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Ikar

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Posts posted by Ikar

  1. 2 hours ago, Paul A. said:

    Everything is sales! At the heart of sales are the skills of convincing and persuasion. To paraphrase Grant Cardone’s Sell or Be Sold, as soon as you’ve convinced someone of your point of view or persuaded them to take a certain course of action, you’ve made a sale! Everything in life can be seen as a sales transaction. It’s a beautiful profession because you don’t need much in the way of a formal education to succeed, anyone can be a high achiever in sales with the right mindset and work ethic. For someone like me who abhors school, it’s perfect!

    I think that strategy works well for business and salary negotiation too. I'd just be careful of "selling" in personal life; I think you can't just "sell" someone into starting a family with you, for example.

    • Like 1
  2. 1 hour ago, Paul A. said:

    Two customers I had worked with previously expressed interest in buying more furniture, which I’m excited about. If I can sell them more stuff, it means I’ve helped them out even more; or at least that’s the way I see it.

    Ah, sales. A part of my English teaching is sales too, because while people are mostly already "sold" on the idea of learning English, I still have to "sell" them on the idea I am the person they should choose to guide them. Though I would probably buy (or even receive for free) second hand furniture myself; makes it easier on the wallet and being financially independent sooner for me. Guess nobody can buy a second hand English lesson 😄

    It's always nice to have the clients return and commend you either by words or more money spent. I once had this multi-level financial advisor gig, though I never seriously got myself into it. I don't know why; I just never really believed in the service. After that I got enough English classes anyway. Later on, I found out this company works on fat commissions the customers pay. You may get a few dozen dollars from every piece of furniture sold and I may get another student to teach, but these guys get one-time and ongoing % fees of the product they pitch and sell well.

    1 hour ago, Paul A. said:

    Funny thing is, this “friend” hasn’t had a job for years and is literally doing nothing with his life, claiming that he wants to be depressed until he dies.

    If he really wants to do that, let him. People just sometimes grow apart, though I understand cutting people off for the first few times is difficult without much previous experience (being young).

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  3. 6th August - 9th August:

    After writing here, I did some housework - cleaning and small reorganization of my room. I played cards with my friends in the evening and even got a few presents from them which was nice 🙂

    Worked on my business website on Sunday, prepared for the classes, did some weekly planning and visited my family.

    -

    I got some news on Monday from randomly meeting the dorm director that it will be impossible to have my own separate room at the dorm due to the big influx of new students who are applying to live here as the new school year starts.

    I gotta say I was quite fortunate to live here for nearly three years and to have my own room. I got here in November 2019, probably after the room was left vacant after some people left since September 2019. In September 2020, everybody was scared of CV, so there was not that much interest in living in big shared spaces. In September and October 2021, I had two friends living here for a week and two weeks, meaning they "blocked" the room for any possible long-term occupants.

    I'm just too old to share my intimate space with someone else most of the time. I started asking my friends if they know of someone who is renting a room or a small flat at maximum. I also started searching on my own and I'll be sending some emails tomorrow. No time to lose here.

    -

    On Monday, I had the internship. After that, I claimed my shoes in a shop and got new ones with a slight discount. I went to have a beer with one friend in the late afternoon too.

    Today I had English classes, went for a coffee with one friend and after that met some acquaintances. Now I'm writing this.

    Plan for tomorrow is the internship in the morning, lunch and then searching for the place to live!

    • Like 1
  4. 23 minutes ago, Ikar said:

    I enjoy listening to rap from time to time, mostly Eminem, although I also listen to a select few smaller bands like Living Legends (this is a great song about addiction) or The Chicharones (this one is quite funny, at least it has that ring to me :V ). So that's my "expertise".

    I usually hear more drum/beat structure in rap, so that's what I am used to. I also don't always sing along with the song, though I sometimes like to. I heard your song once and I got that you are singing about a personal message. As a whole, without the beat it just feels to me like a 3-minute long slur of words. This is how the LL song I linked originally felt to me too actually, so if that's what you want to do, then it's good 🙂 

    Although Weird Al is not a rapper by design, I threw in a link for him too 🙂

    • Like 1
  5. 3 hours ago, Paul A. said:

    I’m leaving a “rough” version of a song I’ve been working on attached to this post for you all to listen to. I’m rather proud of it, but it may end up being the culmination of my on-again, off-again relationship with music; I’m not sure if I intend to continue making music after this song is finished. Any feedback on the song is greatly appreciated.

    I enjoy listening to rap from time to time, mostly Eminem, although I also listen to a select few smaller bands like Living Legends (this is a great song about addiction) or The Chicharones (this one is quite funny, at least it has that ring to me :V ). So that's my "expertise".

    I usually hear more drum/beat structure in rap, so that's what I am used to. I also don't always sing along with the song, though I sometimes like to. I heard your song once and I got that you are singing about a personal message. As a whole, without the beat it just feels to me like a 3-minute long slur of words. This is how the LL song I linked originally felt to me too actually, so if that's what you want to do, then it's good 🙂 

    • Like 1
  6. 2nd August - 6th August:

    On 8/2/2022 at 9:57 PM, Ikar said:

    I think the overarching theme is there are projects I chronically don't have time for. I could be developing my website and marketing strategy or working on my master's thesis, but I am not.

