The Power of Habit

I came to love her for who she isn’t
Who she’s chosen not to be.

She took a piece of me
I’m proud to say
Nothing insignificant
I hope.

I pushed her away
Then further
Until she no longer saw me
In the distance.

I will feel again soon.

The tameable fire that unleashes me
Unburdening my mouth, my mind.

A legitimate love
For my colder heart.

The Meaning of Life and the Purpose of Existence: Mystery Solved

Discovery is always internal. The revelation of some newly noticed internal reflection. The universe rewards and promotes discovery for that very reason. Its purpose for existence, and ours, lay in the exploration of reality – constantly being redefined by change, movement, the passage of time and entropy.

An Infinite Existence

The idea that the universe is expanding is mostly irrefutable, but the debate over whether existence is infinite rages on. However, if we simply apply the laws of thermodynamics – we can accept that energy cannot be destroyed, therefore existence – once started -must be infinite, in some form or another.

So bearing this in mind, what could the purpose be for an infinite universe?

The Purpose of Having a Purpose

There can only really be two types of purposes – an accomplishing purpose (with a definite targeted outcome) or a concurrent purpose (serving an ongoing unending function).

You see, an accomplishing purpose relies on one property: Being finite. Something that is infinite cannot possess an accomplishing purpose as its priority, for it has no final result and therefore cannot complete its function. Energy is not wasted, therefore if it has a purpose, an infinite God or Universe could not complete their purpose and then proceed to exist without one. That would be a waste of energy, and an unprecedented contradiction to the laws of physics which are observed without exception. An infinitely purposeful being or existence could only be justified in having a recurring purpose as its prime function of being.

A few types of recurring purposes have been speculated as the prime function of God or the universe: a moral authority, a source of positivity – or as I will here suggest: a fanatic and curious collector of all things new and adventurous.

Our Curious Existence

Within the universe, billions of universes exist via the sea of human consciousness and our individual conceptual positions. Like a fractal descent spiralling eternally into its evermore divergent self, the essence of human experience celebrates the universe’s, the creator’s and/or our thirst for newness, freshness, originality and discovery.

The spoils of fortune and fate are simply a community chest, a pot for collection for those that push themselves to discover more and inspect the nature of their own reality for the benefit of all consciousness.

To stay still is to die. To transform (alter or move form) is to uncover what was formerly hidden by that object now transformed. The truth is always there, hiding, awaiting discovery. As one saying goes: “The cave in which you fear to enter, holds the treasures you seek”.

Morality versus Reality

Truthfully, the evidence is all around us: morality is NOT the central theme of existence. Clearly, we are not reliably rewarded for our goodness. However, we are reliably rewarded for our inventiveness, ingenuity, our exploration, our emboldening. We are rewarded for being more, expanding, learning, growing, exploring, creating novel experiences for ourselves and others. The universe is using us to grow itself. Through consciousness, the universe expands. Through concept, reality is redefined.

If the creator or God or universe had felt morality should be the priority and central theme of existence, it would seem very likely that we would see a reliable trend in moral cause and effect, moral consequence.

In fact, I think morality has a lowly priority in the role of consciousness, sometimes restricting discovery and exploration, and limiting the expanse of the conceptual universe. God seems bored with morality. God gets bored with people who do the same things and don’t think new ideas. The universe rewards inventiveness, those willing to be brave and bold and try new things and discover new experiences for themselves which feed the universe’s conceptual mass.

The priority of the universe – as far as anyone would determine by simply looking around them – seems to be CONTRIBUTION. The invention, development, increase, and expansion of reality in as many ways and forms as possible. Good or bad, as long as it has not been experienced before and creates new opportunities for new truths to emerge – the universe will expand and I believe, give you a few threads of the new tapestry space as commission.

Expand for the universe, and the universe will expand for you – Stagnate, and expect the same all around you

That is where reward is reliably found. Not simply doing what was done yesterday. Not simply following the laws or the rules, but using our unique opportunity in our time and space now to analyse and establish a new situational paradigm, a new plan, a new relationship or connection between two or more things or people.

And the cosmic prize is not gifted to the one who drinks the new cocktail, but the one who devises it. The one who realises its inception and gifts reality a new offering. Enabling others to experience new things is a higher purpose and an act that is reliably rewarded by this existence – overriding the much less virile moral dimension.

You don’t get what you deserve, you only get what you negotiate

Consider the injustices of war and nature. The pillaged villagers are punished for their well-meaning but limited tradition and repetitive ways. Whereas in contrast; the warmongers are handsomely rewarded for their ruthless expansion, merciless discovery and barbaric adventurousness. They become a creator of their own new parallel existence, a whole new plethora of eventualities for exploration in the unaudited Never-land of Feynman’s subatomic potentials.

They made something true, which was not true before it and in doing so uncovered a new thread in the infinite tapestry of reality.

The lie that morality serves as the central theme of existence traps many people unwittingly into a repetitive and constrictive mindset. It is the paradigm that ties people to the material nature of outcomes.

The universe demonstrates no reliable respect for the nature of moral outcomes.

The Father of Creation

In other words, morality is about consistency of behavioural values – which is physically all about repetition and theoretically all about stasis. Repetition may be the mother of skill, but invention is the father of creation. The father of creation, it turns out, actually is creation – and there you have it – all the questions answered.

So go forth – even more forther than ever before – and explore the world, yourself and each other – because the universe is using your new experiences to get bigger, BADDER and even better every single second.

Life is literally about exploring, novelty, new things, new combinations – basically – the universe wants you to experience (and therefore redefine reality) in order to explore the infinite potentials available to us all.

Ugly People Should Be Ashamed of Themselves and Other Evolutionary Arguments

Ugly people are not to blame for being ugly. You can’t usually say it’s someone’s fault. Sometimes good-looking parents have an ugly baby so it’s not always predictable, and there are times when a person is born with a disease which of course the sufferer can’t be held accountable for.

However, putting this aside, is there an argument to say that offensively ugly people should take precautions to limit others’ exposures to their unsightliness? I mean, stupid people can hardly be held accountable for their stupidity, yet their genetic weaknesses are tolerated in general with less compassion and understanding.

