Don’t Grab Life By the Horns!/?

So I thought about structure and how there as a lot of things I could do that didn’t require thought meaning I could continue thinking while doing them and so I shouldn’t require so much motivation to do them. Even things like sleep, especially things like laundry, and even things like routine data entry aspects of blog posts etc.

Then I thought, well why do I need all this time to think and is this what my life is really going to be based on? Lately I have been realizing time has been passing while I continue thinking and planning. It feels in a way like I’m not enjoying my life. So I realized, maybe I don’t need to be making so many plans. Maybe I need to spend more time in the moment, and when I do make plans, maybe I should plan out when I will make those plans, so that for the most part I’m not doing this.

It seems like maybe I was using plans and possible goals, as almost like a drug. Fantasizing about who I could become, what I could do. I mean, having goals isn’t really wrong, it’s just that depending on them for happiness, especially when the goals is to find the best possible goal, it seems like there is a risk that I will end up never reaching that goal.

If this happens, then will mostly have wasted my time. However, my goal was also to live the best possible life, which is more achievable I think because it doesn’t depend on outside factors which are always changing. It’s just about I guess reacting to life, and just being. I think a lot of people are urging society to figure out what they want to do. To become fulfilled, to make a difference, to achieve. They stress these things that I guess you could sum up as “grab life by the horns!”.

Well I guess, if life for you is a bull, an animal you need to try your best to control.
However, there is a contrary idea, that what you can control is yourself. That self control, self mastery, leads to freedom. I feel like the whole pua/seduction mindset runs in paralell with the grab life by the horns mentality. Trying to control your environment and control other people.

I am starting to think these things will not be fulfilling for me. Now, this isn’t to say that I wont have goals. What I’m saying is that I will have goals, as a reaction to a want/need. I wont have goals as an end to themselves. I wont have goals just so I can say I’ve achieved goals. I wont have goals just so I can say I’m grabbing life by the horns. Also I feel like trying to find the best path, is like closing oneself off
to possibilities.

Oh, another thing. The way I though about it on the bus was that I had been
spending my life waiting for life to happen. Waiting to figure out how to live so I can do it, waiting until I can meet a nice girl lol, etc. I realized that there is so much of live I’ve been just not experiencing because I’ve been so busy waiting. I guess it would make sense if there was really something I needed to wait for. Well I guess it does make sense because I was waiting for the realization that I didn’t need to
keep waiting, that I was waiting for the arrival of something which is already there.

Although I guess I did expand my mind a lot these last few years, and if I hadn’t I don’t think I would be as happy with not waiting anymore. Anyways, so what I want to do now, is well, not so much stop thinking and live only in the present, but I guess just let go of some idealized future. My hypothesis is that once I stop trying to reach some ideal, I will be able to enjoy what is already infront of me, including the ideas as they come to me, but also just whatever life is.

Basically, not relying on goals for your happiness, allows you to be open to the wonder of the universe, and then that will make you happy. I mean, maybe this wont be the case for all mbti types, or even all types of entp, but for me this seems right. I feel like the time when I was happiest as a kid, although that happiness
was extremely vulnerable, was when I was just open to the universe. Another thing I realized though on the other end of the spectrum is that I don’t really need to be around the most flamboyantly interesting aspects of life to have enjoyment. Infact, there seems to be a point where too much “interesting things”(internet?), but that don’t need to any action, is almost a waste.

I so guess I want goals based on wonder, not on achievement…if that makes sense. Chinese for example, is based on wonder. I think my wonder is very people focused actually…I feel like the thing that holds me back from this wonder, is wanting to utilize it. The best way I guess to deal with this, might be to just only do things that are nessesary, and let the rest be based on when I’m inspired and when not inspired, I can simply be in the moment(which may bring inspiration but if not will atleast feel good).

Also for me, as a wonderer, I feel like my “productivity” is often in my ability to share what I’ve found with others. Otherwise, as has been the case with a lot of my thoughts, they are just in my head. I need to find other reasons to live than just goals. Goals end. See, if I can give up the idea of trying to become something, then  that whole pride thing will go with it, and then there will be nothing holding me back from being as people oriented as I want. See because even if people would say, “why don’t you have your own thing” I can say,
“I don’t need or want my own thing” or”you are my thing, get used to it”.

Si and imaginative memory

I checked out some deviant art pics, and saw some really cool fractal art and I tried imagining I was in the picture and realized, like when I was a kid, I can still do this to some degree. The result is an actual feeling, a feeling of being present physically, in that space.

I thought about how fractals could be more Ne depending on how novel the specific fractal was, but maybe the feelings of color, space, structure etc could be Si?

