Category Archives: Ideas

On getting straight As

On getting straight As

It took me until my third degree to get straight As in any one semester or degree program.  Getting straight As has been my plight since I got straight Os in kindergarden.  The next closest I came was all As and B+ in 6th grade.  That damn B+ demotivated me until high school, when I tried again freshman year.  New school, new me.  New form of delusion.  I discovered a whole world of new books to read that were not listed on any syllabus whatsoever.  I learned a lot in high school, but probably only 30% of that knowledge was in the curriculum.  College was just a more adult repetition of high school.  Day dreams of being a revered honors student while I was drinking in my friend back yard the night before a final that I was sure I would ace.  3.02.  That was my undergrad GPA.  I flew outta there after 5 years vowing never to return to those dry business subjects.  My friend showed me the grad school business curriculum and I shrieked in horror at the sight of “economics 510” listed on the MBA required courses list.  It literally did sound like a hell until suddenly two years later I looked once more at the school website.  I was so exhausted by shit jobs that school once again sounded like an paradise.  School paradise is one where everyone sleeps when they are tired, except before midterms.  Work can be turned in incomplete and you are still allowed to continue attending the class.  You can even sleep in class and still be allowed to come back.  After working in an investment bank, that economics class suddenly sounded fascinating because I finally understood that language.  New degree, new me.  New level of understanding my limitations.  Turns out grad school is a lot of work crammed into a short span of time.  I graduated with a 3.35 and although I had gained a vast new view of the world, I still felt like an idiot because of all the information I encountered that I didn’t fully understand.  The next 5 years after grad school I spent in a constant state of epiphany.  I encountered more knowledge than I could remember, yet when I encountered forgotten concepts in the real world I knew what to do with it.  I just couldn’t remember it all back then during test time, but it was all in there somewhere, waiting to an anchor itself to a real world experience.

This after-learning bothered me.  If school should come in the beginning, then why do I learn so much more after all the testing is done?  My grades are in no way indicative of what I learned from getting a masters degree.  They only say how much I learned while in class.

Anyways.. I started dabbling in classes again once I plowed through all the non-fiction books for dummies at the library.  My grad school student loan made me stick to the inexpensive classes at the community college.  My attendance to on campus lectures induced anxiety which required that i stick to online only classes.  I figured out that as long as I turned in all the homework and follow assignment instructions, I got As.  The quality of the work was not being graded at this level (my art homework is evidence of this), just the fact that people made an effort to even do it got them an A.  Or perhaps, having already ascended through the graduated level, my work quality was already A level in community colleges.  AKA the bar is set low there.

How refreshing.  You mean I don’t have to care about oxford commas here?  Or group projects.  Or having to be somewhere on time awake and happy?  I can just learn what I learn without the stress of cramming in all the stuff I’m not so interested in but still get awesome grades?  How fun…

This carefree approach to picking interesting classes along with the higher salary from my graduate degree helped me to just enjoy the classes I took.  I was working full time so I started by taking once class a semester.  That was easy.  So then I took two.  Until I noticed I could squeeze in an eight week class because some 16 week classes really aren’t a lot of work every week.  Suddenly I was only four classes from an AA degree.  Because I already had a bachelor’s degree, I was just focusing on the specific subject I was interested in and wasn’t distracted by other subjects that, are interesting in themselves, but not what I was in the mood for soaking in.

So many things lead me to a situation where I finally got straight As.  So is my plight done? Mission accomplished?  Goal achieved?  no.  Getting straight As in online classes at the community college level after having already graduated at a master’s level is expected.  Is it an improvement and a positive sign that I am headed in the right direction? yes.

Figuring out what works for me has been huge in my understanding of what skills are important to work on, but it has also shown me what more I would need to do in future, more rigorous programs to keep my winning streak going.

 

On mediocre talent

On mediocre talent

Most of us have it.  There are many things we are all good at, or rather, good enough at.  I don’t know if it is better to not be interested in anything, or constantly know enough to know how much more there is to know.  Knowing is a great burden on the curious.  A catch-22.  To not know carries just as heavy of a darkness as knowing what you don’t know or can’t do.

At any given time we can answer to ourselves for our faults.  We know what more we can do to brighten our minds and condition our spirits, yet we also know what the world has thus far been unwilling to allow us to do.  These two contradictions spur us into mobile inaction, and insanity state where we cannot move forward in our personal growth and we are bold and persistent enough to not regress, so we just keep doing what we can do.

