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50 things I know

๐ŸŒˆ Abstract

The article discusses various insights and pieces of advice the author has gained through their experiences. It covers a wide range of topics, including personal growth, relationships, emotional awareness, and practical life skills.

๐Ÿ™‹ Q&A

[01] Taking on Difficult Projects

1. What does the author say is the best way for people to grow reliably? The author states that taking on a difficult project with some amount of public accountability is the best way for people to grow more reliably than anything else. This can be a large or small project, such as a lecture series, a business, a blog, a house, or a child.

2. Why does the author say people often resist positive emotions? The author suggests that people often resist positive emotions, as well as negative ones, and that this may be related to how displays of rapturous delight are often discouraged in adolescence.

3. What does the author say about creating from a place of defense? The author states that it feels horrible to create from a place of defense, such as trying to convince people that you are not dumb or boring, or hoping not to offend anyone.

[02] Embracing Silliness and Difficult Conversations

1. What does the author say about being silly? The author knows that being silly is a gift, and that by being silly, you "un-taboo silliness" for everyone around you.

2. What does the author say about having difficult conversations? The author believes that most people overrate the difficulty of hard conversations, and underrate how good it is to have them. The author states that conflict avoidance slowly rots your whole life, and that many people are about eight awkward discussions away from a much-improved existence.

[03] Relationships and Emotional Awareness

1. What does the author say about the different types of people in our lives? The author notes that the people who will make you feel warm and fuzzy when you're sad, and the people who will give you brutally honest feedback, are usually different people. The author suggests that ideally, you want to have relationships with both kinds and reward them for their strengths, rather than getting mad at them for failing to do what they're bad at.

2. Why does the author say people can't read your mind? The author explains that people really and truly cannot read your mind, and that it's easy to think they are ignoring your wants or emotions because they don't care, when in reality, they likely have no idea what those are and have forgotten if you've told them before.

[04] Travel and Persistence

1. Why does the author say travel is valuable? The author believes that travel is valuable because most knowledge can't be written down, and the most crucial information about a society is how it feels to be there - the rhythms of street life, where and when people eat meals, and how gender works.

2. When does the author say persistence is not a virtue? The author states that sometimes, persistence is not a virtue. The author gives the example of trying to become an exceptional songwriter, and after a serious enough try, realizing they don't have the knack for it and deciding to let the dream go, as their life is better for it.

[05] Confidence, Masculinity, and Social Skills

1. How does the author describe real confidence? The author says that real confidence can be spotted in people who are fluid with status - who allow themselves to be the butt of a joke or accept criticism, but also avoid false modesty and inhabit the spotlight when it falls on them.

2. What does the author recommend for men who struggle with masculinity? The author suggests that men should give combat sports a try, at least for a short time, as fighting is as basic as sex, maybe more basic, and exploring that part of their nature can provide self-knowledge.

3. What does the author say about the social skill of candor? The author believes that candor is an even more neglected social skill than listening, and that it is important to be able to state your needs without explanation in a relationship or friendship.

[06] Parties, Relationships, and Emotional Awareness

1. What does the author recommend for throwing a good party? The author provides detailed advice for throwing a good party, including creating a sense of social optionality and accidental touch, having good food and drink in abundance, and maintaining the right volume and lighting levels.

2. What does the author say about expressing needs in a relationship? The author believes that in a great relationship or friendship, you should be able to state your needs without explanation, such as "I need attention" or "I want to express a feeling that I don't endorse."

3. What does the author say about the issue of disembodiment? The author explains that disembodiment, or the sense that your perceptual home base is a golfball-sized hole in the middle of your head, is a real and pervasive mental issue that can be addressed through practices like the ones described in the resources provided.

[07] Miscellaneous Insights

1. What does the author say about freedom? The author believes that freedom is earned by confronting things that embarrass and trigger you, over and over again, until you are "cringe-proof" in your desired environment.

2. What does the author recommend for handling a lazy day? The author suggests that on days when you feel extremely lazy, you should decide to work diligently for only 30 minutes on the most important thing, and then take the rest of the day off, as this will result in your best work on those days.

3. What does the author say about compliments? The author believes that almost nobody hears too many sincere compliments, and recommends complimenting people to their face and behind their back, as well as practicing naming pleasant feelings you have about people as soon as they bubble up.

Shared by Daniel Chen ยท
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