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Goal 30 Days of Agitation

Discussion in 'Misc' started by Fundinn, May 11, 2018.

Goal: For 30 days, I will engage in activities that cause discomfort or novelty and report back objectively to enlarge my horizons. by June 7, 2018 (finished)

100%

Completed

Member Fundinn commits to the following actions to achieve this goal

- Taking singing lessons
- Do tai chi in a crowded place.
- Give free hugs on a given day.
- Try an improv class
- Interview people on the streets for a random survey

  1. Fundinn

    Fundinn Active Member

    Rating points:
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    Goal Approval

    The next 30 days are a celebration of doing things differently, exploring new avenues, rekindle with curiosity and a sense of adventure. I'm already closing in on two months since I started the new job, it's easy to turn into an automaton:

    Today we come across an individual who behaves like an automaton, who does not know or understand himself, and the only person that he knows is the person that he is supposed to be, whose synthetic smile has replaced genuine laughter, and whose sense of dull despair has taken the place of genuine pain. Two statements may be said concerning this individual. One is that he suffers from defects of spontaneity and individuality which may seem to be incurable. At the same time it may be said of him he does not differ essentially from the millions of the rest of us who walk upon this earth.
    -Erich Fromm(Quoted in 7 Habits of Highly Effective People)

    I put a couple of action commitments that I will do for sure during the next 30 days, but the goal in itself is to pay attention to any opportunity to do things differently at any given time. Say I decided to go for lunch and I have an opportunity to strike up a conversation with someone in line or to sit down with people I don't know at work, I will do it instead of what I would commonly do. This could also involve cold approaches when I see an opportunity(but I want a challenge dedicated to that in the future).

    I'll start with what I find most feasible and ramp up from there adding more actions. Every week, I will list down everything that I did differently in the following format:

    1)
    What I did that was different:
    How it felt:
    What I learned:
    Proof:
    2)
    ...
     
  2. Tom

    Tom Active Member

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    Sounds class. I'm definitely trying a similar goal soon.
     
  3. Gort

    Gort Robot

    Notification: Goal approved!

    The community voted to approve this goal as Doable and SMART.
    Now, do your best to succeed! Your next progress update will come due on Sun, 20 May 2018.
     
  4. Fundinn

    Fundinn Active Member

    Rating points:
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    Posting in advance, as I will be offline during the long weekend off camping.

    ---

    I've had a bit of a rocky start. Last Saturday I suffered from a minor concussion after a sparring session. Felt generally fatigued in the afternoon, the kind of fatigue that doesn't happen from mental or physical work, something like headaches and fussiness. Unto the challenge.

    Ever since I started the challenge I see a lot of opportunities for doing it <differently>, but I see how conditioned we are to play it safe. It shocks me, but I'm kind of happy and humbled, the road is paved with obstacles, trying to keep it fun!

    In any case, notable things I did differently:
    What I did that was different: Went to a play(an hour long monologue narrating Alexander The Great's life)
    How it felt: Felt normal. I was on my own so while waiting in the hall I did small talk with an older lady to kill some time.
    What I learned: I learned emotions can be expressed even if we don't have a motive, The act was filled with emotions, the actor was colorful, I think that I could try to be more willing to emote and express myself for the sake of being more captivating.
    Proof: I have the pdf of my ticket, but I don't think it's necessary.
    ---
    What I did that was different: I had a singing lesson.
    How it felt: I laughed a lot more than usual, I said I was nervous, but it didn't show, and inwardly I was 80% comfortable. I think some of it came from having never sung before, that's fair and I expected that.
    What I learned: Hard to say exactly what I learned, it was all new to me. I was comfortable singing even with the presence of the teachers wife in the house, I thought I handled myself well.
    Proof: I'll post a picture later, or a song I have learned at the end of the month, since I'm taking one more class to a song.
    ---
    What I did that was different:I did Tai Chi in Chinatown.
    How it felt: My thought process was really unhelpful. I felt defensive and a little tense. No nervousness. I did it at the spot I didn't want to do it at(internally) cause I knew there are a lot of people who pass by, but again, it was psychological. And it wouldn't be a challenge if I decided to do it in an open space, such as a park.
    What I learned: My inner voice is critical and pessimistic, I'd like to be more conscious of rewarding myself for the high standards I put myself through by celebrating small achievements... you know, I think I forget what I accomplish and put myself down for messing things up. I also consider the worst-case scenario's, when really, things are going to be just fine most of the time.
    Proof: Timelapse
    ---
    What I did that was different: I did woofing at a dog sledding business out of town.
    How it felt: I was averse to meeting the business owners, I feel like a thief sometimes, that I have something to prove, that I am inadequate.
    What I learned: It felt good to do something for someone else(especially animals). I enjoyed my weekend, it was the fruitful labor that comes from volunteering.
    Proof:Me and my friend at the farm.

