The Very Presence of a Community and Other Voices Can Be Reassuring, Regardless of What They’re Even Saying

a map of various cartoon busts of people connected with a series of dotted lines, like a social network in pictographic form
Image by Pixabay / CC 0

It’s been interesting, the past decade. Polyamory went from being a relatively obscure term, something that was only discussed in low-tech ancient discussion groups that looked basically like .txt files posted by a few obsessive outliers, to being covered by major news outlets. (The history of this emergence is well covered by Alan M’s blog Polyamory in the News)

While people disagree on whether consensual non-monogamy has caught on as a¬†practice¬†during that time (some people say no,  » Read more

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Huh. Apparently Optimists Live Longer.

a picture of a smiling sun drawn on a blackboard
Image by Pixabay / CC 0

As I’ve written before, research has shown that the most resilient people aren’t always positive. “Always” is the key term here. A generally positive outlook is helpful in responding well to life’s challenges; the important point is that while resilient people are generally optimistic they also acknowledge reality.

There’s no amount of positive thinking that’ll let you just gloss over the bad parts and have you rebounding easily from them in a meaningful way.  » Read more

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There’s Not Always a Jerk

a set of various shades of grey via overlapping circles
Image by Pixabay / CC 0

As it happens, I was bopping around the Internet the other day, not exactly minding my own business but instead throwing open every door I came across and rifling through for treasures, a bit like a video game protagonist looking for stray gold coins in NPC closets. You know, what people used to call “surfing the web.”  » Read more

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The Kind of Self-Help That Sneaks Up On You

a stack of books and an e-reading device
Image by Hobbies on a Budget / CC BY

I’m a big reader. Have been ever since I learned how. I grew up reading primarily fiction. It was the same through my teens and into my mid 20s. Fiction and loads of it.

And then, somewhere along the line, I stopped reading fiction. If I had to guess when it happened, I can look back at my back-to-back experiences prepping for two separate careers (after the changing economy snatched one away): the first involved cramming medical terminology into my skull;  » Read more

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The IKEA Effect: We Love Things More That We Personally Built

the outside of an IKEA store viewed from the parking lot. A parking lot marker reading "A" can also be seen in the shot.
Image by Sam Greenhalgh / CC BY

By now, practically everyone has heard of IKEA, thanks to their increasingly expanding set of stores as well as Jonathan Coulton’s excellent tribute song to them. (“Billy the bookcase says hello” by the way.) And anyone who has any firsthand experience with IKEA knows that while they offer timeless modernist style at scandalous prices, it also comes with a time commitment.  » Read more

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