Summary of “The Science of How Our Minds and Our Bodies Converge in the Healing of Trauma”

Art by Simona Ciraolo from Hug Me.”A purely disembodied human emotion is a nonentity,” William James asserted in his revolutionary 1884 theory of how our bodies affect our feelings.
In The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma, he explores “The extreme disconnection from the body that so many people with histories of trauma and neglect experience” and the most fertile paths to recovery by drawing on his own work and a wealth of other research in three main areas of study: neuroscience, which deals with how mental processes function within the brain; developmental psychopathology, concerned with how painful experiences impact the development of mind and brain; and interpersonal neurobiology, which examines how our own behavior affects the psychoemotional and neurobiological states of those close to us.
You don’t need a history of trauma to feel self-conscious and even panicked at a party with strangers – but trauma can turn the whole world into a gathering of aliens.
Their bodies are constantly bombarded by visceral warning signs, and, in an attempt to control these processes, they often become expert at ignoring their gut feelings and in numbing awareness of what is played out inside.
The bodies of child-abuse victims are tense and defensive until they find a way to relax and feel safe.
Securely attached children learn what makes them feel good; they discover what makes them feel bad, and they acquire a sense of agency: that their actions can change how they feel and how others respond.
Avoiding feeling these sensations in our bodies increases our vulnerability to being overwhelmed by them.
Even though the trauma is a thing of the past, the emotional brain keeps generating sensations that make the sufferer feel scared and helpless.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Deficient Animal”

The “Science of man,” as David Hume put it-understanding human beings as human beings, both individually and collectively-has been something of an embarrassment.
What Darwin and neo-Darwinians achieved was rooted in a concern with continuities among species, in showing how human beings evolved from animal predecessors.
This increasingly exclusive focus on biological similarities tended, on the one hand, to fold the human being entirely within the continuum of the animal order and, on the other hand, to minimize, downplay, or ignore altogether the distinguishing characteristics of the human species.
The philosophical anthropologists argued, in Arnold Gehlen’s words, that “For a human’s situation to correspond with that of true mammals, pregnancy would have tolast approximately 21 months.”2 The persistence of such infantile features was related to other human peculiarities, including the long period of helplessness at the infant stage, the similarly protracted stage of development preceding sexual maturity, and, most important, the curious but undeniable absence of a well-developed structure of instincts.
In the late eighteenth century, Johann Gottfried Herder had called the human being “The deficient being”; others, following Herder, described humans as animals “Not yet determined,” “Unfinished,” “Incomplete,” “Physiologically premature,” and “Organically deficient”-and ever malleable.
In sum, human beings must of necessity make up for their instinctual impoverishment by actively transforming the world to suit their own ends, mastering and re-creating nature rather than merely adapting to it.
By nature, the human animal is a language animal, and upon this symbolic frame is built the entire interconnected edifice of culture.
The conclusion is unavoidable: The human animal is, like no other, a cultural animal.

The orginal article.

Summary of “You’re a Bad Listener: Here’s How to Remember What People Say”

You can build better relationships and get ahead in business if you learn how to actively listen, says Cash Nickerson, author of The Samurai Listener.
“Listening helps you handle conflict, express respect and be a better leader,” he says.
Good listeners use skills that are similar to techniques used in martial arts, says Nickerson.
Listening involves being in the moment, which is connected to martial arts.
Listening is the basis for growth and advancement, says Nickerson.
Listening is also important because all people want love and respect; they want to spend time with people who listen.
“Good listeners tend to get advanced and promoted,” says Nickerson.
“There’s no greater feeling than when someone listens. Not just pay attention but listened.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Shut Up and Be Patient”