    I've actually worked on my website every day since. It turns out I actually do have an extra hour or two a day, if I want to find it. I added a few pictures and did a bit of rewriting. I need to do more of the same for the rest of the page, so I suspect it will take a few more hours. Besides that, I am going to work on adding the site to other internet media and overall marketing.

    -

    I spent time at the internship on Wednesday and Thursday and had a bunch of English classes on Friday. Played billiard, met up with gun buddies and read a book and finance newsletters. It was also my birthday yesterday, so today we went for sushi today with my brother and his girlfriend to celebrate.

    I plan this weekend to be slow and easy; just chilling, working and not rushing anywhere.

  7. 1 hour ago, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    I know for a fact she spent ALL DAY playing fucking Roblox while I was gone. She didn't even tell me I just know because that's all she does. Her gaming wasn't a problem for me before but now it is... But she wouldn't do anything else fucking productive even if she stopped. I know cause she got bored of all games like 6 months ago and took a break from them. When she doesn't game all she does is scroll reddit or other internet and watches shows. She's "too depressed to do anything else" but honestly I completely believe the way she is chosing to live is making her depression and suicidality worse.

    I believe it, because I used to live like that too.

    1 hour ago, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    WHY DID I HAVE TO DO SO MUCH SELF IMPROVEMENT TO THE POINT I SEE HOW FUCKED UP THE SITUATION IM IN IS.

    The old adage says "things have to get worse before they get better". Quitting games is one thing, but the actual red pill is seeing things for what they are. Going through the trough is the worst. The sedative is off and the reality sets even before any meaningful positive results arrive from walking the straight and narrow path.

    Do what's best for you.

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  8. 31st July - 2nd August:

    I'm having a feeling that I wasted a lot of time today, which is not necessarily true. I had 5 hours of teaching, cooked, read a new book, researched ammo prices, dug up an old list of "dreams" and updated it from today's perspective, worked on a few emails and read some newsletters. The thing is that rather than wasting the day, the day feels disjointed, as if I needed something singular to work on for a few hours.

    I think the overarching theme is there are projects I chronically don't have time for. I could be developing my website and marketing strategy or working on my master's thesis, but I am not. Yes, I have classes to teach and yes, I have internship to do, but in days like these, I wish I had more of a plan to tackle the serious issues that may not really have a finish line or expiry date. What further complicates things is that it's hard to get started on things that seem very big, as there just seems to be no progress. They are the elusive ones. I'm never going to have more time, unless I prioritize some things over other.

    -

    I spent the weekend with my girlfriend. It was a nice car-trip overall. She told me she doesn't want to have a long-distance relationship when she leaves in two weeks, partly because she already has the experience of long-distance for three years and she doesn't want to go through that again. I did cry (which I haven't in at least a few months, if not years), although I do not feel heartbroken. We're gonna see as a couple for the last time in two weeks. I take it as it is. Life's good.

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  9. 25th July - 30th July:

    I read the whole Animal Farm in one sitting on Thursday. I just need a good book to get into to interest me in reading.

    The internship has been going on as well, spent about 17 hours there last week, which is more than what I spend teaching these days. I also spend a lot of time walking and cycling because of that.

    I'm going to the shooting range often too. I should go there twice the next week, once with friends and once to "instruct" my friends' kids.

    My digital maintenance has been going well. I do peek to FB every now and then on my phone. My news consumption is next to zero. I noticed that it's easy to slide into "interesting" articles/videos, even if I am intent while searching for specific information. I also noticed that if I want to search for a song on YT, the Google search engine is capable of dealing with that too.

    My girlfriend came to visit me for the weekend and we'll do a car trip today.

    • Like 2
  10. I think bouts of dissatisfaction are normal and a part of being human. Everyone can be always doing more but... why bother if your belly is full and the bed is comfortable?

    I think the main ingredient to overcoming the feeling is keeping busy. However keeping busy according to your own volition, not because somebody said that you should do something. Then you'll see where the life is taking you and the direction will be clearer. I gamed (often socially), wrote about games and learnt English well, even though there were guys who were even better at English in high school. English teaching is my job now.

    As for the directions and goals themselves, you also never know when some paths will intersect. I've always been a saver with my money and I naturally accumulated it, even if I had no reason to. Later on, I learnt I could reach some amount that would free me completely of the worries that I can't afford to do something and it definitely opens up many more possibilities for my future.

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  11. 22nd July - 24th July:

    On Friday, I went to the get-together with my high-school classmates and had a good chat with a few of them. I wrote this to my girlfriend yesterday:

    "I caught one or two remarks from a guy like I would 8 years ago. I think that some (high-school classmates) see me for who I am today, while others never will. I think this shit is bound to happen with people you used to see every day for a long time (classmates, parents), but now you see only twice a year or so. The environment tends to recreate itself in a very similar way again as it used to and it's hard to escape that."

