eighteen things tagged “life”

My Undecided Thirties

Indecision has been a pretty huge problem in my life and this comment by /u/tomwaste hit home.

I’m not sure if people have experienced the same but when I entered my 30s I became convinced I was rapidly running out of time. Rather than using that as motivation I let it paralyze me with indecision because I “couldn’t afford to make the wrong choice.” Consequently, I’m now 39 and, though I’ve had great things happen in my 30s, I regret spending so much time worrying and so little time committing to a course of action.

What’s the simplest way out of this mire of Analysis Paralysis?

“One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. ‘Which road do I take?’ she asked. ‘Where do you want to go?’ was his response. ‘I don’t know,’ Alice answered. ‘Then,’ said the cat, ‘it doesn’t matter.”

Their comment also reminded me of this Sylvia Plath poem illustrated by Gavin Aung Than of Zen Pencils.

The Fig Tree, a poem by Sylvia Plath illustrated by Gavin Aung Than of Zen Pencils

On Doing Nothing At All

As far as Indian Gurus go, I find this guy more illumined and full of practical, actionable advice than, say, this guy, less full of shit than this one, and definitely less batshit crazy than this one.

Via LT 🙏

Update

The creator of the video is Masood Boomgaard. Here’s his YouTube channel. And here’s the Balm your Soul needs in its entirety 🙏 🌸

On Fear (and Lethargy)

The question is, what does it mean to be living a fear-based agenda? Then your life is always constricted. Then it’s sabotaging the expression of your possibilities in life. Jung said once, in a book published in 1912, “The spirit of evil is negation of the life force by fear.” That’s strong language. Only boldness can deliver us from fear, and if the risk is not taken, the meaning of life is violated. Now, I think of that as a kind of daily reminder to me. The way I put it in one of the books The Middle Passage, “Every morning, two gremlins at the foot of the bed, challenging us and threatening us, fear and lethargy. Fear says, it’s too much, it’s too big for you. You can’t handle this life. And lethargy says, chill out. Tomorrow’s another day, turn on the television, try to be distracted if you can.”

And both of them are the enemies of life, and they’ll be there again tomorrow, no matter what you do today. So we have to realize they are inside of us. The biggest enemies to life are inside of us: fear and lethargy. If we can address that life opens up and begins to be what it’s supposed to be, in my view, the unfolding of the gem that each of us embodies in this world.

James Hollis on an episode of the Insights at the Edge podcast with Tami Simon

Here’s a transcript. Via LD 🙏

On Living Together

You’ve said that, despite being married three times, you’ve been in love only once. Do you think you might have a particularly higher bar than other people?
No, I think I’m not that interested. I’m much happier on my own. I can spend as much time with somebody as I want to spend, but I’m not looking to be with somebody forever or live with someone. I don’t want somebody in my house.

Have you always felt like this?
Yes. I’m the round peg, and marriage is the square hole. You can’t have a square hole, can you?

Whoopi Goldberg, in an old interview with Ana Marie Cox, The New York Times

2021 Things

Wasted 2020

2021

New Years resolutions for 2021 are gonna be like:

  • travel to the other side of the room
  • wear a different shirt
  • cut screen time from 12 hours a day to 11
  • eat a vegetable
  • bathe
@alyssalimp

Some Life Lessons by @sweatystartup on Twitter More Pasta

I’ve gotten a lot of bad advice in my career and I see even more of it here on Twitter. Time for a stiff drink and some truth you probably dont want to hear. 👇👇

College isn’t worthless for everyone. All of the successful folks who tell you college is worthless went to college. What does that tell you? It’s not about the learning, though. It’s about growing and learning how to sell yourself and your ideas.

Miami isn’t the next tech hub. It’s surrounded by a swamp. Construction costs are insane because of hurricane codes. Vacant land doesn’t exist. Property insurance has risen on average 20% per year for 5 years. Plus it’s hot AF. Ever been there in July?

Starting a business isn’t right for everyone. 95% of folks are better off getting a job. It’s hard AF. Decisions are critical and plentiful. Risk is for real. Stress can be crippling. Delegation can be impossible for poor communicators. Most folks don’t have what it takes.

Technology isn’t as far along as the media makes you think it is. We’re 5+ years away from autonomous vehicles. Alexa still can’t play the song I want 25% of the time let alone make decisions and “learn”. Robots fall on their faces when they aren’t on perfectly flat ground.

Real estate isn’t a good place to start. It’s terrible at generating wealth compared to other forms of entrepreneurship. Rich parents or a bankroll of your own? Sure. Everyone else? Start a biz or make money some other way. The odds are much better.

More on RE because this is important. Early in your career you need to double and triple or create cash from nothing. That’s hard AF to do in real estate. It’s good at growing your wealth over a lot of TIME. Early on you don’t have time. Do something else.

Don’t “just buy that first property”. I hear this so much but it makes me angry. Assets are overpriced AF right now and yield is tight. Overlevering right now is very risky. Look for cashflow, not appreciation. Cashflow is TIGHT out there right now.

Chasing your passion is a bad idea. And it’s the best way to end in heartbreak IMO. If you’re passionate about it so are other people. It’ll be competitive AF. You’re more likely to make emotional (and bad) decisions. Chase opportunity now and your passion later.

Getting rich quick isn’t possible. The media tells you the stories of the overnight successes. But that’s all bullshit. It gets clicks but it doesn’t work that way for 99.99% of successful folks.

Giving up is often the best choice there is. Too many people drag along projects with poor odds of success for far too long.

Money isn’t your most valuable asset. Time is much more important and unlike money you can never get it back. Use it wisely and cut people out who waste it.

You don’t need a new idea to start a business. Do something a lot of folks are already doing and do it just a little bit better.

