Time, accountability and quiet with Side Project Sessions

And delving into Brené Brown's FFTs

Hi folks! This week’s newsletter is a short one.

On Saturday 10 AM - 1 PM EDT I’ll be attending and briefly speaking about starting & maintaining side projects at Side Project Sessions, a virtual deep work session with intermittent breaks. Join me—would love to see you and your digitally floating head! I wrote about going to SPS last year if you’re curious to read about the experience.

In other news, I’ve been catching up on Brené Brown’s podcast including the episode on FFTs (F-ing First Times). The situations and icky feelings associated with FFTs are exactly what I was describing in last week’s newsletter on learning and sucking at things.

FFTs aren’t just applicable to acquiring new skills. We’re experiencing first times constantly during this pandemic—how to keep 6 feet of distance from others, how to act when someone isn’t keeping 6 feet, how to not collapse in anger when people are congregating at the parks without masks, how to wear a mask without our ears hurting, how to convey friendliness to a stranger when they can’t see our smile, and many other situations more serious than these.

We are not always choosing to engage in discomfort and vulnerability to grow and better ourselves. Often times we are thrust into the chaos without any choice, as we collectively have been for the past few months. Our environments are changing and we are changing, regardless of our desires to be changed or remain the same.

Perhaps that can be a small comfort for today: we all have FFTs, doing something embarrassingly and uncomfortably for the first time. None of us can stay immune to the discomfort of something new. The discomfort is universal, essential for us to fully experiencing life.