People who were bullied growing up and go on to become the smartest, nicest, and most interesting dude at the company Christmas party, yet they still harbor this overwhelming sense that nobody really likes them, that it’s all fake and unreal and unearned and undeserved, and that in the end, everybody’s going to wind up hurting them.
People who grew up thinking they were dumb but then go on to get a PhD in molecular astro-chemo-bio-physics yet still feel like they have to prove themselves over and over, that they can’t be wrong about anything, ever, that any sign of doubt in others is a secret sign of inner laughter, that the simplest of mistakes or a poor decision will bring down their whole life like a house of cards.
Maybe your neurotic mother conditioned you to feel guilty about every fucking thing that ever goes wrong in her or anybody’s life, so you’ve learned over the years to always believe you’re not good enough.
These habits – a.k.a. your identity – have been built up over the course of decades of living and breathing, laughing and loving, succeeding and failing, and through the years, they have built up a cruising speed of 40 knots or so in the freezing Atlantic.
Life’s not like a Smart Car where you can just jack the thing into reverse and veer onto a pedestrian-strewn sidewalk whenever you please.
Life moves at the pace it wants, not the pace you want, bucko.
Maybe that is why we are so afraid, because we know that once we chart that course and fire up those furnaces, it’s so fucking hard to turn things around, it’s so hard to move and change and we’re afraid we may end up like the spoiled rich girl, stranded in the icy Atlantic, screaming, “Jack! Jack!” even though there was totally room for Jack on that piece of plyboard, the dude clearly had some martyr complex and wanted to feel like he was dying for her, dying for something beyond his own selfish desires, which ironically, is still dying for your own selfish desires, asshole.
It would be easy for me to say, “I want the answer NOW! I want to know what my life will be like NOW! I want to know what I should do, how I should feel NOW!” But I’ve lived long enough and fucked up enough to know that that doesn’t help things.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Constance Wu’s Hollywood Destiny”

The first all-Asian Hollywood film in twenty-five years, it outgrossed every romantic comedy released in the past decade, and Wu was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actress, making her the first Asian woman to be recognized in the category in forty-five years.
In May, in response to the news that “Fresh Off the Boat” had been picked up for a sixth season, Wu fired off a string of expletive-laden tweets grousing about what many actors would consider unequivocally good news: “So upset right now that I’m literally crying. Ugh, Fuck.” She was immediately pilloried on social media, and Jimmy Kimmel, on his late-night show on ABC, quipped, “Only on ABC is getting your show picked up the worst thing that can happen to you.” Wu took to Twitter again, explaining that the show’s re-up, while wonderful, would prevent her from pursuing “Another project that I was really passionate about,” one that “Would have challenged me as an artist.”
If the burden of being Constance Wu seemed to weigh heavily, it was also evidently not something that she felt she could renounce.
Wu is generally reluctant to talk about her family, particularly her mother, whom she has gnomically described as “Whimsical.” Eddie Huang was too loyal to Wu to divulge details, but he inadvertently let a hint slip.
Wu told Archibald that she had yet to meet the woman who would be playing a younger version of her character, Grace, in “I Was a Simple Man.” “I’m concerned, because I don’t know how she sounds,” Wu said, haltingly.
In “Hustlers,” Wu plays a squirrel-which is to say, she plays a woman from Queens named Destiny who strips in order to support a young daughter and the grandmother who raised her.
Wu’s flitting eyes betray that Destiny doesn’t quite dare to believe that she really belongs, and, the more I thought about the characters that Wu has inhabited, the more connected they felt to me, a band of outsiders.
Resting her chin on the back of her hand, Wu watched with coiled stillness, her only movements the lines of pleasure and surprise that occasionally registered on her forehead. When her turn came, Wu chose an emotionally lacerating eight-minute scene from “Middletown,” a play by Will Eno.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How the Word ‘Hangry’ Came to Define a Timeless Feeling”

By now, you probably have a word in your head for what I was feeling: hangry.
You can warn onlookers of your shitty mood with your hangry shirt, or even read a book on how to avoid being hangry.
Hangry Kits are full of protein bars and candy, and the word has been fully memefied.
Annie Mahon, author of Things I Did When I Was Hangry, said the definition of hangry was self-evident to her when her publishers first suggested using the word in her book title around 2015.
“Hangry” might have stayed a niche reference if it wasn’t for Snickers, who about a decade ago began work on their ad campaign “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry.” The ads poke fun at how one’s personality changes when they’re hungry.
They followed up with their “Hungerithm” campaign, in which the company lowered the price of Snickers bars based on how “Hangry” people on the internet seemed that day.
He recognizes the crisis of being hangry happens to adults, too.
Being expressively “Hangry” is ultimately a childish state, and yet it’s adults that made the word happen.

The orginal article.