    It's a fairly stark reminder of how I was and how I used to feel in the past. I sometimes feel a mixed bag of shame, regret and inadequacy in that setting. Regardless, these people largely do not matter today, so it's pointless to worry about that. I feel truly myself only with a few of them and these I'd try or I'm willing to see more often individually.

    I decided to come back in the afternoon on Saturday, as I felt the main thing was to show up and meet and chat with the people I wanted to, instead of staying one more day. Worth noting is that I cycled with a few guys and it was about 80 kilometers in total.

    Yesterday I had a call with my girlfriend and overall a relaxed rest of the day after returning in the afternoon. Today I have a day just for myself and I'm catching up on some errands, as I haven't had a completely free day for two weeks. I'm planning to do some reading, planning and other small things that need doing.

    • Like 1
  12. 17 hours ago, Amphibian220 said:

    Do they discuss the barbell strategy of investment? Investing 90 per cent into the safest possible instrument and the 1-10 % of savings into highly risky venture capital.

    I read in one contemporary finance book that “medium” risk is a misnomer because of how volatile the markets are by their current nature, so it only makes sense to put most of your money into the safest bet and a small fraction into a business that given your intelligence has potential for major growth. It makes even more sense to work for that venture capital firm because your motivation will be greater. 

    It depends what you define as the "safest possible instrument". The safest way for me to grow my money over the long run are stocks, though bonds might perform better at the moment. I'm 24, so I have a shot for a very long investment horizon. I also don't want to trade - guess, if a single stock goes up or down in the next week, month or year. I did that with Forex and it didn't work. Now I just set the order and buy the whole market index once a month, as my salary arrives. I have a cushion to deal with unexpected expenses or unemployment, so I am covered on both ends.

    And if the world as a whole goes to the shitter, then I am happy for whatever army training I remember and my gunnery hobby 😄

  13. 18th July - 21st July:

    The internship has been interesting, despite the fact that mapping of greenery and its usefulness for people was not exactly the first thing I'd imagine doing for my internship. My mentor is around 60, however he sometimes strikes me as if he's my age and we get along well. He's very knowledgeable in his field, however he did mention he has no illusions about how much of his work actually gets to the decision makers/politicians. We walked a lot as a part of the mapping.

    I finished reading the book about homeless people. It was interesting. It made me realize that while at one point there was a possibility that I am going to end up homeless, as in the real story below:

    A friend of my father has a son who used to game all day and didn't do anything else. He and his wife decided to kick their son out of the flat, so that he could get a job and start functioning properly. There was no telling what would happen (i.e. he could have turned into a homeless junkie), but in the end it turned out well, because he got a job and was able to take care of himself.

    Now the chance of that for me is zero. I'd have to literally become insane AND forget everything at the same time AND lose all my friends and family, but I wouldn't or couldn't care at that point anyway. I wouldn't be I as I know myself today. Life is looking pretty great for me since I have stopped gaming.

    I went to the shooting range with my gun buddies on Tuesday. It might actually become a regular hobby of mine.

    I had a long video-call with my girlfriend on Wednesday.

    I didn't miss YT the last few days as I was busy working on other things. Gonna allow it from 12th August to see if I broke the habit and if I can use it in a more constructive way.

    I'm also going to share how my finances look like, to give some context why I sometimes mention it at all in my entries. I started my FIRE journey in April 2021 and I plan to be financially independent by the time I am 35! Links are below:

    Jack Bogle - bogleheads.org forum: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=344956 - this one is with some discussion with other users, as it's older and provides more context.

    MMM forums: https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/case-studies/my-fire-journey-(24-czech)/ - this one is new and distilled based on the previous link.

    • Like 1
  14. 16 hours ago, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    I am going to set a new challenge for myself: Nothing New 90.

    Essentially for 90 days I will only spend money on: food, experiences, and utilitarian necessities.

    The goal is not just to reduce spending but to reduce accumulation and clutter. Spending isn't really what I'm concerned about, so even if I'm spending more but I'm not accumulating more shit that's fine by me.

    This is actually perfect because by starting today it will end exactly on my daughter's birthday!

    I am still allowed to accept gifts. However as always, if it cannot actually serve me, I will find another home for it. I don't keep things just because someone special gave it to me anymore. I think regifting something is more respectful if the item would otherwise just collect dust.

    I am allowed to buy things we genuinely need.

    For example: We have to buy some shorts for our daughter because she hates clothes that go on over her head, but she's learn to take her own diaper off. We need something for her to wear when we are relaxing at home, because normally we don't make her wear clothes at home since she doesn't like to wear them. We only have two pairs of pants for her and they are kindof long so they get in the way of her mobility. She does seem to like only wearing pants though, so I need to get her at least a couple of pairs of shorts.