Well, I definitely want to pay more attention to both my imagination, and the imaginations of others. So the periods of relief from boredom maybe should have lot’s of music and art as their focus. (if I do a hermetic process of periods of boredom and then fun)

Being able to go into a picture like that, and enjoy it so deeply. It makes me wonder if maybe that is what people should be learning how to do more of, instead of trying to create the physical products. I just wonder, what would the results be, of focused imagining.

Another thing is that power of psychadelics as I hear it described seems to remind of of things that improve Si. Hallucinations, emotional centering, reduced depression that last well after the drug is taken, for example.

Also in terms of building an ISTJ like memory power, if even possible, being able to put oneself into the scene of a mnemonic story or image, meaning see the scene as if you are there, is probably the thing needed.

This allows a few things I can think of.

1. It means you get to immerse in something that is (hopefully) exciting and intriguing so that you are gaining experiences that you could not have without this imagining. Ne

2. Since you are sensing the scene, from inside your mind, I guess this means you are using Si? So is this kind of like a Ne-Si connection. Also is it like a substitute for dreaming.

aesthetics and diagrams, obfuscation and fun

Based on the half dream I’ve been having for the last
few hours where I’ve somehow been mulling over the idea of
creating art out of a learning experience.

I remember one part where I had created a website? or maybe
more of a digital art collage? but with parts you could
click on to make things happen.

It was very intersting and beautiful, and seemed to be filled
with images that were symbolic of concepts and were connected
together. SO it was kind of like an artistic diagram.

I think it was a lot of electronic concepts actually…but maybe
other things as well.

Also my music “what age means” was playing along with it.
I either was displaying it to others, or imagining the time when
I might do so, and it was inspiring.

Now that I’m awake I find a paralell to the way I’v been trying to
learn hanzi which is that I’ve been making diagrams that show the
connections, and I plan to use a ruler to make even neater looking
diagrams as they actually seem like the most beautiful thing in
my journal.

Also the diagram was almost like a game, or a movie, I remember,
like it was fun and an experience. That would be good for
a method of study. To create something I enjoy re-experiencing.

I enjoy reexperiencing my music, that’s for sure.

This is interesting though, because it’s like I got a glimse
of a possibility, one that could be revolutionary in learning and
art and I guess in my life, and now I can try working backwards to figure
out how to get there.

So, if I want to create an experience I’d enjoy again, well what seemed
to really help in the dream was that the music went directly with the
images…so I guess it was animation…so like, like amvs??!!

That could be awesome, because I enjoy watching my amvs repeatedly!

Poetry was like…one level above simple diagrams, in the artistic sense,
but I struggled to make them fun to recite as they seemed devoid of
artistic expression.

It could be that my artistic expression is more logical and so creating
stories and poetry that don’t express logical things, things worth
understanding, it ends up being not relevant or meaningful to me.

So maybe, like the hanzi diagrams, it would be better to focus on
making the method of diagraming, more beautiful, instead of
obfuscating the knowledge with art. So, using art in a way that
enhances understanding instead of the opposite.

So for example, the pie chart, could be seen as a form of aesthetics
simply because it’s a way of symbolizing something visually that is
more EFFICIENT(as efficiency and beauty are related).

rhyme works, when linking relevant facts together. However, rhyme that
links facts together but through adding in irrelevant untasteful information
, might not be as beautiful.

animation works well because it is a way of visualizing something that
otherwise wouldn’t be visualized. Along with sound effects, music,
and art in the drawing of symbolic images, it because very aestehtically
pleasing, some times even creating a whole other world around the
concept when the animation, sound fx ect come together well enough. Then
there is no need for extra irrelevant information.

This can be seen as an ENTP goal actually. By that I mean, it could
be a thing that all entps are built to do somehow, or that is on of their
highest forms of self expression. For example, Steve jobs revolution
of Apple, and pixar, was at is base, about this. Adding aesthetics
to the expression of information.

Leonardo Da Vinci was also about this, or at least his drawings
of inventions in his notebooks etc, and the way he painted, it was
conveying information in the most effective way possible.

It could be why I like electronics more than programming…because I
get to see more diagrams in electronics. Even the actually creation
of deviced, involves wiring connections together between different

Maybe if programming could be done in this wayWow, with code blocks
connected together. Even parts of algorithms should be visualized
as components. Actually, even math itself could be visualized as
being made up of components. Even philosophy could be.

Wow, I learned so much by going to bed early…enough that I woke up
3 hours in to write all this.

When I look at the diagrams in my hanzi journal, they just seem like
…like expensive. Like the most expensive thing in my journal, the
most significant. (also it’s the only thing written in pen lol, but

So maybe, to me, I enjoy the expression of connectedness, or at
least I am more sensitive to it, than most people, and so it is
art, and beautiful, to me.

