The brain’s a funny organ. It just weighs 3.3 pounds (3% of body weight) and controls the rest of the body. 20% of energy goes to this tiny dude. Why? Is he doing that much work? People claim so but mine’s up there sleeping and eating pizzas all day. So in an attempt to piss him off here are five questions I came up with. You should piss yours too, it will be fun!

1. How will you live if you’ve all the money you want?

That means no work… hmm let me think bingeing Netflix? Nah It gets boring real soon. How about partying day and night? Oh, wait I found it. I could change diapers for 2-yr-olds with bun like bottoms in a childcare centre. That seems fun!

Unless you’ve 3 eyes and 15 limbs you know human life looks somewhat similar to this. You’re born, you go to school, go to college, get a job, get a car, get married, get promoted, get a kid, get another kid, help them get their kids and die. Think about the last time you were free of worries. Maybe when you were 7, building sandcastles with the girl whom you thought you’re gonna spend the rest of your life with?

An average human work works around 13 full years off his life and I understand that it’s essential to put food on the table. But is it what our entire lives are about? I ain’t suggesting that getting a car, working or popping out multiple kids is sad but let these things consume you is. Don’t you wanna enjoy the brief period of life you have?

Average time worked (in years)
Source

Now imagine a life free of financial/ work concerns. How will you live your life? If it where me I would spend my days cooking my own food, hanging out with my friends and playing video games with them, writing, reading, raising a dog, going on vacations, learning foreign languages and the list goes on. Now, what would you do?

It’s impractical to wish for a life free of worries. But overwhelmed by financial pressure, work and a lot of other responsibilities we end up staring a TV screen all day without doing things that make us happy.

Try to implement parts of your dream life today. Start doing things that bring you joy for the mere joy of doing it.

Note: Don’t do stuff that hurts you(in the long run) but makes you happy(in the short term) like binge drinking, playing video games 24×7 etc…

2. If you’re guaranteed to master a skill within a year what would it be?

Do you know that research suggests that having a healthy passion boosts our psychological states? Vallerand, Robert. (2012). The role of passion in sustainable psychological well-being. Psychology of Well-Being. 2. 10.1186/2211-1522-2-1. Check out this paper to get a detailed idea about passion and its benefits.

With work and responsibilities consuming our lives it’s hard to think of a passion let alone doing it. But we can escape the mundanity of our day to day lives by strolling the path of a creative life.

Back in April 2019, I started writing stuff for the internet out of boredom. Looking back it was one of the best decisions of my life. Not to brag but I’ve something to show for my work, I am happy that I started and I learnt a lot in the process. If it wasn’t for writing I wonder what I would’ve done all those hours? (Psst… probably bingeing YouTube clips)

Does that mean non-passionate people are destined to exist in a limbo of sadness? No, but with a passion for something, your life becomes more interesting. It needn’t be something as big as starting a youtube channel. Start a blog for example. Write your thoughts, poetry, stories. Learn to draw and upload them on Instagram. If that seems huge start even smaller, learn to cook simple meals, gardening, learning about dogs or training them. You can even be passionate about fixing things like repairing a flat tire, assembling your pc.

Start being passionate about something that makes you happy. You’ll be glad you did.

Charts depicting the impact of passion on your psyche
The impact of passion on your psyche. Source

Bonus: If you can be one superhero who would you be?

Let’s be frank! Who doesn’t want to be a superhero? Don’t wince your faces like you don’t. You know what I would love to be? I wanna be Superman. Not because of the laser eyes or superhuman strength but to experience what it feels like to dress like him.

Stop acting like you’re so busy to imagine yourself wearing underwear over your tights flying over city saving people. Moving on…

Superman toy flying
Photo by Yogi Purnama on Unsplash

3. If you’ve only 30 days left to live with no responsibilities whatsoever. How will you live them?

With societal pressure to earn more, wear trendy clothes and get degrees that we’ve no idea of what it’s about we fail to realize that time is finite.