    Another obvious example is things like replacement toothbrushes, toothpaste, sponges, dish soap, cat litter... Actual necessities that we buy regularly. 

    I don't need to buy more books. I don't need to buy more knick knacks. I don't even need to buy more stickers to go in my sketchbooks!!

    I have a library card. I am considering getting a yearly membership to the museum so we can go whenever we feel like it (pays for itself after like two trips!) I have a YMCA membership. I will still be allowing myself to eat out. I do not need to go shopping for fun!!

    I feel you. I do have some gifts sitting in my room, collecting dust. I think my family and close friends mostly got the drift by this point, however I still sometimes get something, when upon seeing it, I know I'm not gonna use it. Myself, I prefer to give some experience (e.g. invite my brother for sushi) or food (meat, nuts, alcohol), so the chance is low that it won't be used, or at least re-gifted. 

    16 hours ago, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    I've been combating my hoarding since 2019, when the tidying up show came out on Netflix. I have completely turned around my life since then, and I think I'm tidier than the average American. However, in my eyes we still have too much shit. There are a lot of spaces in our living area (We share our home with my wife's extended family so not all of it can be controlled) that are not as tidy as I'd like them to be.

    While doing this challenge I am also going to focus on reducing clutter around the house. Again, our living spaces are already relatively tidy, but they could be better. I'm striving for the best I can do!

    I'm going to make a list of all the rooms in the house that we have dominion over, and then I'm going to make sub lists of each problem area in those rooms.

    Wish me luck!

    I also very much prefer to have my own system in my own room and it's usually reasonably tidy, except when I'm in stretches when I am busy. It's not a nice sight when everything is everywhere, also because it's easy to lose track of the stuff.

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  15. 10 hours ago, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    It was a system app on my Xiaomi phone too, but we were able to use a PC program to remove it. I don't remember what it was at the moment, I'll have to ask my wife and then get back to you on that.

    Thanks! I am sure @Paul A. would appreciate that as well.

    I'm at a loss how is YT or Chrome are a system app, while Xiaomi offers its default apps. I'm at a free-market/capitalism proponent. I believe most people would be much better off if they just tried smarter/harder, however I agree with Manson that many things today are optimized for engagement/addiction, so they're hard to kick:

    https://markmanson.net/newsletters/mindfck-monthly-102

    • Like 1
  16. 17 hours ago, Paul A. said:

    I think today marks my 8th day of being game-free. So much has happened over the span of 8 days.

    This made me reminisce of my own first weeks of quitting. Thinking what would be the situation with my X and writing her, having +60 hours more to spend a week, working and quitting some shitty temp jobs before settling with English teaching... it was very discombobulating, but necessary. You'll figure it all out in time.

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  17. 1 hour ago, Paul A. said:

    How has quitting YouTube helped you? I find that nowadays I don’t even watch a lot of YouTube videos, but I keep returning to the app as a way to alleviate boredom, if for nothing else but to scroll through videos to see if something will interest me. I’m considering deleting the app myself. Just wanted an idea of how getting rid of it has helped you along the way.

    As I wrote above, it's been just a week without the YT main page. It helps me internalize that there are other things I can be doing instead of scrolling the videos and trying to find something new. I follow several channels and there might be, let's say, 3 hours of content a week they produce that I am interested in, but that doesn't make YT the "default" place to go if I feel idle. It's definitely something I can live without for a month or even longer if I so choose.

    Just one note, I mostly watch content I am interested in on desktop computer. On my phone (Redmi Note 10), it's impossible to remove or deactivate the app just by going to the options, because it's a system app. That makes the process quite annoying, as you have to devise a more complicated process to restrict the access to the app.

    • Like 2
  18. 13th July - 17th July:

    I've been feeling boredom here and there since I've blocked YT main page a week ago, however a few seconds after realizing that, I always come up with other things that I need and want to do, such as reading, taking a shower or writing here.

    As for news, I only watched a bit of national news with my grandma yesterday on TV, nothing besides that.

    I used my phone browser version of FB a while ago to search in specific groups for specific exchange programs. A few days ago, I also checked one event I attended that was organized by my friend to have all the relevant info.

    -

    I went with my brother for sushi, started the internship, read about finance, read a book about homeless people, did a bit of car repair, went to the gym, cycled, visited my family and played billiard.

    My internship mentor is working on the conception of greenery and its classification in our city. We'll go around the city and evaluate the state of the greenery into some quantitative form using the given criteria.

    • Like 1
  19. 13 hours ago, Amphibian220 said:

    @Ikar, I’ve sent some targeted applications but had no responses yet. I think sending offers by post will attract more attention because email accounts are frequently spammed so  that something important can be skipped by an HR employee.

    I think that's a false premise. I do think that a physical letter would grab more attention, but if you already assume their email is spammed, why would they have time to get into a physical letter? Plus if they already got an overloaded/uninterested HR that can't/won't deal with your requests, I don't think that's an employer you want.

