Habits: Time Necessities

While at Clearfield Job Corps Center (CJCC), I formulated a standard operating procedure (SOP) for running a small business. It was an arduous task, but I learned a lot from it; the most important thing creating an SOP taught me, is that for those that want to be successful in life, time really is money!

Ever since then, whenever I waste time I take into account whatever I think I am worth per hour that day, and realize just how much money I just squandered.

For example, as I am worth $100/hr. currently, I have wasted a whopping $2,500 in just the last week alone. This simply cannot do! To ensure that I don’t waste so much valuable time in the future, an effective Time-management plan must be formulated, just as I did for my SOP @ Job Corps.

Because everyone has different priorities, the true SOP for one’s life must be determined by each person individually; however, this SOP (inspired by Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs) provides a viably universal roadmap to guide everyone in developing an effective Time-Management plan. Let’s make it count!

It should be noted that because time management is so complex and pervasive, the majority of the Time SOP plan will be explained in-context, and that will not be until the next stage of Project Matthias (which will cover habits more in-depth) has initiated.

Thus, this post will serve as a time-management overview, only covering the basics:

1. Most activities (all except those given special provisions on an exception status) will be allotted a time limit of 10 minutes. My reasoning for this is that the most time-consuming task, taking a shower, can be completed in less than 10 minutes with enough practice.

2. The default “special provision” time limit will be 20 minutes, since an anime episode can be completed in that amount of time. When an exemption is made for leisure activities (such as anime), only one exemption will be given per day.

3. There may up to 3 exemptions made for socially-beneficial activities; such exemption(s) will take up no more than 2 hours per day in combined time spent.

4. Any task with marginal value must be completed in less than 1 minute.

5. All regular events of non-marginal value should be scheduled (via Google Calendar)

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Habits: Emotional Necessities

Although emotional discipline is more of a problem for females than males, controlling and properly utilizing one’s emotions is an issue that should be targeted by everyone. Emotional habits assist with channeling one’s excess energy, both positive and negative, into productive means.

I’ve known many people (including myself) who have so much excess emotional energy that they resolve to rid themselves of all of it– for their own good. While this might be an acceptable path, and is by its very nature “reasonable” (emotional is killed off in favor of logic), is imbalanced, and leads to several negative side-effects, such as anti-social behavior, detachment, apathy, dysfunctional families, co-dependency, nihilism, and existentialism tendencies. In my opinion, that’s not a life worth living.

I have bipolar disorder, and so I understand very well what it means to have to cope with excess emotional energy, both positive (mania) and negative (depression), regularly.

These habits not only help control bipolar (effectively curing it, without medication), but also sublimate (e.g. “transfer”) that excess energy into a productive lifestyle– making that otherwise troublesome energy an investment, instead of a liability.

Note: These Habits overlap with the Mental sense, because they heavily rely on mental self-affirmations.

1. As covered in Mental Necessities, “monitor your own filtering system”, in this case to keep track of emotional anomalies. That is, emotions that deviate from what is considered “normal” should be monitored, analyzed, and responded to proactively.

There are two primary attributes of emotional anomalies: intensity and abnormality.

Intensity: Refers to the strength of the given emotion. If the emotions you feel are more intense, the effects of it will have a greater impact on your behavior.

Abnormality: The level of deviation from the norm; that is, the extent to which the emotion felt is an anomaly.

In other words, Abnormality refers to how much of a problem a particularly emotion will cause, and and Intensity refers to the net impact of those problems will have.

To ensure that your emotions are “kept in check”, It’s important that you understand how you feel, and the intensity of those feelings; this knowledge will help you to be able to expect what to feel, and know how to properly react to those feelings before they become a problem. In doing so, you will effectively be turning “abnormality” into “normality”.

2. Create a psychological failsafe:

There are always circumstances that we all must deal with eventually, which are often unexpected, dramatic, and…well, new. It might be something painful and tragic, or it might something exciting and pleasurable.

But either way, some situations cannot be planned for, and there should be a catch-all failsafe that prevents you from doing something…stupid.

It could be that the million dollars you just won is a scam. It’s not worth getting revenge on the person who killed your soul mate by killing them– at least not in the long run.