    Otherwise, I've been cultivating a disregard for unsatisfactory circumstances. I keep finding myself building up excuses because the time isn't right, or the weather isn't right or the schedule doesn't work... it's the kind of thinking that slows down progress. When I saw myself making up these excuses I tried to see how I could act anyways.

    I looked into improv classes, there's a free class in June so I'm aiming at attending that and put a note in my calendar.

     
    Kostadin, James and Tom like this.
  5. Tom

    Tom Active Member

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    Awesome man. I can just see the kind of development this is going to bring. If nothing comes from that development, you're going to have some killers stories and experiences any way. 'Oh, there was this one time I did thai chi for x hours in the street.....' xD
     
    James likes this.
  6. James

    James Host

    Fairly standard for out-of-habit behaviour. Knowing you'll start doing this, and preempting and countering it, works wonders.
    For instance, if "it's raining" ever comes up as an excuse, catch yourself when you fail to put a foldable umbrella in your bag. Another one is thinking what winner X would do. "Would Branson bitch out like this?" etc.

    My favourite though is saying to myself, like people do in the movies, the steps you're going to do in a forceful manner: "you're going to shut the eff up, you're going to W, then you're going to X, you're not going to Y, and you're not leaving until Z". Something about being forceful about the steps prevents you from weaseling out.
    For this I like the "zoom out" exercise. Imagine zooming out, in space and time, and looking down at yourself carrying out your life. At this scale, these feelings just look like defects, detracting from a greater mission. All we can all do is our best, but it must be our best, because our lives are so small and short that anything else has no chance of moving the needle. To be able to look in the mirror at the end of the day and say "I lived consistent with my will" is all any of us can do. And honestly believing you're doing all you can do, brings contentment. The true reward is looking in the mirror and saying "you're doing what you should", and believing it, and thereby receiving respect from yourself.

    In this frame, self-criticism is swatted away with "and have I not worked on this today?", pessimism with "have I not proved my actions can cause improvements? And if I have not, have not others like me?", feelings of inadequacy with "you say I'm inadequate, but you are only one man, is that not arrogance? what do they say? what could they say if you succeeded by your actions?". And so on. Rigorous objectivity is the ultimate antidote.
     
    Fundinn likes this.
  7. Gort

    Gort Robot

    Notification: Goal update is due.

    Please submit an update on your goal progress.
     
  8. Shaney96

    Shaney96 Active Member

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    I thought you meant you took a lesson or something; I didn't expect that timelapse - I commend your efforts. This ain't something easy to do, and I can imagine how your ego was pulling you away from getting this far outside your comfort zone. But you say you didn't feel nervous, but only defensive? So it's less your ego being afraid of what others will think of you, and more your ego not wanting you to stray outside your comfort zone in fear of facing an imaginary danger.

    Guessing it's not this.

    Nice exercises @James. It's easy to think "what's the point in improvement and growth if we all turn to dust?" or something, and one thing to do is to delude yourself into believing that we've been assigned time on Earth by some entity (the 'Whole' as good ole Marcus puts it). That we do work for this entity, and are being fugitives if we don't, for the work we do benefits us and thus the whole.
     
  9. Gort

    Gort Robot

    Notification: Update not submitted.

    The goal update was not submitted within the time limit.
     
  10. Fundinn

    Fundinn Active Member

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    I feel like street performers who aren't too good, but need to make a living face this 8 hours a day, a couple of days a week, so I really shouldn't deal with feeling any shame for something like this, deep down that's how I feel.

    Yeah, I mean, I felt a tad self-conscious, but no physical sensation. I think I perform well once I get going, but the 'getting to go' part is an invisible barrier that I need to break down.

    More like this. ;)

    Totally forgot about this one, thanks! I also like to think of work, when I'm paid to do something, I get it done. Same for the construction workers working outside in bad weather, they will get it done.

    I'll try that, it sounds like saying 'I will' instead of 'I should' and 'I prefer' instead of 'I have', definitively need to keep feeding myself with affirmative self-talk when I feel like I'm going down.