    I remember I sent the email twice to some companies, if the interviews from the first wave of companies that wrote me back (and had an interview with me) were not satisfactory. And don't send "some" applications, send "dozens" of applications. I don't know the specifics of your CV, job requirements etc. but having more options is always better than having less options.

    • Like 1
  20. On 7/14/2022 at 2:26 PM, Morrigan said:

    I got rid of my gaming addiction without the supernatural, and so can you!

    This post would be incisive if the whole forum was saying that "Jordan Peterson is the only way to escape addictions!", but I don't see any evidence for that. Most of his videos/lectures are about preaching hard work, life-long learning, self-improvement and his psychological practice. If you had problems with gaming addiction, you overcame it and your life is better for it, who cares how exactly you quit it?

    Quitting games was a half-way religious experience for me, because I easily spent 10+ hours gaming a day. My perspective shifted RADICALLY. I was even thinking of picking up some official faith, but in the end I didn't and thought I can handle my life myself. I'm currently trying to conquer my "porn" habit and I successfully haven't watched any for two weeks. I am not describing this as a religious experience and the process is much more atheistic/grounded/rational, but again, who cares? Why do you care? I'm curious.

  21.  

    I'm using the template I used the last time. 18/06/21 - 13/07/21


    "L" will stand for the (last) plan/notes for this term. "T" will stand for done this term.

    I added "Future goals/direction" to better reflect on the things I am trying to do and to add specificity. I will copy it and stick it somewhere where I can see it to remind myself whenever I feel aimless. I will also use different colors: blue for newly added goals/habits, green for completed/successful, orange for ongoing/some progress and red for ones I haven't worked on in that period.


    ---

     

    Books/Reading articles:

    L: I've been keeping up with the newsletters and read a few short booklets I got from LibertyCon about philosophy.

    T: I've been keeping up with the newsletters. I've read a lot of articles from "Mr. Money Mustache: Blog". I also read "Digital Minimalism" in about four days when I was on holiday visiting my girlfriend. I wrote about it above, though I will mention it again in the text below.

    Possible direction/goals:

    Continue getting through the newsletters.

    (Borrow) and read one book until the next monthly report.

     

    Family:

    L: My brother is nice to hang out with and my father is a reliable and I can count on him with anything, though he is sometimes too hotheaded. I went for sushi with my brother two weeks ago and it was cool.

    Things are more difficult with my mom and grandma. I spend several hours a month alone with my grandma. I think she sometimes has the "victim" complex in a way that she did XYZ for other people and they didn't do anything back for her or don't understand her (without her asking).

    I can't help but feel that she also distorts my ability to have an opinion on my mom and that I see my mom as a caricature. That's not to say they dislike each other - my mom visits my grandma regularly and that wouldn't happen if they weren't on good terms. Weirdly enough, I think my mom is the family member I know the least.

    T: I'm going with my brother to sushi today. I don't think there's anything special happening at the moment.

    NOT: I don't want to get alienated from my family.

    Possible direction/goals:

    Continue working on bettering the relationships with my family.

     

    University:

    L: I forewent going to Erasmus completely, as it would result in the inevitability of extending my studies while not working towards anything relevant to my studies. There's no good way to do any courses/subjects or to write my masters' thesis abroad. I have a creeping feeling that the longer I take to complete the studies, the less likely it is that I'll finish them.

    I've successfully completed the semester and I even got the highest merit stipend (which is funny, because I didn't have a single A at bachelor's). I'm currently looking for the internship/praxis.

    T: No university duties directly, however I found the internship and I'm going for the interview/praxis tomorrow. 

    NOT: I don't want to drop out of the university.

    Possible direction/goals:

    Find an internship for summer.

    Find more sources for my upcoming masters' thesis during the summer.

    Work on the assignments in a timely manner.

     

    Exercise/Movement:

    L: I haven't been to the gym since April and seriously (every week) since March. I keep moving by visiting my students either by walking or cycling, going to nearby evening events on foot and I manage to go for a walk once or twice a week. I also sometimes take the basketball outside and hop around. I think the combination of all this works, however it's not a 100% stable habit, so I have to keep an eye on that.

    T: I visited my family on the bike two weeks ago, meaning I cycled about 40 kilometers in one day. I take the bike or walk fairly often for minor errands. I'm planning to go to the gym after finishing this report. I feel better about my physique now that I have more free time to work on it.

    NOT: I don't want to become fat.

    Possible direction/goals:

    Keep in shape.

     

    Job/English:

    L: I don't know if I am going to teach English forever, but I like it reasonably enough, sometimes it's challenging as well and it's paid nicely. I'm gonna have less English classes during the summer. I paid the taxes this month. I also contacted the benefit companies, which advertise my business for a small cut of my profits. I also talked about this with my students. Some of them work in HR or marketing and they've been very helpful and the advice they gave me was useful. I went to a business workshop on Wednesday organized by the university and it was useful to clear up some concepts regarding marketing and business progress.

    T: The work has been slower as expected, though I still do maintain about 10 lessons a week. I picked up a few new courses too. I'm currently working through a lot of ideas/concepts I accumulated during my holiday last week. I got a new font for my website too, so that's something!

