Author Topic: What you want vs what's normal vs what you 'should' want vs what's logical  (Read 1107 times)

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Offline suicidal_orange

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Another long weekend with too much time on my hands has me back in 'introspection mode', a mental state where nothing is certain, dreams are more frequent, simple and memorable, and anything can be seen as a sign from the universe.  The focus is once again on why my life's going nowhere and what needs to change, and the problem is identifying what I really want from what my fellow humans do that appears to fulfill them, what people tell me I want (parental messages from childhood and unsolicited advice in presnt times, often aligning with normalcy) vs what's logical (which is pretty much the life I have that is unsatisfying)  Instinctively normal = bad and advice from people who are nothing like me (that's pretty much everyone) = wrong but this means if I do want either of these I assume it's because of one of the above aed ignore it.

The problem is then that emotions are a) personal and b) illogical - that means the only person who can know what I really want is me but I am too logical and can't shut my mind off for long enough to see it, and the logical 'try everything until something sticks' method gets countered by the equally logical considerations of financial security and not hurting other people.

The only way round this seems to be the old school 'go and take drugs in a tipi' or 'go for an endless wander in the wilderness', but neither are practical.

Not sure what the point of posting this is but if you got this far any thoughts or experiences would be appreciated, even though they will be assumed misleading and irrelevant :p
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Offline tp4tissue

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The mind developed in stages. First we had the lizard brain, this is where the propensity for food and secs is strongest.

Then later we increased our Neo-Cortex, that's your forebrain, table look ahead, convolution.

Our world has changed too quickly for the biomechanics to adapt.

For example, only a few generations ago, there were BENEFITS to a large family. The synergy and labor remained within the family.

Now, we have capitalism which funnels those benefit to the State (Oligarchs). In time, the empire becomes diseased as the main population weakens due to toxic leadership.


The environment has changed such that our mid and fore brain are terribly out of sync. We simply can not obtain the equilibrium in mindset living where we live now.

Some people have found balance in the woods, or island countries / Mediterranean, Malta, Sardinia, Philippines, Indonesia.   Places where humans can be more empathetically human and pursue the animal structures without an oppressive regime. 


_WANT_ is very straight forward,  your brain is making a calculation on how to make your family gigantic, but the environmental changes human societies have taken will not allow you to do that, so it spins in place, and you're stuck at the loading icon.



Offline suicidal_orange

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Your analysis covers a large and historically important part of life (starting a family) but there are other things that appear to stimulate people.  Some like risk (driving fast cars/motorbikes or rock climbing), some like learning about something in great depth, some are creative artistically, some seek physical excellence (eat well, exercise lots) or achievement (climbing Mount Everest), others take pleasure from collecting hundreds of keyboards - you get the idea.   Logically (to me) none of these make sense so they are unacceptable options.

While the relationship/family line is part of my consideration I've always had that on the back burner because how can I expect to find someone who can like (emotional thinking) and coexist (logical thinking) with me if I don't know what I am?  Or on the other side finding someone now would lead to 'me' being defined by whatever they shape me to be, and that sounds bad.  Though perhaps I've gone as far as I can in a vacuum and this is the next step as 'the universe' seems to be hinting.
« Last Edit: Mon, 31 May 2021, 00:30:18 by suicidal_orange »
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Offline F eq ma

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I really want to respond, but not sure how.   I don’t want to make any assumptions of your situation.   So take this with a grain of salt from a stranger you have never met.

Most things in life are not life and death important.  You have time.   Go to sleep and life will move forward.   Nothing wrong with being logical, to think through the maze.  Remember the only person you need to answer to is yourself. 

For me, anti-depressants were helpful.  My happy pills so to speak.   It brought me out of a funk.   Been on them since 2004.  Society can go f*** itself with its ideals and perfect resolutions.   It is a delusion, smoke and mirrors, a level that can not be attained because EVERYONE is different.   I don’t care if people think less of me for taking a pill.   It helps me, and that is what is important.  I will still not hesitate to disclose that fact.  There is no stigma when you realize just how many people struggle with depression.   Life is not a straight line.  It ebbs and flows.  Like a river.

If you are a logical creature, like me, then my suggestion is to not overthink life.   Make small changes and realize some will be failures.  That is ok.    It is how experience is gained.   I like to say that I have a lot of “experience“.

I am still searching for what makes me happy.   I am pretty sure it involves food and drink.   Enjoying the moment as it happens and ignoring the past and future.  What works for me probably will not work for you.   Just realize your struggles are universal.    You are not alone and it is all normal.

