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The Tinkered Mind
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May 2nd, 2019
Hopes. Goals. Dreams.
Big, small, complicated, simple. Realistic or just plain fantasy.
What we imagine we’d like to do and accomplish can fall into all sorts of categories. Some might not actually be achievable, and this would be a painful lesson worth learning as it would require a set of actions to reality-test that possibility.
Regardless of failure and lack of possibility, such efforts are ultimately an exercise in information gathering. By proving something is not possible by giving it our best effort we understand something about the world in the tightest way possible.
This calibrates our imagination even more finely, allowing the next thing we might imagine to be more within the realm of the possible.
One day…. we say, we’ll do this or that. Live in this place, hold some certificate, start some company, be a meditator, write that book and so on and so forth.
Our ability to project into the future, or rather our inability to reliably project into the future ultimately causes a variety of fantasy that is counter-productive.
What we do today shapes the most immediate future we will have access to, namely tomorrow. This simple and obvious fact has hidden within it a compounding mechanism that we often fail to connect with the hopes, goals and dreams that we fantasize about.
By saying one day we effectively remove ourselves from any responsibility to do something about it today.
Certainly there is an order of operations in that some things are definitively limited by the completion of other things, however if this is the case then our current efforts on limiting factors count in the direction of any succeeding goals, like levels in a videogame.
Many of the dreamy goals that we hold in reserve, however, do not have any part of our daily energy devoted to such aspirations, and such is the trap of language like One day.
The shape of language has an enormous impact on our thinking, and downstream from there, our thinking has an enormous impact on our behavior. The language that we use, especially with ourselves ultimately has a large influence on our behavior.
The phrase One day as a prefix to the actions and situations we can sort of imagine ourselves inhabiting convinces us that it will happen in a very insidious and potentially deceptive way. Such phrasing comforts us and enables the lazier parts of our mind to say that its not necessary to act today. There’s always tomorrow.
The problem is that this lack of action compounds in exactly the same way that small actions compound, however the difference is that one leads us towards goals and the other leads us to a place where there is increasingly little time to take advantage of positive compounding results – and potentially a place and time when goals are no longer feasible, because time has run out.
Possible or not, the price to find out is action.
Any time we catch ourselves saying One day….
We must remember that there is actually only ever one day, and that day is
This episode references Episode 352: Order of Operations