submitted 3 months ago by _number8_ to c/asklemmy

like, if i'm feeling bad but force myself to do something, i usually feel better. how to maintain the usefulness of this advice without presenting it as 'fuck your feelings', in that usual arrogant right wing sort of way

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[-] Riccosuave 115 points 3 months ago

"Action over anxiety."

My mom has told me this since I was a kid, and it is still something I am trying to put into practice effectively when met with challenging situations. It is the most forgiving way I can think of to get yourself in the mental headspace you are talking about without the "time to nut up" connotation.

[-] b3an 11 points 3 months ago

I really like this, and your mom is wise. Hug her for us if you can! 🫂

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[-] KpntAutismus 53 points 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago)

Enjoy when you can, and endure when you must.

-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

not an exact fit, but i think about that sentence often

[-] YoFrodo 45 points 3 months ago

I prefer to think of it as "the only way out is through" or "the only path is forward."

For some problems it won't matter how people feel or even who is at fault. What matters often is how you begin to work through it. Once you're out of the hole you can reflect.

[-] [email protected] 37 points 3 months ago
[-] FireTower 31 points 3 months ago
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[-] kreiger 26 points 3 months ago

In Swedish we say "Har du tagit Fan i båten, får du ro honom i land".

In English it would be "If you put Satan in your rowboat, you'd better row him ashore."

[-] [email protected] 17 points 3 months ago

The English equivalent is "When you're going through hell, keep going."

[-] stom 24 points 3 months ago

"I have to get over this some time, why not now?"

~ Louis Wu, from Ringworld, written by Larry Niven.

"Because I'm not ready" is also a valid answer, but it gets your brain moving towards the goal I find.

[-] [email protected] 21 points 3 months ago

Technically what you're describing is discipline. It takes a lot of will power to just make yourself do something. You can take pride in that. Call yourself disciplined, principled, stoic.

In fact, you might broaden your perspective on this particular subject by looking into stoicism. It's like a "manly" mindset but without the gender or toxicity attached.

[-] themeatbridge 17 points 3 months ago

Your feelings are valid. Job still needs doing.

You don't get to the Promised Land without going through the Wilderness. You don't get there without crossing over hills and mountains, but if you keep on keeping on, you can't help but reach it. We won't all see it, but it's coming...

[-] [email protected] 16 points 3 months ago

Really, that thinking should be a last resort instead of the default.

It's ok to be vulnerable. It's ok to ask for help. It's ok to do or say nothing while you assess a situation as sometimes that is the best course of action.

It's only when you have no options left and you must act that you actually need to take action alone. One might actually need time to process a trauma, or experience grief. And I would argue that the ability to be vulnerable with others is it's own type of strength.

For instance, if you are noticing that you are getting depressed and are finding it hard to perform basic maintenance tasks for yourself. Instead of first trying to be strong and convince yourself to do it every time. Maybe it might be better to seek help for your depression.

[-] [email protected] 10 points 3 months ago

True. "Suck it up" works in some occasions and in others it makes everything worse. It's a terrible default approach to teach your children because they can end up never learning how to deal with stress in a healthy fashion.

The result is usually someone who builds up stress where other people don't (and then acts accordingly) and who has absolutely no ability to comfort other people when they need it. Few parents want their children to be lonely assholes.

Of course it's harder to teach someone nuance. Identifying when it's okay to be vulnerable and when you need to tough it out by yourself is difficult. But if you're not capable of both you're lacking essential tools.

[-] [email protected] 16 points 3 months ago

Thug that shit out

[-] Jerb322 14 points 3 months ago

Just keep swimming...

[-] PandaPikachu 12 points 3 months ago
[-] Num10ck 12 points 3 months ago

Put on your big girl panties

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[-] captainlezbian 11 points 3 months ago

“Your feelings matter, but your actions matter too, and you choose those.”

“The only way out is through.”

“What can I do to improve my situation.”

Don’t let douchebags scare you away from this, but this is basically stoicism. It’s not that your feelings don’t matter, it’s just that sometimes you actually can change your situation and it’s good to do that then

[-] [email protected] 11 points 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago)

The issue is the "man" up aspect. There are ABSOLUTELY times when you have to... Well, man up, nut up... Whatever. That's a fact of life - some situations require you to stop being a child, and instead face it like an adult would.

We run into issues with it being 'man' or 'nut' - these are gender-loaded terms, which imply that females aren't able to do the same thing. Do I think anyone actually means that when they say one of those things? No. Do I think a lot of reactions to them are overblown? Yes. We should still be cognizant of what the language we choose to use may say subtextually though.

