inconvenience people get upset, you know, it’s been a while, but he’s kind of since I’ve seen it, so I’m just trying to remember. But this is the gist. You know, everyone’s kind of grumpy and he’s like, and I just look around, you know, and here we are 30,000 feet and I just think, this is amazing. we’re flying through the fly. Like everyone is flying and no one is happy and paused and think about like, kinda like with your gratitude journal, like how amazing is it that rather than having like a hand cart and oxen and having to walk across the country to go visit your relatives or move or whatever, like a simple plane flight and four hours and you’ve crossed the whole country. and, just how amazing that is. And so, you know, yeah, there are bad things about the world, there’s challenges, but, there’s a lot to be grateful for as well. I, really like your idea about kind of taking note of that and letting it kind of seep into our minds about how amazing our lives are in so many ways,
Brittany: In so many ways. And even if things, even if there’s everything going wrong. That’s why I like to say that. Even just sometimes writing, I’m glad I have a warm bed to sleep in tonight. Cuz maybe that’s the one thing. Maybe it’s something small and it doesn’t seem that big of a deal, but then you realize how many people don’t have that. So it’s, it put things in, puts things in perspective. I think
Connor: There’s also another angle to this that I’m thinking about right now on the fly. And that is that problems create opportunities. And so in other words, with so many bad things happening, there’s also more opportunities to help people. Yep. Like if the world was just fine, then there’d be no opportunity for service cuz no one would need anything. And that’s not to say that we want bad things to happen so that we can go serve people. But you know, like, look, there’s a lot of challenges right now. A lot of people have lost their jobs. Some people are hungry, some people are homeless. there’s a lot of people in need. Or even just losing the human connection, right? Not being able to hug people or go to church or whatever it is. and so there’s a lot of need out there. And, so that, you know, I don’t know about you, but every time I, can’t remember ever doing like a service project or helping someone out and thinking to myself, well, that was a waste of time.
Brittany: right? you’re always gonna feel good after.
Connor: Yeah. You always feel good and you’re always like, man, I wanna do that again. You get this like rush in your brain and, just, you feel good overall. And, that definitely can make you happy, right? Like, things can be going crazy, but if you can help one person, if you’ve got a friend down the road, if someone’s in your class or someone who goes to church with you, or whatever it is someone in your life who you can help in whatever way, that’s gonna make you happier. And, so even when the world is crazy, well look, if the world is going crazy, that means that there’s an opportunity for you to go find ways to help people so that it’s a little less crazy for them. And then you’re gonna feel good. You’re gonna forget about your problems and you’re gonna realize, like, again, look, life goes on and we can help one another get through it.
Brittany: This is not as, profound as your, uh, suggestion. The last one. I like that one a lot. But, I think also getting involved in a new hobby, I’ve been learning how to do piano on YouTube, and that’s been really fun for me. So that’s kind of kept me positive, you know, because music is fun and beautiful anyway, and even that can help inspire happy thoughts. But, you know, taking up a new, it doesn’t have to be music. Maybe you learn how to get better at chess. That’s another thing I’m doing. Maybe you, I don’t know, learn anything, learn a new hobby. And the cool thing about the internet being around is you can pretty much learn anything nowadays. So
Connor: Yeah. That’s cool. I like that. I think there’s a real need for, community and being around like-minded people. And, this might be a little bit silly, but one way that I stay happy and, and maybe even like, motivated, I guess is a good word. Like, you know, I, fight in the trenches for freedom every day, and I’m dealing with people who basically hate freedom and they’re trying to make government have more power and take more of our money and all this kind of stuff. And so it can get kind of down once in a while, especially when you have a defeat and, you know, you didn’t win. People voted against your bill or things like that. But one thing that I do, to kind of motivate and one, thing that kind of keeps me energized and yeah, I even happy, working in a crazy world like this is watching, movies that are kind of inspirational about people fighting for Freedom.
Brittany: What, are some of your favorites?
Connor: Well, I mean, I remember the first time I watched Braveheart,
Brittany: I still have never seen that movie.
Connor: Oh, you know, just like the passion there. another one that I first came across, several years ago, is Sophie Sho The Final Days.
Brittany: that’s a good movie.
Connor: This one is probably appropriate for like a 13, 14-year-old, and up. But Sophie Sho, formed the White Rose Society, and this is during Nazi Germany, and along with, her brother and a friend, they wrote and distributed, leaflets, pieces of paper with, kind of anti-Nazi, writings on them trying to help people wake up and realize how horrible the Nazis were. And they were caught and interrogated and, beheaded. And so this doc, this not documentary, this film is recreating her final days, you know, when they were caught, the whole interrogation, everything is really well documented. The Nazis for all the horrible things they did, they, were very good, you know, documenters of, everything taking notes and official reports and everything so they can go back and look at what was said in these interviews and what happened. And so watching that, watching her experience that injustice, is, deeply motivating for me to think there are people out there still today trying to oppress people, you know, like that. And, I can do something, I should do something about it. It’s, it’s just, mercy is another one, that came out in the past couple of years. you know, about racism and the death penalty and the criminal justice system. In other words, how the government treats people who’ve, allegedly committed a crime. And, you know, I, watched that film about what happened to this person, who was innocent, and the wrongs that were being done against him. And I watched that. And for me it’s, like the Energizer bunny, you know? Yep. Putting a new battery, put a new battery in Connor. You know, you just haven’t watched one of those movies. And I’m like, I’m ready to take on the world. Let’s go. And that makes me happy because I know that I can do something about it. That’s kind of my skill. And it really energizes me to find inspiration from, past examples of when things have gone wrong and people who have risen above that, right? Tried to kind of overcome that and have fought back. It’s, very, energetic. This is a good conversation, Brittany, I think to have because a lot of people are struggling right now. And, you know, we can let it get to us. We can let it get us down. We can turn negative, we can turn inward. And, you know, I, think we really need to kind of redouble our efforts to be, positive and outgoing and energized and, build human connections where we can. So for even the little kids, listening, right? Find that service project, play with a friend who might feel a little bit lonely, organized a little field trip, together to a place that isn’t shut down in your community, right? Let’s, figure out ways that we can actually, find ways to be happy during trying times. Cuz I, guarantee they’re out there and, you know, either we need to look for ’em or create ’em. So thank you again to the folks, who’ve given us some of these ideas. This a fun topic. Reach out if you’ve got ideas that you’d like us to talk about. as always, you can listen to past episodes, Tuttletwins.com/podcast. Make sure you subscribe. Until next time, Brittany, thanks for chatting.
Brittany: Talk to you later