So maybe I can enjoy learning anything, if I can just express the
connections between things within and between feilds in the most
effiecient way possible.

This is a new form of communication so I wonder if it could
become it’s own language somehow lol.

As I searched for the word “obfuscated” I came across the
international obfuscated c contest. It’s so cool. It actually
would make programming fun…For one thing it is actually comical
in a way that is smart so it’s like…a new and maybe improve form of
comedy. Second it’s so creative and it’s a creativity for the
purpose of entertainment, and possible even just fulfillment in
ones ability to create something so crazy.

It’s weird that so many programmers seem so passionate about just
creating things that are functional. I feel like obfuscated c is
way more fun and maybe even a better learning experience, beyond when
you want/need to know something. I’ve searched programming poetry
before and while the philosophy was cool sometimes, the actually idea
of doing it was not. It seemed like it would just take energy away from
me. It didn’t present a specific challenge where I would gain energy and be
inspired by, but instead it seemed draining as poetry without reason
often seems draining.

Obfuscated c on the other hand is like, purposely doing meaninglessly complex
stuff. It is actually like a skill that you can develope and it’s
actually comical and fun.

It’s almost like an attack on the standardization of programming,
and for me just the irrelevance of programming to my life.

I mean, the dullest thing I’ve learned so far is making data based
for websites. However, if I gave myself permission to create the
most messed up databases, maybe I could actually enjoy
the learning process at least.

Really what obfuscated c seems to do is it opens my mind to creative
possibilities without limiting it to things that are needed by the
real world or following real world standards of efficiency. Basically
it brings the imagination back into the equation where otherwise I
would always be depending on someone else’s idea of how things should
be done. Now the whole goal of programming is to do things the way
they “shouldn’t be done” which means I can use every possible peice
of information and weave it all into doing something the wrong way,
because the wrong way, becomes right.

Why is the wrong way fun? So I think it’s because it’s not limited to
someone else’s methodology for one, but for two it’s because it depends
on you ….

just wow…I mean I wish I had thought of that earlier, like, instead
of learning from books, I could just do things the wrong way on purpose,
trying to see how wrong I could do it.

So theses are two ways of learning. One is using art to communicate
ideas more efficiently and it will be beautiful. The other is to
use ideas in the least efficient way on purpose, and using
creativity to make them the most ineffiecent, and this will
be comical.

Actually, obfuscated c reminds me of how I play mtg. I try to pick really
weird cards or combinations and make them work. So when I do this,
the game becomes about my deck making ability as much as my play
ability. I don’t do it in a funny way nessesarily, but more like a way
to challenge myself. I guess it helps that mtg is social, but still I
wonder if I could do the same with obfuscated c. Instead of going for
comical, go for something different that expresses me. Like how I go
for making music that is more obscure sounding. I can express myself in
code by my choices of what tools to use for a specific job, instead of
going for the tools recommended. In this way I also would be making
mini challenges like, “do this part without using printf” etc.

I wonder though, because this seems more social than more art related

Well also I guess it’s just that, duh the right or best way of doing things
is often not that hard to figure out. It’s not as challenging, at least
for my style which looks for more possibilities, as trying to make
somethign more “interesting”.

So really it’s not about it being “detail oriented”, it’s about
it being to common knowledge…I like exploring what is possible,
and the way to do that in programming, at least until I reach some
master level where I just know how things should be done better than
anyone else, unless/until that happens it’s best to flex my creative
muscles through obfuscation and doing things in different ways
regardless of what is more efficietn, but just focusing on what could
actually be possible outside of how things are usually done.

So for things based on logic such as strategy games, programming etc,
artistic expression seems to come through individual choice in how to
do things. So it’s best to give ourselves permission to do things
in whatever new and creative ways we want in order to express ourselves.

In music and other fine arts this plays a role, but also individual
tastes like musical tastes, play a big role.

In things like physical labour, artistic expression seems to come
, at least for me, from a combination of pure physical intensity, and
creative efficiency of momevement.

Now, artistic expression in the actual learning process, that seems to
be more about just the way the information is laid out.

Actually the idea of obfuscation can be applied in many interesting
ways it’s so cool that I just found this through googling and that
google autocorrecting to the “ed” ending helped me get there.

I could make a store, that is made of CSRs who standing in formations
to create iles etc.

I could also make a store where everything is just drawn in the snow
but have security gaurds protecting it, being really serious.

JUst taking a goal, and finding very weird ways of accomplishing that
goal. That is one power I have that most people don’t and that people
will probbaly find very useful or at least entertaining.

If I want adventure, that is one really good way of getting it.
I feel like that is the kind of thing I would do in video games
but should also do in real life more. STYLE! Cool style!