The mental overload from this obsessive think-tank “can-do” attitude is mind numbing.  Attempts to break out and actually network into some great dream, which we have meticulously envisioned thousands of times over, always end with just more free time pondering what went wrong.

We blame ourselves for being too passionate, too much ourselves, or too much of not what other people are looking for.

In reality, there are a lot of talented-enough people.  It is the bell curve.  The dream of finally being the best and earning enough money to continue being the best is most likely going to be interrupted by the alarm clock.  “Time to start another day.”  Cinderella was one of the few who was saved, and it wasn’t because of talent.

 

 

On what it all keeps coming down to

On what it all keeps coming down to

It isn’t what people say at the beginning of a conversation that is on their minds.  Wait for it.  The bread and butter will reveal itself.  I know this because I know my own mind.  It never stops living.  My life is a mere continuation of my dreams, but in my waking life I are often interrupted by simple things such as people talking to me, cars needing to be driven, work needing to be done, and bodies needing to be taken care of.  In my sleep there is no stopping the thoughts, they manifest to their fullest without remorse or guilt for any harm or discomfort they cause me.  But I don’t mind, I like to roam free.  In watching my thoughts, I am able to see through the layers by not getting stuck on one topic, so for a second, I get a glimpse of what is bothering me way underneath it all.  Under those layers are the things I wouldn’t say until I was deep into the conversation.  Under the layers are the situations that I wish never happened, the things I wish I could take back, and the things I wish would leave me alone.  I see those issues there, but seeing is all I can do.  If I pull out a topic from the roots and thus finally rid myself of its nagging existence, another topic will fill into that spot.  The process is endless because the spots are always there, grasping issues to apply its emotions to.  Seeing through the layers, clearing them off, and restructuring was just the beginning.  It is overwhelming to climb what you thought was the tallest peak only to finally see how many more mountains are ahead of you.  It is the space they layers fill that needs adjustment.  How to adjust them, I don’t yet know.  From here I cannot see how deep they go because the surface life covers them for most of my day.  When the surface life is very smooth and thick, it crates a nice trail to follow that makes me not think about the foundation built below.  Maybe this is because the deep layers really do not matter so long as life is in order.  So I guess this one comes down to this:  When life is good, don’t spoil the fun.

We all have a Cinderella complex

We all have a Cinderella complex

Men like to tell women that fairy tales don’t exist.  I believe that this happens because women are more prone to wearing their emotional needs on their sleeves.  It is easy to walk up to someone and tell them fairytales don’t exist when they have “Looking for my dream man” written on their T-shirt or Stilettos.  But we all have our fairytale dreams where we envision our savior coming down and taking away some sort of internal torment.  For many they turn to Jesus and say that the savior has already come, we have just to learn from his teachings.  Others hope for the future to bring us what we desire.

We sit and dwell and work out all the details so that we don’t miss the opportunity once he presents himself.  In every fairy tale there is a discomfort that drives us to want relief.  Prolonged exposure to the discomfort makes us externally accepting of the situation but internally scheming for our way out.  Unfortunately for us women, men are always a disappointing solution because they don’t honestly provide relief, they provide a distraction that in itself causes more problems.

 

 

Labeling the Depths of Normalacy

Labeling the Depths of Normalacy

Amazingly, people are rather normal, but for some reason everyone wants a label for their particular segment of normal.  It seems as if everyone likes their freedoms and so called individuality but are, at the same time, hesitant to accept their own differences as normal.

I’ve noticed many people embracing when they are informed that their difficulty in social situations is related to some sort of disorder.  People buy into it because it solves a huge problem in their lives as well as gives them an excuse for acting against social norms.

You can tell when a label is really just another term for ‘normal’ when it hits pop culture and all of a sudden many many people have a disorder of some kind.  Genius marketing.  They are selling a sense of togetherness through a concept that can neither be seen nor touched.  The payment for these labels fuels parts of industries like pharmaceuticals, therapy, and media.  The trick isn’t to find a product that solves problems, it is to sell ideas that give people peace of mind in knowing that when they speak of their life issues people will believe them and not write them off as someone who is still in the default label of ‘crazy’.