Anyways, i ramble.  Feel free to PM me.

Offline Leslieann

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The focus is once again on why my life's going nowhere and what needs to change, and the problem is identifying what I really want from what my fellow humans do that appears to fulfill them, what people tell me I want (parental messages from childhood and unsolicited advice in presnt times, often aligning with normalcy) vs what's logical (which is pretty much the life I have that is unsatisfying)  Instinctively normal = bad and advice from people who are nothing like me (that's pretty much everyone) = wrong but this means if I do want either of these I assume it's because of one of the above aed ignore it.
Welcome to being an adult.
Trust me, most people are in the same place as you, don't believe for a second anyone else has things any more together than you do, including parents, ancestors and those you look up to, it's all one big lie and they're all just winging it. While their experience gives them some added clarity, life for them at your age was not the same as it is now and that experience doesn't always work today. I'm not saying ignore it but put waaaay less weight on it than you do.

Who says your life has to be pointing a specific direction? Why, so you can die in an office chair punching keys making someone else rich? Before you critique your own life too harshly, look around at those giving you said advice. Are they actually happy, are they moving "forward" or just going through the motions? It amazes me how many people will tell you to follow the same path they did because it's apparently the "right" one and yet it hasn't made them happy. Didn't make their parents happy either or their parents parents happy.

The person happy in life probably isn't going to be standing around waiting to hand out advice on how to be happy in life, they're too busy enjoying it.
You do you.
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Offline suicidal_orange

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I really want to respond, but not sure how.
Same.  I completely agree with everything you said but just like Leslieann you seem to think I'm failing to live up to some external standard (which I am - pretty much all of them) but I don't care about that.  It's sad that after years of "happy pills" you still haven't found your thing but if you think they help I'm not going to argue.

Welcome to being an adult.
Haha, I wish!  I'm double 'adult' age and have vaguely followed the messages picked up from my parents - "women only want your money" (from my mum) and "women are more trouble than they're worth" (from my dad) hence I'm not separated from a partner and seeing my child every other weekend as many men my age are.  I have no idea how you're doing in life but as you took the time to offer advice I guess you've failed to find happiness too so I should ignore you?  Don't think that's right...


I wouldn't care if my 'thing' in life is to be a crazy cat man with no friends or money, I just want to know what it is so I can follow your advice and "do me" when I'm not working to make someone else rich rather than doing literally nothing as I have this, and every other, long weekend.
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Offline tp4tissue

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For me, anti-depressants were helpful.  My happy pills so to speak.   It brought me out of a funk.   Been on them since 2004. 

Not against pills,  if possible, give whole food plant based a try,  Large quantities of Veggies = natural antidepressants. Not either or,  you can try both.

Offline tp4tissue

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Some like risk (driving fast cars/motorbikes or rock climbing), some like learning about something in great depth, some are creative artistically, some seek physical excellence (eat well, exercise lots) or achievement (climbing Mount Everest), others take pleasure from collecting hundreds of keyboards - you get the idea.   Logically (to me) none of these make sense so they are unacceptable options.

While the relationship/family line is part of my consideration I've always had that on the back burner because how can I expect to find someone who can like (emotional thinking) and coexist (logical thinking) with me if I don't know what I am?  Or on the other side finding someone now would lead to 'me' being defined by whatever they shape me to be, and that sounds bad.  Though perhaps I've gone as far as I can in a vacuum and this is the next step as 'the universe' seems to be hinting.

Risk is calculated against payoff.  When mice are contained in their cell with the option of Cocaine, they choose cocaine. When they are released into a playpen with wheels/tunnels/toys and other mice, even given the option of cocaine they do not pick it. they'd rather play with the other mice, and do other stuff.

So what was the difference, the Environment for which decisions are mapped.  WE collectively live in a caged system,   This is responsible for the Irrational yet seemingly non-optional optimizations our fellow members take on.

For example, WHY is Tp4 obsessed with Monitor Calibration and Piano tuning. It makes no sense, it doesn't lead to m0ar food, it doesn't lead to m0ar females.

It however, DOES provide a SENSE of what is UP.

Behind it all everyone is looking for a way out of the cage,  in between that possibility or lack there of,  we take up the (Everything else) to placate that angst of energy.   


There is "supposed" to be a natural system of feedbacks we're designed to receive from our Evolutionary Environment (open space forest), which we no longer live in. So we now experience much of life as friction (aimless hedonism).    This isn't a new thing, it's been going on for ~10,000 years,   It's described as normal life for humans,  but it is anything but normal for the human animal. 