Also, to obfuscate can mean, to make dark/(er). So in a way it is
gothic. It is venturing out into the unknown, the unbeaten path,
the mysterious, and expressing that, maybe in a way becoming that.

I have two things now to think about. Perposeful obfuscation,
and aesthetics diagraming. Both are interesting and seem fun.
One seems more fun in the moment though and more connected to
doing. Although, AH, I could use obfuscation in my creation of
diagrams maybe…but not in a way that adds irrelevant info, just
that that form of organiziation could be more obfuscated.

Meaning you might have to work harder to extract the meaning,
but it would be interestin to create, and could lead to
actually innovation in creatin diagrams. IUnno.

Brings me to think of entps as dancing with death but maybe more
accuratly, with darkness, as we search the darkness, the unknown, through
ourselves, for new possibilities, where as most people are content to
just use what is known and there already.

Work = Fulfillment (Work, not success, not specific goals, just working)

I’m going to throw out some ideas here:

1. Working and living can be seen as synonymous when looked at in a kind of abstract and primitive way. I mean, we live because our cells “work”. Everything we do is based on every cell in our body “working”. So you could say the more we work, the more alive we are. More to this in number 3.

2. In many instances, we choose not to work hard because we assume it will feel worse than not working at that time. We are often mistaken about this. For example, if you don’t feel up to a jog or walk but do it anyways you will often feel better, happier, as the jog progresses (assuming you jog for a limited time like 30min). So we can often assume that even though we don’t feel up to something such as work, there is the possibility that we could enjoy it, if we just did it, or even did it with the goal of enjoying it(working out harder because you know the chemicals will flow stronger and you will feel happier faster).

3. We often find fulfillment in playing games, but when it comes to a career, we struggle to find one that will be fulfilling. Why is it that games that have no real world impact can be more fulfilling that careers, work that is based in the real world. It stands to reason that what is really fun and fulfilling in then is being active, feeling challenged, working, etc, more than what that work is, and what impact it has on society. However if we think it’s not enough to just work on SOMETHING, then we wont think we should even be doing it. Doing things we think we shouldn’t be doing, that we think of as wastes of time, would result in the opposite of a rewarding experience. This advice might not be for everyone as some personality types learn early on what they want to do. However, other types seem infinite and ever expanding possible list of options. Here I wonder, is it the things you do that will make YOU feel happy, or that you are doing?

4. Sometimes we divide our focus between goals that are in conflict with each other. There are many kinds of conflict but a basic form of conflict is of reward circuitry. If you achieve a goal that rewards you extensively without being fulfilling, such as porn/drugs, etc, then you will not have any reward chemicals left for things that will be fulfilling. Depending on who you are of course. If you remove all the “distractions” that compete for you reward resources, would you be left with only the desire to work?

5. Many people who are not able to do as much work, don’t have the motivation, etc, wish they did. They wish they could do more and are trying to figure out how. We(generalizing) have an intrinsic motivation for growth, and productivity. Once this motivation wins over the other distractions, we should find ourselves un-able to live any other way.

6. We need to either believe in ourselves, and/or be willing to experiment, to see what we can accomplish and even enjoy if we put our minds to it.

7.  You may notice you have self-talk about how certain work is not enjoyable and fulfilling, which you wouldn’t have even categorized as self-talk because it seems like just logic. If you can remove this, and replace it with commands to yourself to work, you will work.

8. Another way to look at this is to observe that when you seek out instant gratification through drugs, and other stimulation, your brain get’s worse at making you happy. However, when you seek out challenges like exercise and intellectual challenges, things where you have to push yourself, push against resistance, against the initial negative emotions, your brain get’s better at making you happy. At least, if you are taking up those challenges willingly.

9. So with all these things in mind it stands to reason that the best way in reach a state of being where you feel fulfilled, would be to just start working on something. Anything. Well, anything that is work, that is hard, and that will result in completion, production, achievement. Like like how we work out using weights, not building houses, we should set out to live  a fulfilling life by doing challenging work, not work that is necessarily the most “meaningful” as that can always change. I’m not saying don’t do meaningful things, of course you should. I’m saying don’t depend on them to shape your productive lifestyle, but use productive work as a form of training for growth, independent of what might be meaningful. So, do work, and maintain focus on doing work, with the belief or hypothesis that doing this will lead to enjoyment of this and therefore fulfillment.

Productivity: Complete it in a Day”

Summary: For certain long term goals, especially learning, create relevant projects that you can complete in a day, and then every day create and complete one of those, eventually forming a collection of completed projects that are the equivalent of that goal, in scope.

Link: This concept comes partly from :

I just notice that as a motivational tool it applies to any job. It’s that as long as you start and complete something (I say the same day but just sooner rather than later) you will reap the reward of having something you have produced. By this I mean, you will have done something REWARDING.