But when you are pumped with unexpected emotions, you don’t have the self-control to break them down and analyze them as instructed in #1– your instincts are controlling your body at that point– not you!

So you need to create your own instincts, so that “when the time comes”, you can head off primal instincts with your own failsafe instincts. Engrave it in your mind:

No matter what happens, don’t kill people unless your life depends on it”

Something like that.

This type of habit is a moral code of sorts, and so in that sense overlaps with Social Habits, although that won’t be covered for a while.

3. Proactive empathy: Not everyone has the intuitive ability to feel other people’s emotions– I know I don’t. But regardless of whether you do, it’s always better to consciously make a habit of being empathetic– after all, just as emotions are unreliable, intuition is too. When intuition is cast aside, empathy can be considered the process and skill of sharing, discerning, analyzing, and responding to other’s emotions.

So to acquire reliable empathy, you should make a habit of consciously studying the emotional self (both your emotions and those of others), being open about your emotional self, connecting with others emotionally (by sharing feelings), and most importantly, responding to other’s feelings.

What I’ve found (through a lot of unfortunate experiences) is that you can have “empathy” in the eyes of others, but only if you’re willing to bullshit people into believing that you actually “feel for them” even if you don’t. But this aspect of empathy will be more appropriately covered in Social Necessities.

4. Moderation: If there is too much of any good thing, surely that axiom applies to emotion.

Regardless of whether you enjoy what you are feeling, it’s important that you control those emotions as much as possible, so as to maintain emotional Balance and stability.

This especially applies to people with Bipolar– those who’s lack of emotional stability has led to emotional immaturity. By moderating your emotions, both expressively and mentally, you will gain a greater level of emotional discipline and self-control over time.

By limiting your emotions, you may stifle some of your happiness, but over time, you will gain patience and a sense of security and self-empowerment that leads to a far greater happiness than you could have otherwise attained.

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Habits: Mental Necessities

For those that are philosophically driven and open-minded like myself, it’s quite easy to lose sight of reality, and float freely in an idealistic dream world.

There is a great deal of potential in the creativity that comes with “thinking outside the box” (take Ego Engineering for example!), but to properly use it, we need some habits to remind us to come back “down to earth” regularly, so as to not “lose touch” with the “real” world:

Note: These Habits overlap with the Psychological sense, because they are based in the concept of self-affirmations, a method invoked by Self-efficacy.

1. Every day when you wake up in the morning, recite a creed that emphasizes the validity of distinguishing between the your reality and that of Other people. For example:

“I am aware of what I believe and what I know to be right. But at the same time, I recognize that Other people do not agree with my morals, ethics, beliefs, or even my perception of reality. This is a truth I must acknowledge, accept, and live my life according to– and, when appropriate, exploit for my benefit.”

2. When talking with people or reading material on the Internet, maintain a self-enforced moderation in your perception and cognitive bias of any knowledge you are exposed to.

(In other words, don’t be gullible or impulsive with data you receive)

3. Everyone normally has a filtering system for interpreting information taken in, and ensuring that data harmful or useless to oneself is either blocked or “censured out”. It’s important that you monitor your own filtering system, to make sure that your perception is filtered correctly.

Mental illness is the direct result of deficiencies or *bugs* in the data filtering systems of the brain. So if the universe is made of compressed sound, “chemical imbalances” might well be the direct result of proverbial “white noise”.

4. Remind yourself that “You are what you believe in”. For this reason, you should perceive reality according to the reality most suitable for your personal success. Remember that you can’t know anything with absolute certainty, so you’re better off believing what will make you happy (or whatever it is that you want to be!).

(Watch the movie “The Importance of Being Earnest” for a good example of this).

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Standard Operating Procedure

While I was in Job Corps, I spent a few weeks working as the manager of the pseudo-company “IT Portal”. My instructor Jay Bindrup, recognizing the lack of proper infrastructure for the company to operate properly, encouraged me to create a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to better define the operations of the company, and to serve as a reference point should operations be compromised.

At first I was not enthusiastic about the idea, as I had not created an SOP before, and was still in the dark as to what IT Portal was about in the first place. But eventually I realized that the laziness and informal state of the company made an SOP a crucial matter that needed immediate attendance, and so I worked off what little knowledge that I had to create what was to become a 15+ page long comprehensive SOP of IT Portal company operations– an employment manual of sorts.