This question prioritizes things that you’ve been wanting to do but procrastinating on for a long time. Finally showing for your kid’s soccer practice, or going on a hike with your friends.

Contemplation of death is helpful to set priorities straight and helps us avoid falling into the rat race. If it were for me, I would go on a vacation with my friends, spend the rest of the time with my family, write a blog post about it and die. (You thought I’m gonna die without writing about a blog post? Naah!)

Death makes you grateful for the life you’ve, grateful for the people and time you’re given with. Making it richer with a better perspective on life.

Virtually every great thinker…has thought deeply and written about death, and many have concluded that death is inextricably a part of life and that lifelong consideration of death enriches rather than impoverishes life. 

-Irvin Yalom, Existential Psychotherapy

4. If you’re to lose everything (Money, fame and success) that you’ve gained over the years what would you do?

That’s downright painful and chilling. Your company going bankrupt, you’re getting kicked out of your job, evicted out of your house there’s a fair chance that all these things can happen. But how will you react to it? The importance of this ideology cannot be stated enough. For instance,

Tell yourself you’re gonna watch a scary video and do it. Note your emotional state. Now consider the moment when you were genuinely scared due to the same. You’ll find that the first one was less painful than the latter.

James Clear in Atomic Habits advocates the importance of having flexible identities. He states

The more you let a single belief define you, the less capable you are of adapting when life challenges you… Transform your identity from “I’m the CEO” to “I’m the type of person who builds and creates things”

James Clear, Atomic habits

This mindset makes you more prepared for the situation. It’s this blog for me. I’m gonna shatter, wail in pain if my work’s lost in an abyss. Hundreds of hours before the keyboard, my mind fleeting out of a spectrum of emotions and hard work would be for nothing. But when I change my identity to myself as a curious guy who loves to write I prepare myself. Even if this blog gets wiped off the internet (Fingers crossed I really don’t want it to) I gonna not stop writing.

Understandably, you’re gonna wallow in pain when you lose everything. Everybody does. But what makes you different from others? You learn to move on… You have the tools and knowledge to build something. So whose there to stop you?

None of this is to suggest that it’s easy but the odds that you’re gonna get back up is much higher. So let’s be prepared and hope good things happen.

5. If you were to go back in time and fix one thing what would it be?

Whoa! That’s huge. Intolerable embarrassments, wrong career choices, relationship mistakes everybody has a huge list of things that wish they didn’t do.

Regret is a powerful thing but do you know what’s more powerful? Growing out of it. It’s these experiences that make us a better person. That missed opportunity, wrong financial decisions these are painful stuff. But this question changes it all

“What if it’s a gift?”

I ain’t kidding! Losing surplus money early on in life means you’re far more cautioned before making decisions later. Missed a life-changing opportunity? You start valuing new opportunities from thereon. All it needs is a change in perspective. Take me for example,

I valued work more than friendships in my sophomore year of college. Worked the brains out of me, slept only 4-5 works/day disillusioning myself that I’m working. I had this belief that more time spent on work = more success. As a consequence not only my health deteriorated I lost a few valuable friends too. This was an eye-opener for me. I realized that no matter how successful you are you aren’t gonna feel joyous if you don’t have people around you to celebrate with.

This type of question switches your perspective on what you’ve lost and reminds you not to make the same mistake again. We all need someone to kick us right on our asses to get our heads straight. You know why? Our brains love eating pizzas and dozing all day.

What now?

There’s no need to stick with my suggestions and my experiences. Go crazy, find out what makes you happy. A better perspective leads to a better life. And whatever you choose (your passion) make sure it aligns with your values. Gain more experiences and make yourself a much better person. My brain’s getting pissed! I’m gonna go soothe him up before he starts ranting about me on social media. See you soon!


Footnotes:

  1. Vallerand, Robert. (2012). The role of passion in sustainable psychological well-being. Psychology of Well-Being. 2. 10.1186/2211-1522-2-1. Check out this paper to get a detailed idea about passion and its benefits.

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