“Someone once told me that human beings have three dimensions: how you see yourself, how others see you, and how you want others to see you. The closer the distance between the three dimensions, the more at peace you are and the more stable you become.”—Marwa Rakha (The Poison Tree)
“There is a perception that speaking up for boundaries is somehow introducing conflict into a situation, or at very least, escalating it in an unkind way, like, everything was fine until you spoke up for your needs and now you made it weird. But not speaking up is not making the situation better, it’s just giving the other person more license to operate and communicating that you are okay with the behavior. There is no prize for being the world’s most stoic and accommodating person. A friendship that cannot survive a the momentary discomfort of you standing up for your needs is not actually a friendship worth holding onto.
Nobody loves being told that they are screwing up, obviously, but if you don’t have the ability to ever take any negative feedback along the lines of “Hey, could you not do that one thing anymore, thanks?” from a friend, YOU are the problem. When told that they are stepping on someone’s foot, good adult people will apologize and get off the foot and not perpetuate a FEELINGSDUMP about their need to really stand on feet sometimes. Communicating “Hey, that’s where my boundary is, thanks” IS KINDNESS. It is giving the other person the tools they need to be in a good relationship with you.”—
“Life is going to present to you a series of transformations. And the point of education should be to transform you. To teach you how to be transformed so you can ride the waves as they come. But today, the point of education is not education. It’s accreditation. The more accreditation you have, the more money you make. That’s the instrumental logic of neoliberalism. And this instrumental logic comes wrapped in an envelope of fear. And my Ivy League, my MIT students are the same. All I feel coming off of my students is fear. That if you slip up in school, if you get one bad grade, if you make one fucking mistake, the great train of wealth will leave you behind. And that’s the logic of accreditation. If you’re at Yale, you’re in the smartest 1% in the world. […] And the brightest students in the world are learning in fear. I feel it rolling off of you in waves. But you can’t learn when you’re afraid. You cannot be transformed when you are afraid.”—