Summary of “What To Do When You’re Feeling Lost”

If you’ve ever pushed hard or cared deeply about something then you’ve probably experienced a feeling of being lost.
Another well-known spiritual teacher, the Franciscan Friar Richard Rohr, often speaks about transformation as a process of order -> disorder -> reorder.
For someone who is accustomed to being on, to having things under control and figured out, disorientation, disorder, and even just rest can be discombobulating.
It’s easy to talk about the merits of disorientation and disorder from a place of reorientation and reorder.
As Bell says, the natural tendency is to fight being lost; or perhaps to shut-down altogether in the face of disorientation and disorder.
Herein lies the paradox: It’s counterproductive to suppress or repress disorientation and disorder.
Evolution is literally a process of order -> disorder -> reorder.
The same thing happens if you dwell in disorder for too long.

The orginal article.

Summary of “15 Practices for Staying on the Path of Mastery”

The best – be it athletes, artists, entrepreneurs, physicians, writers, or business professionals – have at least one thing in common: they are all constantly focused on getting better.
If you want to develop your body, mind, or soul you’ve got to understand that rest – that simply “Being” – is every bit as important as doing.
Doing so makes you better not only at your craft , via compounding gains , but also at the skill of exerting effort itself.
The path of mastery isn’t about being consistently great.
Staying on the path of mastery in any endeavor requires patience.
ToughnessToughness is about doing the hard thing because it’s the right thing.
Acceptance does not mean doing nothing but rather acknowledging and starting where you are.
Why are you doing what you’re doing? What are you seeking? What could you be doing better? Are you open to receiving help? Answering these questions – being vulnerable – is uncomfortable.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Case for Being Good Enough”

It is better to strive to be great at being consistent than striving to be consistently great.
Why? Because being consistently great is really, really, really hard.
I’m talking about the really on top of your game, everything clicking, firing on all cylinders kind of great.
Being perfect every once in a while and internalizing it as an ongoing expectation is a surefire way to lose motivation, experience anxiety, and burn out.
That’s a lot better than being perfect, or 100 percent, only 40, or even 50, percent of the time: 1.0 x 0.4 = 0.4 and 1.0 x 0.5 = 0.5.
Being perfect every once in a while and internalizing it as an ongoing expectation is a surefire way to lose motivation, experience anxiety, and flame out.
For most people in most endeavors, especially in those that unfold over time, it’s better to aim for good enough rather than great.
The reality is that good enough over and again is precisely how you become great to begin with.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Our Internal Critics Enslave Us”

Phillips – who has written with beguiling nuance about such variousness of our psychic experience as the importance of “Fertile solitude,” the value of missing out, and the rewards of being out of balance – examines how “Our virulent, predatory self-criticism [has] become one of our greatest pleasures,” reaching across the space-time of culture to both revolt against and pay homage to Susan Sontag’s masterwork Against Interpretation.
In broaching the possibility of being, in some way, against self-criticism, we have to imagine a world in which celebration is less suspect than criticism; in which the alternatives of celebration and criticism are seen as a determined narrowing of the repertoire; and in which we praise whatever we can.
Nothing makes us more critical, more confounded – more suspicious, or appalled, or even mildly amused – than the suggestion that we should drop all this relentless criticism; that we should be less impressed by it.
Or at least that self-criticism should cease to have the hold over us that it does.
The first quarto of Hamlet has, “Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,” while the second quarto has, “Thus conscience does make cowards.” If conscience makes cowards of us all, then we are all in the same boat; this is just the way it is.
Conscience it is the part of our mind that makes us lose our minds; the moralist that prevents us from evolving a personal, more complex and subtle morality; that prevents us from finding, by experiment, what may be the limits of our being.
This effort to foster the constructive by the destructive, he suggests, ends up turning us on ourselves as our fear of punishment metastasizes into self-criticism.
How has it come about that we are so bewitched by our self-hatred, so impressed and credulous in the face of our self-criticism, as unimaginative as it usually is? And why is it akin to a judgement without a jury? A jury, after all, represents some kind of consensus as an alternative to autocracy We need to be able to tell the difference between useful forms of responsibility taken for acts committed, and the evasions of self-contempt This doesn’t mean that no one is ever culpable; it means that culpability will always be more complicated than it looks; guilt is always underinterpreted Self-criticism, when it isn’t useful in the way any self-correcting approach can be, is self-hypnosis.

The orginal article.