The “blue ocean” strategy is bullshit. Competition is good. It means there is money to be made. The market exists. You can study it and figure out a strategy that has been proven to work.

Choosing your competition is much more important than you think. Who would you rather compete with? The group of folks with VC money and Stanford degrees or the guy down the street who used a fax machine?

Working hard isn’t going to get you ahead. A lot of people work hard for 70 hours a week until they die. Why do we glorify that? Making good decisions and working SMART is much more likely to make you successful.

You can’t have it all right now. There is a difference between rich and wealthy. Rich people buy nice cars they bought with their first check. Wealthy people buy assets that send them money every month so they can work less.

When everyone wants to buy something it’s too late. When nobody wants to buy something is when the smart money enters the game. “Be greedy when others are fearful and fearful when others are greedy”

Building something that can add a little bit of value to millions of people isn’t the way to succeed. You’re way better off building something that can add a lot more value to a very small subset of the population. Riches are in the niches.

Changing the world without any money is a fools errand. You know who really influences the world we live in? The folks with money. Make money first, change the world later.

The real opportunities aren’t online. Being a digital nomad severely limits you from taking advantage of the largest barrier to entry that exists: GEOGRAPHY Real estate, service businesses, etc. Wrap in technology sure, but compete locally.

The biographies of tech unicorn founders won’t help you. Survivorship bias is terrible. For every one that succeeded thousands more failed. What are the odds again?

Software engineers aren’t going to be the leaders of the future. Folks who can look someone in the eye and build rapport and sell themselves and their ideas will. Learn to communicate if you want to set yourself apart. The next generation is severely lacking in this area.

There isn’t one way to win. What Elon Musk did to win won’t work for you. What I am saying here isn’t true for everyone. Get advice from a lot of people, apply what makes sense to you, learn, adjust, and do the best you can.

The key to success isn’t intelligence. It’s sales. If you can get uncomfortable and put yourself out there you’re half way there. If you can be compelling and attract others to your way of thinking you’ll win. LIFE is all about sales.

Going big is a terrible way to start. You’ll end up likely failing and going to get a job. Start small. Low risk. Learn and take opportunities as they come. Batting average > slugging percentage.

Business isn’t about who you know. It’s about momentum. Impress someone in a small way and you’ll get a bigger opportunity later. What you’re doing right now will look nothing like what you’re doing 10 years from now if you’re doing it right.

If it’s easy it isn’t worth doing. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. You show me a successful person and I’ll show you someone who embraces uncertainty and pushed back that self doubt to take a chance.

Books are overrated. Conversations are underrated. Experience is how you learn but it’s not necessarily how you get better.

Too much weight is put on the tail events when you make decisions. Often times one or two main levers determine 90% of your likelihood of success. Focus on those. The rest is noise.

A tailwind is way more important than your competence. Alpha is overrated. Get in on the right trend and everyone wins. Rising tides rise all ships.

You do well by being a jack of all trades. You do VERY WELL by getting really good at one thing and outsourcing everything else. Focus is critical and diversification is overrated.

Your emotions are messing up your decision making. Manage your ego and your self-doubt. It clouds your judgement.

Nobody knows what the hell they’re doing and if they are a self proclaimed genius they are lying. Every successful person is just figuring it out as they go along.

Open-mindedness is the key to success. The people who truly want to get better surround themselves with folks who challenge them. NOT the folks who only agree with them.

80% of folks have a negative attitude. Avoid them at all costs. Gossip destroys your mind and your productivity.

We don’t live in a world of scarcity. Everyone can win. Joe making money doesn’t mean John lost money. An abundance mindset will not only make you happier but also more productive.

It’s really easy to be a bear and act like the sky is about to fall. But 99% of folks who got wealthy did it by betting ON something, not against something. Bears get clicks. The media spreads fear. Positivity wins.

Understanding what you can control and what you can’t is underrated. Far too many people spend far too much energy thinking about and worrying about things they have absolutely no control over.

Changing your mind doesn’t make you look weak. It makes you BETTER.

Making a big decision while emotional is a recipe for disaster. Being able to avoid emotions and make decisions with logic is a superpower.

Nobody cares about you but a handful of people. Caring less about what people on the internet or even those you interact with daily think about you will serve you well.

Listening is great. But if you haven’t made it yet SPEAK UP. Status is a game. You have to play it. Opportunities don’t just fall on your lap. You have to carve out something.

Once you’ve made it, talk less. It’s easy to use past success to talk you into future success. Keep an eye out for blind spots.

People do business with people they like. Be likeable. Ask questions about them. Find out what they are into. Ask good questions.

Buying and selling isn’t logical. It’s emotional. The sooner you understand that the sooner you can use it to your advantage.

A supportive spouse will 10x your success. The opposite will 1/10 your success.

90% of folks in this world either aren’t competent or are emotionally unstable. Surrounding yourself (and filling your conpany) with the other 10% is the ultimate key to success.

Most thought leaders and influencers spend 99% of their time trying to sound smart. They purposely make things too complicated. You’re often better off getting advice from your grandfather.

Doing what you want to do when you want to do it is success. Time is wealth. Our leaders glorifying trading your 20s and 30s for earning and money isn’t in your best interest. It’s in theirs.

A LOT of the advice you get in this world isn’t in your best interest. It’s in the best interest of the person giving you the advice. Therefore you must always know the interests of the person you go to for advice.

There is no better way to live a fulfilling life AND make a lot of money than serving other people. Add as much value as you can to other people and you’ll be wealthy and happy.

Value and money aren’t always equal. Entrepreneurs are tasked with trading value for money.

Speculators make money by guessing properly and to make that money someone else does indeed have to lose it. Entrepreneurs get wealthy by adding value. The second is more rewarding, less risky AND more profitable.

You get ahead early in your career by saying yes to opportunities. Your life gets better when you get to start saying NO.