I am a decidedly ugly male. I have gotten uglier with age. I once believed that the weight of the world’s sadness was on everyone’s shoulders. I thought we should be totally accommodating to the individual dispositions of everyone, to create an atmosphere of comfort for all. I could never understand why it was that others couldn’t be comfortable around me, why it was that partners would never desire me the way they seemed to desire others. I thought people were evil who tried to tell me that I was ugly, but in fact, they were really doing me a favour.

You see, it is natural for people to find severe ugliness uncomfortable. Not that many people can so easily train themselves to be OK with seeing a freak show face. Babies are often horrified by ugly faces and children are scared witless of uglier people. Not all people have trained this out of themselves… and is that really such a bad thing? Is it really for the best interest of society as a whole?

The way I see it, some of us have to take responsibility for what we look like. It’s not pleasant but the truth is that life isn’t fair and the world is a cruel place. I was bullied at school. Stabbed in the leg in Maths class for having red hair by a 15 year old tattooed bully. The teacher said nothing, and I didn’t tell my parents because I thought their worrying about it would impact my few adolescent freedoms. The experiences at school taught me that in my own unique and personal existence, the universe has placed me in a different category to other people. I realised that normal people will experience benefits that are beyond my realistic expectations.

The very saddest points in my life have been during the times when I’ve refused to accept that. As a responsible adult, I have to recognise that my ugliness causes discomfort in people. I’m not to blame for being ugly, but knowing that people find me ugly, I am responsible for whether I make them feel uncomfortable or not. They cannot be expected to change for me – as they are not causing any offence. I am the offensive one, so it is mature and humble for me to change – or try to change something to limit their exposure to my unsightliness.

Acceptance is so much better than denial. We all want to live in a universe where we create our own reality, but if we continually ignore the friction that we experience when we try to do that, aren’t we just ignoring reality completely?

Now, I can finally accept that my eyes are too close together and it makes people feel awkward. Of course it does, it must be horrible for people to hold eye contact with me. I can finally accept my teeth are a crime scene and my face is asymmetrical. I can accept that my overall appearance is too “boyish” to be attractive. I understand that and I can keep to myself and try not to discomfort other people.

Of course I can’t speak for the likes of Lizzie Velasqeuz, the motivational coach used as a meme to describe the “ugliest woman in the world”. She has so much to offer and has helped so many people, but the world had no reason to offer more than mild pity until she could embody a success story as a motivational speaker. Her experiences in life qualified her to do so and it could be argued that she turned her illness – her greatest weakness, to her advantage. She became a contributor to society, to counter balance her ugliness.

I am tremendously ugly outside and I do not have a wealth of inspirational and encouraging value inside to share. Whether it’s physical or not, the world respects beauty, and since it is not present in me; I must accept that my life will be disappointing, restrictive and socially elusive.

The years I spent dating, trying to find happiness, trying to experience all the things others had implied were beyond me – they were just nightmares spent suffering while ignoring the friction of reality. Now, although my life is far from great, at least I have learned my worldly limits. At least I don’t have to feel guilty for being so unattractive or imposing my unsightliness on the more fortunate: Like a beggar on the street, looking for acceptance.

It’s a beautiful world for beautiful people, and an ugly world for ugly people. Ugly people should do their best to moderate their ugliness, dress well and try to hide it – for the benefit of others. Ugly people should not be told that the world can offer them everything. Genetics made a big mistake with some of us, it was a lottery and we didn’t win. Let’s let the good looking people have their fun and just accept that we aren’t as good as them. Let’s be real and accept when we have greater genetic weaknesses than should be usual, and not try to pass those faulty genes onto the next generation for the same problems to persist in.

We must try not to allow our ugliness to become uncomfortable for anyone. If a person is irredeemably ugly then they should accept that they will have that effect on people – lest we start placating everyone’s pre-destined weaknesses like stupidity or tendency to commit crime.

It’s all just a lottery. If you haven’t won, deal with it and accept that you don’t get another ticket.

Some people might say “All people matter. If someone has a problem with the way you look, then it’s their problem”. However, I don’t see why my comfort is more important than another persons’. If we should apply rules based on the most comfortable living experience for as many as possible, not just the selected few, then why ugly people get let off for activating offensive neural pathways via the visual cortex when stupid people aren’t given the same irrational privilege?

Civilisation has built up a fantastic framework for a lifetime through the ages. Society has built itself to a superior level, the hardest times are over – the structure is built and the rooms are ready for operation. There was a long time previously that good looks weren’t everything. People needed to survive! There were other assets needed and they could redeem an ugly person in social status.

The world isn’t like that any more. The human psyche has evolved. Intelligence isn’t going to be as important (to a certain extent) and neither is bravery or even functionality. There are two things this world will constantly reward you for now: Humour and Sexiness.

I’m sure you can see the trend in both the Western and Eastern world that good looking people seem to have a better chance in life – in terms of social mobility, romantic and financial opportunities especially.

I have always been a big believer that the relationship you have with another person is your own responsibility. If it’s not great then you can either change it or replace the other person, but you can’t change them. Why don’t we have the same attitudes to our relationships with our lives? We want everyone else to shift into a place which makes our own lives more pleasant, and criticise people who do things that aren’t perfect for us… but I suppose we aren’t perfect for them either? How about that! We are pretty imperfect to judge people for having private disgusts about us.

I’m not sure what makes an ugly person such as myself matter in this 7 billion strong world. I literally consume resources that a better looking person could consume – someone with an actual chance of having children, someone who can create a family tree that will have the potential for benefiting great things to this planet. Someone who could contribute with their extra privileges, better earning opportunities, realistically better life. That person matters, there is no doubt. It could easily be argued that they deserve my resources.

I am just fed up with the selfish attitudes of people. “I want to be beautiful too, so if I say every one is beautiful then I become beautiful by default”. No, no you’re not beautiful. You’re ugly. Genetics made a mistake with you and you did not win the lottery. Deal with it.

I’m tired of the lack of rational understanding and mature humility in this day and age. Ugly people should feel ashamed, not directly because of their ugliness – but owing to their refusal to acknowledge it as a real-life weakness and sometimes offensive liability.

My face seems to scare children so if they are near I make sure to keep my face down and if I can cover with a scarf or something I will try. I don’t go around thinking “I should feel comfortable doing what I like”. THAT is the childish, immature thing to think. The least damage done the better. If one person is inconvenienced or offended a few times a day to prevent hundreds of people suffering once a day, then that’s better isn’t it. Less suffering, and a more beautiful place. Where’s the bit that sounds bad?

