Biology is a software process. Our bodies are made up of trillions of cells, each governed by this process. You and I are walking around with outdated software running in our bodies, which evolved in a very different era. – Kurzweil
Humans are inefficient at nearly everything.
Yeah, that means you too.
We have a lump of fat between our eyes which is supposed to guide us in the right direction in life, but more often then not it blocks the pathway to exactly the things we want most.
Imagine an on-off switch for fear, social anxiety, willpower, energy, focus/drive and all that fun-stuff.
No, we get this incredible inefficient piece of junk that needs to be put in optimal conditions to get even remotely average work done.
We get sloppy, we get tired, we get afraid, we start resisting against actions that could potentially lead to a GREAT life.
Can someone give me an upgrade please? The human brain is long overdue..
The Story Of Your Divided Brain
First, let’s start with a little – visual – story of how your brain works (and why it sucks balls).
I know you like pretty pictures and fancy colors so that’s exactly what I’ll use.
Here’s your brain – Lets call him Gunther.
Stop asking questions – that’s why.
Inside Gunther lives Grumpy (not feeling that creative tonight – bear with me here.)
You can picture Grumpy as the evil ghost from pacman, trying to make your life miserable.
It will constantly chase your ass down, keeping you from the work that needs to be done and literally tries to eat you alive.
It doesn’t care one thing about what you truly want to achieve in life.
It doesn’t care about your plans for the future.
Grumpy simply hates getting out of bed early, Grumpy hates going to the gym to lift heavy weights and grumpy certainly doesn’t want to eat broccoli. Stinking, nasty, slimy broccoli.
Mr grumpy just does not give a fuck unless it’s absolutely necessary.
He’s easily distracted and tries to drag you along to do stupid stuff like watching videos of whale penises on YouTube (you’re welcome) browsing Facebook for bikini pics of a girl you’re into (you wish), eating (too) spicy kebabs when you go out with your friends and so-on.
He’s the reason you lose focus the second something that looks – remotely – like a female enters your vision (lately it’s been everything with a pulse really). Yet makes your heart rate go up when you approach her.
Grumpy is the one that causes anxiety in big social environments, he dreads public speaking, is the main cause of negative self-talk and starts making you act like a complete and utter retard when an attractive girl is in the room.
God I hate this thing in my head.
It’s constantly looking for the fast, easy way out to get things done. Get rich quick, get healthy without having to work for it, watching porn and masturbating without having to go out and approach women, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol and so-forth.
This is your limbic system. It makes instinctual/emotional (crapshit) decisions. It fires in ancient ways that have become useless this day and age.
He will kick, crawl, scream and do anything to stop you from exerting energy – And tell you anything you want to hear to justify those actions.
And want to know the fun part?
You can’t get rid of it. It’s an integral part of your brain and can’t be separated from your more “common sense”.
Here’s the thing though;
Grumpy is also always lying and always full of shit.
So, whatever he tells you; don’t you listen to him. (easy to say though)
“The enemy is our chattering brain, which, if we give it so much as a nanosecond, will start producing excuses, alibis, transparent self-justifications and a million reasons why we can’t/shouldn’t/won’t do what we know we need to do.” – Do The Work – Steven Pressfield
On the other hand, there’s Mr willpower (Yeah, that’s a lame name too. Deal with it. It’s late over here.)
Mr willpower is your more recently developed neocortex which makes rational decisions. Mr willpower has a more long-term view on life and allows you to;
- Go to the gym when you’re tired and sore
- Wake up early when you’re supposed to
- Fast for one/two+ days
- Not watching porn nor masturbating
- Pushing yourself to approach an attractive girl despite anxiety/fear
- Standing in front of a large crowd and speaking in public confidently
- Being open and honest despite being controversial/hurtful
- Look up & walk proud like you actually deserve a place on this planet
- Taking a cold shower
- Choosing long-term rewards over short-term
- Reaching out to strangers
Overall just doing something uncomfortable but you know is best for you. Mr willpower lets you act despite fatigue, despite laziness or irrational fear.
He’s the “badass” you.
Here’s the thing though;
In the beginning of the day, mr Willpower feels great and energetic and can easily drag the Grumpies around without much effort. He just “flexes them bi’s” and plows through their stupid urges.
But by having to drag them around on his back all day, he gets tired and starts collapsing. He just faints on the floor from exhaustion and needs to start recovering.
Now, the Grumpies are back in charge and with mr willpower completely down ‘n out they let loose; binge eating, unfocused behavior, sleeping in very late, wasting time, skipping on the gym, negative self-talk, watching porn, browsing youtube and so-forth.
A shitstorm of negative behavior.
This is called ego depletion
Who’s In Charge?
The problem is this; you mostly won’t know who’s talking to you and who isn’t. And the problem arises when we identify ourselves with mr grumpy instead of mr willpower.
You bang your head on the wall since you already should have dealed with this shit. How come an intelligent person like yourself still succumb to this?
Why the fuck is your mind-state not 100% – all the goddamn time?
Solid & firm like it should be?
