The Envelope, a podcast: The self-awareness manifesto

Monique Nethington: We’re here on The Envelope with (multimedia editor and columnist) Benji Garcia and Jenny Gonzalez (opinion editor) and my name is Monique Nethington (sports editor); and I’m the girl that you see in all the pictures for The Envelope, wearing the same green jacket all the time-

Benjamin Garcia: Sunglasses-

Monique: Sunglasses and cigarette; everything that is pretentious, brooding and tortured-soulful that you can have.

Jenny Gonzalez: Which is essentially the college experience.

Benjamin: So that’s all we’re going to say about bumfiddling. That was a good conversation, thank you.

Monique: Let’s move onto the Self-awareness manifesto, as Benji called it.

Benjamin: Yes, so people think that I’m an introvert supremacist and I’ll admit that I am.

Jenny: It’s awesome.

Chantal Romero: Would you like to elaborate as to what you mean by that?

Benjamin: Less about introversion and I’m talking about self-reflection; like really thinking about your actions and deliberating before you say or do something. I think that if politicians had one good idea before they presented their policies to a group of people it would be better than producing a bunch of stupid ideas, and then defending them out of a matter of pride.

Jenny: Trump?

Benjamin: Trump appeals to people because he targets some irrational feeling part of the conservative public that doesn’t self reflect. It just is. I guess racists don’t know they’re racist. I guess people are too sensitive sometimes.

Jenny: Sometimes?

Benjamin: It’s because they don’t self-reflect; and it’s people on both sides of the isle too. Liberals are sensitive about race issues, but to a degree that it doesn’t need to be brought to. I kinda rebuke the idea of calling everything a micro-aggression.

Jenny: Why?

Monique: Micro-agression is, I think it’s dumb.

Benjamin: I think it’s one thing to make a safe space for yourself it’s another thing to-

Jenny: Isolate yourself-

Monique: Completely cut yourself and isolate yourself-

Benjamin: Isolate yourself from ideas that are different from your own. I understand if you’re triggered by certain things out of trauma or if that’s just your psychology. But there are plenty of normal people who can function while being, to a certain degree, uncomfortable; and that’s probably healthy.

Monique: See, and that’s another thing. People always say they are being triggered by something. Today’s generation is just so sensitive. They use everything that’s going on in the world to attribute – like “oh i have anxiety, oh I’m depressed” – but they’re not really; they’re just sensitive. Like there are actual people in this world who are depressed and have really bad anxiety and have all these issues going on. They have been clinically diagnosed as those things.

Chantal: Do you think it’s become like a trend?

Monique: It’s like a trendy thing to be depressed.

Benjamin: Remember in 2008 when it was cool to have ADHD? It’s like that now but with depression and anxiety.

Chantal: Which is a joke because that undermines what the actual issue is.

Benjamin: I have depression and anxiety and (I like to) imagine just being happy. Wow. I got shivers. But like, imagine people who are neurotypical, who glorify depression and anxiety to such an extent that they wish they had it themselves. Isn’t that weird? That’s why I hate alternative music.

Jenny: I think it’s scary because I know that I have depression and anxiety, but that’s been a long standing issue for me, and I feel like now that it’s become a topic I feel like a phony.

Benjamin: Like, fashionably depressed?

Jenny: Yeah, I don’t feel that way but because everyone has somehow become that way, I feel like I’m kinda perceived in that category as well; you know; and it’s scary because I feel like I don’t want you to think that my depression is just something that’s temporary. I want you to take me seriously. This isn’t just a trend for me.

Benjamin: Another thing about making depression exportable and fashionable to wear is that people start to not understand what depression actually means, and they expect you to act just like them.

Chantal: They expect you to be sad all the time and it doesn’t work that way. There are good days. Most days can be good days; but when there are bad days they’re really bad. Like you can’t even get out of bed. It’s something that just to do it out of fashion, I think-

Monique: It’s sad.

Chantal: It’s sad because it totally undermines the problem.

Monique: It’s just like a whole “woe is me” stigma, like “my life is so hard” like “I have all this going on.” Just pick yourself up and just get over it.

Jenny: You don’t have an issue that needs to be treated.

Benjamin: So anyway, people need to self-reflect more.

Monique: So anyways, that’s what going on in my life. I don’t know what’s going on in yours. But-