I can understand how people can react negatively. I have extremely uneven, yellow and stained teeth – and people are fairly disgusted by it.

Most are nice enough to try to hide it, but they still experience a strong sense of discomfort when I’m within talking distance. They don’t see yellow unhealthy teeth very often, their families, partners and friends all have quite white healthy teeth. Of course they will find it revolting. It’s only natural. It would be wrong for me to hold it against them. It is the dignified thing to do that I should try to keep my teeth better covered and smile with my mouth closed, for all of us I guess.

An extremely ugly person can still be admired for their other assets if existing, but those assets must counter the negative balance already established by their ugliness. I.e. that person must offer value or purpose to society in order to vindicate and redeem themselves.

Feelings of disgust are a rational and natural response to extreme ugliness. It’s not something that people can help. Emotionally mature people will attempt to mask or at least, not rise to action in response to the ugliness of an individual – but that is an act of generosity from the non-ugly party, rather than an avoidance of some evil.

I think ugly people like myself should pay more gratitude to those others who tolerate and stomach our visual offences without recourse. We should be more understanding of those who find it too impulsive to respond with honest reaction – they are, after all, unable to desist their instincts and nor should they be pressured to.

None of us can control what we look like, but we can control how we impose ourselves on the world.

Adrenaline-Junky Juvenile

The true short story about a fearless four year old and a dangerous hobby.

vincent-road

His small, chubby fingers held firm – tips whitened and blushed under the strain of his junior weight. The redder than terracotta tiling proved sufficiently affixed atop the second-storey veranda ledge for the boy to dangle himself with purchase.

At the age of four, he’d completed his explorations of the small veranda’s gymnastic capabilities. The white window box (accessible by crawling from the ledge) was certainly safe to cradle him, although he wouldn’t continue to play there. He’d learned from the unique perspective gained by hanging from the ledge itself that quite a crack had developed in the plastic trough’s base. A soil pouring onto the concrete below might create a threat of him being discovered. Still, he trusted the window box and the tiles. The only apparatus his didn’t trust was the thin, weary-looking rope knotted to a wall-hook mounted high up by the gutter. Once unfurled and cast out, the rope almost reached to the ground – a make-shift fire escape devised by his parents as a contingency. He’d learned about ropes like this from the vulnerable rope bridges in cartoons. It wasn’t safe, people always thought they might be but they never were. The boy intended to let someone else be the one to find that out.

The exhilarations young Vincent felt while hanging from the veranda ledge surpassed anything he had conceived possible hitherto. He wasn’t oblivious to the danger, although couldn’t imagine what it would be like to fall to the paving below. He hadn’t considered how disconcerting it would have been should a passer-by have spotted a toddler dangling from a pebble dash veranda ledge like a pre-school Spider-man. There was a near sexual pleasure derived from the experience, something you’d expect wouldn’t have been acknowledged until the young man had matured some but this was oddly not the case. He was aware that the experience turned him on, gave him a rush that was both cognitively and physically overwhelming. Inconsequential sounds from the street became sharper, more vivid, more significant. There was a distracting sensation at points, it hinted at pain but did not cross into discomfort. With the gradual depletion of adrenaline, the shallow scathe of the pebble-dash against his arms, torso and knees contrasted with the cold bases of the green wine bottles decoratively embedded within. He felt alive, and nothing else he could find to do compared to the knowledge that he held his life in his own hands.

It felt to Vincent as if he could hang forever. On this occasion however, for the first time, a scraggly murmur came from the resident of the flat below to quite rudely interrupt the boy’s self discoveries.

“Are you suppose’ to be up there?” gargled the gargoyle lady from her first-floor underworld. The surprise prompted by the anxious cry combined with the pre-determined disaster of his being detected caused Vincent’s heart to thump so hard as to cause a flash in his vision. ‘What a stupid question’, he’d thought. Of course he wasn’t supposed to be up there.

Vincent knew that it was immoral to dangle from the veranda. It was intuitive, and he recognised that were he to be caught – he would be somehow punished. What if his Mum heard the noise, or if his Dad found out what he’d been up to. Almost as soon as the flash had left his vision, he scrambled back up pulling himself over the ledge.

He was greeted by the mortified and pale expression of his Mother, peering out to find her preschool child climbing back over the flat balcony. She’d heard the concerned utterances of the neighbour lady and had witnessed Vincent’s transgressions for herself from the window. That was the last time that Vincent was permitted access to the veranda.

When They’re Just Simply Not That Into You

unrequited_love

There’s something so refreshing and liberating about that new relationship feeling. The romantic equivalent of the ‘new car smell’: a personalised aura of kinship comes to define a relationship in the early stages and at the time – it makes the world feel, look and sound like a different place.

Perhaps the most liberating element of a new romance is to have the freedom to be someone new with a new person – to play to newly-developed strengths or to explore a new or forgotten side of yourself that this person has been able to uncover. Equally, the excitement of reciprocated affection and interest from a legitimately desired source is always alluring and reassuring.

That reciprocation can however be quite tentative, with the future of the relationship often depending on what degree of affection and commitment is being offered by each person to the other. A lot of emphasis is placed on making sure that we are giving enough to our partners, which is good because love is an act of giving and we should focus on our own choices and behaviours more so than those of others. But what does one do when they think that the person they’re dating isn’t so serious about the relationship as they are themselves.

This article is all about that partner that really floats your boat, makes your head spin and your knees go weak – that person who is out of this world in your eyes but you don’t see many indications that they feel the same way about you…

This article penetrates the subject of imbalance in the mutuality of relationships, or in other words; the warning signs that a person you are seeing, dating or in a relationship with might not be that into you – and how to respond if you feel that is the case.

It’s an important topic because life is one long series of negotiations, and nothing comes closer to negotiating in the average modern life than dating and job interviews. To get the best offer, we need to be aware of who we are negotiating with and what they think about us and our offerings.

First thing, we need to explore is  the stereotypical courtship process, that is to say: the norm.

THE TYPICAL COURTSHIP PROCESS

Men and women tend to vary slightly in terms of time-frames and relationship landmarks for developing affections and exhibiting them via their respective behaviours. These can be termed stereotypical gender behaviours and there are of course many exceptions, although the below template tends to reflect the majority of cases on average.

