Questions to answer / stuff to write about

  • 30 – what should I do about the fact that I tend to continue where I left off?
  • 42- Envision the event that is not being effected because of your lack of focus
  • 43 – What do I need? Not my audience- what do I need?
  • 44- what small wins do I need?
  • 45- what are the smallest immediate things I can do to improve my life?
  • 46- “to be continued”
  • 47- social life is an elaborate dance of conquest and desire.
  • 48- you are a tube. that needs to feed itself. you are a pattern in space time. you are a bag of chemicals seeking chemical hits.
  • 49- how do you teach someone to be responsible? what’s the point of saying you care if your behavior doesn’t reflect it?
  • pain now vs pain later, 1st order vs 2nd, 3rd, 4th order effects
  • wordvomit ideas
    • 3 years from now… ?
    • meta narrative
    • jesus analogy
    • crutch
    • word is bigger than you realize
    • moving on
    • travel distance
    • freedom peace
    • interstellar lonely
    • diving into reading
    • the boundaries of games people play
      • easy to be mean on facebook to X people, but what are you ultimately working on? who is your ricebowl? daddy = fuck you money?
  • What am I curious about?
    • What is the limit of my potential?
    • what am I missing in plain sight?
    • what environmental changes do I need to make?
    • What peer changes do I need to make?
  • What is the broken leg and how should I respond?
    • (Predatory thinking) – I am impaired and I need some sort of intervention. How do I make sure that I get the most important tasks done? I have to start preparing for things early. I keep wanting to go broad rather than deep. Need to limit
  • vomit questions (0223-0228)
    • 0223 To think about: I haven’t been able to train myself to do hard things, to “eat the frog”.  Why is that? What do I need to do to fix that?
    • Revisit 0223 (Visa Prime)
    • 0225 – There is are painfully large gaps between me deciding that something needs to be done, deciding to do something about it, and finally actually doing it. What can I do about this?
    • 0225 – I said I’d list out everything I have (information) and then schedule the going-through of that info.
    • 0226 – i need to train myself to do one thing at a time (monotasking) – why? how?
    • 0228 – re-read bradbury, read ogilvy on advertising
    • 0228 –  I feel like only after I examine all my own work will I actually have the context I need to figure out what’s the next most important thing I should read.
    • 0228 – deliberate daily sync-ups


How to allocate cognitive resources? (0077)

I think Stephen Covey answered this one pretty well, but it’s helpful for me to try and teach it to somebody else so I figure out my own personal language and style for thinking about this.

Let me try doing this entirely my way, actually.

Let’s start with the worst case imaginable. You have incredibly limited resources and everything is going to hell. What do you do? You work backwards from the worst. Are you going to die anytime soon? Like, are you in a warzone or something? If so, devote your cognitive resources to getting water, resources, protection, shelter, etc.

That seems a little unnecessary, but I think it’s interesting. I’m sure it’s interesting. If you can only get food or water, you should get water, because you’ll die of thirst before you’ll die of hunger. If you can get a bit of both, you should probably get a bit of both. Figuring out the optimal configuration requires a preexisting understanding of human physiology that we may not necessarily have. Alas, most of life happens in situations where we have imperfect information. So we might as well figure out how to think about it, even if it feels a little silly. Let’s just keep going.

It’s unlikely that I’m going to find myself in a warzone, and if I do I don’t think I’m going to be looking for a manual about how to allocate cognitive resources– though having thought about this in the past will probably serve me a little bit. I hope. But the point is that every day your body is kind of at war– not literally in the human vs human sense, but it’s still you versus the world. It’s PvE rather than PvP.

But the basic principles of resource management still count, no? If you’re sleep deprived, go the fuck to sleep unless it’s really exceptional circumstances. If you find yourself citing exceptional circumstances repeatedly (and I do– every little thing is supposedly an emergency), then there are two things to be done. One is to write down clearly what constitutes exceptional circumstances– this should help you decide at a glance whether or not you should lose sleep over something. If it means sending a newsletter a day late, for instance, I’m starting to think it’s not that big a deal. Of course, ideally you want to catch these things way before they happen. And the trick to doing that is to have regular status checks and updates with your teammates, which to your credit you have started doing.