Offline fohat.digs

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One of my ex-wife's most-used expressions is "but it's supposed to just work!"

Nothing is "supposed to just work"

The Buddha said that suffering results from wishing that the world was not the way it is. Nobody is entirely pleased with the way that the world is - it is ****ed up every which way from Sunday! And rapidly getting worse! The suffering that can result from that frustration can be overwhelming. Overcoming despair can only be accomplished by realistically coming to terms with the state of the universe and your place in it.

First you must align your own life and behavior with the path that you believe to be most beneficial to the sphere that you inhabit. Then you can reach outward to use whatever influence you have on people, places, and things within your reach and attempt to improve them. Don't be afraid to start small. Any positive increment is a step in the right direction, and you can feel good about accomplishing it.



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Offline suicidal_orange

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First you must align your own life and behavior with the path that you believe to be most beneficial to the sphere that you inhabit. Then you can reach outward to use whatever influence you have on people, places, and things within your reach and attempt to improve them. Don't be afraid to start small. Any positive increment is a step in the right direction, and you can feel good about accomplishing it.

Thanks fohat, your replies always seem to be answering the wrong question on first read but I must make them fit.

It's hard to do as you say though.  Take the above - my mum wants me to mow her lawn so my young niece can play on it now the weather has improved, but when I go out there I see bees dining on the weeds and wildflowers growing within.  On one hand I can be nice to my niece, on the other I can make a small change to improve the natural world which I believe is more important.  But if I don't do it I'll get moaned at and someone else will so the bees will still go hungry soon, so I do it.  I see this as a small scale version of how humans are destroying the world and not only am I not helping fight it I'm participating.

Unfun work in blazing sun violating my own values was perhaps the worst thing to do but it did get me out of my head for a couple of hours.
« Last Edit: Tue, 01 June 2021, 06:48:54 by suicidal_orange »
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Offline Leslieann

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I have no idea how you're doing in life but as you took the time to offer advice I guess you've failed to find happiness too so I should ignore you?  Don't think that's right...
I'm saying beware taking anyone's advice, including mine. Most people are just regurgitating the same B.S. they were told.

And no, I did not take their advice. I ended up working several of my dream jobs (ones they thought would never pay off) and being quite well respected in those industries. Am I rich, nope, but I do well enough and I've done things many can only dream of and have the free time I prefer. Is it everything I want, no, but few people get everything.
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Offline fohat.digs

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when I go out there I see bees dining on the weeds and wildflowers

I can make a small change to improve the natural world


I am sorry if I tend to make oblique responses. My perception was that you were feeling disillusioned and frustrated with life, and I was hoping to provide a few pointers.

Funny you use that example. Just before I turned on the computer I was debating when to mow my yard - which it needs. There is one corner that hosts quite a bit of clover which my bee colony loves, but my neighbor's yard is full of it too and it grows back soon enough anyway. The general foraging range of honeybees is 2 miles / 3 kilometers and can be twice that if need be, so they will find something to eat even after you mow.

While I recommended that small things make a difference, it is also important to pull back and take a "big picture" perspective. With each step you take to get farther back the more clear the picture becomes.

Let's take another common residential example, household recycling. In the US it is most common for a household to have 2 bins: "garbage" and "recyclables" which are probably picked up at different times on different trucks. Most American toss everything that *they* consider to be recyclable into the bin and pat themselves on the back for helping to save the planet.

They feel very proud and good about themselves, so that is valuable and positive, isn't it? Better mental health? When my cousin, generally a very thoughtful and conscientious person, visited recently she was horrified at some of the things that I threw into the garbage can, and scolded me for "not recycling". Yesterday, I went to her house for dinner and after dinner she wadded up a large sheet of aluminum foil and threw it into the garbage. "Why?" I asked and she said that it had food stuck to it and was too hard to clean - the gesture of recycling felt good but the effort and understanding of it was too much. Of all the commonly recycled materials, aluminum is the easiest and most valuable by far.

Anyone who has seen a documentary about recycling, and plastics in particular, should recognize that unless it is done properly it is worse than not doing it at all. The recyclability of plastics is a subterfuge created and perpetuated by the plastics industry for decades. For example, 2 types of plastics are realistically recycled: HDPE and PET. But if the "plastics" bin is contaminated with non-recyclable plastic then it will almost surely be rejected entirely because it is insanely hard to separate downstream by anyone except the user who originally examined it and selected it for recycling.