  • Men are renowned for being commitment-phobes, preprogrammed by genetics and society (so the story goes) to spread their seed and participate in plentiful non-monogamous acts of sperm competition.
  • Women are (supposedly) inclined to welcome a more monogamous commitment in the interest of cultivating a nurturing and stable environment suitable for modern day child-rearing.

These are the stereotypes, and in many instances, by diverging from your gender’s stereotypical attitude – you can expect to arouse doubt within your partner as to your own masculine/feminine substance. As such, there is evidence that women are more attracted to a promiscuous male, and men more attracted to a virtuous female. This schema contributes towards the following successful relationship formation process, equivalent to the formula which has been used by romance and erotica authors for centuries now.

Successful courtships leading into mature relationships usually follow the same fundamental pattern:

  1. Man demonstrates interest in woman (without commitment)
  2. Woman subtly reciprocates interest (without commitment)
  3. Man chases Woman, perusing and courting her (offering commitment ambiguously)
  4. Woman gradually allows Man closer and begins to ‘chase’ him more in return: (accepting offer of commitment ambiguously)
  5. Man backs off a little, allowing a more evenly mutual courtship to take place: (perhaps reassessing commitment offer and allowing Woman to offer commitment of her own, negotiating the future balance of the relationship)
  6. Absence makes the heart(s) grow fonder (both Man and Woman assess each other’s interest individually and at least one will wonder whether the other might lose interest during absence – if absence is timed well, both will decide to commit on next meeting – based on the perceived high value of the other and the energy invested thus far)
  7. Man conquers Woman who submits to his courting, she begins to commit to him (sealing the deal, contract, making manifest the commitment they offered)
  8. Man and woman assess satisfaction in their reciprocation and decide to commit to one another, complicity or explicitly (assessment and ongoing review of relationship)

This is by no means definitive but summarises the fundamental process over the first two or three months of the typical relationship formation.

Although there can be trouble in paradise!

What happens when everything feels like it’s naturally falling into place and it all feels good – but you can’t shake off the suspicion that your new partner’s motives aren’t consistent with your own? Or what about when you feel like the new love of your life is not falling into line with the above formula – perhaps they are not chasing you at all, or their contentious actions do not match their committed words?

The purpose of romantic dating is to get to know someone really well, to try them on so to speak – to determine whether they are a suitable partner for you. Your job is to come to a decision about your stance in becoming their partner, based on all factors – and this includes ONE VERY IMPORTANT FACTOR: how much they truly value you.

Not how much they say they value you (they should say those things if they expect to court you), or how much they compliment you (most compliments are bribes so look out for the sincere ones). Not how great the sex is (great sex does not equate to great intimacy) or how enthusiastic they seem when you’re together (you spend more than half of your life with a life partner apart from them).

Sometimes, we meet people who for whatever reason – are happy to let us believe they are looking for a long-term relationship but in truth are just not that attracted to us and are using us for some personal reason. That doesn’t mean anything, it doesn’t mean we are worth less or that they are out of our league – it’s all a bit of a joke. I’ve been in relationships with some smoking hot ladies and I’ve also been rejected for dates with girls that looked less feminine that I do, but that is the sense of humour of life that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. We all deserve someone who knocks our socks off but we can’t be that 10/10 knockout to everyone. You can’t please everyone and you can’t be everyone’s ideal partner – some people will get bored of you, others will want to use you for something other than what we are openly offering.

You need to be able to determine what your true value is in the eyes of your new partner and whether they recognise your great value or they are thinking that they can do better – not so that you can criticise them for being wrong about that; but so that you can save yourself the time, energy and potential emotional pain that might have been avoided if you’d known sooner.

THE WARNING SIGNS

Below are some really blunt, to the point breakdowns of the warning signs of this type of unbalanced relationship and common reasons for these types of behaviours. Although it can be painful to accept the reality, it’s important to face the possibilities head on so that you can be sure that you are assessing your contributions to the relationship in an objective, mature and realistic light.

Everyone has been there before. Trying to get another date with that person that makes your heart thump – only to get flaked on, stood up or defeated by a tide of weird or unbelievable excuses. Maybe that person says all the right things, making comments insinuating promise in your joint future – but when you look at their actions, they aren’t consistent with the loving and committed words they recently uttered. Perhaps everything goes so well when you’re together in person, but when you are apart there are nothing but obstacles and arguments.

If two or more of the below indicators are present in your new relationship, you may want to assess whether that person is really that into you. What you can do about it if that is the case will follow after.

