Posts tagged freedom
Evil Geniuses, #FakeNews, and Why You Aren't Free

The reason that so many people love to talk about freedom in the national political conversation is that, deep down, they do not feel a sense of personal freedom in their own lives. They know that they lack the discipline and value structure to achieve real freedom. Attributing this lack of agency and self-control to laws and political forces makes for a far easier pill to swallow than the reality that they chose their current state by living at the whim of their emotional impulses. The tendency to point to external factors rather than the role that they hold in their own life is the precise reason that they do not feel free.

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Are You Letting the World Make You a Lesser Version?

Technology will redefine the way we work, think, and live over and over again. Industries will rise and fall, social patterns will shift, but all the while you will be at the center of your experience. This is the essential point societies have repeatedly failed to honor following past changes, most notably in regards to the disruption that followed ubiquitous smartphone use. How well you weather this chaotic new world is completely dependent on your individual self-mastery. Regardless of how much technology shifts the landscape, you are still a human, driven by a hunter-gatherer brain and hunter-gatherer needs.  

The modern mental and physical health epidemics are spurred by technology that promotes immaturity. As we rely less on ourselves we remain lesser versions. Suddenly it becomes normal for adults to have donuts or fast food for breakfast every morning, to scan social media all day and night, and to spend money they don’t have on stuff they don’t need. To transcend these patterns, we have to intentionally craft a plan for daily self-development. The 30x30 Challenge is that daily plan.

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The Costs of Utopian Delusions

We’d like an end to all prejudice, bullying, crime, and painful accidents. These are seen as obvious positives, yet we rarely stop to consider the immense costs of these pursuits. Good intentions often do more harm than good particularly when it comes to creating an environment of human flourishing. What we think we want is rarely in our best interest and, even when it is, the path there is usually full of unintended consequences that dwarf the intended good.

Ironically, if there is any sort of utopia that is possible in our lifetime it won’t be built through greater ease and convenience, but by a culture that demands effort, growth, personal responsibility, and an understanding of the essential role of discomfort and risk. Instead of asking the world to eliminate all pain and expand pleasure infinitely, we should be asking what societal structure pulls us to be better humans? For that we’ll need to embrace imperfect social constructions such as shame and honor.

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Be the Weirdo: Why Fulfilling Values Require Us To Behave Differently

The most important thing that can do to remain committed to your values is to embrace being a weirdo. This is a beautiful thing. Nearly every influential person in history was a weirdo. That’s exactly why we know their name. They dared to poke their head above the crowd, take a look around, and decide what direction they truly wanted to walk. They chose their own path, often with heavy opposition from those around them.

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Friday Musings: The "Good Day" List

Rather than maintain any singular routine to deem a day fulfilling, productive, or “good,” I now stick to my Good Day List. 

I realized that there are numerous simple factors that lead my evening reflections to deem a day as “good.” I rarely have the freedom to work on every project that is important to me or enjoy every hobby/passion that I have. But, hitting a few items on my list always make the day feel productive and positive. 

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