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Life, and Why We’re All Doing it Wrong

fun things 1

Look at that picture.

Questionable paint skills aside, this image sums up how we should be spending our lives; either doing fun things that make us happy right now, or doing things that will make us happy in the future.

You have the activities that make your life awesome, like playing your favorite sport, watching a good Netflix series, hanging out with fun people, or munching down on a delicious Schwarzwald cake.

Then you have the stuff that you need to do in order to make sure you can continue enjoying an awesome life in the future, such as making money, paying your bills, eating your vegetables, and just generally making sure you don’t end up homeless and/or dead by the end of the month.

Sometimes, you’ll even find an overlap between the two circles, where you’re both having fun and preparing for the future.

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If you’re really lucky, you might even see a large chunk of your life happening within this zone of awesomeness. This would include working a job you love, enjoying the hell out of exercising, or just loving the taste of broccoli.

In an ideal world, you’d spend 100% of our time in this zone. That would be the perfect life; you’d enjoy every single thing you do, and all of these things would also be good for you in the long run. It’s the ultimate win-win situation.

Unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world, and our lives aren’t perfect. We can’t always enjoy ourselves, and we can’t always be doing things that are good for future-us. That kind of balance is simply impossible to achieve.

That is, however, no excuse for our lives looking like this;

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Why Your Parents Don’t Want You to Excel

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Here’s a fun question: have you ever asked yourself if your parents really want you to excel in life?

What about your teachers, your friends, and your government – do you think they want you to excel?

As depressing as it might sound, odds are that none of them do.

I know, I know – this probably sounds like your average paranoid “the-man-wants-to-keep-us-in-line” conspiracy theory. But if you actually think about it, it makes perfect sense; the people around you don’t want you to excel – and you can’t even blame them for it.

Let’s take a look at your parents, for instance.

Your parents probably love you with all their heart and whatnot, but they don’t want you to excel. They don’t want you to be the best you can be, and make the very most out of your life. Instead, they want what every parent wants for their child; safety.

And safety does not go hand in hand with excellence.

In fact, excellence is as far away from safety as you can get. Excellence involves taking risks, and risk means exposure to danger. It means potentially failing, losing everything, and ending up homeless. Or, worse yet, being unhappy!

No responsible parent would want that for their child.

Safety, on the other hand, means getting a good education and a stable job. It means following the tested path, obeying the norms of society, and settling down in a traditional relationship. It means doing what you’re supposed to do, fitting in, and avoiding those scary risks that might end up hurting you.

That’s what parents want for their child. Safety, not excellence.

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Why Your Twenties are the Perfect Time to Fuck Up

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A few months from now, I turn 23. And reflecting on my twenties so far, I’m surprised to see just how many times I’ve screwed up during these years.

I’ve dropped out of Uni twice. I’ve quit several jobs that I thought I was going to like. I’ve tried my hand at a number of online businesses, all of which I quit within the first few months. At 20, I was 50 pages into that book I’ve always wanted to write. Today, I’m still 50 pages into it.

Oh, and I’ve spent the majority of my twenties trying to build this blog – only to completely neglect it and let it fade away into oblivion during the time I lost interest in it.

These are just some of my many failures during these last couple of years.

And you know what? I have no intention whatsoever to stop failing. I’m going to keep screwing up as much as I possibly can during the years ahead.

Why?

Because now is the only time in my life when I can try a bunch of stupid things, fuck up as much as I want and still get away with it.

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The World Doesn’t Care About You – And That’s Awesome

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Imagine that you woke up one day, only to find that you were completely immune to the judging of others. That, no matter what you did, no one would judge you for it, or think any less of you. That no one would ever laugh at you when you embarrass yourself, or look down on you when you fail.

Odds are, that if you could never be judged by others, you would live your life very differently.

This is because our fear of being judged by the people around us is a major driving force in how we live our lives. It affects the decisions we make, what risks we are willing to take, and how we behave in public.

Because what if you did something stupid, and people laughed at you? What if you made a mistake and people would forever talk about it behind your back? What if you got turned down by a girl, and the entire bar saw it and laughed at you? And what if you wore the wrong shirt with the wrong jeans one day, and everyone in school would talk for years and years about how crappy your sense of fashion is?

And, holy crap, are you really that full of yourself? Do you really think the world gives a fuck about your everyday life and the embarrassing things that might happen to you?

If this is your way of thinking, it’s high time you realized something;       

The world doesn’t care about you.

It never has, and it never will. It doesn’t matter how important you may be in your own life, or how life-defining that particular moment of awkwardness was to you. To the rest of the world, it was nothing more than a passing curiosity (if they even cared enough to notice in the first place).

Look, the rest of the world have their own shit to worry about – they don’t have time to give a fuck about your life as well.

Depressing thought, isn’t it? But I’m not telling you this to make you feel bad, or to show you how insignificant you are. I’m telling you this because it’s one of the most liberating realizations you can ever make.

Because if the rest of the world doesn’t give a fuck, why should you? (more…)

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Taking Advantage of the Human Laziness

laziness

If there is one thing we can always count on when it comes to the human species, it’s our laziness.

People are just inherently lazy. Whenever we’re faced with a choice, we will almost always feel compelled to take the easier way out.

Hell, if we had the choice, half of us would probably stay in bed and hide under the blankets for the rest of our lives.

And no, this isn’t because the internet generation screwed us up and made us all lazy, irresponsible layabouts. As much as we like to blame recent inventions for all our shortcomings, our laziness goes deeper than that.

It’s literally in our genes to be lazy.

It’s always been an evolutionary advantage to find and take the easiest way out of any situation. This allowed our ancestors to get through the day using as little effort as possible, and save their energy for when they really needed it.

But this article isn’t going to be some long rant about how lazy we are. Anyone who has ever spent an entire weekend in bed with an iPad already knows this. Instead, we’re going to look into how we can actually use this laziness to our advantage.

Because once we realize that laziness dominates human decision-making, we can start tilting the scales in our favor. We can stack the deck and make sure this laziness works for us, rather than against us.

Because if people can be counted on to choose the easy way out of any situation, why not make sure your way is that easy way? (more…)

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