    NOT: I don't want to have a job that I don't enjoy. I don't want to have a job that is not well paid.

    Possible direction/goals:

    Keep asking for reviews or recommendations from students.

    Create a client persona for both B2B and B2C.

    Update my website to reflect the new ideas and inspiration from the web.

    Look into strategies in becoming truly self-employed by skipping the agencies in between.

    Check out a few more seminars on how to run online courses. / English research

     

    Women/Dating:

    L:

    Spoiler

    I learnt that perhaps I do not have as hard-core of a monogamous mentality as I thought I would have. I'm also probably more aware than ever that everybody is fucked up, including myself. There are a few women I could think of in the romantic plane in my area. I don't think it makes much sense to be writing about specific women though. I came to the realization that planning in this area is usually cumbersome and counterproductive.

    I cut one of the relationships, did sex and I'm keeping my eyes peeled.

    I was predicting the change in my sexual mindset and behavior for a long time. I behaved and acted in line with it. I just needed the reality to catch up on it; similarly to that when I was gaming, I got fired from the post office several days after I quit gaming, because most of my (unsatisfactory) work there was done when I was still gaming.

    In the past, I believe I looked at the more obvious sexual displays of others with both distaste and envy at the same time. Especially when I thought that I have no other option than to sit and do nothing or to get drunk and hope that something happens. It just took some time to internalize that the thing standing between me and a good (even if only sexual) relationship with a woman is... me.

    As long as there are two consenting adults, whatever goes. Whether it's a good idea or not is another question (given the circumstances), but I won't villanify that behavior a priori anymore.

    That said, a horrible relationship is better than none at all. The cataclysmic end of my last one was likely the trigger for me to quit games for good. Nothing is forcing anyone to stay and die in a horrible relationship, except the lack of options in one's head. (December)

    I learnt a lot about the sexuality of women over the past few weeks by spending time with the Spanish girl. I learnt a bunch about my sexuality as well. I also learnt relationships can be more nuanced. It's been a great learning experience so far. (January/February)

    I've spent about two months with the Spanish girl and this morning she left home for three weeks, after which she should come back. I feel that she's into me, that she cares about me and that she doesn't want to lose me (be it to another relationship or due to some quarrel between us, though I find the latter less likely), though at the same time I feel we both want to assert ourselves to leave other options available. In my case to find someone more "permanent" to date/be together with, because I know she'll be gone in the summer. In her case it's different relationship philosophy and uniqueness of every relationship.

    To explain that further, she actually encouraged me to meet other girls to see what might come out of it, which is generally something I am not 100% confident at and could use some practice in. Regardless, despite our differences, I feel that we're willing to respect each other and not argue about them. (March)

    We had a few talks together with the Spanish girl and decided we wouldn't carry on with the sexual element in our relationship. It was the first time for her trying to amalgamate sexual and affectionate relationship into one and the second time for me. I decided to take her for her word and not to push her into something she doesn't want or isn't sure about. I sensed/noticed that it's not the first time she's having difficulty in continuing the relationship in the current setting. I think that a part of good relationship is the ability to respect "no" as a "no" and it's definitely one of the things I want in all my relationships that go deeper.

    I'm actually somewhat surprised by how romantic the relationship has come to be. I think we are both considerate of each other and already value each other to go through this in an abrupt or otherwise bad way. I feel a sense of loss in a way, but I think various factors chimed in to dampen it. Besides, I have learnt a lot about various sexual topics and I grew more confident in this regard. It's very liberating to be playful and inventive too!

    This one is actually only a few days old, but I do feel attracted to one girl and I want to have sex with her, although I don't think something long-term could come out of it due to the factual differences that we have. Hooray for being human! (April)

    We've been flirting and dancing around around with the girl from April. I told her we're gonna do something together after I am done with the finals and I want to keep that promise. I'm not 100% sure if it's the right move, but I'm gonna take the opportunity regardless. (May)

    There are some situations with the girl where we do get close, although from some situations I also understand that I don't want to be too closely involved with her and neither does she. Though I like her physically and I think she's aiming at good things in life, I feel she constantly needs to put herself in messy/highly emotional situations and states. I can joke about it and laugh it off with her as her friend, but it'd be very different if I decided to be a more unpredictable variable in her life.

    That doesn't mean random and unpredictable sex can't happen. The last week I had sex with a friend from the dorms I've known for over a year. We were both tipsy, though I think we were both surprised how that evening ended up happening.

    I've been having thoughts about the time with the Spanish girl, meaning there could still be something I need to decode. I didn't talk to her before she left to Spain about a month ago and nor I gave her the letter I wrote and planned to give her. Regardless, I've thought about the topic myself. I found that the main idea is to take it as it is, regardless of what the reasons of her sudden April "cut" were. I also believe that sometimes the more loving and more courageous decision is to walk away to prevent more hurt and pain, whether due to toxicity (my X) or time constraints (Spanish girl?). One of the things that "got" me closer together to her was the care. She really did care for me as my mom or grandma would, which I noticed when she was adamant about the fact I needed to see the doctor. The fact that we could also agree to disagree was amazing as well. Lastly, she did catalyze more effort from my side to get to know my family better and closer.

