How to Change Your Life with One Small Move

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] Recently, the principles of Feng Shui—an ancient Chinese art which advocates a system of placement within a space to harmonise various energies—became incredibly important to me. (By sheer coincidence, there was an unpleasant job I didn’t want to do, and spending the afternoon rearranging my office seemed preferable.) After some […]

A Simple Idea to Help With Repetitive Anxiety

[content: a quick tip for repetitive anxiety] In the past, I’d regularly get trapped in the exact same worry over and over. Often, it would be health anxiety. For example, I’d experience a symptom of some kind. And I’d immediately imagine that this symptom was coming from the worst possible cause. Perhaps a pain would […]

How to Recover After a Setback

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] This year I’ve experienced a constant stream of setbacks, of varying degrees of seriousness: minor administrative life hassle, major family tragedy, missed career opportunities, painful emotional entanglements, idiotic breakages, unexpected financial demands. At times, it’s felt as if the universe was sending me regular doses of deliberate punishment. […]

Why Goals Aren’t Enough—You Need to Set Directions Too

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] Recently, I caught up with a friend I don’t get to see often enough. Neither of us were in a Major Life Crisis, so we were doing that thing where we swap minor problems back and forth—everything from busyness to boredom to the various ways our ageing bodies […]

Exhausted and Unproductive? This Might Help

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] As a kid, I never understood why adults were so slow. Surely it would be more natural to run around and bounce and clamber – what was wrong with them? Why were all adults so lazy?! Now I’m (allegedly) an adult, I get it: We’re not lazy… we’re […]

How Tiny, Unconscious Habits Can Lead to a World of Pain

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] “Look after yourself,” suggests a well-meaning friend. “Um, thanks…” I respond—but privately, I bristle. What else am I going to do?! Not look after myself? And yet… I absolutely need to be told this, because every single day I fail to take care of myself through dozens of […]

What I’m Doing in July 2018

[post status: a brief life update] When  Walking on Custard came out in 2015 (aside: I cannot believe that was three  years ago! What on EARTH is happening to the flow of time?!), I needed some sort of online home. I considered all kinds of wild, imaginative ideas, like interactive websites which would act as companions to the […]

You Probably Need to Do This One Thing More Often

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] Do your attempts to be kind to yourself ever backfire? I’ve noticed lately that my moments of self-generosity are occasionally actively unhelpful to me: “Fine, I’ll watch another episode.” “I’ve worked hard, I don’t need to exercise today.” “If I eat a second dessert… then I can free […]

Freedom vs Security

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com] Today: some thoughts about life decisions. But First: Let’s Talk About Fourier Transforms, [WARNING: THIS SECTION CONTAINS MATHS! (It’s optional, so skip it, if you like.)] A few months ago, I was making a decision, and every time I thought about it, a mathematical analogy sprung to mind.