Existential Angst? Try a Learning/Productive Day

Chase

Chieftan
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Oct 9, 2012
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Wrote this up as a response to J Wick in this thread, but figured it probably deserved its own thread since I think everyone runs into this sooner or later.

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One note though: any time I start feeling some existential angst, generally I take a moment to look at how I've just spent my day.

Usually I'll discover I did nothing or very little of note on accomplishing any of my overarching goals that day. So, I'll make a few notes about what to accomplish the next day, then head immediately to bed if it's not too early so I can get some good sleep and wake up refreshed and get right to work.

The next day I'll generally bang out all or most of the stuff on my list plus whatever else I want to do, and I hit the hay that night feeling like everything is on track and I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing.

Anyway, that's what I've noticed: if you're feeling angsty, try planning a day where you knock out a bunch of progress on things that are important to you the next day. Then see how you feel at the end of that day. Odds are, the angst will be gone.

Once you identify this pattern, you'll probably find you start planning more and more days where you knock out learning + productive tasks, and pretty quickly your life starts trending in exactly the direction you want it headed in.

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One note I forgot in that post - when planning the next day, try to include a mix of both deep learning (like, reading a book or watching a course or taking a tutorial in something - not web surfing or forum trawling, generally; the learning should be immersive and results-focused) and productive goals. You should be both learning in important areas (so you're getting fresh ideas about what to work on next) and producing/acting (so you're actually making headway on your goals).

Chase
 

ZacAdam

Cro-Magnon Man
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Nov 20, 2012
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Chase,

Chase said:
One note I forgot in that post - when planning the next day, try to include a mix of both deep learning (like, reading a book or watching a course or taking a tutorial in something - not web surfing or forum trawling, generally; the learning should be immersive and results-focused) and productive goals. You should be both learning in important areas (so you're getting fresh ideas about what to work on next) and producing/acting (so you're actually making headway on your goals).

Chase
Just done it for few days. Similar stuff. It helps.

Zac
 

Motiv

Tool-Bearing Hominid
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Dec 18, 2013
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Thank you for this post, Chase! Existential angst is a really good way of describing the chief source of my wasted energy in 2015. I think being a performance artist for a living may lend itself to getting trapped in this pitfall - add in the euphoria of sleeping with new women after a youth spent in religious chastity, and you have the perfect recipe for "existential angst." It's comforting to find rational labels for what once felt like overwhelming emotional trauma.

The overall solution (which I think you espoused): keep busy. For the emotional man, I might add to that placing a psychological stop-gap in one's mind - essentially, a barrier in the form of outright refusal to feel those dark side emotions. Sometimes, this is a tricky (or even contradicting task) for the practicing seducer, because raw, passionate sex potentially opens the portal to that dark realm. If one doesn't manage the flow of that energy in a controlled manner, it can really eat you alive (my personal experience, at least).

Chase, I really admire your calculating nature - you always manage to find a healthy perspective.

Cheers!
-M
 

Motiv

Tool-Bearing Hominid
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Here I am, drawn to this thread nearly three years later and cringing at my old response, lol.

Just now getting out of a drunken haze which served to stabilize recent, severe angst. Wasn’t so existential this time around.

My takeaway: be productive. Women talk, men do. This is exactly why therapy has never worked for me. But once I get back to work on my most precious endeavors, any angst just goes poof. Gone.

-M

P.S. loving all the recent YouTube uploads you guys are doing :)
 

metalbird

Tool-Bearing Hominid
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Sep 20, 2015
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70
I agree with this advice 100%, but it leads to another problem.

I find that when I get really stuck is when I'm trying to be productive but everything I want to do is waiting on someone or something I have little to no control over.

For example, right now, it's about 3:00 in the afternoon where I am, and I've been taking care of stuff since I woke up this morning. But as I look at my to-do list, everything left is "pending" some future thing I can't hasten.

1. I want to finish my degree <-- waiting for the semester to start
2. I want to earn money <-- don't have work until tomorrow, don't get paid until Monday. I could get a better job if I had my degree <-- See #1
3. I want to go to the gym <-- I've been working out really hard the past few days, I'm recovering and wouldn't be able to do very much anyway
4. I want to meet interesting people <-- I don't really have the money to go out right now, I'm trying to save for school <-- see #2
5. I want to have sex with hot women <-- My fundamentals could be better <-- See #3
...

At first glance, it might just seem like I'm making excuses to not do anything. But the reality is, I don't have enough going on in my life to fill all of the hours that I'm awake. So what do I do with the remaining time? My choices are to sit and be bored as shit, or checkout with video games or TV or nap or some other crap that I don't really want to do, just to pass the time.
 
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