Day Dream Derivatives

Day Dream Derivatives

There is a certain pattern to daydreams that I’ve taken note of lately. As with anything that has been occurring for ages, but only recently has become worth noting, this pattern has become a problem (without the negative connotation). “Problem” meaning simply something to solve or get something extra out of because the pieces just don’t fully make sense with my current mode of thinking.

The pattern is as such: a outside occurrence (trigger) gets me thinking of some story to keep my mind occupied or distracted. The topic is of no consequence, the only criteria is that it fills me with some sort elation and intense need to play out the entire story over and over until all the loose ends are figured out and I have one linear daydream. The process is the best part, I get to feel all sorts of emotions which my everyday life doesn’t have (perhaps I don’t actually want in my everyday life) and I’m the one creating the story so I can imagine all sorts of possibilities that are off limits to the put-downs of outsiders. Of course when I encounter a situation in these daydreams that I dislike, I can still play out the drama, but then later decide that I wouldn’t want that to happen so I can go back to any part in the story and recreate the ending from there. I imagine I could write real stories this way… I would just have to record my voice because typing takes too long. Who knows, people may like it, the only problem being that I use real people as characters in these day dreams so I’d have to disguise them somehow. (I know, I’m not supposed to mediate on real people, I know I know, bad habit, because it distorts my perception of who they really are…but that is for another note)

Anyways, so that is the daydream pattern. Probably not too dissimilar to your own. But the “problem” comes along when I realize that my end product daydream is actually obtainable for me and I would really like it to happen. There is one piece that lets me know whether or not the idea is actually capable of happening: The beginning. Often these daydreams start as some sort of life altering event occurring that takes me into a whole new world or stage of life. Like, Prince Charming shows up and I suddenly don’t mind giving up my single freedoms… that sort of “outta the blue, completely change of behavior and outlook on things” type of cheesiness. (Day dreams are full of cheesy scenarios, don’t try to ly, I know yours are too, I blame Disney).

The thing with “the beginning” is that it cannot be planned as such. One cannot plan sending in a resume in response to a simple Craigslist job ad and suddenly having the job of your dreams, because things like that tend not to happen on cue. But once you do have the job of your dreams you can work with it, but there is no viable way of getting it suddenly or with luck.

What I am saying is that those sudden things you would need to happen in your life to get you to the next phase or step cannot be planned for because who knows if and how they could actually start to happen. But sometimes you do actually have a “beginning” that is reasonable and involves simple action on your part to get the ball rolling. Those are the viable daydreams to focus on, because you can actually make those happen, or at least take steps to see if you were right in believing that you would actually enjoy it if it did happen.

So “the beginning” is actually the last step in the dreaming process for me. I’ve got to play out the normal, nitty-gritty aspects of an idea to see if I like the idea before I can even think of where to begin, otherwise I would keep starting a whole bunch of things only to find out later that I don’t actually like doing it. And I’ve done a lot of pretty awesome things in life so far, so I don’t doubt that this method didn’t contribute to all that. There are probably other ways of getting me into action, but so far, my mental forecasts have done the job well enough.

In Love with the Idea of Someone

In Love with the Idea of Someone

I think my habit of falling in love with the idea of things isn’t helping. Well it does help because it allows me to construct an ideal picture to guide my path, but the planning and discovering of what elements would be perfect to put in my situation distracts me from other things. Gosh, I’m trying to say that I shouldn’t fall so in love with ideas, yet all my support to that statement points to “I love falling in love with ideas.” sigh… I just love it so I’m just going to keep doing it. There is no rational way of saying that I shouldn’t dream so much, because dreaming has in fact proven to be the catalyst of all my travels.

But it poses a problem when I am not sure whether I love someone, or just love the thought of them. It is a tricky way of thinking about people. Because whatever data I have gathered is filtered through my brain and my dreams are end products that I use to see if I’m on the right track. If too much negativity manifests in my mind at the thought of you, then I take that as a sign that this isn’t working. If I get a positive reading, then we’re good.

Data selection is key here because when I have a good reading and I’m really enjoying the thoughts someone provokes, I tend not to want to hear anything that will spoil my inner fun. So if I think I need to gather more fuel for my fire (i.e. information), I will still chose to find positive things to outweigh any negatives I happen to run across in the process.

Love is strange in that it has a built in component that makes me refuse to find reason not to love someone.