Where I live, in an older suburb of a mid-sized city with municipal garbage collection, I never bother with leaving a "recycling" bin at the curb because I know that whatever they collect is so hopelessly contaminated that it will surely be discarded. Many (most?) people in the US seem to imagine that there is some mythical "recycling center" where an army of workers (worker bees?) continually sifts through a city's worth of "recycled" waste and carefully sorts it out. Yeah, right. There may be a large magnet that nabs the iron, but only because that is easy.

What I do know is that around here there are 4 things that really do get recycled: metal (sorted into aluminum and steel), glass (sorted by color), plastic ("1" and "2" only), and clean un-coated paper and cardboard. Fortunately, there is a recycling center about 2 miles from my house and I can utilize it to ensure that I have reduced the waste stream by a tiny bit. I am sure that I recycle less volume than many people but I feel that my efforts are actually effective.

I have 3 recommendations for a human being attempting to live a more satisfying life in modern society (and these don't involve money!): (1) reduce waste (in all its forms), (2) always use your precious vote carefully and thoughtfully to ensure that only the most careful and thoughtful candidates are elected to govern our planet (and if that is only choosing between the lesser of 2 evils, so be it, don't squander what influence you possess), and (3) improve the emotional tenor of your personal interactions with your fellow humans.

This last one is supremely important. Contemporary societal pressures have caused interpersonal interactions to shrivel and become vapid and empty, not to mention cold and unkind. Be polite and courteous, and smile when you talk to people. Call people by name and tell them that you appreciate their help. Societies (certainly in the US) have been devolving for decades in terms of general satisfaction with life and personal happiness, and I believe that a big part of it is that people in general are simply not as compassionate and friendly as they used to be. Not to mention that having the biggest ******* on the planet as president seemed to give license to millions to display their own inner *******s.

It is our responsibility to create harmony with those around us. Making "small talk" is a social lubricant, and when you sincerely acknowledge the humanity of the person in front of you they will likely respond in kind. Bring a smile to somebody's face and I guarantee that you will feel better about yourself. That is not being cheap, false, or trivial. When you make somebody smile it is you who are giving them a gift.
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Offline tp4tissue

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I see bees dining on the weeds and wildflowers growing within.  On one hand I can be nice to my niece, on the other I can make a small change to improve the natural world which I believe is more important.  But if I don't do it I'll get moaned at and someone else will so the bees will still go hungry soon, so I do it.  I see this as a small scale version of how humans are destroying the world and not only am I not helping fight it I'm participating.

This IS a huge problem. The only way lawns are kept lawn like with only 1 grass growing in it is via chemical weed killers.  This stuff causes cancer.    But also because the land is not at its full potential with trees and deep-root plants,  the average CO2 sequesteration of that area of land is much much lower ~1-5% what it could be.

Soil Economy will be a major requisite in tackling climate change.

Offline noisyturtle

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The focus is once again on why my life's going nowhere and what needs to change

At least **** isn't getting consistently worse and worse for you by the week. Try identifying why literally every single facet of your existence has either failed or is in the process of rapidly failing, and solving that little riddle with zero resources or support.

I'd KILL for a plateau where everything is boring and I feel as if my potential's petered out. I'd consider trading a limb for even just an answer.
If you are bored with your life you are doing something right.

Offline iri

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You are British, so drugs are always the answer.
(...)Whereas back then I wrote about the tyranny of the majority, today I'd combine that with the tyranny of the minorities. These days, you have to be careful of both. They both want to control you. The first group, by making you do the same thing over and over again. The second group is indicated by the letters I get from the Vassar girls who want me to put more women's lib in The Martian Chronicles, or from blacks who want more black people in Dandelion Wine.
I say to both bunches, Whether you're a majority or minority, bug off! To hell with anybody who wants to tell me what to write. Their society breaks down into subsections of minorities who then, in effect, burn books by banning them. All this political correctness that's rampant on campuses is b.s.

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Offline suicidal_orange

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The focus is once again on why my life's going nowhere and what needs to change

At least **** isn't getting consistently worse and worse for you by the week. Try identifying why literally every single facet of your existence has either failed or is in the process of rapidly failing, and solving that little riddle with zero resources or support.

I'd KILL for a plateau where everything is boring and I feel as if my potential's petered out. I'd consider trading a limb for even just an answer.
If you are bored with your life you are doing something right.

Where you see 'lack of support' I see 'freedom' - I'd have sold everything and left the city years ago and if things were no better in a rural (cheaper living costs) area said **** it and gone off the grid.  Except that would be if I had your inate desire to go on living, which I don't.  Me in your situation would have maxed out overdrafts and credit cards to get more to sell, sold everything, then given all the money to charity before finding a remote cliff to jump off.