There's another parallel issue to the advice to man up. That's that a lot of times, the people who get that advice HAVE BEEN manning up, and the advice giver is seeing them in a moment where they've been worn down and just need a quick whinge fest before going back to manning it up. Situations like that imply that having any emotions other than "git er dun" is a bad thing and you should just STFU and work.

As far as giving others advice goes, generally speaking unless they ask you for advice, don't. If someone's just coming to you with some venting about a thing and you tell them whatever version of "man up" you want, even if it's applicable, it comes across as dismissive. The person may not want advice, they may just want to unload a bit. If you can't do that without offering advice, then it's best to state that.

[-] [email protected] 11 points 3 months ago

As High King Margo puts it:


Gee, it doesn't fit you, it leaves out your whole gender? Take another look at yours. If you want something more neutral, and with a little softer edge,

"Sometimes you just gotta suck it up"

implies you understand that what they are facing sucks, doesn't suggest they're not a man if they fail, and doesn't imply that female=worthless.

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[-] OutrageousUmpire 10 points 3 months ago

There’s the old Nike slogan “Just do it” that captures the idea while having positive connotations.

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[-] Fondots 10 points 3 months ago

I don't know that there's anything quite as punchy, succinct, and general-purpose as "man-up" that doesn't have the sort of macho bullshit connotations, and if there is, it's probably some sort of psychobabble that wouldn't mean much to most people who need to hear it.

I'm also not a fan of the phrase itself, but the general sentiment represented by it has gotten me pretty far in life.

I'm not a religious person at all, but in certain contexts the "Prayer for Serenity" can kind of get you to a similar place.

For the SciFi nerds, there's Dune's Litany against Fear, or Yoda's "Do or do not, there is no 'try'"

There's also "mind over matter," you can't necessarily help what all the synapses and hormones and such in your body are making you feel, but you can sure as hell help what you do about it.

And of course from the advertising world there's Nike's "Just do it"

There's also some echoes of it in things like "be the change you want to see," or "if you want something done right you have to do it yourself," or "fake it til you make it"

Something else that has stuck with me is something one of my instructors said a lot when I was training to be a 911 dispatcher "don't do nothing." Make sure that whatever the problem is, you're taking positive steps to address it. You can't count on things resolving themselves, and you can't count on someone else fixing it either, you have to be the one to make things happen.

Again drawing from my own life experiences, I was a boy scout and the scout motto is to "be prepared" which I find pairs nicely with the saying that "people don't rise to the occasion, they fall to their level of training." Do what you can to prepare yourself beforehand, and everything will fall into place a lot easier when the time comes. That can mean physical or mental training and practice, or it could be something like getting your clothing, gear, tools, meal prep, cleaning materials together the night before and setting up alarms, reminders, notes, etc. to keep yourself on track.

For people inclined to read up on some philosophy, ancient Greek stoicism had a lot to say about things like self control and virtuous living, and daoism/taoism which has concepts like "Wu Wei" which is tricky to translate and keep the meaning intact, but it means something like "effortless action" it's kind of a mix of just doing what is needed as it comes up without having to think about it too much, and a bit of, like God said to Bender in Futurama "When you do things right, people won't be sure you've done anything at all."

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[-] [email protected] 10 points 3 months ago

Sounds a bit like Stoic philosophy. https://dailystoic.com/9-core-stoic-beliefs/ Number 6 and 9 specifically.

[-] cynar 9 points 3 months ago

If it's for yourself, and you know what it actually means to you, just use it. While it's often derided, from both sides, if it works for you, use it.

While I'm generally quite egalitarian, I do have some old school feelings about what being a man means. I'm the proverbial tip of the spear. I'm the one who steps up and deals with the problems. It's also my responsibility to remain capable of that. If that means getting physical or mental health treatment, so be it. "Manning up" is me stepping into that role and mindset. I take on the strain, so that those I care about don't have to.

The poem "If", while dated is a good baseline for what manliness should mean.


If it helps, the phrase "stepping up" can also work. It's not as complete as manning up, but still carries the same connotations to others.

[-] [email protected] 9 points 3 months ago

One thing that I have drawn strength from repeatedly in hard times was drilled into me by a great professor in undergrad (psychology):

You cannot experience personal growth without struggling; without hardship.

Think of the people who are sheltered from the real-world and then get a full dose of it and are unable to cope and preserve like others who had to grow up early.

I remind myself amidst struggles that I will be coming out on the other side a stronger and more capable person. It helps me to accept the shit on my plate and refuse to give up.

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[-] [email protected] 9 points 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago)

"Be the adult."

"If it is to be, it's up to me."

"Somebody has to and no one else will.".

"I don't have to like it, I just have to do it."

[-] [email protected] 8 points 3 months ago

(This is not an idiom, just something I realized as a parent.) Sometimes, being an adult means "reaching into the shit."

