Random Rants: On why we do what we do
Disclaimer: All Random Rants have minimal editing and a general disregard for flow.
Why do we do what we do? I spent most of my time this year, well a lot of my time feeling tired and then upset and angry about being tired. Unable or unwilling to work. I’ve always felt subconsciously that it was some kind of mental block instead of actual physical/mental tiredness.
I guess there is some science to back it up. In the book the willpower instinct he says that your mind tells your body it’s fatigued during physical exercise because it doesn’t want to use up it’s reserves. I guess that makes sense, you only use your reserves in case of an emergency. But ultra marathoners and elite athletes can push past this signal from their brain and tap into those reserves. Perhaps you shouldn’t go into your reserves too often but thats not something I’d have to worry about right now. Im at the opposite end of the extreme.
I guess for certain people that signal comes even sooner. This unwillingness to expend energy, thats the actual definition of laziness. What makes someone willing to spend energy? Results, interest, not having a choice. You ever notice how easy it is to work hard when you’re broke. I’ve always liked the idea of purposely leaving myself broke so I have to work hard. The gift and the curse of having money is that you now have the time to think about what you actually want. For most of us the answer is I don’t know. Or even when you do know, the idea of going after it is pretty daunting.
I don’t feel like Im getting anywhere in my thinking. In my writing. Feels a bit lost. What am I trying to think about? How do we do what we want to do when we’re tired. That’s when we make the worst decisions. There are various different types of solutions. A solution would have to either A) Make us less tired B) Make doing the task less hard C) Have the task done before we are tired D) Increase energy or decrease tiredness. Or some combo of all 4.
How do you make yourself less tired? There are infinite ways, naps, meditation, cold showers (amazing doc on cold exposure), diet, exercise, having something exciting to do. Im often tired but if I do a podcast I’ll feel great in minutes. Other activities increase my energy too. Watching TV even has this affect but if I watch too much I feel even worse. I have to hit the sweet spot, around 30mins usually. Reading something good but not for too long. Probably some others. Meditation I guess can do that as well. I think my tiredness is often related to some emotion, perceived difficulty or lack of interest.
B type solutions there are many of those as well. You can break the action down into steps, write down the specific actions, do the easiest ones 1st, have someone help you do it. I guess there is an E type solutions too. Increasing the interest in the activity. Even when I’m really tired if something really interests me I can do it and my tiredness will go away.
My tiredness owns my soul. I constantly give into it. The more I give into it the more power it has. I’m not using my abilities to find a good solution. There are so many fucking solutions, its the paradox of choice, it’s so fucking hard to pick one. In poker you get tops 5-6 viable options during a decision point, in life there are infinite. In poker the options are known, in life the options can be completely unknown to us. There can be solutions that we’d never even think of. There are so many variants of a particular type of solution too. Not only that but in poker you know what outcome you want! Make money, really fucking simple.
The outcome you want in life situations vary on a case by case basis. Next time you’re in an argument think about what exactly are you trying to achieve. To make the person look bad and thus make yourself feel better? To feel validated? What if that someone is someone you care about or love? I’ve had so many arguments where mid argument I’m asking myself what do I even want to accomplish? What’s the desired result, whats the outcome? Then I just kinda stop talking and sit there confused.
The game of life is probably played to have the most amount of peace and happiness for the greatest amount of people. So how does arguing fit into that? It seems like a necessary part of being married.
My point is that the game of life is hard, you have so many decision points, infinite options, unknown desired outcomes, and inability to measure the true impact of your actions. So what the fuck do you do then? Is it just about genetic expression?
To achieve happiness you have to do things you don’t like, face fears, delay gratification, eat foods you don’t like, try to fit in (to some extent at least), repress anger and other feelings (to some extent). Do things that are hard. Experience failure and setbacks. You must experience those. Its no wonder life is such a hard game.
I guess being cognizant of this, and trying to adjust accordingly. Knowing your outcomes. Thats a key. Understanding proper mindset. Whats proper mindset though? You have to understand yourself. Who you are. What you need. I really don’t know.
The issue is I don’t think our brains are wired for happiness. It cares more about survival and reproduction. Isn’t that true. That happiness is not it’s main goal. That our brain is wired to find problems. To seek them out. Our brain is wired to be afraid of risks. If we are in a state of comfort, where it is easy to survive and thus reproduce why would it want to risk that? I think thats why we only make change when disaster strikes. To do so before then takes a lot of strength I guess. It's probably a bit more complicated than that.
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