Insecurity plagues even the strongest among us. I’m insecure as hell in a lot of areas of life. Pushing through is where I get better and I encourage you to do the same.

Bad mentors tell you what to do. Good mentors ask the right questions so you can learn how to think for yourself.

Life is hard. For everyone. Social media makes you think everyone has it made. It’s a struggle no matter how much you have or how successful you are. Embrace the challenge and do what we all do: Try to live so that our kids can have a better life than we have.

Having kids is underrated. Every 60 year old I know cares about one thing and one thing only: Their kids and grandkids. Make the sacrifice now to reap the rewards later.

You can move to any city in the country and you’ll be miserable if you don’t accept one truth: The tribe makes the place. If you have good people around you you’ll be happy anywhere.

Most of our friends are our friends because of proximity. If you can make friends based on interests and find folks who want to get better and make you better you will be truly happy.

75% of folks don’t truly, deeply know anyone and nobody knows them. Get vulnerable and really get to know someone. What scares them. What they deeply desire. What makes them tick. And find folks who want to know you in that way and let them in.

Providing for your family goes way beyond money. Love and attention are often more strongly desired than food and water. Be present and explore, play and get to know your family on a deep level. Create a bond. And reap the rewards forever.

Goal setting is over-rated. It’s easy to write a list of things on a paper. Doing the work is what sucks and is hard and takes forever. And doing the work is the only thing that matters.

A positive attitude and a smile is a choice. And it will rub off and open doors and lead to a better life. Make the choice every day.

75% of people are filled with jealousy and hate. They are insecure. Smile at them and show compassion. And most importantly DONT TAKE WHAT THEY SAY AS FACT.

The folks who confirm your beliefs should be considered. But the folks who disagree and engage you should be treasured.

I wonder how many tweets I can add to this thread before I hit the limit? I’ll use this as a chance to say something important: I’m just a guy who thinks deeply about things and has experienced some success. Nothing I say should be blindly followed or taken as fact.

I’ve had success not because im special but because I’ve followed the path of least resistance. I was bullied heavily in elementary school. Athletically gifted (for a white guy) but wasn’t foolish enough to think basketball could get me a scholarship.

So I ran track and did several events. Nobody bothered me and I just did my thing. Got accepted to the Ivy League and was lucky enough to win an Ivy title in the hurdles as a freshman.

But I knew I could never be world class in that event. So I took up the decathlon. An event you haven’t heard of and less than 1,000 folks on the USA complete in a given year.

The best athletes were sprinting and jumping or playing football. So I, as a mediocre athlete, set records and was an all-american. USA championship qualifier, missed the Olympic trials by one spot.

All my smart friends at cornell were chasing tech startups. So I started a little service business called Storage Squad with a friend. Once again the competition was terrible and it was low hanging fruit.

10 years later and a 7 figure exit and we’re buying little mom and pop storage facilities in small towns that nobody wants. We do a few things different (mainly with technology) and we have a huge competitive advantage.

It’s easy and tempting for me to claim that I’m self made. But I’m not. And anybody who tells you they are is a liar. I had 10+ folks influence my life in those critical early years and make me a better man.

Managing expectations is the key to a happy (and stress) free life. Over-promising and under-delivering is a recipe for disaster. Sell in a different way. Make your value add clear and let the other party sell themselves.

Everything in life is a negotiation. If you can understand all negotiations are also emotional you’ll get a lot further. Figure out what it is the other person deeply wants. Hint: they often won’t tell you or even know how to verbalize it themselves.

It’s really easy after you’ve had some success to preach the extreme ownership and “anybody can win” mentality. This is bullshit. Most people can’t reach the bottom rung of the latter let alone climb it.

Spend a good portion of your time giving folks the initial boost they need to start climbing the ladder towards a better life. It’ll pay for itself 10x over in joy and relationships created.

Almost everything you regret in life will be the result of a decision you made while emotional. See a trend regarding emotions yet?

Greed is an emotion. And it’s the most dangerous of them all.

Enter every interaction with the goal to add as much value as you can and your world will open up. Enter every interaction with the goal to maximize money or anything else for yourself and watch yourself struggle to find wealth or happiness.

Curiosity is a bigger factor of success than intelligence. The folks who get excited to explore and learn and take steps forward into uncertainty win.

There are two ways to sell: 1. Overcome objections, figure out what’s holding folks back, talk about the positives 2. Find people who need what you’re selling more than you need their money, talk about the negatives, and let them sell themselves. #2 is best.

As a company you have three areas where you can compete: 1. Price. Undercut overtone. 2. Speed. Deliver quickly. 3. Quality. Be the best.

If you compete on price you will not be successful. You’ll create a stressful job for yourself. Never able to afford good help. Always putting out fires. Compete on speed and quality and charge a higher price.

That way you can delegate and build a healthy company. You can pay good help. You can afford proper equipment and resources. And you can scale.

Average folks spend their time putting out fires. Employee comes to them with a problem. And it’s get out of my way so I can fix this problem.

Successful business owners build systems to prevent the fires. Oh you have a problem? How would you fix it? How can we prevent it from happening again?

90% of folks in life play defense. Other people make decisions and they react. They are totally out of control. They complain, blame others and continue to react to their surroundings.

10% play offense. They make decisions that control their earnings, where they live, who they spend time with. They are in control. They don’t complain and they own up to their situation.

It takes time to move from playing defense to playing offense. One decision at a time for a long time. But it’s worth it.

Words of affirmation are stronger motivators for a large portion of the population than money. Praise loudly, often, and in public.

The market doesn’t care what you want or what you think will happen. It’s ruthless and it’s true. And it doesn’t give a shit about you or your ideas. To succeed in the market you must be selfless and search truth over being “right” in someone’s eyes. The ego is the enemy.