It was from this experience that I was first inspired to envision Ego Engineering as a Standard Operating Procedure for life itself.

I had written many posts inferring such an approach, covering topics such as Habits and Priorities, but it was not until IT Portal that I realized the need for a literal “manual” for life– a step-by-step guide to being successful in life, and where you choose what it is that “success” means.

The concept that it’s possible to create a manual that can instruct anyone, regardless of their personality, interests, or goals, on how to be successful in life– just thinking about it is very exciting!

With Ego Engineering, you can become anyone you want to be– just follow the instructions, and before you know it you’re on your path to the dream life that you were so sure was impossible!

I suppose that my initial inspiration for the creating a Standard Operating Procedure was the Core10 framework. But I soon realized that for what I wanted to accomplish, the Core10 was far too abstract. But an SOP on the other hand– with this and a Core10 framework, I could do it!

I’ve said that I will become a god, and that I will become perfect. Perhaps I will, but that’s not the point.

What this is really about: I want you to. I want everyone to. I had an epiphany a while ago, and realized that everyone could become anything they want to, if only they believe. The fact that people are not being everything they can be irks me to no end!

Unfortunately, no one will take my word for it, so I have no choice to become a god– to become perfect, if I am to wake people up to the stagnancy we’ve enslaved ourselves in. To truly inspire people– that is my goal.

If we’d only be a bit more open-minded and exercise a bit more control over our lives, nothing is impossible for those who believe!

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Habits: Physical Necessities

Although it would be unhealthy to live without any of the senses, if you must live with only one sense, let that sense be Physical Sense, for without it you would not even be able to survive.

For this reason, the physical sense is the first sense that is elaborated upon in Ego Engineering, and the first priority in regards to actualization of said writing.

In it’s basic form, it refers to the provision of basic needs, including food, water, shelter (including clothing and housing), and ultimately, sex.

With the dawn of civilization, several new physical needs were added, all of which overlap with social needs: hygiene, grooming, and sometimes aesthetics.

While the basic needs do not need to be habitual, the second set, being socially motivated and thus not instinctively or intuitively knowable, must be learned by means a habits.

These social habits, which are to be applied to the physical aspect of Ego Engineering, are arranged in order of priority:

Hygiene:

1. Wake up at 6am every morning, and go to sleep at 10pm every night.

2. Take a shower every day, at the same time each day.

3. Be sure to use soap and shampoo, and scrub everywhere.

4. Brush teeth twice a day: after the morning meal, and after the evening meal.

5. Wash hands after doing anything in the bathroom.

6. Keep your environment (workplace, bedroom, etc.) clean and organized at all times. Don’t let a day go by without cleaning and organizing these areas.

7. Wear each set of clothes, underwear, and socks for no more than a day. Make sure that all clothing is washed before wearing again.

8. Don’t touch your face for any reason.

Grooming:

1. Shave facial hair and comb/brush hair every day at the same time.

2. Style hair appropriately to the day’s occasion; attention to detail.

3. Wear deodorant and, when possible, lotion.

4. Dress in clothes appropriate for your environment; be sure to match.

5. Use mouthwash and wear a balanced cologne whenever going out.

6. Use skin care products to make sure that your skin is soft and blemish-free.

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You Have Value

In the past few years, I have done quite a bit of writing on self improvement, and have not applied hardly any of it, comparably.

If I were to apply everything that I’ve learned and written about, I would be able to do all kinds of impossible things– things that few believed were even possible.

This is because what I write about is my potential, not what I will actually do.

As a result, I’ve become nothing more than an existentialist philosopher with no value, no will to live. A person who claims to be able to solve all of the worlds problems, and help people be whatever they want to be, and do whatever they want to do. A hypocrite, one who talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk.

This post is about the beginning of everything– the foundation.

1If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

In other words, I could do all of these amazing and beautiful things…but if I do not have a genuine love of myself and for others, nothing I do will ever have value.

This is where it all starts: Love.

While your potential may be determined by what you know, and what inspires you– what you actually become is ultimately determined by how much you value yourself and others; love yourself and others.

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