Podcast 118: Design Your Summer (Again), Start a Podcast Club – and Are You the Difficult One?

Try This at Home

Design your summer. We’ve talked about this idea before, in episode 27 and episode 67. The challenge is to design the summer to be what you want it to be. I plan to make lunch dates and to work on My Color Pilgrimage, my book about color. Here’s the Robertson Davies quotation that I love:

“Every man makes his own summer. The season has no character of its own, unless one is a farmer with a professional concern for the weather. Circumstances have not allowed me to make a good summer for myself this year…My summer has been overcast by my own heaviness of spirit. I have not had any adventures, and adventures are what make a summer.” — Robertson Davies, “Three Worlds, Three Summers,” The Enthusiasms of Robertson Davies

Happiness Hack

Simon suggests, “Start a podcast club. Like a book club, but for podcasts.” Elizabeth mentions The New York Times podcast club on Facebook. It’s hereKnow Yourself Better: Are you the difficult one? I mention the great books by professor Bob SuttonThe No A*** Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One that Isn’t and his forthcoming The A*** Survival Guide: How to Deal with People Who Treat You Like Dirt. (I’m omitting certain words not out of prudery, but to avoid triggering a filter.) Reading his books got me thinking…how do you know if you’re the difficult one? If you disagree with some of these questions, or would add different questions, let me know.

  • When you do something generous for others, do you think it only right that your generosity will allow you to make decisions for them or direct their actions?
  • Do you often find that when you do something nice for people, they seem ungrateful or uncooperative? For example, you offered to host Thanksgiving dinner, but no one appreciates it.
  • Do you think it’s important to express your true feelings and views authentically, even if that means upsetting other people?
  • Do you find that people seem resentful and angry when you offer helpful criticism or advice?
  • Do you enjoy a good fight?
  • Do you often find yourself saying defensively, “It was just a joke!” Along the same lines, do you find yourself remarking on how other people don’t have a sense of humor, or can’t laugh at a little teasing? [Elizabeth and I talk about the dark side of teasing in episode 32.]
  • Do people tend to gang up against you – when you’re arguing one side, everyone takes the other side, or when one person criticizes you, everyone else chimes in?
  • Do you find it funny to see other people squirm?
  • Do you think it’s useful to point out people’s mistakes, areas of incompetence, or previous track records of failure?
  • Do people volunteer to act as intermediaries for you, rather than let you do your own talking? Your son says, “Let me talk to my wife about it,” rather than have you two talk.

Listener Question

Katy asks, “How do I overcome my under-buyer reluctance to buy things that I know would make me happier?” If you wonder if you’re an under-buyer or an over-buyer, here’s a description

Elizabeth’s Demerit

She’s been using her “floodrobe” and not hanging up her clothes.

Gretchen’s Gold Star

Gold star to listeners and readers who have sent me links, videos, podcasts, images, and posts about the subject of color. I so appreciate it. All fodder for My Color Pilgrimage




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