Getting Your Mind Right (Podcast)

Are you holding yourself accountable every day by living a good life, a productive life?  Are your actions congruent with your words? We talk about that slime bag mentality, how it holds you back, and how those little voices in your head can lead you down the path of vices.  There are no shortcuts, no days off, no letups.  You need to be putting in work, and not retreating one inch.  Ever.

This podcast can be found on Soundcloud, iTunes, GooglePlay, and YouTube.

Read more in Digest, my largest and most definitive collection of essays:

8 thoughts on “Getting Your Mind Right (Podcast)

  1. Strong words QC but sometimes that is what needed to communicate with certain people.

    I have always found ‘that’ book opportunistic in its nature – nothing good can come from it.

    Machiavelli has become terribly misunderstood as well. I am no expert about him but I have the sense to know that his works must be interpreted within a certain context that few people have today.

    I also think part of the appeal about Training Day (a great film by the way) is that it shows DW’s character getting his ‘comeuppance’. I can’t imagine someone regarding his character as a role model though sadly it appears some do.

    Like

      • I think part of the problem with that guy is that he is growing up in a weasely world that seems to favor and push a dirtbag, opportunistic and ‘scoundrely’ way of life. With young children it is monkey see monkey do and so they do what they see.

        It is up to men to provide as much counsel as possible and first and foremost this starts with fathers being proper role models to their sons and to correct the errors of their ways. Where the father is absent (physically or spiritually) they seek a father substitute and so it is important that anyone who is viewed as a substitute father (teacher, uncle, online ‘guru’, whatever) have the right values. Unfortunately a lot of fathers and father substitutes themselves succumb to the wrong path. I myself don’t have an answer to this but I can recognize it as a problem, as can you, and if enough do there will be an eventual correction.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. At the risk of being unpopular here, I can say this about the 48 Laws of Power – it’s helpful in its insight to understanding the games that people play. I’ve seen it constantly. Specifically, the points about keeping your mouth shut and listening more, not letting toxic people into your life, and ignoring passive-aggressive attempts to get you off your game are very helpful. That stuff helped me establish a better mentality in determining where I control my attention.

    But yeah, if you’re using it to try and manipulate people it will wind up coming back to you. Like I said about Epicureanism, sometimes it’s the consequences of something that matter, so I can get why it pisses you off. A lot of people will get the wrong impression and get corrupted if they aren’t careful.

    Personally, I thought the Laws of Human Nature was a better book from him.

    Like

  3. The one rule that always “triggered” me was “let others do the work, but take the credit.”

    I’ve been the guy came up with several ideas, did the work, and then the dirtbag leader who made it needlessly complicated and had nothing to do with it then shamelessly took credit for the idea – to my face.

    Most people I sense have no idea to what extent that kind of manipulative behavior erodes social trust necessary to accomplish anything meaningful and causes honest men to check out. As much as young men have their problems, their struggles in part stem from a profound lack of inspiration or meaningful role male models in the workplace, church, or social institutions. In some cases, they are more mature then the older men.

    There’s pragmatism stemming from a mature and nuanced way of navigating a complicated world, but that’s not a license to chuck common decency to the side because “who cares in the end?”. It’s moral laziness and is a toxic attitude.

    Unfortunately our modern culture rewards the most shameless, the most proud, and the most childish and juvenile because such people reflect its values the best. If those are the rules, then it should be no surprise that men with any sense of manhood refuse to play the game.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh hell yeah. I’m definitely responding to the energy and combativeness of this. Ditto the previous cast about anger. You just know some people will be put off because of the “tone”, because you’re being “mean”, but some things need to be said in a certain way to have effect. People use and abuse tone arguments even when you’re being completely calm, so you might as well grab them by the collar and shake them about every once in a while. I’m reminded of that Mark Rippetoe quote that “Poor form in the gym is caused by insufficient yelling.” Obviously this does not mean bullying or belittling people but just a bit of intensity sometimes to stop people from screwing up and hurting themselves and others. Nobody has intensity anymore these days, it has been abolished because it hurts feelings. Sad!

    I must say from the outset that I haven’t read the 48 Laws, so anything I’m about to say might not apply to the content of that specific book. Although it’s somewhere at the bottom of my wishlist on one of those book ordering websites (not Amazon, who haven’t muscled in here yet, although they’re planning to). I’m sure I’ll read it some day eventually, just to see what the fuss is about, but right now there are so many other books that take precedence when I decide to order and read something. Nowadays I find I can enjoy history books that explore the nature of power, as well as self-help books that help me grow psychologically, but not some weird combination of the two. Not this ack-basswards thing where historical sources get plundered to justify weaselly, bitchy behaviour.

    One thing that keeps me from reading books like this is that they seem to be awfully derivative of writers I have already read. Apart from the fact that all writers owe intellectual debts to their forebears, I don’t much care for reading old ideas reinterpreted (misinterpreted?) and repackaged for the modern consumer. Machiavelli? I loved The Prince, but even if we ignore the whole “Satire or not?” argument, I agree you have to look at the context. He didn’t advocate doing evil for its own sake, but he was laying out the qualities for a potential leader who could free Italy from its internal chaos and its being the playground for foreign powers. The values expressed in that last chapter (patriotism, for one) are incomprehensible to many people who get interested in Machiavalli. They want to read a guide on how to be evil and they tend to get disappointed when they actually read the book. And then there’s the Discourses on Livy, which I’ve read some time ago, but I seem to recall Machiavelli is pretty much of the republican mind and rather down on Augustus and the like.