Why did Odysseus even bother? Why not relax? (0085)

What is my background brain currently occupied with? (0080)

What makes smart people lazy? (0056)

The relationship between “smart” and “lazy” (both terms need a lot of defining in order for us to have a decent conversation about it) is an interesting one, that’s not nearly as straightforward as people might think.

How do I succeed where my parents, teachers, etc failed? (0067)

I find myself actually deferring to some of Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits, of all things. Begin with the end in mind, think Win-Win, Seek first to Understand.

Max number of vomits in a day? My guess is 10. (0074)

Let’s spend a weekend figuring this out.

How to change Habits + Behavior? (0077)

I think I addressed this in the MVP model of personal development.

Why not read more books? (0086)

Did I mean right now, or in general? I think it’s definitely an important thing to do, and I think I haven’t been doing it because I’ve been distracting myself with online bullshit that’s really not important. Here’s hoping that I keep this realisation alive as I get home. I shouldn’t be sitting in front of the computer at home. I shouldn’t be taking work home. I should get this shit done and then put it out of mind. And then I can read, in the mornings and evenings. Maybe I’ll start with the evenings, using mornings for preparatory type stuff. I want to read all my best books before I get around to wasting time on the Internet anymore. Seriously, reddit, imgur, we have to take a break.

Why does my brain laugh at me when I make plans? Why odd/awkward? Hyperbole? (0086)

Because the subconscious part of me knows when something is bullshit, even when the conscious part of me doesn’t. It knows that some tasks take a lot longer than I’m consciously hoping they’ll take.

So the trick is to make much smaller plans. I thought Cebu was pretty great. I cautiously agreed to eating Lechon, to going up the mountain and to swimming with whale sharks. We did all of the above. I was also sorta-hoping to see the waterfall, but I think the whole exerpe

Why do I think big instead of seeing present? (0069)

What is the path to me working on big problems? (0069)

What really drives me nuts? (0091)

I think it’s when I go over the same old ground over and over again, which I’ve been doing. Also, realizing that ignorant people can sometimes bluster ahead and do well in life for it.

How to be excited to jump out of bed? (0071)

Who am I away from the noise? (0066)

How do I manage my energy? How should I? (0071)

For the most part I guess I don’t. I just do whatever is immediately optimal. After I finish transcribing these next few post-its I should go for a run.

What have I learnt? (new)

This is a perennial question.

Why do my old posts seem so full of lengthy rationalization / bullshit? (0095)

What is the set of my limitations, quirks and habits? (0072)

Big question, should break down into sub-questions.

Why did I watch Esperanza Spalding but not local jazz? (0064)

Not really a question that interests me right now. I suppose it’s interesting as a marketing question.

What’s stopping me from doing amazing stuff? (0063)

Me, obviously. My own brain. It’s all chemicals in my brain. I should elaborate.

What’s my identity/narrative now? (0096)

I feel like I’ve been questioning and scrapping a lot of things.

“It’s okay to be a rambly bastard in private” – why am I a rambly bastard at all? (0098)

This is actually a fairly straightforward one. You can’t always get to the interesting stuff by moving carefully, logically from point A to B to C. Sometimes you need to take wild leaps and grand diversions to find something interesting. Once you find the interesting thing, you might be able to clean up the train of thought that got you there. You might have meandered and circled a few more times than ultimately necessary. I say ULTIMATELY necessary, because now that you’ve found a shorter path to the interesting stuff, it becomes obvious that that’s the path you ought to take. It isn’t always obvious while you’re still circling around. Sometimes it’s completely logical to circle around multiple times. For this reason we should be a lot kinder to ourselves and others when we can’t quite get to the point, when we can’t quite put our finger on something, when we aren’t quite as precise as we’d like to be. We should encourage people (including ourselves) to try again, try harder, try better, try different. Sooner or later you’ll come upon something interesting.

Why are you not doing the work? [Jealousy? Narcissism] (0078)

Let’s try and answer this.

First if all, does the work need to be done? Do I truly believe that the work needs to be done? How do I convince or persuade myself to do the work?

When do you really learn about rape + horrors of life? Role of parenting in all of that? (0085)

My parents never really talked to me about anything, but to be honest I never really needed it. I did all the research myself

I was reading a tweet by somebody who said that if he doesn’t have a specific ritual for a given time/space/task, it won’t happen. I don’t remember very much about reading this tweet, so I’m not sure if I can do anything useful with this information now.

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