For instance, think about video games with levels short enough they can be COMPLETED in one sitting. Enemies are defeated (completion). Items are discovered and COLLECTED. ( Being able to collect something seems to be motivated as well. I wonder if this is because as you collect more things you gain more reference to which of those things are better/worse. Is there a relationship also between collecting and personal history maintenance or something?

When you lift weights, you COMPLETE sets. I could go on about all the things where you achieve a form of completion within the same day and how you remain motivated to start of the same task again. As well, I could also probably find many things where if you don’t complete said task, it has a negative psychological if not psychosomatic effect. Failing reps in a set of weight lifting for example. Task based work is far more addictive than long haul things or leaving things incomplete.

I notice my music making productivity has increased a lot ever since I decided that when I make a song I’ll just do it the same day, same sitting, etc, unless inspired otherwise. Also that I’ll see it as exploration rather than trying to make it as good as possible, although I’m exploring what sounds good of course.

I wonder if I could apply this concept to all the goals I have. Just try to make and complete a thing related to my goal. I mean, when it comes to goals that would take a long time to complete otherwise. I instead set up a new standard of achievement for myself by first choosing completable versions of that longer goal. This is important, it’s not mini-goals. It’s full on finished products. Just that I stick with products that can be achievable in one sitting, or two, and that are versions or related enough to the long term goal that eventually they could make up that longer term goal.

For example, instead of a game with 100 different elements. Create 100 games, each with one of those elements. I mean, you can do more if you actually want to. I also imagine it being helpful and more fun, to slowly increase the difficulty of the tasks, but not like, first task takes 1 day, second task takes 10 days. I mean, 1 min increase/day on average, or just being able to do more in the same amount of time because you know more. Keeping it really easy.

Another way to do this is just set a minimum of completing a daily task in one of the areas you want to focus on, and let the other areas be bonus. This way if you really feel like working longer on the first task like if you get a jolt of creativity or are just bored and want to keep things interesting, and you go overtime it’s cool. Iunno about this yet tho.

My inspiration for this is seeing some really productive people out there and wanting that for myself, but also wanting it to be fun or at least be able to keep my motivation. Doing things in this task based way I think has the potential even to become a form of adventure. I mean, I would be doing something different every day for sure, and I would be finishing everything I start. I would be able to look back on what I’ve done before. Watch the collection grow.

If I were to do this, it would help to not allow myself time to do as much random entertainment, which is fine because I guess I’ve already been not doing random entertainment. I have a concept of how good it would feel to be doing awesome things all the time, and I want that, so I guess that is helping me reach this point of figuring out how to make that lifestyle work for me. I would also incorporate school into this.

Keep a beautiful journal in Chinese (Power of Aesthetics)

I stumbled on some motivational tips in a scientific america magazin
which initiated some pondering, which resulted in some ideas about what
I might enjoy doing in Chinese.

namingly, writing in a cool ass journal.
This journal has to be cool, and look cool, etc, as this will be part
of what motivates me to write in it.

Also the fact that I be able to show anyone who reads it, “this is the chinese
I know” etc, would mean everytime I write I get an instant sense of
being more chinese and that I am making visual accomplishments.

Also, the more I write in it, the more valuable it will become, especially
if I write observations about my day, or notes about myself.

I just hope I can learn enough through using it, instead of an Srs.
I mean, I hope I will memorize enough.

I plan is to make it like a TAG style Journal where I have a set of questions
that I answer every day for a week or so, then next week I will have another

For each day I write, I’ll first write out the question, before answering
it so I at least get practise writing and comprehending the questions
I write out.

Also this structure means less burden on me to come up with things to
say on the spot when I write. It makes it more of a task based thing.

Although I can still write stuff afterwards for fun.

I also like this because it allows the artistin me to come out in a more
passive but stll rewarding way.

Just like when someone was asked how to turn toasting bread into a game
someone would want to play. The first thought was, make the toast “cute”.
Aesthetics seem to actually be that important.

I mean yeah you can see businesses where people stay on websites or
in stores or whatever based on beautiful or user freindly it is.
What I’m discussing here though is like, can you make doing homework,
more fun than going to a party, through proper use of aesthetics?
I hope to prove this to be the case.

Aesthetics seem to have the ability to add meaning to something.
Would samurias be as romantizised if their swords and armor didn’t look
beautiful. Probably not. Aesthetics might actually hold a huge amount
of power that we can use to our advantage by weighting our tasks
with aesthetic appeal so that the most important task, is made to be
the most beautiful,(and I guess most personalized (like adding your
own touches to the stuff you beautify)) so that they draw you in the

I mean, Chinese drew me in because of it’s beauty.

