The “Feel Good Inc.” Folder

Negative events take up more headspace than positive events. It’s easy to forget about the wonderful things that happen to us.

In my email inbox, I have a folder called “Feel Good Inc.,” named after the classic Gorillaz song.

Anytime I receive an email that makes me light up — whether an old friend reaches out or a colleague compliments my work — I place the email in this folder. Then when times get tough and I need a dose of positivity, I just open the folder and read through. It’s also great for work evaluations when I want to support my accomplishments with real evidence.

Focusing on the positive helps give me energy for when times get tough. Having a “Feel Good Inc.” folder gives me the proof I need to believe in myself.


Work is busy. Life is overwhelming. And what’s worse, you only get one plate.

When your plate is full, something needs to come off the plate. And thinking about what gets taken off is critical. Because if it’s sleep, that is not an inevitability, but a choice.

What if we took off our plates what was non-essential? If we thought that way, sleep, rest, and self-care would stay on the plate. When we toss away all our veggies, living off dessert becomes a struggle.

Meditation’s Paradox

Try not to think of anything, and thoughts race wildly. Allow the mind to do whatever it wants, and thoughts slow down effortlessly.

This is the power in giving your mind space to express itself.

Force people to think a certain way, try hard for certain outcomes: these make our goals more distant.

We’re always more effective when we’re not trying to be right. We’re more likely to win if winning isn’t the preoccupation. We’re calmer when we don’t forcing ourselves to be serene. We do more when we try less.


Write once and that writing is the best writing.

But perfection is overrated.

By definition, half of my writing posts will be below average.

One of my posts will be the best post.

One post will be the worst post I’ve posted.

The aim is not perfection but quality and consistency.

Life Principles

Even if our principles are not written down, we live them out in what we do each day. We may have never thought about what our principles and values are, but even so, they unconsciously manifest in our decisions.

So why not codify our life principles by writing them down?

Make your principles easily to reference so you can access them during difficult times. Be specific so you can compare what you believe in to what you do. That difference is painful but steadying. Writing down your principles keeps you honest and centered.

The Best Time

The best time to meditate is when you least want to.

The best time to observe yourself is when you least want to.

The best time to plan out the day is when you least want to.

The best time to exercise is when you least want to.

Compassion and Directness

We can work on having more compassion for others and being more direct with them. They are not opposite things, even if we may feel like they conflict.


The only way to flaunt your wealth is to diminish it. Buying designer clothes or extravagant cars decreases your riches.

Wealth is accumulated by minimizing the times you show it off.

Accidents and Criticism

When someone drops a dish or spills a drink, people often yell in response: “Why did you need that!!?” Or they gasp with anger: “I can’t believe you did that!!”

How shortsighted.

There is no reason to criticize an accident because it’s not a mistake to be corrected. If criticism is meant to improve people, it doesn’t work with accidents. How are they to learn from something they didn’t consciously do?

Criticism is effective when given to intentional acts. People can take feedback from what they decided previously and adjust for the future.

Criticizing accidents, outcomes that the actors did not want to happen, is unhelpful and makes people feel small. This criticism isn’t helpful, it’s egotistical. Be wary of the effect your remarks have, both in the feelings in the moment and the actions in the future. It’s often far more about the former, but the latter is what matters more. Feedback and criticism are meant to help people, not make them feel belittled.