Gary Bacon

How to Survive Melancholy: Play

Anxiety tends to result in a negative feedback loop.

Having anxiety on an issue, which causes more anxiety for having anxiety, and then thoughts spiral from there.

In her book Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert says,

Find something to do— anything, even a different sort of creative work altogether— just to take your mind off your anxiety and pressure.

Going for a walk, taking a new class, or even trying a new hobby can alleviate pressure.

Travel and New Experiences

There are a few sub-themes to which I follow in order to maintain happiness. However, my overarching theme is this:

Happiness is sustained fulfillment.
Fulfillment is born out of creating art.

What does that mean? How do I achieve this baseline?

  1. Create art.
  2. Be authentic.
  3. Travel and have new experiences.
  4. Solid relationships: friends/family.
  5. Peace where I live.


Much of my best reading gets done on airplanes. In my experience, zero reading gets done in the actual airport. Too much background noise, gate changes, and the constant distractions of awaiting the boarding process. However, once I’m in my distraction-free bubble in the air, I can power through books with ease.

To try and recreate this distraction-free environment, as best as possible at home, I put on my noise canceling headphones and set the iPhone to airplane mode.

Booking airline tickets 2-4 months in advance gives me the freedom to fly. With that much planning in advance, most ticket prices are in the $200-300 range for roundtrip; even west coast trips.

Budgeting for this is of upmost importance to me. I try and keep them to weekend trips, even if it is a 3-day weekend, as to not disrupt the day job. However, I find the inspiration that I gather from traveling to new places fuels my creativity and only enhances my work.

Weekend Bliss

Biweekly Meetings and Adventures Every Other Weekend

The other day, I mentioned that I prefer status meeting every two weeks instead of weekly. Why? It gives you a week of high octane, “meeting uninterrupted”, full throttle working.

The following week, if need be, can be peppered with update meetings galore.

Just need time to focus.