That is also another thing. It would suck if liking chinese so much, I
didn’t allow myself to write in it and own my writing.

Also those writing prompts could even evolve into a game that
I could play with others. Like, everyone getting the same question
and having to answer in just a few words, but getting lot’s of comprehension
from the reading, etc.

Also, notebooks have way more context than srs cards, and after a few
reviews you will have the connections of a whole page for each page of study
instead of just one card.

Also, I will be able to draw on previous pages in future writings allowing
me to use more and better language the more I keep at it.

I went for a jog today, and after work as well, I was feeling pretty motivated.
I’m just waiting till tmr, though because I want to by nice notebook, probably
from coles/indigo

“following a formula get’s old fast”.
How about I decide each day what I’m going to write but I need to
write a minimum of 50 words plus reading a number of previous pages
chinese first just to see how much has stuck. Once it’s allo stuck I
leave it for a random review which I could even schedule as a day where
I pick  few pages at random to review.

How to focus on the journey & Can you make it enjoyable?

Heres another idea,

I just thought of, when I realized, even though I
can learn Hanzi way faster, I still feel like rushing,
just getting it over with, and that that attitude is like
almost garanteed fail.

Even with something like exercise. If I were to say,
“ah, I just need to be 180lb and I’ll be set for life”
I would burn out, because then I’ve set like a goal,
an end point that I need to reach, as opposed to just
working out.

“just working out” for me, is more like, seeing every workout
as a goal in itself, where as “trying to reach 180” means
every workout inbetween counts as almost nilch/ziltch/whatever lol.

When I forget about the long term and just crank the music,
and get the pump for that day, and be strong and awesome
in the moment’s I am working out, and focus on those
things, it becomes enjoyable.

So I think it’s important, maybe especially to really focus on
feeling awesome in the moment for my performance.

Now kind of related might be that I enjoy making music more
when I’m just out for a walk and doing it to entertain myself.
In this case maybe I’m more focused on an artistic awesomeness
Still though, I mean it maybe partly about the enjoyment.

So iunno, I wouldn’t call it mindfulness exactly, but it is
about being present, making the most of the situation, basically
turning it into an expression of me(well that’s how I’ve been making
the most of things with working out etc.

I turn it into an expression of awesomeness. I play music, I make it
dramatic, almost role play. It’s also creative, even though in a
more subtle way. I pose in the mirror, I lift to the music, make
facial expressions, focus on technique(which is probably diff for everyone).
All these things enhance my experience at the gym and at this point they
come naturally I guess.

With singing etc, same kinda deal, imagining I’m on stage,
expressing myself. Being creative with how I sing, with technique,
facial expression, timber, pronounciation, etc.

My hypothesis as I sit here and reflect on all this, is that all those
little things I do, give me little boosts of dopamine.
The time between chosing to be creative in some small way, and
acting on that impulse and thus being rewarded, is so small that
the dopamine is almost instantaneous.

Let’s compare that to if I were just focusing on reaching some
far off goal. Every day that I measure myself and see that I
have not reached that goal, could be seen as a small failure in
which case dopamine would decrease instead of increasing.

That is no fun.

So what I need to do when I pick up a goal, is to not be
focused on the long term at all. I mean, I can set the goal
so I can work effectivly towards it, allocating the right amount
of time each day. Beyond that though, I need to let go of it,
and focus on enjoying every moment of the process.

How do I do that.
It seems for me it will come down to creative expression through
whatever work I am doing. It needs to be creative for the sake
of enjoyment though. Like, I have decided to do this thing, now
I want to turn it into something I love.

So part of that is I need to have decided, otherwise if something
better comes along and distracts me it wont matter if I was
enjoying myself. So I need to first decide that this thing is
important enough to me, which for Chinese it is.

Then, how do I make it fun?
For learning the hanzi, I need to write them out, so the best
I can do there, is write them in a beautiful way. The strokes,
the positioning, sentences, altering lines to make it even more
cool looking. There is a lot to play with there.
Then after creating these things, and I need to make it as
perfect as I can along with it being creative, so that I wont feel
like it’s creative but sloppy. I want it to be displayable. Then I
want to actually have them on the wall of my room, so I get constant
feedback about the beautiful work I’ve created. Constant reward
to add to my motivation.

For talking, for one I can watch funny things. For another though,
I mean, when I’m bored (yes this again), when I’m bored and I just have
chinese flowing through my head, sometimes I’ll just repeat what I can
remember, and really pronounce it as beautifully, or creatively, as I
can. It feels good to do this. Well, even to be more precise, it could
be that I like repeating things that just sound good to me for whatever
reason, iunno. I could start there, at least on rough days lol, but
in general I feel like as long as I can be creative enough I can turn things
beautiful for my entertainment.

