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Uploaded:2021-04-13
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In which John's watch goes rogue, and his friend Craig is kind, and a second shot is manifested.
Did you know that I have a new book coming out called The Anthropocene Reviewed? Preordoer a signed copy: https://bookshop.org/books/the-anthropocene-reviewed-signed-edition/9780525555216

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Good morning Hank, it's Tuesday.

I have to tell you about a profound mortification I recently experienced. But first, it's time to MANIFEST SECOND SHOT IN ARM. Let's go get vaccinated!

 NewSection (0:08)


I changed into a short sleeved shirt so they can have easy access to that arm. Sarah's driving because I'm too nervous. Sarah, how are you feeling about getting vaccinated?

SARAH: Fan-tastic! 

Yeah, I'm definitely very excited but also the excited parts of my brain are like, very close to the nervous parts of my brain. I'm not sure if that's true literally but it's definitely true figuratively. So mostly I just feel A LOT.

 NewSection (0:28)


Right so I have this friend Craig, who is a great guy, he's a teacher and like me, also a big soccer fan. So we text a lot about his team,(?~0:35) and also about AFC Wimbleton's perpetual proximity to relegation. Hold on, I gotta pause this story to get the vaccine.

 NewSection (0:41)


We did it! We are double vaccinated! Now  I'm gonna go home and put back on my Vlogbrothers outfit.

 NewSection (0:45)


There are two other things you need to know for this story to make sense. One is that I have never in my life spoken to my watch, but  my watch nonetheless frequently believes I am speaking to it, which is annoying, but also I don't know how to make it stop because:

JOHN SPEAKING TO WATCH: Hey, can I turn you off please?

WATCH: Sorry, I can't help you with that on Apple Watch. 

Yeah, it's just not able to help me. And lastly, I've been fortunate to have lots of cognitive behavioral therapy to help me deal with my mental illness problems, and one of the techniques I've learned and use all the time is called positive self-talk.  This is where you, like, talk to yourself in an encouraging way, and I use positive self-talk many times, every day to reduce stress and to break cycles of self-loathing and despair. Sometimes when doing this, I refer to myself as "you" other times as "we". Like for instance, if I lock my keys in my car, say, I'll get really angry and frustrated and then I'll take a deep breathe and I'll say, "Okay, we need to transition to a solutions mindset. We need to stop ruminating on what happened, and we need to start focusing on what is GOING to happen." Or if I'm feeling frustrated, and afraid about something, I'll say, "You can do this. You've done hard things before."

One thing about positive self-talk you'll notice from both these examples is that it tends to be aggressively cheesy. But whatever, I only say it out loud when I am thoroughly alone, and it works! It works top treat myself like a team I am rooting for. Right, so last Tuesday, I was behind on everything, and everything was taking longer than expected, and I had to make my Vlogbrothers video, but I didn't have much time,  because I had to pick the kids up from school, and also I've been struggling with fairly severe anxiety for the last, like, eight to ten weeks.  So I did some positive self-talk to calm myself down, and then I shot the video, and while I was editing it, I got a text from Craig and the text was like, I know exactly what this is, and I think its wonderful, and I'm proud of you, and you're right!  You can do it! And I was like, well, that's a bit of a weird text to receive, but whatever. I gotta upload this video, I'm super stressed out, and I finished editing it, and while I was uploading it, THATS when I actually checked the text chain, and realized that my watch had texted Craig a transcript of my positive self-talk. The text in question read, in it's entirety:

Okay. Okay. You can still get this done, just get in the right frame of mind. Let's take a breathe. Okay, you've got this, you know how to make a video. You can do it. There's still plenty of time. You've got this. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. You can do this. Good morning Hank, it's Tuesday. 

I HATE THIS THING!

So what's the moral of this story? Get vaccinated as soon as you can. But also, one, don't be afraid to use as much positive self-talk as you need. Two, get friends like Craig, who will love and embrace you even when your watch reveals your mortifying self-talk. And three, like it says on my 2021 vision board, you've got this! Whatever it is, you can get it done. 

Hank, it'll see you on Friday.