Optimizing for pleasure

Howdy, associates. It has been a l-o-n-g time since I’ve written on-line. Effectively, that is not completely true. I have been writing a ton at Facebook. Actually, it is as if Fb has turn into my private weblog. However that is about to vary. Every thing is about to vary. Let’s discuss it.

As you are properly conscious, 2022 was one hell of a 12 months for me. It was a 12 months of dying and destruction. That seems like hyperbole, I do know, however it’s not. It felt as if my world have been crumbling round me.

After my mother died in October, I made a vow. I used to be going to do no matter it took to get myself again to the identical psychological and bodily areas I inhabited a decade in the past. That span of time between 2012 and 2016 was Peak J.D., and I needed extra of it. Perhaps I could not obtain precisely the identical mind-set, however certainly I might get nearer than I have been the previous few years.

Optimizing for Pleasure

To that finish, I requested myself: What was I doing otherwise then than I am doing now? I made an inventory. I dubbed 2023 the 12 months of me. As corny because it sounds, I started to “optimize for pleasure”. I started to take motion. The motion was efficient.

Listed here are among the issues I have been doing:

  • I have been touring. I spent a while in Colorado in February, every week in Mexico in March, and I simply returned from a month-long solo journey by means of the Scottish isles, up the coast of Norway, reaching briefly to Svalbard, then ending with every week in Iceland. I did an entire lotta nothing.
  • I have been studying. Earlier within the 12 months, I spent lots of time studying books on psychological well being and self-improvement. Then I found the Nero Wolfe novels of Rex Stout. Wolfe and Stout have helped me rekindle my love of books. This 12 months, I have been studying extra books than I’ve since…perhaps 2006? It is nice enjoyable.
  • I have been exercising. I have been hitting the fitness center religiously three days per week. Generally extra. Issues have been irritating at first, however now I’ve developed some power and have misplaced some weight. I have never returned to the height health I loved 2012-2014, however I am getting there. I am about to shift my focus from power coaching to aerobics and suppleness for just a few months, however I will return to weightlifting by the top of the 12 months.
  • I have been hanging out with associates. For a wide range of causes — journey, COVID, transferring, and so forth. — my social life has been awful for a lengthy time. This 12 months, I am intentionally making time for associates, each previous and new.
  • I have been medicating. For years, I’ve resisted utilizing medication to handle my mental-health issues. I’ve at all times believed that I ought to be capable to dig myself out of the darkish, darkish holes I get into. Generally that works. Usually it would not. In April, I requested my physician for assist. She prescribed Wellbutrin. After a rocky begin with the stuff, I discover that it is serving to me preserve my demons at bay. It feels nice to really feel human as soon as extra.

These are the issues I have been including to my life through the 12 months of J.D. There are additionally issues I’ve given up. These embody:

  • Hearthstone. For 9 years, I have been hooked on Hearthstone, a digital card sport. I select the phrase “addicted” purposefully. I’ve tracked my play earlier than, and I are likely to common two hours of Hearthstone per day. That is insane. Nonetheless, I could not cease. However you realize what? The day I began taking Wellbutrin, my urge to play the sport vanished. I’ve performed a complete of two hours of Hearthstone previously three months, which is a far cry from two hours per day. (I have never given up gaming completely, although. Presently enjoying Zelda on the Swap and loving it. However it’s not an addictive habits. Have not performed in any respect for every week.)
  • Reddit. I do know lots of people get sucked into Fb or Twitter or Instagram. None of these have a compulsive draw for me. (I’ve at all times hated Twitter. I exploit Fb sparingly, and actually solely to share stuff with my associates.) However Reddit? Man oh man, Reddit has sucked a ton of time from my life. I will scroll mindlessly for hours dumb stuff. My urge to take action has declined since I began taking Wellbutrin, and the latest actions of the location’s management have served as the ultimate straw. I’ve given it up.
  • Get Wealthy Slowly. That is proper: This time without work has helped me to see that I would like to surrender GRS. Once more. I by no means ought to have repurchased the location. I can not clarify why — and I needn’t, truthfully — however GRS acts as a weight round my neck. It is a psychological burden. My life is healthier after I’m not writing about cash.

I assumed for a time that I needed to surrender on-line life completely. I’ve some robust opinions in regards to the fashionable web and its unfavourable results on society. I do not wish to be part of one thing that I consider is destroying our world. However I’ve realized that I must observe what I preach.

Working towards What I Preach

You see, I usually urge my associates who’re indignant in regards to the state of the world to do one thing as a substitute of complaining. Should you do not like how Mississippi, say, does issues, then transfer to Mississippi and contribute to the change. Do not attempt to dictate what Mississippi does from the consolation of your house in Oregon. That is bullshit on so many ranges.

If I have been to desert the web fully, I would be surrendering. I would be saying, “Okay, I give in. The search engine optimisation spammers and AI web sites and social-media stooges win.” I do not wish to try this. I do not essentially wish to wage warfare on this stuff, however I do wish to present — in some very small manner — a substitute for the entire bullshit that is on the market.

Apart from, I like to write down. I have been writing on-line for 26 years. This is part of who I’m. Throughout my prolonged hiatus, I’ve felt like part of me is lacking. Whereas touring not too long ago, I revealed photographs and tales to Fb each single day. It was enjoyable! It made me notice how a lot I miss writing for the net.

So, I will return to writing for the net. However I am not going to write down on only one matter. I am not going to publish at a distinct segment website…like Get Wealthy Slowly. I will write at my private weblog in a private fashion. If there are individuals who wish to learn what I write (and even be part of the dialog), nice. If not, additionally nice. I will write for myself — as a result of it is what I must do to course of my ideas and emotions, as a result of writing has been part of who I’m for almost fifty years.

The Backside Line

I’ve reached an settlement with my enterprise accomplice, Tom Drake, that provides him management of Get Wealthy Slowly whereas permitting me to make use of my cash writing in no matter manner I select. Mainly, he’ll take over GRS and do with it what he thinks is greatest, and I will transfer my on-line world — my complete on-line world — to jdroth.com whereas nonetheless with the ability to use the articles I’ve written previously.

For these unfamiliar with Tom, in some methods he is the Canadian me. I have been known as “the Godfather of cash running a blog” (and, extra not too long ago, “the grandfather of cash running a blog”). Effectively, Tom is the Godfather of Canadian cash running a blog. He is been writing about private finance since 2009. Tom runs many websites, however is greatest identified for Maple Money.

Perhaps I will write one thing for GRS every now and then. However perhaps not. After I do, these articles will probably be revealed concurrently at each Get Wealthy Slowly and at Folded Space. (Folded Area is the identify of the private weblog I publish at jdroth.com.) This text, for example, is showing on the similar time in each locations.

So, that is the place I’m. I’ve had a contented and productive first six months of 2023. Making this the “12 months of me” was tremendous good. I am in nice form bodily and mentally, and issues proceed to enhance. I am desirous to see what the remainder of the 12 months has in retailer…