99% of people network all wrong. With their hand out. Help me. Do this for me. Introduce me. Me me me me! It’s not about you!

The way to win: Become a master at something and begin to help other people. Put in the work. Have a unique skill set. Then add value everywhere you go. Then watch your network explode. This is tough to hear right? Work first network later? Bummer I know.

Simple almost always wins. Simple businesses. Simple jobs for your employees. Simple structures. Keep it simple!

And another hard truth - Most employees WANT structure. They want guidance. They want you to set them up for success. Autonomy is great but business owners miss the make here and end up throwing employees to the dogs and setting them up for failure. Simplify the job.

If folks wanted autonomy and to make decisions all day they’d start their own businesses. And this leads to another point. Very few people think like you do. But you project your needs and desires in others. Stop doing that.

Your employee doesn’t want profit sharing and upside. He wants a paycheck he can count on and for you to tell him he’s doing a good job.

Status and respect is desired much more than money by most people. And it’s free for you to give. So give it lavishly!

More folks should start businesses like poker players play hands. What do I need to invest, what is the likelihood of success, and how much would I win?

They’d figure out picking the low hanging fruit and going after that first passive $100k a year is a lot more likely in sweaty industries without much curb appeal.

And folks should also re-calibrate how they think about earnings and success. How much money do you really need? I’ll tell you there are only three levels of wealth…

#1 - you can successfully feed your family and you aren’t worried about making rent, delivering the essentials to live.

#2 - you can go in a restaurant and order whatever you want without looking at the price.

#3 - you can travel and buy flights without worrying about the cost.

Beyond that more money doesn’t matter. So why do we chase millions or billions? Ego and status. Recognize it’s a fools errand and forget about the games around these two things. Because you can’t win.

You’ll end up buying things you can’t afford to impress people you don’t like. It’s real. Focus instead on making enough to do what you want to do and TAKING BACK YOUR TIME so you can spend it building memories with people who do know you and do care about you.

Trust is a funny thing. It takes years to build but seconds to throw away.

If your goal is to make someone else better amazing things happen. They reciprocate and a unique synergy happens. Those are the best relationships. Build them and charish them.

I went to the mountains yesterday and did some reflecting. I suggest every so often you turn off the input and sit alone with your thoughts. Clarity isn’t something that comes easily in a world of constant distractions. Do it. It’s worth it. https://t.co/mKKHaZiE6o

Everything in life is an opportunity. You get out what you put in. You can let it slip through your fingers. Or you can grab hold and ride it to the next level. When things change massive opportunity is created.

There has never been a time of more rapid change for so many people. As an opportunist you have a choice. Are you going to capitalize, add value and make a name for yourself? Are you going to start taking steps to lead to a better life? Or are you going to sit back and watch?

What is the meaning of life? I think it’s different for everybody and lucky for us we get to chose what really drives us. To some it’s seeing who can die with the most money and they don’t care if there is a wake of distraction left behind.

For me it’s seeing how many lives I can positively influence. And building unique, deep and meaningful relationships with a handful of individuals. I’m thankful this platform gets me closer to my goal. And thank you for following along and for making me a better person.

If you enjoy this kind of thing I suggest following a few others who think a lot differently. @baldridgecpa @fortworthchris @moseskagan @SullyBusiness @amandaorson @Keith_Wasserman @BrianColunio @scottyo21 @MattLasky @tsludwig @awilkinson @ShaanVP

TRUISMS (1978-1983) by Jenny Holzer More Pasta

JENNY HOLZER

A LITTLE KNOWLEDGE CAN GO A LONG WAY

A LOT OF PROFESSIONALS ARE CRACKPOTS

A MAN CAN’T KNOW WHAT IT IS TO BE A MOTHER

A NAME MEANS A LOT JUST BY ITSELF

A POSITIVE ATTITUDE MEANS ALL THE DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD

A RELAXED MAN IS NOT NECESSARILY A BETTER MAN

A SENSE OF TIMING IS THE MARK OF GENIUS

A SINCERE EFFORT IS ALL YOU CAN ASK

A SINGLE EVENT CAN HAVE INFINITELY MANY INTERPRETATIONS

A SOLID HOME BASE BUILDS A SENSE OF SELF

A STRONG SENSE OF DUTY IMPRISONS YOU

ABSOLUTE SUBMISSION CAN BE A FORM OF FREEDOM

ABSTRACTION IS A TYPE OF DECADENCE

ABUSE OF POWER COMES AS NO SURPRISE

ACTION CAUSES MORE TROUBLE THAN THOUGHT

ALIENATION PRODUCES ECCENTRICS OR REVOLUTIONARIES

ALL THINGS ARE DELICATELY INTERCONNECTED

AMBITION IS JUST AS DANGEROUS AS COMPLACENCY

AMBIVALENCE CAN RUIN YOUR LIFE

AN ELITE IS INEVITABLE

ANGER OR HATE CAN BE A USEFUL MOTIVATING FORCE

ANIMALISM IS PERFECTLY HEALTHY

ANY SURPLUS IS IMMORAL

ANYTHING IS A LEGITIMATE AREA OF INVESTIGATION

ARTIFICIAL DESIRES ARE DESPOILING THE EARTH

AT TIMES INACTIVITY IS PREFERABLE TO MINDLESS FUNCTIONING

AT TIMES YOUR UNCONSCIOUSNESS IS TRUER THAN YOUR CONSCIOUS MIND

AUTOMATION IS DEADLY

AWFUL PUNISHMENT AWAITS REALLY BAD PEOPLE

BAD INTENTIONS CAN YIELD GOOD RESULTS

BEING ALONE WITH YOURSELF IS INCREASINGLY UNPOPULAR

BEING HAPPY IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANYTHING ELSE

BEING JUDGMENTAL IS A SIGN OF LIFE

BEING SURE OF YOURSELF MEANS YOU’RE A FOOL

BELIEVING IN REBIRTH IS THE SAME AS ADMITTING DEFEAT

BOREDOM MAKES YOU DO CRAZY THINGS

CALM IS MORE CONDUCTIVE TO CREATIVITY THAN IS ANXIETY

CATEGORIZING FEAR IS CALMING

CHANGE IS VALUABLE WHEN THE OPPRESSED BECOME TYRANTS

CHASING THE NEW IS DANGEROUS TO SOCIETY

CHILDREN ARE THE MOST CRUEL OF ALL

CHILDREN ARE THE HOPE OF THE FUTURE

CLASS ACTION IS A NICE IDEA WITH NO SUBSTANCE

CLASS STRUCTURE IS AS ARTIFICIAL AS PLASTIC

CONFUSING YOURSELF IS A WAY TO STAY HONEST

CRIME AGAINST PROPERTY IS RELATIVELY UNIMPORTANT

DECADENCE CAN BE AN END IN ITSELF

DECENCY IS A RELATIVE THING

DEPENDENCE CAN BE A MEAL TICKET

DESCRIPTION IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN METAPHOR

DEVIANTS ARE SACRIFICED TO INCREASE GROUP SOLIDARITY

DISGUST IS THE APPROPRIATE RESPONSE TO MOST SITUATIONS

DISORGANIZATION IS A KIND OF ANESTHESIA

DON’T PLACE TO MUCH TRUST IN EXPERTS

DRAMA OFTEN OBSCURES THE REAL ISSUES

DREAMING WHILE AWAKE IS A FRIGHTENING CONTRADICTION

DYING AND COMING BACK GIVES YOU CONSIDERABLE PERSPECTIVE

DYING SHOULD BE AS EASY AS FALLING OFF A LOG

EATING TOO MUCH IS CRIMINAL

ELABORATION IS A FORM OF POLLUTION

EMOTIONAL RESPONSES AR AS VALUABLE AS INTELLECTUAL RESPONSES

ENJOY YOURSELF BECAUSE YOU CAN’T CHANGE ANYTHING ANYWAY

ENSURE THAT YOUR LIFE STAYS IN FLUX

EVEN YOUR FAMILY CAN BETRAY YOU

EVERY ACHIEVEMENT REQUIRES A SACRIFICE

EVERYONE’S WORK IS EQUALLY IMPORTANT

EVERYTHING THAT’S INTERESTING IS NEW

EXCEPTIONAL PEOPLE DESERVE SPECIAL CONCESSIONS

EXPIRING FOR LOVE IS BEAUTIFUL BUT STUPID

EXPRESSING ANGER IS NECESSARY

EXTREME BEHAVIOR HAS ITS BASIS IN PATHOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY

EXTREME SELF-CONSCIOUSNESS LEADS TO PERVERSION

FAITHFULNESS IS A SOCIAL NOT A BIOLOGICAL LAW

FAKE OR REAL INDIFFERENCE IS A POWERFUL PERSONAL WEAPON

FATHERS OFTEN USE TOO MUCH FORCE

FEAR IS THE GREATEST INCAPACITATOR

FREEDOM IS A LUXURY NOT A NECESSITY

GIVING FREE REIN TO YOUR EMOTIONS IS AN HONEST WAY TO LIVE

GO ALL OUT IN ROMANCE AND LET THE CHIPS FALL WHERE THEY MAY

GOING WITH THE FLOW IS SOOTHING BUT RISKY

GOOD DEEDS EVENTUALLY ARE REWARDED

GOVERNMENT IS A BURDEN ON THE PEOPLE

GRASS ROOTS AGITATION IS THE ONLY HOPE

GUILT AND SELF-LACERATION ARE INDULGENCES

HABITUAL CONTEMPT DOESN’T REFLECT A FINER SENSIBILITY

HIDING YOUR EMOTIONS IS DESPICABLE

HOLDING BACK PROTECTS YOUR VITAL ENERGIES

HUMANISM IS OBSOLETE

HUMOR IS A RELEASE

IDEALS ARE REPLACED BY CONVENTIONAL GOALS AT A CERTAIN AGE

IF YOU AREN’T POLITICAL YOUR PERSONAL LIFE SHOULD BE EXEMPLARY

IF YOU CAN’T LEAVE YOUR MARK GIVE UP

IF YOU HAVE MANY DESIRES YOUR LIFE WILL BE INTERESTING

IF YOU LIVE SIMPLY THERE IS NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT

IGNORING ENEMIES IS THE BEST WAY TO FIGHT

ILLNESS IS A STATE OF MIND

IMPOSING ORDER IS MAN’S VOCATION FOR CHAOS IS HELL

IN SOME INSTANCES IT’S BETTER TO DIE THAN TO CONTINUE

INHERITANCE MUST BE ABOLISHED

IT CAN BE HELPFUL TO KEEP GOING NO MATTER WHAT

IT IS HEROIC TO TRY TO STOP TIME

IT IS MAN’S FATE TO OUTSMART HIMSELF

IT IS A GIFT TO THE WORLD NOT TO HAVE BABIES

IT’S BETTER TO BE A GOOD PERSON THAN A FAMOUS PERSON

IT’S BETTER TO BE LONELY THAN TO BE WITH INFERIOR PEOPLE

IT’S BETTER TO BE NAIVE THAN JADED

IT’S BETTER TO STUDY THE LIVING FACT THAN TO ANALYZE HISTORY

IT’S CRUCIAL TO HAVE AN ACTIVE FANTASY LIFE

IT’S GOOD TO GIVE EXTRA MONEY TO CHARITY

IT’S IMPORTANT TO STAY CLEAN ON ALL LEVELS

IT’S JUST AN ACCIDENT THAT YOUR PARENTS ARE YOUR PARENTS

IT’S NOT GOOD TO HOLD TOO MANY ABSOLUTES

IT’S NOT GOOD TO OPERATE ON CREDIT

IT’S VITAL TO LIVE IN HARMONY WITH NATURE

JUST BELIEVING SOMETHING CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN

KEEP SOMETHING IN RESERVE FOR EMERGENCIES

KILLING IS UNAVOIDABLE BUT NOTHING TO BE PROUD OF

KNOWING YOURSELF LETS YOU UNDERSTAND OTHERS

KNOWLEDGE SHOULD BE ADVANCED AT ALL COSTS

LABOR IS A LIFE-DESTROYING ACTIVITY

LACK OF CHARISMA CAN BE FATAL

LEISURE TIME IS A GIGANTIC SMOKE SCREEN

LISTEN WHEN YOUR BODY TALKS

LOOKING BACK IS THE FIRST SIGN OF AGING AND DECAY

LOVING ANIMALS IS A SUBSTITUTE ACTIVITY

LOW EXPECTATIONS ARE GOOD PROTECTION

MANUAL LABOR CAN BE REFRESHING AND WHOLESOME

MEN ARE NOT MONOGAMOUS BY NATURE

MODERATION KILLS THE SPIRIT

MONEY CREATES TASTE

MONOMANIA IS A PREREQUISITE OF SUCCESS

MORALS ARE FOR LITTLE PEOPLE

MOST PEOPLE ARE NOT FIT TO RULE THEMSELVES

MOSTLY YOU SHOULD MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS

MOTHERS SHOULDN’T MAKE TOO MANY SACRIFICES

MUCH WAS DECIDED BEFORE YOU WERE BORN

MURDER HAS ITS SEXUAL SIDE

MYTH CAN MAKE REALITY MORE INTELLIGIBLE

NOISE CAN BE HOSTILE

NOTHING UPSETS THE BALANCE OF GOOD AND EVIL

OCCASIONALLY PRINCIPLES ARE MORE VALUABLE THAN PEOPLE

OFFER VERY LITTLE INFORMATION ABOUT YOURSELF

OFTEN YOU SHOULD ACT LIKE YOU ARE SEXLESS

OLD FRIENDS ARE BETTER LEFT IN THE PAST

OPACITY IS AN IRRESISTIBLE CHALLENGE

PAIN CAN BE A VERY POSITIVE THING

PEOPLE ARE BORING UNLESS THEY ARE EXTREMISTS

PEOPLE ARE NUTS IF THEY THINK THEY ARE IMPORTANT

PEOPLE ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT THEY DO UNLESS THEY ARE INSANE

PEOPLE WHO DON’T WORK WITH THEIR HANDS ARE PARASITES

PEOPLE WHO GO CRAZY ARE TOO SENSITIVE

PEOPLE WON’T BEHAVE IF THEY HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE

PHYSICAL CULTURE IS SECOND BEST

PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE IS ESCAPISM

PLAYING IT SAFE CAN CAUSE A LOT OF DAMAGE IN THE LONG RUN

POLITICS IS USED FOR PERSONAL GAIN

POTENTIAL COUNTS FOR NOTHING UNTIL IT’S REALIZED

PRIVATE PROPERTY CREATED CRIME

PURSUING PLEASURE FOR THE SAKE OF PLEASURE WILL RUIN YOU

PUSH YOURSELF TO THE LIMIT AS OFTEN AS POSSIBLE

RAISE BOYS AND GIRLS THE SAME WAY

RANDOM MATING IS GOOD FOR DEBUNKING SEX MYTHS

RECHANNELING DESTRUCTIVE IMPULSES IS A SIGN OF MATURITY

RECLUSES ALWAYS GET WEAK

REDISTRIBUTING WEALTH IS IMPERATIVE

RELATIVITY IS NO BOON TO MANKIND

RELIGION CAUSES AS MANY PROBLEMS AS IT SOLVES

REMEMBER YOU ALWAYS HAVE FREEDOM OF CHOICE

REPETITION IS THE BEST WAY TO LEARN

RESOLUTIONS SERVE TO EASE OUR CONSCIENCE

REVOLUTION BEGINS WITH CHANGES IN THE INDIVIDUAL

ROMANTIC LOVE WAS INVENTED TO MANIPULATE WOMEN

ROUTINE IS A LINK WITH THE PAST

ROUTINE SMALL EXCESSES ARE WORSE THAN THEN THE OCCASIONAL DEBAUCH

SACRIFICING YOURSELF FOR A BAD CAUSE IS NOT A MORAL ACT

SALVATION CAN’T BE BOUGHT AND SOLD

SELF-AWARENESS CAN BE CRIPPLING

SELF-CONTEMPT CAN DO MORE HARM THAN GOOD

SELFISHNESS IS THE MOST BASIC MOTIVATION

SELFLESSNESS IS THE HIGHEST ACHIEVEMENT

SEPARATISM IS THE WAY TO A NEW BEGINNING

SEX DIFFERENCES ARE HERE TO STAY

SIN IS A MEANS OF SOCIAL CONTROL

SLIPPING INTO MADNESS IS GOOD FOR THE SAKE OF COMPARISON

SLOPPY THINKING GETS WORSE OVER TIME

SOLITUDE IS ENRICHING

SOMETIMES SCIENCE ADVANCES FASTER THAN IT SHOULD

SOMETIMES THINGS SEEM TO HAPPEN OF THEIR OWN ACCORD

SPENDING TOO MUCH TIME ON SELF-IMPROVEMENT IS ANTISOCIAL

STARVATION IS NATURE’S WAY

STASIS IS A DREAM STATE

STERILIZATION IS A WEAPON OF THE RULERS

STRONG EMOTIONAL ATTACHMENT STEMS FROM BASIC INSECURITY

STUPID PEOPLE SHOULDN’T BREED

SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST APPLIES TO MEN AND ANIMALS