    Talking to one of my friends, she said the average masturbation for her is better than the average sex. I found that quite surprising, as I've never thought that would be the case for anyone.

    To end on a good note, I met an interesting girl yesterday in the evening and wrote her on Messenger today. I really should meet even more new people. We'll see what comes out of this. (June/July)

    I noticed that I am thinking more outside of my head about this topic and around friends which is good. (August/September)

    I'm fairly positive I am making progress in this area. It's really only about having the guts to say hi and then making the ask to meet. It needs to become the routine, if I want to have some control over this aspect of my life. The end-result doesn't actually matter. And I'm aware I will make mistakes, get myself in stupid situations, get used and whatnot, but it's all in the game. I'm fairly adamant and determined in this. I've done a lot of scouting recently, so I got some "hard data" on a few girls I was interested in. (September/October)

    To put a real example here, I'm currently making an effort to find dates and a girlfriend. I met a girl last Monday, had a good chat with her for a while, wrote her to meet up and she agreed. Five minutes into the second meeting, I found out she had a boyfriend, yet I didn't just turn around on my heel, as I promised her a walk around the city she doesn't know. I spent some two hours with her, had a good conversation with her, found out she's a good speaker and discussed some views on philosophy and politics.

    The advice I could take from this regarding my dating life: Be more aware of social situations when I am first interacting with a girl I like and be better at scouting to find out whether she's already seriously dating someone or not. Then again, I got something I wasn't expecting but is valuable as well: thinking about reconsidering some of my life views through a good debate.

    All in all, it's impossible to answer the question: Was it a success or a failure? Well, It depends on how I choose to look at it. (Oct/Nov 21)

    I've been meeting one girl for about a month now, both in a planned way but also running into her randomly. She seems shy, a maverick/lone-wolf to a great extent, but also quite honest. I think it's gonna be interesting. Gonna meet her on Monday and do something together again. (Nov)

    So I've been out a few times with the Georgian girl I met at the beginning of October. She's fun to be around, likes my analytical mind and so we sometimes grapple intellectually. She's also kind and I'd argue more compassionate then I am. We're gonna plan something together the next week too. I'm fairly unaware about where this is going, so I'm leaving this go its own way. The only thing that's for sure is that she leaves at the end of January.

    What I've been probably happiest about that this area of my life seems to have some traction, as I felt there was none during the summer until the end of September. What's also worth noting is that this one of the areas with the most shades of gray and trial and error I've been in. I can absolutely not plan for an outcome. It's as much about knowing the other person as it is about knowing myself. (Jan)

    Things have been going pretty well with the Georgian girl. She's gonna stay here until June and I myself might go to Germany for Erasmus in April, if the situation permits. It's nice to have somebody close to me to share things and try new things with every now and then. She's intellectually bright and can challenge me on a few things, so she also gives me the mirror sometimes.

    She's also good at English and had some interviews already. She negotiated even a bit higher rate than I did. She actually gave me the impulse to revisit the payment I get from language schools this early. (Jan)

    February and March have been pretty good with the Georgian girl and I believe we both enjoyed it. I'm happy that we managed to get the things we wanted to get done together. We will continue to date, until the distance is just too much to bear. She's going to have a more complicated schedule in April with a lot of traveling and in mid-May she's going to move to another city, which is however reachable on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. I hope to post an update on this when the time comes. (Feb/Mar)

    In April, we've been apart for about two weeks and there's one more week until she moves to another city for the internship. We spent a lot of time together this week.

    I've entertained the idea to have a long-distance relationship until I/we are able to be in one place or to change location at will. My plans are to do the Erasmus in Bulgaria and finish the masters at the uni in early 2024 and after that I am completely location-independent - until then, I am to an extent bound in my current city. The money is not necessarily the issue either; although it's usually more expensive to travel than to stay in one place, I expect my financial situation to be healthy. It's not unrealistic, but we'll see. (Apr/May)

    We've been seeing for weekends. My girlfriend even made a surprise visit today, traveling to my hometown for the weekend. (Jun/Jul)

    T: Made a promise to not watch "porn" to my girlfriend. Our relationship is very warm. We shared some nasty secrets about one another and I think that bound us even closer. She's leaving back to Georgia in mid-August. We plan on seeing once or twice more and deciding what's next.

    Possible direction/goals:

    Set up at least two dates a month.

     

    -----

     

    Digital maintenance:

    The plan is to get rid of or reduce the usage following apps and websites. I will include cases why they might be useful and why I have had them so far:

    Instagram app - deleted. I have a few acquaintances there, but they're mostly foreigners and hardly anyone writes me there. If my friends have it, I have other means of contacting them too.

