Good work for bad people

               I may have mentioned the laws of physics once or twice before today, I did. However, most of my chaotic and questionable writings have been about the human mind and my efforts change into a better man, to become somebody else in flesh and thought – this is not a random effort, it is something I believe is derived from the laws of physics by way of mathematical modeling. Sounds fishy? It should, I wrote it that way and it sure sounds fishy to me, too. But my models actually do work. It’s the scale of things that doesn’t work. I’m not having trouble with effectiveness, I’m hitting all the right markers but I’m not scoring high on efficiency. You see, there’s trouble ahead with lions and dragons in uncharted territory, because I’ve reached a point in my life where everything hinges on my mental abilities and not on the various textbooks and work scenarios I may or may not use for peak performance. I’ve reached the highest level of my competence or, as the Peter Principle states way better: I have risen to the level of my incompetence. The only thing I can improve is not my work but my mind, and I have to admit I might need a wee bit of help.

               I have noticed for years now, that I am utterly incapable of imagination in newer fields. I can’t create something new, I can only improve and innovate on existing designs and ideas. I know my brain is playing tricks on me, has been for decades now and it has kept me on a tight leash – no running around, boyo. What I mean is, for the lack of a better explanation, I found my first limit and it is something I may be able to overcome. Being an idiot for such a long time has created some bad habits and those bad habits have, in turn, created shortcuts in my reasoning. I was stupid, fat and afraid – now, I’m just afraid and a wee bit overweight. About five years ago I have found the reason for this desire – my son, and I was terrified. I took a long look at myself and found myself wanting. Since then, I have had very good progress on my improvement list but I’m only a third of the way through and, well, the kid’s starting to ask questions to which I lack answers. No, not answers per se but models, because my idea of parenthood involves becoming a role model, doing thus showing and I sort of fear I’m not improving fast enough.

               The point is, I read many books that apparently have a common theme – good parents worry about being good parents – but I don’t think a pep talk can cure it, what if that’s only something for selling validation? I mean, buy this book that tells you because you worry you are a good parent. What if good parents aren’t worried about their parenting abilities? I do find some points in favor of this last statement, as the majority of kids I see are either insecure or dumb, confused individuals and to me that doesn’t scream “good parenting”. Hell, I was one myself three decades ago, loving math and science but unable to “mingle” therefore I took a series of turns which ended with me drinking more alcohol while attending university than I did in the whole decade that followed (and I have to admit, I may have upped the game a bit since then). I simply thought it was the correct way to be popular and meet girls – wrong choice for the first target, right on target for the second. Ulcers takes the high ground.

               I can do my job quite well, however boring I may think of it, but going further may require additional brain power. I never did qualify at what I’m doing now and my company is new territory and unfamiliar ground, going further means more discipline and better controls of my behavior ergo I have to improve unless I’m either stuck in limbo doing what I’m doing now or go back to corporate sales which almost killed me a few years back. What example would that set for my son? Well, the decision was mine and I’ve made my choices therefore I have to live with them. I decided to improve regardless of how much that hurt, I chose to become a different, a better person than the one staring at me in the mirror. The choice is simple, the method to achieve is … complex. For instance, I could be starving myself to lose weight, it’s not an easy thing nor is it painless, it is effective but it is not efficient. Why? I am not in control of my emotions when I’m hungry, which is polite speak for I get very, very angry just like that Snickers commercial. If I were to do it and keep it up so I won’t gain back that weight I lost, I may upset my family so I may improve one thing but break another which would require me to use more of my resources to fix what I broke, not a good score overall, I should say.

               My quest for a better mind is only a part of my war against the old self, against the habits and behavior of the past but it is by far the hardest. Why? There are no shortcuts, there are no cheat sheets, there are no items I could buy and instantly put on, like shoes and ties and bathrobes, everything goes slow and I’m opposed by my own brain. The previous text about being a gentleman was read by exactly 3 people which is not my idea of popular but you get my meaning – I may have blundered there a bit. No, I won’t change it, it is exactly what I’m thinking at this point in my life and I have to keep it there for my future self to ponder on. Not everything I write about is nice. I am not a nice person. I will be one, at some point in the future, but I am not one now. Keeping a closed mind for most of one’s life does that to people. I don’t have much time left so I have to use the most efficient method to finish what I’ve started, and that, mon ami, is my dilemma – efficiency.

               I can’t pick just one bullet point on my list and go with it, I have to pick a category and improve it as a whole – looks, thoughts, proactive behavior, reactive behavior, social skills, clothes, health, skills – and there’s a catch in there somewhere as well, often one category is sort of linked with others, I can’t lose weight and still wear my old clothes and I can’t focus on social skills without improving my thought processes and my standard reactions. Right now, I’m focused on looks, health and clothes which left me worrying about other… stuff. Working out means less time for my family, less food means me smash, and even if I can talk about it with my wife, my son is not really that up for it, he doesn’t have the vocabulary for it, yet and he’s not exactly aware of future complications. In short, I want him to feel happy and loved, not ignored and resentful. So, what do you think is the maximum effort I could push myself into that also has the minimum interference in my son’s life? What’s my most efficient route?


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