SYMBOLS ARE MORE MEANINGFUL THAN THINGS THEMSELVES

TAKING A STRONG STAND PUBLICIZES THE OPPOSITE POSITION

TALKING IS USED TO HIDE ONE’S INABILITY TO ACT

TEASING PEOPLE SEXUALLY CAN HAVE UGLY CONSEQUENCES

TECHNOLOGY WILL MAKE OR BREAK US

THE CRUELEST DISAPPOINTMENT IS WHEN YOU LET YOURSELF DOWN

THE DESIRE TO REPRODUCE IS A DEATH WISH

THE FAMILY IS LIVING ON BORROWED TIME

THE IDEA OF REVOLUTION IS AN ADOLESCENT FANTASY

THE IDEA OF TRANSCENDENCE IS USED TO OBSCURE OPPRESSION

THE IDIOSYNCRATIC HAS LOST ITS AUTHORITY

THE MOST PROFOUND THINGS ARE INEXPRESSIBLE

THE MUNDANE IS TO BE CHERISHED

THE NEW IS NOTHING BUT A RESTATEMENT OF THE OLD

THE ONLY WAY TO BE PURE IS TO STAY BY YOURSELF

THE SUM OF YOUR ACTIONS DETERMINES WHAT YOU ARE

THE UNATTAINABLE IS INVARIABLE ATTRACTIVE

THE WORLD OPERATES ACCORDING TO DISCOVERABLE LAWS

THERE ARE TOO FEW IMMUTABLE TRUTHS TODAY

THERE’S NOTHING EXCEPT WHAT YOU SENSE

THERE’S NOTHING REDEEMING IN TOIL

THINKING TOO MUCH CAN ONLY CAUSE PROBLEMS

THREATENING SOMEONE SEXUALLY IS A HORRIBLE ACT

TIMIDITY IS LAUGHABLE

TO DISAGREE PRESUPPOSES MORAL INTEGRITY

TO VOLUNTEER IS REACTIONARY

TORTURE IS BARBARIC

TRADING A LIFE FOR A LIFE IS FAIR ENOUGH

TRUE FREEDOM IS FRIGHTFUL

UNIQUE THINGS MUST BE THE MOST VALUABLE

UNQUESTIONING LOVE DEMONSTRATES LARGESSE OF SPIRIT

USING FORCE TO STOP FORCE IS ABSURD

VIOLENCE IS PERMISSIBLE EVEN DESIRABLE OCCASIONALLY

WAR IS A PURIFICATION RITE

WE MUST MAKE SACRIFICES TO MAINTAIN OUR QUALITY OF LIFE

WHEN SOMETHING TERRIBLE HAPPENS PEOPLE WAKE UP

WISHING THINGS AWAY IS NOT EFFECTIVE

WITH PERSEVERANCE YOU CAN DISCOVER ANY TRUTH

WORDS TEND TO BE INADEQUATE

WORRYING CAN HELP YOU PREPARE

YOU ARE A VICTIM OF THE RULES YOU LIVE BY

YOU ARE GUILELESS IN YOUR DREAMS

YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR CONSTITUTING THE MEANING OF THINGS

YOU ARE THE PAST PRESENT AND FUTURE

YOU CAN LIVE ON THROUGH YOUR DESCENDANTS

YOU CAN’T EXPECT PEOPLE TO BE SOMETHING THEY’RE NOT

YOU CAN’T FOOL OTHERS IF YOU’RE FOOLING YOURSELF

YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT’S WHAT UNTIL YOU SUPPORT YOURSELF

YOU HAVE TO HURT OTHERS TO BE EXTRAORDINARY

YOU MUST BE INTIMATE WITH A TOKEN FEW

YOU MUST DISAGREE WITH AUTHORITY FIGURES

YOU MUST HAVE ONE GRAND PASSION

YOU MUST KNOW WHERE YOU STOP AND THE WORLD BEGINS

YOU CAN UNDERSTAND SOMEONE OF YOUR SEX ONLY

YOU OWE THE WORLD NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND

YOU SHOULD STUDY AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE

YOUR ACTIONS AE POINTLESS IF NO ONE NOTICES

YOUR OLDEST FEARS ARE THE WORST ONES

What’s the most common mistake people make when choosing their spouse? by LaTuFu on Reddit More Pasta

Child of divorce, professional who dealt with divorcing couples for many years, Adult who went through a divorce, remarried and volunteer counseling/mentoring for couples today.

Here are the most common mistakes I’ve seen (my own as well as collectively) in the failed and struggling marriages I’ve seen:

  • One or both spouses have unresolved childhood baggage issues that will rear its head in their adult relationships. Examples of these include (but not limited to) physical or emotional abuse/neglect in the home; sexual abuse; one or both parents had substance abuse/addiction issues; one or both partners came from a divorced or single parent household. Among the many reasons why this is such a significant factor is if you grow up in a dysfunctional environment, you have no idea how dysfunctional and unhealthy it really is. To you, its normal, it is all you’ve ever known. So if Mom and Dad resolved conflict by getting drunk, yelling at each other and then not speaking for days, guess what you have a chance of modeling as an adult in your own relationships?

  • Understanding what “marriage as a priority” really means. When you get married, your marriage has to be the main priority in your life. Not your career, not your spouse (i.e. don’t put them on a pedestal), not your kids, not your hobbies or your personal fitness. The fact is, when you get married, you no longer get to call all of the shots. Gotten used to staying up all night playing XBOX with your boys on weekends? Not going to work in a marriage for an extended period of time. You’re going to have to accept the fact that if you want to have a healthy marriage, compromise is your new word of the day. In some cases you may have to give things up entirely, or learn to say “no for now.” While this often tends to be more of a struggle for men, women can also struggle with this issue. I’m not saying that getting married means giving up you completely, or kiss all of your favorite activities goodbye. What I am saying is, if you want your marriage to be healthy, you now have someone else in your life who gets an equal (not dominant–equal) say in how you spend your free time.

