When Self-Help Isn't Very Helpful



Over the past few years, I’ve tried to experiment. I try to experiment with different perspectives and mindsets. I try to experiment with different strategies of life. Some stress the importance of absolute discipline.

No drinking. No women. No partying. No drugs. Strict budgeting. Purchasing only the bare necessities and nothing more. Others stress the importance of a carefree, casual lifestyle. Drink often. Fuck casually. Party regularly. Ingest every drug to experience any kind of high or rush. Spend frivolously and quickly. Buy on impulse and buy what makes you happy, regardless of price. I’ve tried both perspectives to an extent. Not every item and not to the absolute extreme. But I’ve tried to experiment with adopting those viewpoints and auditing how I feel. The conclusion I’ve come up with: Both work and yet both are devastating. How can this be so? I think valuable action lies in the center of two extremes. Anything in excess is no longer helpful. A diet that’s too strict is doomed to fail as nearly every human will eventually get bored and slip into bad habits. These habits will likely outweigh the good habits. The bad habits will cause you to fall back further than your starting point.


If you diet too heavily, you’ll inevitably begin eating like shit. Because you’ll get too sick of a good diet. In my opinion, this same logic applies everywhere. If you spend too much of your time looking for women, you begin to get consumed by those desires until you never accomplish anything, which can ultimately push away the women you’re interested in. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you’re so focused on your non-relationship goals that you prevent yourself from ever interacting with women, you’re forced into a position where you either never get into a relationship due to a lack of practice or you settle with any potential relationship the universe throws at you. Often, anything simply given to you by life is never what you truly want. Anything worth having tends to come with at least a little effort and sacrifice. These are minor examples to illustrate a point. Anything taken to an extreme is detrimental. While this may seem like common sense, over the past few years, I’ve found that far too many people and groups preach this extreme, all-or-nothing, approach.. If you watch entrepreneurship videos, you hear stories and speeches in which the message seems to suggest you should put your head down and grind for the next X amount of years until the job is done. I don’t think this extreme approach is healthy. Sacrificing your life to achieve a single goal just to enjoy life seems a bit roundabout. Also, time spent can never be regained so grinding for X years with no potential return could cause you to waste your life. I often find myself questioning if that pathway is truly worth it. I’m still not sure.

At times, I think the advice to become successful or to accomplish something in life does more harm than good. It can be isolating.

While some of the advocates seem to have accumulated more when it comes to resources such as wealth or assets, their lives aren’t necessarily exponentially interesting or appealing. Working 80 hours to make endless money only to never use it because of you’re strict habits or routines doesn’t seem particularly logical. Just imagine… You start a business that requires you to spend anywhere from 80-120 hours a week working. Your goal is Freedom. But Freedom from what? A job? At 80 hours a week, you’ve created a more stressful and more difficult job. And you’ve sacrificed your time, which is more valuable than money. I’m not sure if this is a valuable trade-off or not. In a longwinded sense, this article is about the idea of balance. However, it’s not necessarily promoting the discovery of balance. Rather, it’s about trying to understand what balance is, conceptually. To be honest, this is a mystery to me. If given a life or death mission, I don’t think I could simply identify balance without extensive work.








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