  • They say “I’m really into you” but their actions read: “I can do better”. They give the impression with what they choose to say that they really like you, but some things they have done repeatedly say otherwise. They’ll tell you anything to secure your investment, talking about future commitments eagerly like living together or going on holiday – but they won’t get round to making those commitments because their heart is not truly in the relationship. They simply want your heart to be in it: so they have one more option.
  • They cancel, flake or stand up a date more than once. In some cases they might not even offer a believable excuse. Maybe they hope you’ll take the hint if they tell you an obvious lie.  Chances are that they think a better opportunity for them has come along – or perhaps they just couldn’t be bothered.
  • Everything is great when you are together in person, but when you are apart: you can do nothing right. Since you are serving them with the purpose for your existence (in their world): a distraction, a bit of fun or some companionship – of course they will treat you well when they are with you in person! But once you are apart, you are no longer useful. Left to be compared with your competition – with whom their interest is higher – your affections and interests in them are only a guilty burden to them and they’ll create arguments to derail the relationship. NB. In some cases (of women especially), a partner will create conflict to test the other – to see how effectively they deal with conflict and/or to determine whether that person is overly volatile or emotional. This is fairly normal and should be expected from time to time. Be sure to understand this concept and to be able to separate occasional ‘testing‘ (which can be present in any stage of the relationship) with the chronic and repeated obstacle of disagreeableness.
  • They can be really cruel and it seems unnecessary and/or intentional. One thing that we tend not to do with people we really have a deep romantic interest in is to hurt them emotionally. Although we do tend to hurt the ones we love more than anyone else in life, this tends to be with long-term loved ones. Ordinarily, we would do anything to avoid hurting the one(s) we consider a potential long-term partner – so as not to jeopardise our courtship attempts as much as any other reason. When someone shows clear disregards for the impact of their comments to you on a repeated basis – or appears to verbally attack you unwittingly – they are demonstrating their personal criticisms of you and showing a lack of respect of your value. They may or may not realise that they have these reservations, as everyone is different. Some people have an insecure need for love and affection and will try and fail to look past elements they find unattractive in others – to try to avoid the loneliness of being alone. Some others may recognise these unattractive qualities but are prepared to try to move past them to see whether something more substantially attractive can be found in you. Some others may take pleasure in successfully seducing numbers of people, or in the power they assume from hurting others. At the heart, the truth is all the same – they are trying to force or fake an attraction to you, but a significant attraction is not present. Attraction is not a choice, like the laws of science: it can be predicted – but not manipulated. Save your time, and find someone who sees you as the valuable catch you are.
  • They demand as much as they can get away with but give only the minimum. They only seem to want you around when they need something done, or when you can provide them with something they need. They always want you to do the texting and calling, but they never have much energy to give back to you once you have given them what they asked for. And they are not afraid to ask for things, they will never make you feel pressured but they will give the impression that giving them what they want is a step towards winning their heart. If this sums up the person you are dating, then I suggest walking away now. These types know what they are doing, they know how to wrap people around their little fingers and get them to do the dirty work for them. They are experts in manipulation and they are fully aware of their selfish intentions in your relationship. They will use you until they can find another person who can offer them more. Avoid these types of people, even if you are attracted to this type – because they are incapable of contributing to a functional relationship dynamic.
  • They say that they want you to be exclusive with them but they end up dating other people behind your back. People cheat on their relationships all the time, it’s not something that’s unforgivable or at least, I don’t believe it should be a “one chance only” or “once a cheater, always a cheater” thing. But honesty is integral to respect in a relationship and to be selfishly dishonest is the same as to lack respect for someone. If you discover that your partner is being dishonest in your new relationship, you have a difficult decision to make of whether to trust them again in the future. It can be very painful to discover your partner is seeing other people and not being honest about it, especially if you would have been open to a less exclusive arrangement. There are plenty of fish in the sea and I would always suggest not trusting a person who lies to you about anything meaningful in the first few months to a year. Everyone lies sometimes – that’s true for all of us, but how can you trust someone who lies to you very early in a relationship? It’s a clear indicator that they don’t respect you or the relationship enough, since they weren’t willing to be honest or exclusive.

Spotting these trends and not allowing yourself to believe in an illusion that can be quite inviting is really important. These people do not value you the way you deserve to be valued, and they will not offer you the relationship you hope for – at this point anyway. They see you as a temporary option and will not fall into the formula for a successful courtship I identified earlier on, unless that is – you respond correctly.

You may simply be a distraction or a sexual release, a novelty or a just someone they want or wanted to conquer. They might not even realise that they aren’t that serious about you: they might really like some qualities in you but at the end of the day, if they are doing two or more of the things above – something isn’t right – and if you are doing your part (not chasing too much or too little) whether they realise it or not, they just don’t think you’re the full package. They won’t chase you because they won’t value you. There will be no mutual reciprocation, no mutual respect for seducing one another.

SO WHAT SHOULD YOUR REACTION BE?

You can’t judge them for anything. Whatever their reasons or motives, theyre only responsible for making themselves happy and its up to you to accept or reject their involvement in your life. The world has a judgement mentality these days, so much so that half of the Myers-Briggs personality types are defined (in part) by the propensity to judge others and oneself. You can get much more out of life by gauging rather than judging – focussing on your own response to the choices of others, instead of focussing on the choices of others themselves.

COMMUNICATION

The first thing you need to do is communicate openly, productively and assertively about your needs, wants and the values which are most important to you. If your partner has done some of the things above, you can express to them how that makes you feel, the impression that gives you about how they feel about you, and your concerns about that as an ongoing problem.

You need to communicate maturely and in a productive manner, reassuring your partner that you want to make things work but also being firm and fair in letting them know what behaviours you can and can’t accept.

If your partner really isn’t that into you, they are likely to very easily accept that the relationship will not work. They most likely will take the opportunity to leave the relationship however this is not always the case. There are some partners who are “users” and they may still have a “use” for you, therefore do not accept their eagerness or resilience to make things work as evidence that they really are into you – other people’s motives are very difficult to determine. Focus less on their promises and more on their behaviours, whether they are willing to address the concerns you have and adapt or, at least, be sensitive to your concerns. Some will say that they really want to make things work, but they won’t be able to apologise for something they do wrong. Some may be happy to criticise you and will throw every possible negative thing you’ve done back at you, but will be horrified if you raise a concern about their behaviours even in a non-critical way.

As long as you try to communicate with them in a clear, mature and honest way – you will soon be able to see whether they are on your level or whether they are putting on an act, or even self-deluded. Once you have determined that they do not value you as much as you think a person lucky enough to be your partner should, you must communicate with them first. But if they can’t offer you what you need, you need to fight fire with fire.

WHEN NEGOTIATIONS ARE OVER – BE READY TO WALK AWAY

That’s where it often comes unstuck for us. The bundle of desire that you are, it can be really difficult to be honest with yourself during the early stages of a new relationship. You might really like this new person, you might really hope to develop a specific type of relationship with them which may seem possible or even likely. They might have seduced you: given you an illusion of themselves, becoming an illusory doorway to some colourful or reassuring element lacking hitherto in your own life. The desire for reciprocated love, as history has shown, can be stronger than the desire for self-preservation.

Humans are prone to projecting their own level of interest onto others – especially us guys. A couple of subtle indicators of interest from a smoking hot woman (a mischievously licked-lip and a warm-eyed smile, for instance) are all it takes to make me believe she really wants me, and me alone. *And she probably does, in that moment. But if you aren’t honest with yourself about your new partner’s intentions and attitudes towards your relationships with them, you’re leaving yourself open to emotional abuse and hurt. You’re inviting them to manipulate your heart and eventually, you may follow them in spirit to the dumping grounds in which they abandon your relationship (the one only you invested into).