    News webpages - blocked. I use them merely as a source of fun, due to their comment sections. I hardly ever come across an article that I would be genuinely interested in (maybe one in a hundred or a thousand). The same will go for "Wiki/Current events" - even though it's a healthier alternative to consume news, it might sway me, so I'll get rid of it too for now.

    Facebook - blocked. I used to justify keeping FB around for scoping events in the area, but I can't remember when was the last time I actually used it that way before coming to Prague (I was looking for events there, as I am not local). 

    YT - limited. I listen to music on YT, so I won't block it completely, however I am going to block/reduce the main page to prevent me from scrolling it. YT works well with my interests overall, but I noticed I just rely on it to entertain me more than I'd like.

    ---

    The blocks will apply on my desktop computer and notebook. I'm gonna have only one browser on them with a blocking add-on installed.

    My phone will be "unlimited", mostly as I am not really used to using it that much (not having mobile data helps a lot) and in case I actually DO need to use the blocked services above. I also have a "Digital Wellbeing" widget on the home-screen of my phone, showing me how much time I spent on each app.

    This is definitely not the first plan I devised for this area of my life. I actually have it partially in effect on my desktop computer at home already. This is just a thought out update of the plan put into words.

    ---

    What to do if I am bored?

    Replacement activities for 1 hour: reading, cleaning, washing the dishes, learning languages

    Replacement activities for 2 hours: going to the gym, going for a walk

    ---

     

    Additional thoughts/activities:

    My hobbies are: personal finance, gunnery, GIS/statistics, reading/videos about (modern) history, English and geography.

    -

    I do not want to be lonely.

    I'm intentionally putting a very broad classification here, because I don't know how my friends or romances are going to look like a year from now. All I know is that long-term isolation is deadly and that I want to have meaningful relationships.

    I do not want to become addicted again.

    All of the things above got a lot better once I stopped gaming several hours a day and dozens of hours a week. Time to time, I encounter a game with a strong pull on my psyche. I don't know if there's anything else that could have such a pull on me that would also be good for me. Who knows.

    -

    I'm gonna get through all the bookmarks/ideas/concepts on my notebook. Areas: social, business, planning and more.

    For the first week of July, I decided to visit my girlfriend in Prague. It's was mixed bag of vacation, breaking the stereotype of being in my hometown, creativity and spending time with her.

    This month, I did these cool activities: spending time on trips with my girlfriend, reading about personal finance, taking part in many social events, working on my business, going to the shooting range.

  22. On 7/11/2022 at 1:06 AM, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    Personally, even if I have 30 - 60 minutes of time that is not being taken up by anything else, not arts and crafts, not baby care, socializing, blah blah etc. even if I'm so bored I want to die... I still would prefer to not game. But why? I know why. It's simple to me. When I game I do not only game for 30 - 60 minutes, maybe for a short time right after ending a detox, but in my experience it never stays that way.

    I think it's just the fact people still don't fully grasp the idea that gaming could be addictive. They've heard of smoking, drinking, gambling... but gaming? I am however confident there'll be more self-identified gaming/social media addicts coming out of the closet over time, as the "uniqueness" stigma lifts as the mainstream media talks about the issue more and more.

    On 7/11/2022 at 1:06 AM, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    When I game it quickly becomes the thing to fill all voids in my life. My easiest way to escape.

    ...

    I have noticed a dramatic difference in my overall behavior and mood when I am not gaming. The most obvious is that I can't be irritated by having my game interrupted if I don't do it in the first place. I also do not get angry at games (which have the power to enrage me quite easily) if I don't play them either.

    Is there a clearer way to say something is addictive? I think it's one of the best descriptions of addiction I've ever read.

    On 7/11/2022 at 1:06 AM, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

    Again, this is all very personal...

    Reading this part, I remembered reading or hearing somewhere that people often think that they are "ordinary people who have unique experiences", while the opposite is more likely - we are "unique individuals having common experiences". It's worth thinking about when facing a problem - probably billions of people had the same problem to solve at some point too.

    • Like 1
  23. On 7/9/2022 at 3:15 AM, Amphibian220 said:

    Need to do research in the field of my study Asap and look at better ways of exploring work opportunities.

    Im no longer a dreamer, but how do I master those job interviews?

    You can try what I did. Not many language companies externally advertise they have available language courses for lecturers. The situation is so dynamic it wouldn't make sense to give a serious "regular" job posting for a "job" that is once a week for 90 minutes.

    When I first set out to seriously search for a job, I opened Google Maps, typed in "language school", "language agency", "English teacher" etc. and looked up all the companies in my area. I still have the file and it has nearly 100 e-mail adresses.

    Since then I've sent out hundreds of mails asking for an interview. I've been to dozens of interviews. And I've worked for a few companies. All this work made me have experience, options/relative job independence and confidence in myself.

    Now, it happens from time to time that somebody finds my advertisment/website and contacts me, or remembers me from the past and makes me an offer, but not often enough to build my business on that. I am happy I did all the work in the past and today I'm benefiting from it.