You’ve meditated, you’ve tried the weird bouncy-breath exercises your friend told you about, you’ve done the paralyzing comfort zone challenges, you write in the fucking journal and do the reflections you’re supposed to do, you go to the damn gym and eat all the stinking broccoli you can find.
You’ve spent days in your room working on skills that will be valuable in the future, you’ve approached a ton of attractive girls, you get up when you’re supposed to and lift weights on days and hours people don’t even consider getting near the gym.
YET WHERE IS IT? Where is the permanent change, the reduction in resistance from your own brain?
It’s like a constant uphill battle between you and yourself. Everyday resetting as you go to bed. You’re not getting closer – despite the effort.
I know – rationally – I should dis-identify with the bullshit thoughts that only bring me down. I understand my mind is biologically divided and that I’m the victim of never-ending garbage-thoughts of my ancient instinctive urges.
Fucking – why
Can’t it change faster
“At the very biological level your brain is a battlefield between your nature and your nurture”
Hey brain, if you’re listening (I know you’re not): I’m 21 already, I’m dying here.
Mastering The Brain
Like I said, a switch where you could turn on or off any trait you wanted would be heaven.
No more fear, no more tiredness, no more boredom, no more brain fog, no more resistance on tasks, no more distractions, no more anxiety, no more negative self-talk, no more foggy thoughts or other useless crap that poisons our life.
But unless we get some better, upgraded cyber-brains, that’s not going to happen anytime soon.
So guess I’ll end this post on a practical note. There’s two main ways we can go about improving our brain really;
- Train the brain to start resisting less (reduce the power of the grumpies)
- Meditation/grounding/breathing exercises (I’ve started holosync recently)
- Neuro-feedback training (if you have the money – I’m skeptical though.)
- Build selective habits that have the highest ROI for your life quality. Routinize 80% of your life (especially mornings & evenings). Automatic brain patterns means less mental resources need to be spent on the same action.
- Visualize and experience situations you want to become desensitized too. Create the neural patterns required so it’ll be easier to traverse the path in the future.
- Provide the brain with more mental resources to overcome resistance (make mr willpower stronger)
- Eat a paleolithic/ketogenic diet and take omega 3 & a vitamin d supplement, optimize your sleep. More energy means access to higher brain functions (e.g. your neocortex)
- Modafinil/provigil/adrafinil (nootropics – ordered my first dose right now actually). Again more mental resources.
- Build self-discipline to overcome laziness & courage to overcome fear. Like a muscle
Self-discipline is build by getting shit done – no matter what you feel like. Here’s activities that require self-discipline;
- Implement new behavior
- Filter distractions
- Resist temptations
- Suppress negative emotions
- Restrain aggression
- Choose long-term over short term reward
Every time you push that boundary – the ‘further’ you can go the next time.
There are probably some other ways to upgrade your brain – but I was distracted looking at boobs.
Getting your mindset right on a constant basis is the only thing that ultimately matters. Conversely, it’s the most difficult thing you’ll ever attempt.
Let’s face it; our brain is simply not suited for the time we live in. Which can makes us feel really inadequate at pretty much everything we try. No matter how long we’ve been at it.
In this post I’ve outlined some basic actions you
can must take if you want at least a satisfactory control over your life quality.
But some patterns are simply so deeply ingrained that they’re impossible to remove.
With the design of our brain, nature has found a cruel way to keep us engaged and reproducing in life. Fear, insecurity, lust are the “necessary” spice of life as they
allow force us to adapt, improve and survive (although these encoded actions are rendered largely useless by now)
What’s free-will worth behind pre-programmed actions of a dated brain? Even worse when influenced by chemicals for useless pursuits like reproduction and status acquisition . (0:40)
“Why, Mr. Anderson? Why? Why? Why?
Why do you do it? Why? Why get up? Why keep fighting?
You believe you’re fighting for something for more than your survival? Can you tell me what it is? Do you even know?
Is it freedom or truth? Perhaps peace. Could it be for love?
Illusions, Mr. Anderson. Vagaries of Perception. Temporary constructs of a feeble human intellect trying desperately to justify an existence that is without meaning or purpose.
And all of them as artificial as the Matrix itself!
Although, only a human mind could invent something as insipid as love.
Makes me wonder what the purpose is of reproduction? The “grand-scheme” of our brain on which all our energy and time is mostly spent. A thing of seemingly great importance.
Why reproduce? – simply because our brain tells us too?
Because the right amount of dopamine and oxcytocin shot into your brain creates a 6 to 8 month neurochemical addiction that gives you happy-happy fun-fun feelings?
Including withdrawal-like symptoms and a chance on a walking durex-ad.
Point being = Me and my brain have opposing agenda’s.
Humans are too bound by instinct to enter the transcendental plane of machines and too rational to be happy by living purely animalistic.
The only way being forward.
I hope there’s an upgrade soon.
Thanks for reading this article, if you found it helpful, be sure to share it around. If you’re having anymore questions or thoughts on this article be sure to share them with me in the comment section below.
Take care & stay strong
– Simon resetting for the day.