So I’ll try to get into these things and just make them into habits.

even with doing the dishes at work, I’ve created techniques and I do
them in ways that make them beautiful. Like, iunno, like a robot, or something.
Just really, I guess efficient and maybe graceful.

This is opening up a whole new way of seeing achievement.

Also another important thing to realize is that, well at least for me,
as I get older and a lot of my childhood memories are fading or so it
seems, I want to creat new memories. I see the importance of experiencing life
in a way that is memorable, instead of always seeking something else.

So it’s good that through this way of seeking goals by just enjoying them,
I can kind of do that because I’ll be more focused on making the things
enjoyable and so I’ll be more focused on the experiences. Way more than if
I could somehow get a high paying job that was meh.

So an even higher level of thinking that I’ve afforded myself here is that
I can see that this is my expereince of life that I am taking control
of by actively seeking to experience my activity, instead of just finding the
fastest way to the goal. The goals are really not that important. Final
Fantasy, is not about the goal, it is about the journey, and making it as
exciting as possible, so that you hope it never ends.

Language Learning: Muscle Memory and Passive Auditory Imprinting

“Passive Auditory Imprinting” Is really just a name I’m giving for the idea Khatsumoto from gives the idea of learning things through “osmosis” or passive listening. Where for example, if you hear the same phrase over and over, even if you don’t actively pay attention to it, you will become familiar with that phrase. Another example is learning a song or the words to a commercial even if you aren’t trying to.

I call it passive Auditory imprinting, and I stress “imprinting” because to me that feels like the best way to describe what is happening, at least for the moment and because this idea of imprinting seems to have other ways of occurring that I want to discuss.

First though, the reason why I find this idea important. It is because I find learning things actively to require a lot of resources and therefore not efficient. I mean, the worst example of this is creating mnemonics, where you focus completely on this task for the period of time that you are creating them AND all the reviews of the mnemonics you create.

Why is this not efficient?

For some people I’m sure it is efficient. For me though, I find myself constantly thinking, “damn I have to make up stories and review and actively recall meanings and stories of words. I have to remember a lot of information actively. I have to spend this time doing this, when I could be thinking about so many other interesting things. That is what makes it a burden.

Working out isn’t a burden for me. Doing chores not really, a physical part time job not really, but sitting down to review information that I already know so I don’t forget it, running over the same pathways, consciously,almost as if I never even made them before. That sucks.

A bit better is learning by trying to make connections. It’s still very active but it can rely on context more than creativity.

I feel like remembering things is important. I really got thinking about these ideas because of this fact, being able to remember a lot of facts is important for success in most fields and at least for the moment, it is not practical to try to get around it, in the school system at least.

Language learning as well is another huge example of where memorizing facts can become the “make or break” point. Learning Chinese requires being able to read and write 3000+ unique symbols.

This brings me to my next idea. Because learning Hanzi through mnemonics and review of those mnemonics becomes mind numbing very fast for me, because in general, memorizing can have this same effect, I need a way to be able to do memorization without it being a burden. Without having to sacrifice my cognitive resources.

Now here is my solution, which is pretty much going against the new way of doing things. I want to learn Hanzi by rote. As I write them out 10 or so times each, I will not have to think about them nearly as much. I can think about anything, let my mind wander in and out of focus. As long as the strokes are right and as long as I somehow fit the meaning to them. Either by only learning sentences which would have built in context for far more Hanzi at once. Or even paragraphs of text, just writing the whole paragraph out, knowing what it’s about, until I’ve memorized it and can write it on command. Or just write the hanzi while saying the name each time. Simple things like that.

I’ll still learn them. Why because of another type of imprinting. Muscle memory imprinting. My muscles(and parts of my central nervous system) will learn the Hanzi. I will be able to access those parts either when I write, or by imagining writing the words, and eventually just because I’ll have used them enough.

Now here is an interesting question. Is writing in big letters, the same as hearing a song played at a louder volume, in terms of increasing your ability to remember it. Or does a song only need to be loud enough to be clear, and writing something you see, the same as seeing the symbols clearly.

So this brings me to a whole philosophy about learning. Should we be trying to force our learning(of boring material) into consciousness awareness? Or is it better left to other parts of the central nervous system to store, and then we process and internalize further as needed?

I’ll end this by saying it sees some thing we are passionate about “knowing and understanding require a foundation of memorizing things we feel are not interesting. This method is a way to memorize those less interesting things in a way that uses more kinesthetic resources instead of the deeper conscious cognitive processes we want to use for the fun stuff.

