3 Minute Monday – Setbacks, Peacocks & Vision


Hi friend,

We’re thinking about setbacks today.

On that note – I’m walking without crutches, finally!

Still in my big moonboot to protect my achilles but I’m out of that next week and back in normal shoes again with crutches.

It’s been a very challenging last few months.

As someone who is hyper-self reliant and loves independence, this situation is the antithesis of what I want in life.

I’ve not being able to drive myself anywhere, including the gym to do the rehab required to get better.

Unable go to the shop without someone else pushing the trolley.

Can’t stand or sit upright for more than 90 minutes without needing to elevate my ankle to manage swelling.

Plus a million other difficulties from going to the bathroom in the middle of the night to tackling stairs and even just having a shower.

This lack of sovereignty would have sounded like hell to me 3 months ago.

Layer on top of this that I’m natively quite a catastrophic thinker, I would have presumed that this would be a living nightmare.

And yet…

I’ve been finding a level of satisfaction from life that might even be greater than I had pre-rupture.

Sure, I’ve somehow become slower, smaller and fatter all at the same time.

But I took a ton of pride from doing my first heel raise last week. It still makes me feel warm & happy now.

Yeah, I’m pretty useless for anything that involves locomotion.

But I felt waves of joy from finally getting my foot flat on the floor and the feeling of the carpet underneath it.

If life now lets me take happiness from things as small and simple as these activities, is it still accurate to say that my injury was a catastrophe?

Also consider that many of the challenges can easily be seen as opportunities with the correct reframing.

Unable to drive? I can use the time I would have spent driving to work or read more.

Struggling to cook or clean? I get to see my parents more often as they’ve come to help me.

Not going out of the house? Good chance to deepen my friendship with my housemate.

Can’t work at my clubnights? More time to spend coming up with good creative campaigns for the events.

Not going to the gym? Means I can invest extra energy into researching new guests and preparing for podcasts.

The point here isn’t that bad situations aren’t bad.

But that disadvantages can be windows to opportunities if viewed with enough equanimity.

I’m nowhere near awakened enough yet to say that my injury was a gift.

But the case for it being called a setback is definitely becoming weaker.

Most of what we fear is change, but with change comes growth.

Life isn’t lived from the comfort of your couch.

And even the worst of catastrophes can become an opportunity if you stay curious about what the future holds.


I do a podcast which has had 6 million+ downloads. You should subscribe on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

This week’s upcoming episodes:

Daniel Sloss – Netflix Special Comedian, Scottish person and good friend Sloss joins me again to discuss mental health, the challenges of 2020, Covid & more.

Mara Cortona – existential risk, the end of the world, how we can avoid it and why the public attention is focussed on all the wrong problems.

Mark Walsh – what are the skills of embodiment? How can we improve our daily wellbeing with simple practises? Great episode.


“If you can’t be happy with a coffee, you won’t be happy with a yacht” — Naval Ravikant.

Fisherian Runaway Selection.

Fisherian selection suggests that when one sex prefers mates with certain genetic traits, then through the process of sexual selection, the other sex will come to possess the trait in increasingly exaggerated forms.

The process is called “runaway” because over time, it causes the development of greater preference and more pronounced traits.

Eventually the cost of producing the trait will balance the reproductive benefit of possessing it.

The peacock’s tail is a perfect example of this.

Its tail requires a great deal of energy to grow and maintain, it reduces the bird’s agility, and increases the animal’s visibility to predators.

Yet, it has evolved which indicates that peacocks with longer tails have a sexual advantage.

This same process occurs with men’s preference for women with neotenous (youthful) features.

Which is why Snapchat Filters give women bigger eyes, fuller lips and smaller chins.

Freedom does not mean being allowed to do what you want.

It means not having to do that which you do not want.


Use Your Peripheral Vision

A new one for me after podcasting with embodiment expert Mark Walsh this week.

Typically, we focus our attention on a very thin section of our visual field.

It causes our eyes to narrow, brow to furrow and jaw to tighten.

You might be doing it as you read this right now.

Take a moment to look at the full stop of the next sentence, and bring your attention on widening your field of vision to take in as much as you can.

Try taking a big breath in, relaxing the tension in your face and focus on the peripherals of your visual field.

How’d it feel?

I really like this trigger.

Will be trying to automate it over the coming weeks.

Big love,
Chris x

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