I have something to offer Hackerspace— and I’m sure there’s a hack in here. Today I got a call from a Christian friend who had read something about making a gratitude list of ten things each day for the coming year.

She was in a good mood today, I could tell. And that’s good—- and more power to her, may her joy not fall, but go up higher, because she is one of my very best friends.

For some reason, as I listened to her, listened to her suggestion that I go outside and breathe in the air, it being a nice day, I became more down than before she phoned.

I think what it is, is that I usually can’t use and don’t believe in other people’s feel-good methods or hand-me-down self help. It’s not that I was in a bad way before the call came, just the usual for a morning, me not being a morning person in the first place.

My friend told me to pray, or that she would pray for me, to find an answer to a travel decision I have to make in the new year. This only left me feeling mentally log-jammed and angry, not with my friend, but with the situation.

My hack would be something like this. Try not to let people slogan you into guilt over how you feel. Your reasons for feeling ‘off’ are your *own*. And your reasons for feeling better later on, will be your own.

I just don’t know what to do with people’s effortless words. Words are easy. Anybody can say, ‘you have so much to be thankful for’ or ‘it’s such a nice day out there’ or, whatever happy words they found in a book on that day.

There was an episode of The Simpsons where Lisa was down and not wanting to smile, yet feeling forced. In the end, Marg told her, something like, ‘if you don’t want to smile, then don’t’.

I took that to mean that no one can guilt you or book you into feeling better. In the end, whatever tools we find for getting by, are ultimately our own personal things, things that help, but for our own personal reasons.

We’ll be inspired, but it will be a bedrock inspiration, what I think of as, the most intimate kind of faith that you can have. It’s the faith that says ‘this will be a good day’, before you even get out of bed, even though there may be no specific proofs for that hope, it doesn’t matter. Your faith is true, because it’s unspoken, and it comes with NO pushy words.

With that, I’ll just add Happy 2017 to you all.