Be as careful with your own heart as you try to be with others’. Don’t accept those willing to handle your heart ungracefully. We are all capable of being insensitive, awkward, insecure, unreliable, dishonest or even spiteful – it is such as these things that make us human. Look for these traits in new partners, trends contrary to their words or your hopes – and you’ll be able to determine those people who just aren’t that attracted to you, for whatever reason.

The best way to respond is to respond in kind. Fight fire with fire, and demote your interest to the same level as your new partner. Treat the relationship as casually as they opt to treat it, and be OK with that. You don’t need this person, keep your eyes open for a better suited partner if that’s what they intend to do. The whole point in dating them is to determine whether they are suitable for you in the long-term – and your experiences so far have demonstrated that with the attitude they currently have, they are not suitable long-term.

By all means, continue to see them if you enjoy their company. Hang out, have fun, hook up and enjoy your dating experiences. That’s what dating and relationships should be all about: having fun. Just be open if you plan to see other people and be prepared mentally for the possibility that they will disappear and never come back, that they may just decide one day that they don’t like you any more. It’s always good to be prepared for this outcome in any new relationship, but it can be more difficult in new relationships when you especially like someone and they are giving you the rope to hang yourself with. Don’t let yourself be fooled into the noose.

Having this attitude is the best attitude to have with a person who is not that into you, because people are proven to be more attracted to those people whose romantic interest is uncertain. I.e: a person is more likely to find you attractive if they don’t know whether you find them attractive or not. It is much more beneficial for you to keep your cards closer to your chest, and to make sure that you do not let this person believe that they have “got you in their clutches”. Chances are, because they are not that interested, when they have you in their clutches and they know it – they will let go.

Follow the below guidelines and you should be able to both a) protect your heart from emotional abuse and b) maximise your chances of the person’s interest in you growing.

THE DON’Ts

  • Don’t put any pressure or expectations on the relationship and be able to freely accept it if this person decides to walk away
  • Don’t trust their words, instead: listen to their actions
  • Don’t chase them if they aren’t prepared to chase you back at least a little bit
  • Don’t ever allow them to use you emotionally, financially or socially
  • Don’t accept a disagreeable relationship dynamic, address disputes and arguments calmly and pleasantly and if there are too many arguments – explain to them that it isn’t the dynamic you can tolerate and walk away
  • Don’t tolerate them being aggressive, spiteful or mean-spirited with you under any circumstance. You are worth more than that
  • Don’t chase them if they do walk away, let them go and move on

 

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The key to all of this is really simple: You have to be prepared to walk away. If you’re not able to pick up your self respect and be objective about your emotions – you are likely to invite relationships like this time and time again.

You will respect yourself more, and the other person will respect you more if you do not tolerate insufficient respect and affection in a relationship. You don’t get what you deserve in life, you only get what you negotiate – and the most powerful negotiating position is being able to walk away from a deal. It gives you freedom, options and power in negotiating and you should always remember too that absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Life is full of counter-intuitive quirks, summed up well by the fact that often-times the best way to get someone else’s attention is to remove yours. When you really master that knowledge and have it firmly in your mind, a lot of you will come to the conclusion that this is itself the very reason that you like that person this article reminds you of in the first place.

 

 

How to Extinguish a Victim Mentality (or: How to Stop Being Such a Little Bitch)


It’s a sad fact of reality that other people are going to hurt us in life. 

We can’t control the actions and words of other people, therefore we are – from time to time – going to encounter behaviours that cause us pain, anguish, fears and doubts.

But it is how we choose to respond in those crucial times of injustice that often ends up defining who we will become: to both ourselves, and to others.

There are of course ways to limit our vulnerability to the impact of other people’s ill-motivated ambitions. We can be assertive, sceptical, prudent… but sooner or later, someone will hit us where it hurts.

That can feel disempowerring, as if we’ve lost the freedom of our own destiny. As if we’ve incurred some punishment owed to another, or as if we’re being held hostage to a situation we did not invite or design. 

However, it is in the miserable heat of these injustices that we have the opportunity to prove to ourselves what we are made of, and the manner in which we respond forms the backbone of our future resilience to the same abuses.

Injustice is always overwhelming. It breeds negativity and pessimism, reminding us that life is unpredictable and that we are never truly protected from the volatile and chaotic nature of human interaction. 

We ask ourselves questions in search of resolutions. We naturally try to reason with our circumstances in the hopes of getting a grasp on our situation. We try to gather back what power we can. We seek to regain control.

The instinctive self-questions we ask in these circumstances are explored in this article, and these are in themselves good questions to ask. But within the answering of these questions there lay traps – negative thought-patterns which can potentially give rise to reactions that will not serve us well.

This is often the first question we ponder to ourselves when someone hurts us… or at least – it should be.

What did I do to deserve this?

In order to calculate whether we have truly been wronged, we must first assess the contribution (or lack thereof) we ourselves have made to our current situation.

However, once we’ve determined that we are faultless, (or at least, that our punishment was excessive in consideration of our crimes) we can fall into the first dangerous victim mentality trap: 

Seeking a form revenge or retribution


The motivation for revenge is a petty one. 

A desire for revenge masks the mistaken belief that another party has defeated us in some meaningful way, that our value has somehow been reduced or depleted by them.

The Revenge Trap tempts us to believe that in order to recoup our lost value – we should, by force, steal back from our aggressor the power which was robbed from us.

Of course, in truth, no-one can truly affect our self-value but ourselves. Our value is determined by how effective and important we perceive our contributions to be to the world. We are worth what we are worth – based on what and who we decide to be and no-one external to us can decide that on our behalf.

We tell life who we are and life listens, trustingly.

Donald Trump is a good example of this. Oozing high self-value and confidence, he appears to fully trust in his abilities to preside over his nation, rightly or wrongly. It is this high self-value which convinced his followers to vote for him, rather than his more competent and experienced (but less confident and charismatic) republican political opponents.
Our value is determined by ourselves and ourselves alone, in the long-term, through our words and our actions.

When someone does something to wound us – it will hurt, yes. However, to seek revenge is to convince ourselves that we are a loser in a contest that never really existed. It is objectively fruitless and personally damaging.

Instead, we can direct our energies towards vindication. We can endeavour to prove to ourselves and our perpetrators that we are in control of our own value.