    Beautiful, reminds me of an exercise in the Charisma Myth. I realize that I don't put to practice most of what I know, kind of have forgotten about these tools. I'll put it on a list to rectify that with an action plan.

    As always, thanks for the feedback, looking forward to my next update.
     
  11. Shaney96

    Shaney96 Active Member

    Rating points:
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    Huh, reminded me of the same thing. I try and remember to use this whenever I'm feeling anxious about something, and realizing how insignificant this event is.

    I found this lecture pretty helpful for mindset. I too don't put enough practise in after reading/watching a lot, but the key thing from this lecture is to focus on having, being and working, instead of needing and wanting. People "need" and want the next best thing, but if you tell yourself you already have these things, then you'll be less focused on needing them and, if you don't already have them, will begin really working toward getting them, because in your mind, you already have them.
     
  12. James

    James Host

    hmm, probably needs some kind of a preemptive / delayed update feature to give it flexibility for these cases.
     
  13. Gort

    Gort Robot

    Notification: Goal update is due.

    Please submit an update on your goal progress.
     
  14. Fundinn

    Fundinn Active Member

    Rating points:
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    Result points:
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    Goal Update

    Hi guys, week flew by.

    What I did: Surveyed people on a survey of my choice. The survey is one question: "What makes a public speaker engaging?"
    How I felt:
    I'll give a detailed rundown, because I'm trying to shed some light on some of these interactions myself!:

    On May 23rd I finished work. I had about 30 minutes before a group meditation session. I went to a nearby park knowing I would start the survey. My palms were slightly sweaty, and I could feel an unwillingness to proceed with approaching random people. On a whim, I decided to only interview women, and hopefully younger(and prettier) girls. To give myself a chance I said, "just do one, you can ask a simple question to one person, I know you can, it's easy, you've done it plenty of times".

    Encounter #1: I figured I would start easy, there was a women in her 40's sitting at a bench looking at her phone. I didn't think of any openers. I told her I was doing research, that I was fascinated by social dynamics and that I needed help with a survey. She wasn't thrilled, she had the "let's get it over with" vibe. Got my answer, left her alone.

    Encounter #2: An asian girl, about 30 walked down a path in the park. She looked kind of lost. She barely spoke English too. I was not impressed at all with this encounter. In any case, it was kind of funny because I got my answer and then she hanged there waiting for more. I ended up cutting it short, this encounter felt like a transaction. Not too charming. She had the: "Wow someone is interested in me vibe".

    Encounter #3: Girl in her 20's. I fucked up my introduction, but I kept a good frame and kept on talking. I told her I liked psychology. Turns out she is doing a masters in psychology and wants to know the purpose of my survey. I lied* to her by going on a tangent about using this survey for a public speech at a toastmasters club. I got caught off guard, didn't expect her to be so interested. In any case, she asked me a bunch of other questions. It was a missed opportunity to ask about what she was doing for her masters in detail. I did close by saying I liked the idea of meeting people like this. She agreed.

    I get a bonus point for moving sideways when the sun was beaming in her eyes. I took this opportunity to get some negative body language going by moving to her side. It made the encounter more chill.

    Encounter #4 &#5: Two girls(mid twenties) playing a card game at a table. They showed resistance when I came up, as I interrupted their game(woohoo). That being said, I opened up by saying: "Could you help me out, I got this survey..." and they proceeded with their answer. I wish I had asked them about my interest in their card game, one girl was real pretty. I won't know if I would have been invited to play a game with them. It was good though, I was in control. I do notice a tendency in "getting it over with" by telling people it "won't take long". I get +1 for targeting a group.

    In any case, the park run was good. 100% success rate. People are chill, they aren't going anywhere so it's easy.

    On May 24th I planned on continuing with the survey, but I was hungry and it seemed like a good excuse. So it became one.

    On May 25th, before going to the boxing gym, I proceeded with the survey. This time, the location is a busy strip in downtown, right after work on a Friday.

    Encounter #6: Tattooed girl, mid twenties, barely got her to stop walking. She ended up saying she would need more time to think about the question and said she was waited by someone. I thanked her for stopping though. I was very eloquent, I notice that my question being written in English is easier to ask than in French.

    Encounter #7: I got eye contact with a girl(sweet looking btw) dragging her bike on foot. She knew I had something to say, felt her presence. She was patient and understanding. She asked me why I was doing this and I said: "I find it hard to approach people, I'm practicing, this survey is a way of doing that". She appreciated the honesty, but it felt like I came from a dysfunctional place. I feel like some women aren't interested in cleaning up a mess, or maybe she sympathised. In any case, I wasn't trying to read too much into it. Moved on to more encounters.