    One thing I’ve read ABOUT the 48 Laws is that it’s popular with celebrities, businessmen and politicians, and that alone is making me think of why books like this are so popular. Now, there are undoubtedly many people in those professions who are making a positive contribution to society, but I think the majority are making it worse, more weesh. Plenty of too-cool-for-school wannabe Machiavellian celebs businessmen who have no qualms about filling our minds with garbage and our stomachs with soy, and you bet they’re getting rich off of it. Plenty of politicians who happily stimulate this to get endorsements and kickbacks. Plenty of activist celebs who are active propagandists for the ongoing upper-class revolution against the middle and lower classes. I guess those guys really understand the nature of power, huh? Let’s worship and emulate the soy merchants and oligarchs, the heroes of the 21st century. What greater good could there possibly be other than worldly power? Robert Greene worked with 50 Cent, what better role model for men than that guy? Let’s forget about everything else and let power be our guide.

    On the lower level, undoubtedly there are also legions of bureaucrats and middle management types who think they’re wielding power, who don’t even realise that they’re low-level servants, not leaders. As mentioned, the kind of people who read in a book somewhere that you need to let others do the hard work and then take the credit for it yourself. The kind of managers at my office, who deliberately only assign 15 workplaces to 23 workers to keep everyone on their toes, under constant stress, and in constant competition even for a workplace. Because they know all the desk jockeys will bitch about it at the water cooler for a bit, but then grudgingly change their schedules around all the barriers that have been put up by people who do no work at all. And then they can brown-nose to THEIR bosses about the cost reduction they’ve achieved. Or what about all the people with hiring-and-firing powers who blackball suitable people for political reasons? So powerful, much Machiavelli!

    I’m sure many of these guys have it all worked out: this is not the real them. They’re only going to use their “power” to make a lot of money, then in 30 years when they retire, they’re going to do something good for the world by giving some of it to “charities”. Except most big “charities” are also run by guys who love power and politics and who also contribute to the vicious cycle. Great, thanks for helping!

    I don’t even know where to begin with the causes of all this. You could write multiple volumes on this. Lack of role models, lack of father figures, is one thing I would think of. Kids don’t learn about the realities of the world. So when they learn of all the evil that exists, when they see it glorified in the media, they go: “I wanna learn how to be evil too!” Think of supposedly red-pilled “guyz” who have bad experiences with women, so they think: “I’m going to buy a book to learn the secret tricks I need to con women into sleeping with me when they don’t really want to!” And if that stuff works a few times at first (because of its novelty when it was first introduced), they think they’re really getting something good when in fact they’re just exacerbating the arms race between the sexes. They are no better than the teenage girls who learn the “rules” about dating from magazines. They are (sometimes literally) saying: “I’m going to sleep around for a bit in my prime, and then by my 40s I’ll be ready to settle down with a good girl, but she has to be perfect, chaste, a 20-year-old virgin, blah blah blah.” Of course those same guys spew bile about “thots”. They could just try to develop and improve themselves to become more attractive to women for whatever purpose they desire, whether lewd or chaste. Just be honest to yourself about what you’re doing.

    Hey, another aspect of this that is brought up in the podcast: pop culture, even the pop culture with good intentions that gets misinterpreted! I wonder what Oliver Stone thinks of all the 14-year-old wannabe gangsters who have film posters of Scarface above their beds. Hey, Tony Montana got the money, the poon and the power, right? Wait not really, he was a subordinate to bigger gangsters and he ended up dying like a bitch. It’s amazing to me that so many people don’t get that film, or indeed most gangster films. It’s just a cool guy being a cool gangster saying cool shit and doing brutal shit. That is basically the mindset of all these people who want to read books on how to manipulate others and gain “power”.

    So much of this is just a lack of character and people trying to rationalise it. Like you got stepped on once, so from now on you’re going to be the snake biting at everybody’s heels. Wait, wut? How did it ever occur to anyone that this is not only OK, but it somehow makes them smarter and cooler than those with a modicum of integrity?

    At the end of the day, nobody is perfect, and we all have our vices. If you point out any of the stuff you’re talking about, people think you’re being a Negative Nancy, or you’re encouraging naïvety, or you’re preaching morality at them like some televangelist, but that is not the point at all. The point is to be intellectually honest about one’s actions, about the purposes behind them. Of course sometimes it’s necessary to take harsh actions. Also be honest about one’s vices. Just don’t try to be smarter and cooler than all the others by deliberately doing evil while rationalising it as somehow being good.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow, Q was fired up on this one (maybe he needs to listen to a podcast on the sources of anger).
    I bought the 48 Laws of Power because I saw some cool tweets “from the book” with good rules/laws but upon reading the book (especially the bit on taking all of the credit), I found myself staggered – there’s no way in hell I’d follow these rules and I sure as hell wouldn’t want to follow or even be around someone who followed most of these rules, clearly violations of the Golden Rule.

    Like

Leave a Reply to Hereward the Woke Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.