  • Poor communication skills. A shockingly high number of adults lack basic healthy communication skills and conflict resolution skills. Its heart breaking to have conversations with struggling couples who won’t speak to each other with a kind word for any reason. Both spouses should feel that their marriage is the one safe place in the world for each other. Unfortunately, in many instances, it is the last place a spouse can go for emotional safety. If you don’t feel your partner is your first friend, your best friend, your most trusted friend, then something is broken in your communications with each other.

  • Vastly different backgrounds. Don’t get me wrong. Anyone can be successfully married to someone else if both people are committed to it and willing to work on it. But most of the time, that’s just not the case. Societal/familial pressures are real, and it is important to assess them if you find yourself in a relationship that is impacted by them. Are you dating a trust fund baby/very wealthy child and you are the Jack Dawson? Tread carefully. It makes a great movie, but statistically, Rose winds up marrying Cal far more often than running off with Jack, because she doesn’t want to deal with the family pressure or get cut off financially. Sorry, that’s reality, not the movies.

  • Similar to different backgrounds, different motivations in life. Do you know what your partner wants out of life? Do they aspire to be an artist who welds clown sculptures out of mufflers? That’s great, but will it support the two of you, and if it won’t, will you be okay supporting them while they’re making Pennywise the Dual Exhaust Killer? Do they want to be a stay at home parent? Are you okay being the sole breadwinner? What if it is the reverse?

  • One. Union. Combined. Together. This notion is one that I see a lot of guys–especially high wage earners who are the sole income for the family–stumble over. Whether you are religious or not, the fact is when you get married you are no longer two individuals. You’re one. The law sees you that way, the tax code (at least in the US) sees you that way, and society sees you that way. There is no such thing as “mine and yours” in a marriage. There is only “ours.” The faster you get that concept nailed down, the better off you’ll be. I’ve seen many marriages collapse just over this issue alone.

  • Marriage is not an event, its a journey. So many couples stop trying to pursue each other after the wedding day. Guys and girls do this. Stereotypically/historically, men tend to focus on their careers/making money; women tend to focus on raising the children and/or managing the household. (I realize not in every situation) Both spouses stop taking time to compliment each other, appreciate each other, go out on dates, weekend getaways, or generally just spending time chasing after each other. They take each other for granted and begin to drift apart. “We just fell out of love” is one of the most common phrases I hear in couples struggling, and the sad thing is, its one of the easiest traps to avoid.

  • Friends and family around the marriage. This is especially hard for people who come from dysfunctional families. When you get married, your new spouse automatically gets moved to the front of the line. In front of your parents, siblings, lifelong besties, etc. They’re great to have in your life, but all of them have to take a distant back seat to your new spouse. If you’re a guy who has had a doting mother all your life and she’s told you what to do, who to marry, where to go to college, etc, you have a tough job ahead of you. The Monster-In-Law stereotype exists for a reason. If your new wife turns pale when your Mom’s number pops up on your cellphone, you need to talk to your wife and find out what boundaries she’d like to have installed. If you are Daddy’s little girl and nobody has ever been good enough in your Dad’s eyes, its time for you to tell Dad that you’re so grateful for his love and support, but Jim is more than good enough in your eyes, so you need him to be in his eyes, too. And sadly, if you have friends or family members who are toxic to you or your marriage, you may be forced to make a very difficult decision in your life. Anyone who sits around bitching about how much they hate their life, their spouse, their kids or how you’re going to eventually feel the same way about yours–put distance between you as fast as you possibly can. We tend to adopt the attitudes of the company we keep. So if you spend all your time with negative people…guess where you’re going to be mentally?

  • Date to establish trust. Time is actually your friend, not your enemy. Do not ignore ANY red flag you see in a relationship. Examine it for what it is, then determine if it is something you can work through with the other person, or is it something they refuse to acknowledge or deal with? If you’re dating someone who is selfish and they refuse to see it, they will not magically become unselfish because you were kind enough to marry them. Red Flags ignored in dating will become the rocks upon which your marriage boat smashes in the coming storms. If there are multiple red flags and they won’t talk to you about any of them, walk away. It doesn’t matter if you’ve already moved in, share the bank account, the dog, and a car. Get out now. If they’re not willing to work on things that impact the security of a relationship today, you can count on them not working on them after you get married.

Marriage is not easy. It requires a lot of work sometimes, even when you are both on the same page, have great communication, great sex (which will happen very easily if the rest of the relationship is healthy by the way) and great chemistry. People get sick, they get laid off, their family members die, children get sick, get hurt in accidents, friends have affairs, get divorced…life is challenging and it impacts our relationships, sometimes in ways we’re not expecting or prepared for. If you’re not willing to value your marriage above everything else in your life, its going to be really hard for it to survive the day in and day out challenges of living.

On ‘Finding Someone’

There’s so much more to life than finding someone who will want you, or being sad over someone who doesn’t. There’s a lot of wonderful time to be spent discovering yourself without hoping someone will fall in love with you along the way, and it doesn’t need to be painful or empty. You need to fill yourself up with love. Not anyone else. Become a whole being on your own. Go on adventures, fall asleep in the woods with friends, wander around the city at night, sit in a coffee shop on your own, write on bathroom stalls, leave notes in library books, dress up for yourself, give to others, smile a lot. Do all things with love, but don’t romanticize life like you can’t survive without it. Live for yourself and be happy on your own. It isn’t any less beautiful, I promise.

Emery Allen