The best way to accomplish that is to ensure that our response personifies the core qualities of high-value behaviour

  • self-control
  • self-love
  • propriety
  • consistency
  • fairness

These qualities can protect our self-value by ensuring that our behaviours do not cross the line into the murky waters of retaliation. For example, if a husband commits an act of infidelity, his wife may choose to do the same in retribution – a common pattern in many relationships, sadly.

But since the wife believes that infidelity is not a fair or permissible behaviour, then her propriety and consistency should remind her that this behaviour is not acceptable for her either – and should prevent her from performing her own act of cheating. 

Instead, she can keep her self-value by retaining her virtues, whether she leaves him or stays with him. She can know that she did not stoop to the behaviours that she condemned in him.

Another revenge-fuelled reaction would see her engage in violence, throwing crockery or blows at him upon discovering his affair.

However this leads into the same retribution goal, whereby she claims a jealous victim’s privilege to perform otherwise unacceptable deeds.

This is the degradation of our self-respect. When we give in to the victim mentality, we allow ourselves to become the thing we hate, and we subconsciously prove to ourselves that we are no better than our perpetrators – while disguising our weakness as a justified response.

And it is here that our self-respect erodes. We can tell ourselves that we are happy with our actions, or that we deserve the pleasures of revenge – but in truth, it is a shortcut to false vindication that does not yield any benefit. I say ‘false vindication’ because our self-value is in fact reduced by the perceived ‘temporary’ abandonment of our pre-existing morality.

The wish for revenge in any form only encourages us to pity ourselves in the present and grants us permission to attack our aggressors in future instances. We become ready for revenge. We become vengeful. It creates a dynamic in our mind that we are only as valuable as our aggressors allow… prompting us to try to turn the tables hoping that the aggressors will then prove only as valuable as we allow them to be. It is a false economy.

Vindication is a far more elegant and appropriate response. It encourages us to remember to value our behaviour in a consistent and dignified way – which builds good habits in self-respect and self-control.

It is far better for the wife to either negotiate and talk with her husband or to leave the relationship if she feels she can’t tolerate his actions. To get revenge only defines her in the same bad light as her cheating husband. She does level the scores, but by pulling her score down to meet his.

We are accountable for our actions and we must remember them, and whether we feel we can justify a revenge or not – we should always first try to resolve or dissolve the matter in a manner consistent with our original value systems – to preserve our identity and any moral upper hand.

Revenge is a dish best not served at all.

There are always other options to explore which will not encourage an individual to see themselves as the sufferer of their circumstance, but rather the shaper of their character and future-self.

Another question we are likely to ask:

How could they do this to me?

This is usually the second question that comes to mind in times of injustice.

Most of us instinctively try to understand what is happening around us, what drives the motives of others and how we can relate to the actions of those who can affect us personably, professionally or emotionally.

We like to believe that everyone thinks the same way that we ourselves do, with similar priorities and reflective logic. So when something happens that conflicts with that belief – we are forced to reassess our understanding of what motivates other people in their behaviours.

Unfortunately, we rarely have sufficient information about the experiences of others to gain a comprehensive insight into their motives.

As we all experience life so independently and differently, of course we are going to gain different perspectives and ethical guidelines for ourselves. If we don’t recognise this at the formation of our relationships with each other – we can mistakenly assume that we can rely upon others to reflect our own moral compass. 

And herein lays the second victim mentality trap:

Relying on other people to make us happy


The Dependence Trap is all about relying on others for things we can give to ourselves, and blaming others for things we could have avoided. This is the central theme of the victim mentality.

When we don’t take responsibility for our own happiness – we invariably trust, hope or expect that others will instil happiness within us. We don’t place the attention and emphasis we should on properly assessing the people we let into our lives, and we even forget to take responsibility for letting those people into our lives.

If we are to take responsibility for our own happiness, we must first accept that others are not responsible for making us happy. Although that doesn’t necessarily mean that we are always fully responsible for our own sadness.

Taking responsibility encourages a healthy habit of being more careful about who we trust, and not allowing others to control our emotional states easily. 

It also means that we can accept the flaws and mistakes of others more readily and fairly, as we won’t any longer have our unrealistic expectations or hopeful assumptions to placate.

Taking responsibility for our own happiness is the most important step we can take to overcoming the victim mentality.

As long as we put our happiness into the hands of others, we impose upon others the burden of our aspirations and impose upon ourselves the restrictive and limiting belief that we cannot be held accountable for our fulfilment in life.

Often this is synonymous with a lack of faith in one’s own ability. Many people feel that it is their job to make other people happy and expect the same in return: another false economy. 

It is a lonely fact that we must not expect or rely on others for our happines – but with independence comes freedom and this freedom can liberate a person from their dependence on others and the victim mentality prison.

Why do these things always happen to me?

The last of our questions is actually quite proactive in nature. It is an attempt to understand a trend in our lives, to better our future circumstances and avoid the same negative outcomes.

Doesn’t that question imply that the person is taking responsibility? Not always, and the trap lays right ahead for those that do not:

Believing it is possible to avoid injustice completely. 


As I said at the beginning of this article, we cannot control the behaviours of others. Unless we are to live in a world where we do not love anyone and separate ourselves from all around us – there will be people with the power to hurt us.

The best thing we can do is evaluate honestly and realistically which people are deserving of that power. We must determine the people whom reflect our own priorities and values, and whom we feel do (or at least, feel could) earn our trust.

But even these people will hurt us sometimes, and even people who are not supposed to be able to hurt us will, on occasion, get you down. Our children can hurt us – hell, even our workplace subordinates can do it. It’s a part of life that one must accept in order to avoid the victim mentality.

We all know this fact of life, we have all experienced it – but the self-appointed victim lies to themselves that only they (and perhaps other ‘rare unfortunate souls like them’) endure such hardships. 

Our insecurities drive the limiting belief that for the rest of the world – life is fair, but for some reason the universe has conspired to single us out for a tougher ride. Of course, this is not true but it allows us to trick ourselves into the victim mindset.

And this is the Victim Trap, which gives us permission to accept powerlessness over our emotions and to become responsive rather than proactive.

Logic and reason are opportunistically twisted to create an alternative reality to suit our fragile egos. Our insecurities are being fed by the very devices which flare them – leading ultimately to the acceptance of the behaviours that hurt us.

Why does this always happen to us? Because we invite these injustices to reinforce the idea that we are not to blame for our failures at large.