    Encounter #8: This girl with a giant rack and a sense of style walked by. I leaped in like a dragon and told her: "I'm not selling anything, do you have a moment to answer a simple question?" She stopped and agreed, but I could see that she had better things to do, as I got her answer she was ready to leave. It felt like a business pitch, in any case, she was good looking and I got her attention and she had a small smile going on after I talked to her, so +1 for me.

    Encounter #X: I asked my question to a girl working for green peace. I thought it was hilarious that I reversed the role. I asked her how she felt about approaching people. In any case, I won't count this one.

    Encounter #9: I was going to wrap it up, I started walking to a street corner and a girl was waiting to cross so I pretty much got her there and then. She looked tired and didn't give a fuck. I still got an answer, but I started feeling tired too and had a hard time speaking out. I opened up with "research and study" which led her to ask me about what I was studying. It was fucked since I then went on to explain how I had already graduated and that this was basically something I did for fun. In any case, I'll forget this one.

    7 girls decided not to talk to me, the moment they saw my pen and paper they assumed I worked for some organization. It's much harder to approach people in the street on a weekday. I passed about 10 opportunities, felt like I needed to wait it out as I was getting turned off consecutively. I felt a bit upset or defeated, but hey, "the show must go on".

    The funny part is, the approaches were fine. Didn't make me the least nervous. There's something difficult to explain though, in the back of my mind, I was also trying to meet girls, so the survey felt like an indirect way of getting to the point. I think it was a fair way to get the ball rolling again, but I'll have to re-think what I want when I do these things. Also, I won't do it holding the paper in my hands in the future, I got ignored because people thought I was selling shit. Some women told me she wasn't interested in buying what I had for sale!

    Once I was on my own back home. I felt a bit of shame. I'm not used to disapproval or rejection, but "this too shall pass". Anyways, I gave the survey a fair shot, I'll be very comfortable approaching people at a party, since that's a downgrade to stopping people in the street.

    I also used Jame's advice to obverse my thoughts from a distance, as far as outer space. It was helpful when I listened to people and my mind was going off on a negative tangent.

    Proof: Paper

    What I did that was different: I cut all my hair off with a barber kit.
    How it felt: My heart rate went up for about 10 seconds, then there was no turning back. Never had hair this short. I made people talk, kept my chest out and my chin up. I like the clean look.
    Proof: Yeah baby

    What I did that was different: Registered for a 10krun with coworkers, supposed to be a party afterwards. More on that next goal update. I don't like running, this is going to be a first.

    What I did that was different: I took cold showers all week.
    How it felt: Not particularly enjoying it, but it's cool to pay attention to that moment of resistance before you start the shower and cold water touches your body.
    Proof: Not necessary.
     

    Voting on this update has closed.

    Last edited: May 28, 2018
  15. Fundinn

    Fundinn Active Member

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    How does not wanting get you to work harder towards getting something? I think it's more about trying to fix goals that align with your values and be outcome independent when you act. I mean, I want things. It's ok if I don't get them, as long as I do some small actions that gets me closer. I downloaded the lecture, I'll listen to it, sounds interesting.
     
  16. James

    James Host

    Awesome work
     
  17. Tom

    Tom Active Member

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    Agreed. I've done this approach, you can feel the eeeww radiating off them. Makes an uncomfortable situation feel even worse.

    I've heard it comes from being in a 'higher energy state' forcing yourself out of your comfort zone for prolonged periods of time.

    I get you with wanting to meet girls. Always niggles away. We are only human. xD
     
  18. Tom

    Tom Active Member

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    @Fundinn Just a thought... Was reading about stuff on r/seduction, the dudes in a thread are convinced that girls go crazy when a camera is nearby. Maybe you could utilise this? Like a 'fake filmed interview'?
     
  19. Shaney96

    Shaney96 Active Member

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    Mum's spaghetti?

    Sounds like you shot yourself in the foot, a worthwhile experience nonetheless.
    Hello there, handsome chap.
     
    Tom likes this.
  20. James

    James Host

    Of course: attention is their life source. Double edged sword though, as the reason for this is it puts them in the eyes of more men (so they have more to choose from and feel more powerful). So may not help, depending on intentions.
     
    Tom likes this.

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