Tools have never worked for me. Productivity hacks, tips and tricks, software thingies, ways to organize your day. Whatever.
I have tried most of them, but none of them work for me. Allegedly these things work for other people.
I feel like at the end of the day, all that a tool could do is give you an excuse to not be a dumbass.
If you’re a dumbass it doesn’t matter what tools you use, you’ll still be a dumbass.
Maybe why I have failed in using tools comes from expecting the tool to do all the work. Like if I used it, I wouldn’t be a dumbass. But it doesn’t work that way, does it?
If you’re not a dumbass, it doesn’t matter what tools you use, you’ll still be not-a-dumbass, and you’ll probably be successful no matter what you do. Because you’re not a dumbass.
I can recognize dumbassery pretty easily in others. Not always in myself. But from my observations, the primary characteristic of dumbass people is that they take actions and make decisions based on fear. “I’m doing this, because if I didn’t do this, that would mean that I’m a bad person.” Or something. Whatever.
All that is bullshit. If you spend your time trying to fit into your own imaginary ideals of what the world should be like, you are full of shit.
I am sometimes full of shit too. It’s not bad, it’s human. But usually I snap out of it, so I can go back to doing useful things, like express my ideas in writing. That’s what I’m doing now.
Just face the world head-on. It probably doesn’t look like you were taught it looks when you grew up. It probably doesn’t look like what you think it looks like. I am almost certain that what I think of as reality has no real basis in what’s actually real. I accept that, and I accept that 99% of the thoughts I have are basically bullshit.
The thing that all really happy people have in common is that they accept everything.
Hitler is a good example. As soon as you say the name Hitler, people get tense. It’s just a fucking name. OK, so you probably have no intention of exterminating one or more ethnic groups, but hey -- this guy came from nothing and managed to convince millions of people that killing Jews was a damn good idea. You don’t think you could learn from that? You could do what he did, but apply it in an area that you think is good.
I don’t really buy into any of the stories I hear about other people. Gandhi might have been a total dick. I don’t know. I didn’t know the guy. He probably wasn’t, but maybe he was. There’s no way for me to verify anything.
Dumbassery means to make assumptions about the world and about people, that you have no way of knowing.
The perfect example is in sports like football, where before (and after) a game people will get into fistfights over which team is better. No one knows, because the game is not over yet. When the game is over, it’s easy to tell. It will be right there on the scoreboard. No need to punch people. Stop being a dumbass.
But football just makes the same behavior more apparent. We do it everywhere, not just sports. Everybody is so damn sure about all their opinions.
I don’t care. I don’t have opinions about a lot of things. I have some opinions, but they are just as bad as anyone elses.
I don’t care much for self improvement either. I can only hope that some day, from getting a lot of practice at life, I can be a little bit less of a dumbass.
Current HIGHLY recommended reading list:
Choose Yourself - James Altucher
Street Smarts - Jim Rogers
Makers: The New Industrial Revolution - Chris Anderson
The Entrepreneur’s Guide To Getting Your Shit Together - John Carlton
- The 50th Law - Robert Greene and 50 Cent (not a new book, but it’s one of those that are worth reading probably once a year)
On the surface, it might appear that some of these books are industry-specific. Like if you're not into making stuff, Makers isn't a book for you. Same with Street Smarts. Not true. I'm not an investor or a "maker" -- but both of these books are books I think everyone should read. Or not. Whatever. I like these books a lot, and maybe you will too. Enjoy!