U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., cleans up debris and personal belongings strewn across the floor of the Rotunda in the early morning hours of Jan. 7, 2021, after protesters mounted an insurrection a the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., cleans up debris and personal belongings strewn across the floor of the Rotunda in the early morning hours of Jan. 7, 2021, after protesters mounted an insurrection a the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

2021 Is A Mess. Here’s How To Stay Positive

U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., cleans up debris and personal belongings strewn across the floor of the Rotunda in the early morning hours of Jan. 7, 2021, after protesters mounted an insurrection a the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., cleans up debris and personal belongings strewn across the floor of the Rotunda in the early morning hours of Jan. 7, 2021, after protesters mounted an insurrection a the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., cleans up debris and personal belongings strewn across the floor of the Rotunda in the early morning hours of Jan. 7, 2021, after protesters mounted an insurrection a the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

2021 Is A Mess. Here’s How To Stay Positive

The first week of 2021 was rough. But, as advice columnists Daniel Lavery and Heather Havrilesky tell us, there’s still room for optimism.

“We have been through the flames, my friends, of 2020,” Havrilesky says on today’s episode. “I know that I was flattened completely by 2020 and I feel pretty resilient right now. Now granted, whenever I say that, the next day a giant anvil falls on my head. But I think there’s been some adaptation. I think we’re, dare I say, growing.”

Then, we talk to Dr. Y. Joel Wong, a professor at Indiana University, about the very real science behind positive thinking. A number of studies show that people who keep gratitude journals are mentally and physically healthier than those who do not.

And finally, poet Ross Gay tells us about The Book of Delights, his collection of “essayettes.” Turns out, the more you look for delight, the more it shows up for you. Which seems like a pretty delightful thing to bring into the new year.

And speaking of things to bring into the new year, we’d love to know: What are your resolutions for 2021? What’s your stance on resolutions in general? Record yourself on your phone, and send the audio file to nerdettepodcast@gmail.com, and you may hear yourself in next week’s episode.