I've offered thoughts and asked questions when you've complained previously with no acknowledgment so can't say any more than that which is no help to you now.
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Offline tp4tissue

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Suicidal ideation is not healthy y'all,   Gotta get on that learning a new instrument/ exercising/ monitor calibration/ whole food plant based. .

Offline suicidal_orange

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Suicidal ideation is not healthy y'all,   Gotta get on that learning a new instrument/ exercising/ monitor calibration/ whole food plant based. .
I'm not in noisy's situation, I have a job, mortgage, family and 'friends' - that is, no freedom.  I get exercise but don't want to live forever so it's not my life, there's no point playing an instrument with no audience and learning is frustrating, not fun (have an electric guitar)  My monitor is ancient and not worthy of calibration, and I'd need a new desk to fit a new one in a stupid shape (widescreen) and don't see the point of binning the perfectly good one I have.

I could go on but it's time for work.
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Offline tp4tissue

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I'm not in noisy's situation, I have a job, mortgage, family and 'friends' - that is, no freedom.  I get exercise but don't want to live forever so it's not my life, there's no point playing an instrument with no audience and learning is frustrating, not fun (have an electric guitar)  My monitor is ancient and not worthy of calibration, and I'd need a new desk to fit a new one in a stupid shape (widescreen) and don't see the point of binning the perfectly good one I have.

I could go on but it's time for work.

There are no problems with your logic,  but at some point , you have to have faith in Digi-God and take the leap.

Logic is good , but it only goes as far as your personal intellect. Since we can not fully model what exists externally, Digital-Faith is necessary when our thought loop closes out, as it has for many modern homeostatic hughmahnns such as yourself.

Offline noisyturtle

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finding a remote cliff to jump off.

I've offered thoughts and asked questions when you've complained previously with no acknowledgment so can't say any more than that which is no help to you now.

That option is always on the table, it's just all about the right timing. You don't wanna be standing on that rooftop thinking about what you didn't try to do differently. Exhaust every option and dig for resources you were blind to previously. I guess rockbottom is different for everyone.

Sorry if I never responded directly but every bit of advice and perspective is weighed and considered, and I am happy anyone is thinking about me at all. Many times I just don't know how to respond. All one can really do is offer empathy and perspective, but how much is that really worth to someone without hope?

Offline suicidal_orange

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I guess rockbottom is different for everyone.
Sure is, though how anyone knows they got there is another question. The stupidest question I've ever been asked was 'rate your mood 1 to 10'.  I answered hoping I'd been nowhere near 10 and assuming 1 would be much worse but who knows...

You aim high and fail, I float and don't - neither is satisfying but how would either of us actually feel had we swapped lives?  How can I empathise with you (or anyone) without knowing what being you feels like?  I can try, but that's the one area of life I know I suck at.
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Offline noisyturtle

  • * Exalted Elder
  • Posts: 6216
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I guess rockbottom is different for everyone.
Sure is, though how anyone knows they got there is another question. The stupidest question I've ever been asked was 'rate your mood 1 to 10'.  I answered hoping I'd been nowhere near 10 and assuming 1 would be much worse but who knows...

You aim high and fail, I float and don't - neither is satisfying but how would either of us actually feel had we swapped lives?  How can I empathize with you (or anyone) without knowing what being you feels like?  I can try, but that's the one area of life I know I suck at.

Ya know it's such an old trope, switching places with someone for some duration of time, but has anyone in history actually done it? Has there ever been an irl Trading Places?

Offline suicidal_orange

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There are no problems with your logic,  but at some point , you have to have faith in Digi-God and take the leap.
Which is why 'logic' appears in the thread title!

Ya know it's such an old trope, switching places with someone for some duration of time, but has anyone in history actually done it? Has there ever been an irl Trading Places?
How long would it need to be to get close to someone's life experience.  I mean even ignoring friends and family if you walk in to my work no-one will respond in the same way because they don't know you, if you pass someone in the street I used to know (whether it was a positive relationship or negative) you would have no reaction to them, you'd be useless at my job because you have no experience so that would probably stress you out.  You don't bear the scars of my previous life like the wasted years getting an IT degree that makes helping people with computer problems bittersweet...

I guess trading places is "reality" TV which pretends it can be done in a couple of weeks but that wouldn't get past the novelty stage of everything being different.  I'm thinking two years would be enough for 90% immersion, but you'd be fired before then (as a not-new employee there would be no provision for training) and that would be a big change from what you should be experiencing.
« Last Edit: Sat, 05 June 2021, 05:27:36 by suicidal_orange »
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