Category: Goals

Freedom vs Security

[This post was originally written for puttylike.com]

Today: some thoughts about life decisions.

But First: Let’s Talk About Fourier Transforms,

[WARNING: THIS SECTION CONTAINS MATHS! (It’s optional, so skip it, if you like.)]

A few months ago, I was making a decision, and every time I thought about it, a mathematical analogy sprung to mind.

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Jiggling an Imaginary Rope Helps You Re-Evaluate Your Life

[Warning: contains mild physics.]

Imagine a short piece of rope. We’ll call him Ropert.

Let’s imagine that Ropert represents our lives.

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The Gap Between Where We Are and What We Want

It seems fairly clear to me is that there’s often a gap between “what we have” and “what we want”.

If I were to accurately model this gap using Science(TM) and Art(TM) it’d look something like this:

gap 1

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Oh no, I’m Motivated By Fear!

fear based motivation 5

Now that I’m (mostly) successfully managing my anxiety, everything should be great forever… right?!

Well, no.

Obviously life isn’t magically perfect. (Though of course “less anxiety” is a huge improvement!)

This is fine. I never expected perfection.

But something else I didn’t expect was that managing anxiety better could itself cause problems.

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The Power of Short Term Thinking

Stonehenge (detail) by Francesco Volpi, on Flickr

How do you eat a Stonehenge? One bite at a time.

Original Photo © Francesco Volpi, Francesco Volpi on Flickr.
CC BY-ND 2.0

I’m fond of planning. I’m a Plan Fan, a man who can plan. I plan, er…

Inner critic: Hello reader. If you don’t respect anyone who can’t think of more than three rhymes for “plan”, you might like to turn away now.

Anyway. I like looking ahead, you might say. But if I get too caught up in long-term thinking, I end up struggling.

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