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INTRO Greetings from a young man trying to turn things around

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AJP

New Contributor
Feb 27, 2017
4
2
16
Montreal
Hi everyone,

I just registered on the forum yesterday, found it and lurked for a few days before that. I've read the TMF book (free chapters and then summaries/quotes from the others), and have benefited greatly from other sites (Danger and Play, Bold and Determined -Victor Pride referenced this forum in one of his articles). I've never had an account for a forum site or contributed/networked online before so I'm winging it just a bit. I suppose I'll share my story below, for anyone who is interested and/or willing to comment or offer advice. I'm grateful to the people who have created and contribute to this site.

I turn 21 in about a week, and up until about a month ago I was on a crash course to mediocrity. I am very lucky to have been born into an intact middle class Canadian family, with supportive parents who provided for my every need and gave me a good education. I was fed well, read voraciously, and provided with opportunity. I was a sheltered, introverted, 'sensitive' kid, and so throughout much of elementary and high school I was rather insecure. In living a life that lacked any sort of real hardship, I never formed a deep sense of drive, ambition, or wanting. I was relatively intelligent, and so things came easily to me (grades, blending in socially with other kids). I retreated into video games and other distractions, and lived life as this rather weak personality, never taking ownership, never becoming autonomous or defining my goals and dreams. I coasted, and continued on this path through university - the school and faculty I chose were ultimately passive decisions, made based more on influences from other people and peers rather than as part of a strategy for my own honest improvement. At university I wasn't particularly happy, I got caught up in the milieux of ideology, bitterness, and nihilism that I think sucks in a lot of university students who have lived most of their lives in a bubble. You know, the whole "why change ourselves and address our own flaws when we can talk about all the perceived problems other people/society pose to us right? Make THEM change first!" thing.

I turned to typical college distractions, avoiding any serious contemplation on where my life was heading, who I surrounded myself with, and the values that I lacked.

Anyways, about a year ago a couple things happened that began to slowly start a snowball of change. I rediscovered a childhood artistic pursuit that I had abandoned when I was 11 or 12, due to my weak sense of will and extreme concern for what others thought of me, and then I met a girl. And of course, meeting the most beautiful girl I had ever seen did what all girls seem to do to guys - make them self-conscious. I looked at my life, and my habits, and was disgusted to put it lightly. I began to take health and fitness seriously, and the process of changing my body over the summer/fall of 2016 was beneficial in recognizing the value of self-ownership. However, I was still negative and doubting, still weak. My academics slipped but I was lethargic and unconcerned, and I remained in a pretty pathetic mental state of mind and existence.

Then, about a month ago, I sat down, began to write and somehow the process of articulating my past failures, present thoughts, and future goals triggered something inside of me. I cut my addictions and habits, and began to build new and beneficial ones. In truth I haven't felt the same for some time, and the past few weeks have been an interesting and almost unsettling psychological experience, as it feels like some part of my personality or self is fading away. I now have a defined goal related to that childhood artistic endeavour that I am pursuing, and have found fastlane as part of a strategy to finance the pursuit of my artistic ambitions and continue to develop as an individual.

When I think about how I managed to lead myself astray despite all the incredible advantages and opportunities provided to me I feel so ashamed. I think about how blindly I was living, and how I was unwilling to take responsibility for the trajectory of my life, the lies that I told myself and others close to me. Regardless, I am here now, and have begun the process of building myself. Acknowledgement and acceptance of my profound failings was the first step. I've instituted a daily routine and have a 20,000-30,000 word plan related to my future goals. I'm on this forum to learn and better understand the means by which I can provide for myself and create a living online.

I read often as a kid, and so despite a lack of discipline and development of skills in early life I have a good command of English (though I have a habit of being pedantic, which the length of this post seems to support - just another thing I have to work on). Following the advice of forum members I just took action, I registered on Upwork yesterday, got approved today, and sent out a bunch of proposals for writing gigs, focusing on requests where I could attempt to do the work they wanted in advance rather than selling myself. I don't really know what I'm doing and have no credibility to speak of, but I just wanted to start somewhere.

This post is intended to introduce myself, create some accountability, and to simply share my experience. If anyone managed to read through all that well, thanks for listening. I hope it wasn't too soppy or drawn-out. I just let it flow out. If you have any advice for a 20 year old guy who is really just starting out on trying to figure out how to provide for himself and adopt an entrepreneurial, self-dependent mindset, I would be very grateful. Also feel free to roast me for being such a dummy for so long. Or if you have any resources you think I might find useful, or you need a favour done, anything really.

