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My Story, and Where I'd Like to Be

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by HelloFriendo, Dec 21, 2017.

  1. HelloFriendo

    HelloFriendo New Member

    Action points:
    83
    Hey All,


    Really glad to be joining a budding community of men who are interested in self-improvement. The mission of this forum seems like a great framework to guide men like us.


    Who I Am


    Like many of you, I found out about this community through TRP. I’m a 31 year old man living in the East Coast of the US. I make a solid living working in accounting. It’s not the career I want for the rest of my life, but I will go into more depth on that later. I’m married with an infant son, both of whom I value to the highest degree. My immediate family is extremely small, so I have an inclination to treasure family and to grow it.

    I had a pretty happy childhood. Lots of friends who lived close by, stayed busy with activities, etc. My parents had their issues (mother is insanely passive and refuses to stand up for herself, dad is a closet alcoholic who was a bit neglectful in my young years but not abusive) but overall they raised me well. I don’t blame them for my issues in life. This is my life and the decisions I have made led me to where I am. Both the good and the bad.

    Starting in middle school, I started to become very reclusive. While I had friends/girlfriends during high school, I began to spend a lot more time by myself. This was also about the time I started smoking pot regularly, and it became my escape. Rather than making an effort to go out and make friends or improve on a skill or hobby, I would simply get high and play video games by myself. This has continued through the past year or so, and is part of the reason I’m finding the need for self-improvement.

    I never had a problem getting women, but I used to be a habitual “settler.” Most women who I have dated/been intimate with have been those that were openly interested in me, so I took the easy route and went with them rather than pursuing sexier women who I was intimidated by, or didn’t feel good enough to land. This is thankfully not the case with my wife, who I left a mediocre former GF for.


    Why I Am Here

    1. I have had frequent debilitating bouts of depression and anxiety since starting college. These bouts would come and go in phases, but at their worst I would be completely useless. Too anxiety ridden to sleep. Super awkward even around my closest friends. Constant suicidal ideation. I am currently in a really dark place, similar to the months after I graduated college. That was probably the worst period of my life, and I credit getting out of that funk largely to finding a new network of friends as well as finding an SSRI that worked. I thought I was “cured” once the bad feeling abated, but I am not realizing that the anti-depressant was only working as a band-aid, and I have deeper underlying issues that I need to address. Basically, the “ideal” me is far away from the “real” me.


    2. I have engaged in many forms of dopamine abuse (weed, porn, video games, Youtube, etc.) as forms of escape from my problems. I need to work on ridding myself of these distractions in order to gain the energy and confidence to pursue my self-improvement goals.


    3. Humans are social animals, and my social skills suck. I’m naturally introverted, but that’s no reason I can’t become better socially and increase my status and ability to network.


    4. I don’t feel like I’m good at much of anything, and I want to find hobbies/interests that I can practice and improve on.


    5. I find my career in accounting boring and unfulfilling. The pay is good, but I have a hard time exceling at something that I am not passionate about. I would like to figure out what I actually like to do, and find a way to tailor my career to follow those interests. The main issues I have with this is that taking a step back financially (which would likely be necessary if I want to start over in another career) would hinder my ability to provide for my family.


    Goals

    1. Get to 220 lbs with between 10-12% BF. Since the beginning of 2016, I have started weight lifting consistently and it has become a passion of mine. Between this consistency, eating more (and better) calories, honing my form, and taking worthwhile supplements, I have gained a respectable amount of muscle and people have recognized my transformation. Still, I don’t track my calories or my training progress. I more or less “wing it.” I need to take my fitness goals more seriously, and my first micro-goal is to get to 5 reps of 225/225/315 lbs. for bench, squat, and deadlift, respectively.


    2. (Passive goal) Abstain from marijuana and porn COMPLETELY. Limit video game/TV/Youtube use drastically.


    3. Expand my social circle/become more confident socially. This is one that is a bit hard to quantify or make measurable.


    4. Find a side hustle. The closest thing I have to this is poker, which I use to actually make decent money playing. While I want to improve my poker skill enough to allow it to become an alternate source of income, there is too much variance in the game to make it a dependable side gig.


    5. Find hobbies/interests that I can improve on and will ideally give me a greater sense of confidence.


    6. Learn to respect myself and rid myself of the “Nice Guy” syndrome. I have begun reading the book “No More Mr. Nice Guy,” and this community seems like a great place to serve as a support system for ridding myself of the personality traits commonly associated with the dreaded Nice Guy Syndrome.



    I’m sure I will have more goals as I progress through this journey, but these are the main ones that I have in mind at the moment.


    Really looking forward to working with you all as we become the best versions of ourselves we can be.
     
  2. James

    James Host

    Welcome, @HelloFriendo ,

    Do you have any data on things you have passion about, or had passion about (even going as far back as childhood), other than the base consumptionary things you mentioned? Or is there anything where you think "I'd like to change that / improve that in the world", etc.

    As for the goals, looks like you know the direction you want to take, but I wouldn't take on too many goals at once. I don't know the limit of your focus, but for most people they can only effectively do 1 or 2 things at a time. So picking 2 of those goals (probably 1 & 2 or 1 & 4) sounds like a good workload. Once those are nailed, you can move onto the next ones.

    This looks pretty solid and clear. You could consider making this your first goal here in Fitness.