Theories in motivation and learning

One theory is that there is this period of development where a child wants to take things apart and see how they work. If they are aloud to do this and taught about the things they take apart, their interest in those things will grow, but if they are not aloud to take them apart or if they can’t figure out anything about it afterwards the interest may fade. Just an idea. In addition to this is my idea that that interest doesn’t go away completely but remains as dormant interest that can only be rekindled in the proper environment where things can be taken apart and understood.

Notice schools mostly don’t work this way. For the most part school relies on teaching kids about individual components and only at the very end do they learn how things come together in maybe on or two applications. This is the reverse from a childhood motivation which is to seem many completed devices and wanting to work their way down to see how they work.

This leads me to my next idea. That maybe I could create a learning environment for myself based on things that are whole, completed things, that I then take apart.

Beyond this is the idea that it doesn’t necessarily have to be like, a whole computer, just the basic functioning component. What I mean is, if you hand me a capacitor I wont be intrigued. Sure you could hand me a whole computer, but really if you just handed me the smallest application of the capacitor and let me look at that whole thing, I would also be intrigued. By application I mean something where I see a visible or audible effect. Something that has an effect on my physical world.

So this is another theory I want to think about. Are we more intrigued by things we can actually see, hear, touch, and even more so by things that we can see having a mechanical/automated effect on the environment. If this were true it would mean the difference between learning computer programming by just writing code for a long time vs purposely compiling and running that code every minute just to get that hit of dopamine when you see your program have an effect on the screen.

You know how people say, ” I loved programming from the first time I got the computer to print words out to the screen.”, ya? So this must be a pretty important idea. Maybe critical to the enjoyment of learning programming. Being able to see often, the results of your work. This could be hard in some cases when you have a lot of errors etc, but  guess the whole point would be to create a system of learning that keeps errors to a minimum, but also if possible is not predictable in what comes to the screen.

I notice a strong paralell between this and learning a language where learning just hanzi in chinese has become actually painful, and I would much rather learn sentences which are actually functional.

I’m already in school for psychology, I might as well see if it’s possible to create the kind of system that makes learning anything fun.

Are you the type who likes someone to teach you how to play a game first, or do you like to learn as you go along? I feel most people would rather get right into the fun of the game. To me that is the difference between learning about components and learning about simple applications.

In fact, even a capacitor is more fun if you hook it up to a dmm and see how current reacts to it etc. But a small application hooked up to that dmm would be more interesting.

The urge to provide

My obsessing over what I could do to make a living, I think was based on the stress of how hard good jobs are to get. If for instance, I could have gotten a high paying job right out of college like I thought I would, I think I would have taken it. I mean, if it didn’t feel like I was in some kind of competition and needed to sell myself beyond my diploma. There was a time when it was easy to get a good job out of high school or college. In that age I feel like becoming self sufficient would have been easier. I mean, yes I think there would still be other things I would want. However, I would have been set as far as supporting myself was concerned.

So I guess what this makes me think is that what I need to get right now is work life stability. All the other passions can come, but this basic passion of freedom needs my attention now. I feel like if I were supporting myself, I would appreciate all my other passions that much more. I feel like I have this natural instinct to provide, for myself at least, and I think I need to go about meeting this need in the most efficient way possible.

However, when I think about the need to provide for myself, my thoughts drift towards areas like programming instead of philosophy. See programming is easier to get jobs in, although I definitely have a knack for philosophy. The best bet would be to do programming as well to keep my options open I guess. However, this division of goals between school and money makes this hard. If I joined a group though…or just got some people together…Or just made a daily allowance of 1 hour max for programming and I had to learn as much as I could in that time. It would make sense to focus on games or web dev because those areas will build a useable portfolio fastest I think. Out of those two, games are more fun. Then at the same time, if I did programming I could easily shift my experiments onto youtube and make friends in that scene. It would benifit me greatly to do this because it would make jobs easier to get when it came time to look. I would have to have the mindset of I’m trying to become awesome at this as if to program another world, or something. I should not stick to the basicl game ideas, but go off on tangents to make weird and wonderful things. I should have space music in the background when I work to make it more enjoyable. 1 hour a day…hmm it’s definitly an idea. I mean, it’s an investment, and if I feel it’s sound I can take out a load and move out knowing I’ll have jobs waiting for me when I’m ready. Maybe not in games, but in something interesting. People like to hear that I’ve played with mini max algorithms. I guess  need to push myself just a bit.

The thing that scares me is when people say with programming you either love it or you hate it. It doesn’t seem to be that way for me. Nothing does. It’s a day to day thing for me when it comes to what I enjoy doing. For instance right now I hate the chinese language or at least the hanzi. However, I’m pretty sure I’ll start liking it again soon after a nice break. So for a job, I can’t go by what I “love” because that changes all the tim. I need to go by what I’m good at that pays and is interesting.  I can get into a flow state while programming, so there’s that too.

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