Shit has to be dealt with. My kids - as babies - could not deal with their own shit. It was my job and responsibility as their parent to clean up that shit. And sometimes something would get dropped in the shit. And you gotta reach in.

Nobody likes dealing with shit. Everyone tries to take as little shit as they can. But some days, no matter how I feel - it's on me to reach into the shit.

[-] viralJ 8 points 3 months ago

"OK, a few deep breaths and let's soldier through it."

[-] [email protected] 8 points 3 months ago

using something along the lines of “someone’s gotta do it” always works for me

[-] [email protected] 8 points 3 months ago

The only way out is through

[-] [email protected] 8 points 3 months ago

Doing the right thing is hard

When I getting to the point of boiling over, I remind myself that what I am doing is hard because its the right thing to do. It usually helps or at least puts me into a mindset that evaluates what I am doing to make sure that its worth the hassle.

[-] RGB3x3 7 points 3 months ago

Sometimes feelings are good, sometimes they get in the way and it's best just to do what you need to do.

"Embrace the suck" Or "Fuck it, let's just get it done" work for me without feeling like it's invalidating half the population.

[-] [email protected] 8 points 3 months ago
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[-] [email protected] 7 points 3 months ago

"Fuck it, I give up"

I'm not very succesful in life.

[-] [email protected] 7 points 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago)

Truthfully, I feel the response that said “Action over anxiety” is probably the best one I’ve seen in this thread.

I have a bunch of things I tell myself to try to keep up my motivation, and it does change depending on my mood. I’ll sometimes be kind and gentle with myself, silly, stoic, angry, and - try as I might to avoid it - even self-abusive sometimes.

But, really, though. It’s not about the phrase or the wording, it’s about motivation.
My ‘battle cry’ changes depending on how I’m feeling, but the underlying reality is that we must do these things.

It’s best if we don’t motivate ourselves with toxic masculinity or self-abuse, but it kind of doesn’t matter what we say: We must continue on.
The only other option is stagnation and death.

Just keep swimming, friend.

[-] Kuma 6 points 3 months ago

I think instead "be nice to the future you", in the end do we do most things for our future self. It may be hard today but you will be happy you did it tomorrow.

[-] qwerty_bastard 6 points 3 months ago

""""Nonspecific gender person who is typically relied upon to get things done without considering their own feelings on the matter -- up!"""

[-] [email protected] 6 points 3 months ago

It’s less “man up” and more “you can do this” to me. It’s not “fuck your feelings” and more “life is hard and uncomfortable, but you can do this despite hardship, because it’s worth doing”. Actually wanting to do something that is hard to do, is kind of a testament to the importance of the task. And also, sometimes I remind myself that feelings will pass and change all the time, so maybe they are not always that important.

[-] [email protected] 6 points 3 months ago

"Get it done" or "Take care of business". I guess another one is "Future me will appreciate this".

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[-] disgruntledbroad 6 points 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago)

Maybe explain, as you're doing so well here, that your goal isn't to be invalidating. You could point out that sometimes distracting, venting, or leaning on coping mechanisms can actually become the problem. They can become a way to avoid and minimize our own feelings, abilities, and issues. Even basic actions, like taking a much-needed shower, taking a brief walk or finally making it through a whole workday can trigger massive chemical changes in our brain when we're in a crappy place.

I hope this helps. I think you're bringing up a really helpful sticking point here, and having received and misunderstood many a "man up" pep talk during depressive episodes, I gotta say it's a very cool move for you to workshop supportive language like this

[-] GeoGio7 6 points 3 months ago

Where there's a will there's a way, you got this. Be tough.

[-] ohlaph 6 points 3 months ago

I usually tell myself to "suck it up". Especially if it's something I know I will benefit from.

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[-] Alpha71 6 points 3 months ago

"Gotta go get shit done."

[-] analwound 5 points 3 months ago

Ain't no hill for a stepper

[-] [email protected] 5 points 3 months ago

"Harden up" or "Take a teaspoon of cement" are my go tos.

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[-] [email protected] 5 points 3 months ago

Let's roll.

[-] [email protected] 5 points 3 months ago

"Be the change you want to see in the world." "If not me the who, if not now then when."

"Either I get over it, get through it, or I have to learn to live with it"

[-] [email protected] 5 points 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago)

"Take responsibility for yourself."

"Be accountable."

"Learn to accept things you can't control."

"Self pity gets you nowhere."

These are all nongendered ways of saying your mental health is your own responsibility. Or, simply repeat to yourself your own observation, "If I'm feeling bad but force myself to do something, I usually feel better." You were already on the right track friend. Just realize gender has absolutely nothing to do with the concept and counter thoughts that tell you otherwise.

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this post was submitted on 29 Feb 2024
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