As a dumb kid trying to turn things around, I'm glad I found this place.
 

MidwestLandlord

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If you have any advice for a 20 year old guy who is really just starting out on trying to figure out how to provide for himself and adopt an entrepreneurial, self-dependent mindset, I would be very grateful. Also feel free to roast me for being such a dummy for so long. Or if you have any resources you think I might find useful, or you need a favour done, anything really.

As a dumb kid trying to turn things around, I'm glad I found this place.

First off, welcome!

Secondly, did you read the whole book? If not, you need to buy it and read it for sure. Best investment you'll ever make.

Thirdly, I read your whole post.

Dude, don't be so hard on yourself. Seriously. You're young, you've got your whole life ahead of you. Stop looking in the rear-view mirror!

You list all these good things:

Good grades
Daily routine
Meeting a girl
Pursuing fitness
Pursuing an artistic creative outlet

But then you surround all that good stuff with self-pity.

Your story of mediocrity in early life is very, very common. You're certainly not alone in that. The difference is that most people continue that life of mediocrity until they die, and you found your way here. Already ahead of most people!

Read the book.
Read the gold threads.
 

cmor16

Gold Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
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Oct 30, 2016
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Nova Scotia, Canada
I turn 21 in about a week, and up until about a month ago I was on a crash course to mediocrity. I am very lucky to have been born into an intact middle class Canadian family, with supportive parents who provided for my every need and gave me a good education. I was fed well, read voraciously, and provided with opportunity. I was a sheltered, introverted, 'sensitive' kid, and so throughout much of elementary and high school I was rather insecure. In living a life that lacked any sort of real hardship, I never formed a deep sense of drive, ambition, or wanting. I was relatively intelligent, and so things came easily to me (grades, blending in socially with other kids). I retreated into video games and other distractions, and lived life as this rather weak personality, never taking ownership, never becoming autonomous or defining my goals and dreams. I coasted, and continued on this path through...

Honestly, I stopped reading here and skimmed the rest. The reason? This is me 23 years ago. Be grateful that you found the book and this place when you did. Whatever you do, don't hold on to this mindset like I did. Trust me, it will limit your potential. Mind you, I didn't turn out too bad, but it was this type of thinking that kept me from trying to make it on my own earlier and also delayed success in my career.
 

million$$$smile

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Midwest
Nice introductory post.
I too agree with @MidwestLandlord, I think you are selling yourself a bit short. Sure, you have pondered and recognized some past shortcomings and time wasters but it sounds as though you are beginning to do something about it.
Really, just taking action and signing up for Upwork is a positive step. It is really surprising how many on this forum ask the question "should I sign up for Upwork?" rather than just jumping in a getting their feet wet.

You write quite well.

You are 20 years old. You're just now learning to be comfortable in your own skin. Just continue to seek out minor successes in your life and it will give you the confidence to tackle larger challenges.

Read some of the Gold Threads. They are Gold for a reason.

Good luck!
 

AJP

New Contributor
Feb 27, 2017
4
2
16
Montreal
First off, welcome!

Secondly, did you read the whole book? If not, you need to buy it and read it for sure. Best investment you'll ever make.

Thirdly, I read your whole post.

Dude, don't be so hard on yourself. Seriously. You're young, you've got your whole life ahead of you. Stop looking in the rear-view mirror!

You list all these good things:

Good grades
Daily routine
Meeting a girl
Pursuing fitness
Pursuing an artistic creative outlet

But then you surround all that good stuff with self-pity.

Your story of mediocrity in early life is very, very common. You're certainly not alone in that. The difference is that most people continue that life of mediocrity until they die, and you found your way here. Already ahead of most people!

Read the book.
Read the gold threads.

Just bought the PDF in full. Thanks for the response.
 

AJP

New Contributor
Feb 27, 2017
4
2
16
Montreal
Nice introductory post.
Really, just taking action and signing up for Upwork is a positive step. It is really surprising how many on this forum ask the question "should I sign up for Upwork?" rather than just jumping in a getting their feet wet.

Just secured my first bid (35$ for a 4000 word ebook - not pretty haha but boy does it feel good to have started the journey). Thanks for the comment.
 

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