I have to admit that I haven't finish enough pages of reading that I'm supposed to -- I only finished reading "Introduction --How it started". It's been a long time since I decided to start reading an English book, even a book. At the same time, I also have to say that I'm still not good at reading. No matter it's a book in Chinese or English, I get lost easily. Sometimes I would have to read some sentences again and again to make sure I didn't lose a word or I was trying to figure out the meaning, except for Wuxia novels. I'm even very skeptical about if I had a correct understanding of the paragraphs I read. Nothing to complain though, everything just proves that I'm a newbie for reading. That's it.
With this being wrote, I have a feeling that what I used a slightly similar approach as how the author started this book. She started with "How it started" with multiple paragraphs complaining about packing up things, feelingless families, growing environment etc. The difference is I cannot complain anyone else for my bad efficiency in reading but just can accuse myself.
Notes for reading "Introduction - How it started"
A coincidence is, the author stated that she is not a "sentimental keeper of things” when I just started reading this book and I was thinking about throwing away some of my stuff. But, I AM a sentimental keeper of things, or even I am a just a keeper of things.
With only a few paragraphs completed so far, I could only highlight a few feeling or notes I have:
- I like how the author wrote about her growing up environment using multiple family errands and childhood moments.
The description of those scenes proves that she is the one who has "magic powers" and can see things are coming. She "complained" about how good her parents are from the outside but not necessarily when inside the family house. She used multiple examples to show readers about her background and feelings: She described her father's behavior during the hocky games, her decision about standing out to go to the principal's office. However, I do feel sometime culture difference or weird feelings while reading some paragraphs, such as she described her parents as "predictably good outside the house, and wildly unpredictable inside". I would ask, isn't that just human beings happening for many families ? I think I will figure out once I finished more pages.
- I agreed with one of the sentence very much --"I understand that people would do almost anything to feel pain"-- and I'm surprised that I never think about this until I graduate but the author does since she was still so young. I was told a similar sentence as "Happiness in a life is about getting rid of pain" and I think I do agree with it. But sometimes I also wonder "can happiness be better than that ?"
Sentences that caught my eyes
“ I come from a very tough, suck-it-up-get-it-done-and-don’t-talk-about-feelings family.”
“I understood that people would do almost anything to not feel pain, including causing pain and abusing power, and I understood that there were very few people who could handle being held accountable for causing hurt without rationalizing, blaming, or shutting down.”
“Being in the weeds and pulling out of the weeds happened to everyone on almost every shift. It was just part of the job, and you learned to manage it.”
“What does it mean if the vastness of human emotion and experience can only be expressed as mad, sad, or happy? What about shame, disappointment, wonder, awe, disgust, embarrassment, despair, contentment, boredom, anxiety, stress, love, overwhelm, surprise, and all of the other emotions and experiences that define what it means to be human?”
““I also learned that when you hold someone accountable for hurtful behaviors and they feel shame, that’s not the same as shaming someone.”
“Learning to label emotions with a more nuanced vocabulary can be absolutely transformative.” ”
“They can be beacons, not barriers, helping us identify what we most care about and motivating us to make positive changes.”
— This sentence is very helpful to describe something in any situation that you think can be a Northstar guiding you or helping you
--- 03/27/2022 ---
The 2nd half of the "Introduction" part is actually much easier to understand...
Articulate ( vs. intepret, express
Default ( it can be used as a verb !)
“There are still tough times, and it’s easy to default to the old ways, but we’ve seen what’s possible and we’re making progress.”
Arousal ( low arousal, high arousal)
“ jury is still out. ”
--- Reading Note 04/23/2022 ---
This is probably the last reading note I can leave on the forum within this reading marathon cycle. I won't refer to or record details in the book, but instead, I'm going to talk about my overall experiences, feelings, and next steps.
My reading journey so far:
"What a Pity/Shame/Guilty thing that I haven't been able to finish this book!"
I completed slightly less than 2/3 of the book ( Completed chapter#9 so far) and I decided not to read too fast or pretended that I've finished the book. It is true that I think I'm not a big fan of perfectionism, but "Shame/Guilt" can strike me when I didn't finish something as planned, especially when there are observers. But still, I decide to stick to my reading approach since I feel I can only absorb the nutrition of books only if I read carefully and thoroughly. This is sort of matching my MBTI personality type "ISFP" -- They are slow learners, but they could have a clear or even deep understanding of what they've learned. On the other hand, I do want to improve my ability and self-discipline in completing the follow-up tasks. Sometimes I was just putting up tasks there appearing that I have "good" plans but I don't even feel too guilty when I don't finish them. After learning from this book, I guess it's because I assume nobody is going to look at and care about them.
The book itself plays a role as a "Dictionary of Emotions" for me. Similar to how this book is named and introduced, this "Atlas of Heart" can be a long-term reference or dictionary for me every time I was curious about emotion or when I want to communicate better about my personal feelings. The author does have "magic power" which originated from her personality and childhood but is also trained by her research deeply. It is not necessarily guiding people to act as what the book teaches them but unraveling the nuances of emotions does help the readers to make sense of and tune their behaviors. ( For example, I think I should say I feel guilty instead of shame about not completing the book since I want to say "I'm stupid since I cannot finish the book", not only "I'm stupid")
The knowledge I learned from this book on top of my list would be:
- Communicate actively to pretend disappointment caused by stealth expectations.
- Set realistic expectations so that I could be able to get satisfied and happy much easier
- Set boundaries
What are my follow-ups:
There are so many ideas that emerged while I read the book but I didn't get a chance to really get them done one by one ( I'm being realistic and also lazy here lol). Thus I'm trying to list out what I want to do next even after this reading cycle is ended:
- Finish this book.
- Collect all the words about emotions together and find out the accurate Chinese mapping works or explanations for each one.
- Collect the sentences that I like
- Try to find references or data of interest for certain types of emotions. For example, I'd like to know if there's any research paper regarding how people treat or mitigate their resentment or even anger; How people recover in a healthy and effective way after they experience anguish, such as divorce, death of relatives, etc.
In the end, thanks for organizing, and happy reading!
04/23/2022 (World Book and Copyright Day 2022)