    This goal would need a bit more structure, and there's no such thing as a passive goal. Usually for "stop" type goals, it's more effective to write a "replace" goal. You have certain habits baked in. So when you try to stop one of them, you're left in a "hmm, but what do I do instead?" limbo, which often ends in you just doing the thing. So you could list all those habits, what leads into them, and what you can do in place, to break the habit. Frankly I'd start with video games. Very easy to start: just replace it with one of the other bad habits (the least bad one: e.g. YouTube or TV), and delete all of your games. It can be done right now. Video games are toxic to success.

    So for this one, you could make a brainstorming thread in Fitness, so we can get clear on what the goal will involve.
     
  3. Tom

    Tom Active Member

    Rating points:
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    God damn dude what's your height? Those stats are monstrous. I will hands down being your girlfriend if you end up with them FULL homo.

    I just started reading it today!! Like an hour ago. Holy shit.... What a book. To anyone reading this, get the damn book.

    The book recommends having 3 safe people to talk to. Hit me up if you are stuck for one.
     
  4. James

    James Host

    There's been a lot of talk here so far about good books to read. I think reading wise stuff is good (especially if you replace time-wasting activities with it), but it should always take a back seat to action.

    But this makes me think it might be useful to have an "approved resources" area here, which lists approved "getting on track" books, so I'll add it to the ideas list.
     
  5. HelloFriendo

    HelloFriendo New Member

    Action points:
    83
    Appreciate the responses, guys.

    The things I am passionate about are far and few between at the moment, but I have grown a huge interest in the human anatomy, especially when it comes to muscles, through my endeavors in lifting. If I won the lottery tomorrow, I'd probably go back to school to become a physical therapist or get my license to be a personal trainer. Maybe I start expanding my knowledge of muscles and how they function in my free time?

    I'd also love to be a life coach, because I've always gotten a lot of enjoyment out of helping others. But I need to get my own life in order before I feel qualified to ask anyone to pay me to help them better themselves.

    Good point. Trying to take on way too much at once will likely lead to me being overwhelmed and failing. I think #1 and #2 are the best, as I feel that #2 will do wonders for my social anxiety, depression, brain fog, and overall confidence.

    That makes sense. I've actually cut down drastically on VG use since my son was born, so I'm not as concerned with that one for now. Porn and weed are the big ones. What is the best way to make a "replace" goal measurable? Aiming to abstain from the bad activities for X months, and replace each urge with reading/tidying up/stretching/meditation/etc?

    6'2. Right now I'm 210 with BF in the range of 15-17%. 220 at 10-12% may be a pipe dream for the foreseeable future. Maintaining my current weight at that BF% may be more attainable.

    Thanks! Will definitely take you up on that. It's scary how to a T that book's opening chapters describe the kind of person I am.
     
  6. Tom

    Tom Active Member

    Rating points:
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    Action points:
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    This is in part the nice guy? I know exactly how you feel, it feels good to help people. I guess if you kept the ncie guy to your job where it benefits you ie money, this could help you keep it separate from the new chad version of you at home? Just thinking out loud.

    Ok, so we'll be conservative and pick the 17%. You'd be sat at about 191 at 10% bf which is juicy as fook and that 20 lbs isn't too big. Not too far off this dude: https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/male_transformation_phil_thompson.htm

    You'd be bigger and leaner than this guy: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=6...QsAQIKA&biw=1920&bih=949#imgrc=r33u0hBYtKnkXM
    Looks decent. Christ, if you turned up to a swimming pool like that compared to the average fat 5 9/10 dude...... Wet floor signs needed.

    Try the member search on bodybuilding.com for those stats. Looks pretty big and would be an amazing base for the 220. To be fair 210 at 10% bf is getting giant as it is....

    Sounds solid.

    No more Mr nice guy has active steps within. Plus, the author has worked with nice guy chodes for 20 years... It's a bible. Awesome book.
     
  7. Fundinn

    Fundinn Active Member

    Rating points:
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    Action points:
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    Result points:
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    Hi HelloFriendo, welcome to GoGetters. Looks like the negative daily habits are the first thing that need to go out, make some space for something different. There's this idea in diets where instead of removing what you like, you add more of what you need(Talked about in the linked podcast). It might be easier to go that way than to radically stop certain habits. As for youtube, I use a plugin called LeechBlock. You can block out websites or set timers on them before you are locked out. I've found it very useful.

    Looking forward to seeing your goals!

    Yeah I agree. To put an emphasis on practical application is paramount. Books can be really enlightening though, I think it's important to link thoughts cultivated from a book into concrete ways we can integrate them in our daily lives. That being said, reading a lot of books kind of changes your mind at a very subtle level. It makes you realize that their are many 'worlds' outside of your 'world'. I used to imagine surrounding myself with the great heroes that I read in books and that eventually started affecting my decisions in life(For better or worse!).
     
    James likes this.
  8. James

    James Host

    Well it's an option. You could start a bit of research into this, what would be involved in making such a move (e.g. how could you start part time), what it would take to be "good", the typical rewards of it, etc.

    Yes the measurability is still "did zero of". So by the end of the goal, the aim is to be down to zero for each of those bad habits. And you can start with the worst (i.e. weed). That's hard to hold without clear replacement and "habit starting avoidance" planning, as you're basically completely rewiring your day to day life and resetting your dopamine levels, so all of that stuff you have to do to get there becomes part of the action commitment.
     

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