Anyways, I do not see that it is a bad thing if someone is in love with the idea of a person; however, if that is the only thing about them that makes you love them, then you’re not really in love with them at all. You’re in love with the parts of them you can create. So this Pygmalion effect essentially is misdiagnosed as love, probably because of the euphoria and sense of completeness that is only attainable in my mind…

On Exploration

On Exploration

Once in a while I find it difficult to explore new ideas because I am not always aware of exactly where I got the idea to explore something new in the first place. Somethings just jump out at me and say “Hey! I fit into your paradigm perfectly! Study me.” Others just manifest slowly to the point that I am not aware of how surrounded by their essence I actually am until I become aware of it enough to seek out additional details.

It is in that seeking that I find it difficult to continue at times. Because once something of interest is on my radar I see it so often and suddenly realize that the idea was in no way unique… it has been starring me in the face for quite sometime… i just for some reason had internalized it to the point of being able to recreate it, all without knowing what I had done until I have finished one piece and go in search of further inspiration, only to find perfect substitutes already in existence.

Taste

Taste

I’m wondering if in fact people would be happier if they weren’t so preoccupied with the way food and drinks taste. There is a quality limit to this, meaning that if an undesirable taste is a result of spoilage, then by all means don’t keep trying it to find something good about it.

I’m also referring to taste just like in choosing clothing, but instead food. I think it is ridiculous to physiologically identify with a food product because its brand. Though I can see the benefits to the self by defining oneself but exterior parameters which outside can easily understand. We are essentially walking through our day accepting and rejecting items in the world and projecting them onto ourselves, being encouraged or discouraged for trying certain aspects on for size.

Same thing goes for religion too. Is it more fitting to worship a male or a female, human or animal, mystical unknown force or a concrete object? It is just categorizing yourself into a comfortable mold to socially fit into and at the same time provide an imaginary helper who understands you better than you understand yourself. Propagation of simple survival techniques such as this works well to distract the conscious mind enough with the outer world so that fear won’t work counter productive to its survival purpose.

It is hard not to live for external identification of who you are by what you choose to surround yourself with all these impression being thrown at us constantly. For me the fine line is drawn between the capable and the not so capable. Being capable to me, means choosing wisely (maybe a bit too cautiously) what influences you allow in and also what influences you seek out.

Also the primary method you gain your information from is another display of taste. After receiving some sort of stimulus from the external world to spark me to action, I prefer to read enough to realize what I cannot figure out on my own. Once I realize that there is more information out there somewhere (which I cannot seem to process or maybe do not know where to look) then I ask, not necessarily a good source, but maybe just a good friend who (through conversation) can help me put things in better prospective before I decide whether or not I have already obtained sufficient information to solve my personal puzzle.

Restructuring Thought Programs

Restructuring Thought Programs

Being somewhat of an immensely yoga influenced person I find that it does help once in a while to step back from life and view it from a detached position so as better to see what is going on, especially in my mind. On a necessary occasion I like to try and think about nothing and not let any thought grab my attention no matter how badly I want to take hold of the reins and ride the thought into the sunset. By doing this I can see from the sidelines how the content of my life affects me.

I’ve known forever that I am a daydreamer, I love daydreaming. Daydreams are different to other thoughts in life because they are purely for entertainment purposes and ways to fill time while in meetings, brushing my teeth, walking around campus, trying to fall asleep at night, etc. Those are great but I have (in the somewhat recent past) developed a shift in my thinking. I’ve gotten in the habit of daydreaming on my life, my real life. I don’t make up pure fictional stories like I used to, I simply use the outside world as fuel for my everyday inner world, which I probably have always done, but I used to use more imaginary figures and places… (I spent 10 years with my nose in scifi/fantasy books… what do you expect?) Anyways, so I feel like I am drowning in my over active imagination, which consists of a multitude of events in my life that have never happened to me or probably won’t.

So taking a few-minute break from my thoughts was a great idea because it allowed thoughts to pop up on my mind screen and after instantly acknowledging them out of habit, I saved them for later, all before I grabbed hold of them which prevented them from fully being played out and reacted to. So you see… these thoughts that have often taken over my time, have only done so because I have allowed them to.

It isn’t easy fighting a mental program once the program has established itself and is propagating how it fulfills my needs, but sometimes enough is just enough. I have to stamp out useless thought programs fully to keep my mind strong.