It is a lack of self responsibility – but more than that, this time we welcome the idea that life won’t let us be happy, that life has restricted our experiences to negative ones (when it suits us, of course).

We need to stay realistic, otherwise we will fall into the trap of wanting to be the victim, even feeling comfortable in the victim role. At that point, we’ll consciously and subconsciously fashion opportunities to take up that role in all the walks of our life because it will become ingrained in our identity – especially if others get used to us acting that way.

If we can stay realistic and just be strong enough to accept that everyone encounters unpleasant experiences, we will feel less likely to expect the pity party we do when we are in the victim mindset – and more likely to get on with life, to get through the bad times in order  to find the good times.

             —————-

Ultimately, it all boils down to the same thing: the lies we tell ourselves and others do us no favours. If we aren’t honest with ourselves, we can’t expect to have honest experiences with others. 


When we chose to be a victim, we are trying to execute a strategy to win what we want by foul means, but we only end up becoming our own enemy, and the victim of ourselves.

Three Quotes That Make Any Relationship Easier

controlOur lives, in many way, are centred around our relationships with each other. Not only our romantic relationships, but those with our families, friends, colleagues, neighbours, our bosses…


Our relationships mean so much to us. Those we have, those we want and even those we sometimes wish we didn’t have. The reason they mean so much to us is because they tie in so closely to our emotional states. Humans are programmed to laugh or cry in order to communicate extreme emotional states, and for many people, society is a necessary source of security and purpose.

However our emotions can so easily dominate our interactions when we become emotionally invested. This can have an impact on our judgement or behaviour in any given setting and with any close one or acquaintance.


So here are just three tips that you can use to keep perspective in those moments when things get complicated by conflicted emotions:

Love in such a way so that the person you love feels free

We’ve all been in this situation: Someone you love is doing something you would prefer they weren’t. Or maybe they’re not doing something you would prefer they were…

When we come to care about anybody – we need to accept with that care a responsibility to it….to behave with dignity and respect to that person. We owe it to the care we have for them to let them be them, to allow them to have space, to accept their rejection gracefully, to encourage them to watch the sports they enjoy, or to respect their privacy on social media.

When we accept a link to someone – we must accept them as they are – not to become fixated on blending them with the ideal we took on first impressions, or worse, before we met them.

A person must want their partner to be happy and fulfilled and enriched by anything that they enjoy – and if there is something incompatible, then you should not accept the relationship.

No-one should be restrained by their partner, and no partner should try to tame or restrain their own


Relationships are about giving… until it’s no longer fulfilling to give

A lot of people talk about relationships as being a matter of give and take. I accept that compromise is important, but ultimately, we should focus on the giving – lest we all get carried away like last time and focus on the taking again.

A really healthy mental short-cut to take when building your relationships with any and everyone is to ask yourself these questions:

“am I contributing to this relationship enough?” “could I do more?” and “am I still enjoying it?”

These are great questions because they get to the heart of what a relationship is all about: fulfillment. Nothing worth having comes easy, and you often need to invest something before you get a reward in life. You usually get out what you put in, and a good relationship will feel like that, a constant cycle of positive energy.

I think we can always do more in our relationships, so asking yourself the question regularly will really impact your behaviour and generate real positivity in your interactions.

It is relevant to your job, your personal life, every relationship… if you realise that you are not enjoying it on an ongoing basis – you will likely be able to identify quite quickly the reasons why. With patience and dedication, if the problems can’t be resolved – then find another relationship which does fulfil you. Whether you give to give, or give to receive – you deserve someone who does the same.

You need to make sure that you are in control of what makes you happy, because no-one else is responsible for your happiness…


You don’t get what you deserve in life, you only get what you negotiate

When it comes to society, we often accept the information movies, media and the world in general feeds us about status, fashion, beauty, careers, professions, lifestyles…

We tell ourselves stories to make ourselves feel better about our failures. “That guy will never fancy me because I’m only a 7/10 in terms of looks” or “I’ll never be successful because I didn’t go to university”.

These are excuses that we use to take away a sense of responsibility to ourselves to make ourselves happy. There are probably a million “good guys” sitting around right now wishing they had girlfriends and telling themselves how unfair life is that they don’t have girlfriends and all these terrible guys we hear about do. Damn right it’s unfair – it’s unfair on the girls! All those intelligent, sensitive and considerate guys who could be saving hopeful women from players and abusive men… but instead sit around and sulk just because they seemed to believe that a magic fairy was going to come along and say “You have been a good boy this year, there is a girlfriend waiting for you on the lawn”….

Life is not a video game. There is not a running score in the left hand corner of our vision. If there is a moral equilibrium whereby we all get a reward and punishment for our objective moral values… it does not happen in this lifetime.

So if you think you deserve that great job – go out and fight for it. Negotiate it and make it as impossible as impossible is for them not to give it to you. If you deserve to receive love and affection, go and get it.

No-one else is responsible for your happiness and no-one else is going to give you what you think you deserve unless you convince them it makes sense.


To some extent, the last one is the trickiest of the three. It requires a person to remain unemotional about the perspectives of others. Ultimately, the people who are most successful tend to remember that “what other people think about you is none of your business“.

Imagine all of your thoughts about others were broadcast to them. I’m sure some of those people would be surprised, horrified, offended?

If a confident person is met by a sour look from a passer-by in the street – they will probably assume that person had an off moment or was thinking about something else and it was totally unintentional. If a salesman pitches to a client who is not satisfied and doesn’t make a purchase at the close, the salesman will smile, pick up his briefcase, and find someone else who will agree on his terms. This is the approach we need in relationships, where we focus more on our own choices than the choices of our affiliate.

Our thoughts and opinions are our own before we share them so don’t be so nosy to wonder what people are thinking about.

If you can achieve this, then you will undoubtedly see the rewards, as you will be focussed on your behaviour, your attitude, your commitment and your contribution. If you’re not getting what you deserve, you need to go and find it – whether you negotiate it in your current situation or find a better deal in a new situation.

That’s all you can control in this life… YOU

When we get into relationships, so often we forget about “me” and start seeing everything as “we”. If you have seen in your past relationships that your emotions or behaviours have had a destructive impact – it is probably because you sought to control your partner, rather than controlling yourself.