Steve and I have a long but sparse history. By the time I'd first heard of him years ago, I'd tried,and failed,to do the polyphasic sleep schedule twice. When he started to experiment with it, tons of people sent me links to his site.
His first day was like mine, so was the second, and so was the third. On the fourth day I wrote him an e-mail giving him some tips and letting him know that it was about to get a lot harder. Day four was hell and I'd never made it through five.
He wrote back and said something like, "Thanks for the advice, although I refuse to consider the possibility that I might fail."
I thought, "What an idiot. That guy has no idea what he's in for."
Day four came along and his post mirrored my experiences exactly. On day five I woke up, went to his site, and saw that there was no day 5.
I was both disappointed and smug. I TOLD him it was difficult, but he didn't listen. He had overslept just like I had in the past.
Later that day he posted that he had essentially crossed the dip and that it was easy now.
Both times I'd tried it I had quit just before it started working, but Steve had the determination to push through. I've met very few people more stubborn than me, and I was inspired.
His success gave me just enough grit to push through and make it onto the polyphasic sleep schedule myself.
Over the following years I stopped reading Steve's blog. It had become too "spiritual" for me, someone who has always been logical and skeptical.
Then a couple months ago a reader (I can't find your e-mail, send me one and I'll give you credit) let me know that Steve was getting into polyamory and wanted to meet pickup artists. As it turned out, I was heading to Las Vegas, where he lives with his wife and kids, so I sent him an e-mail. He replied with a really friendly e-mail and invited me to his house.
A month or so later I was pulling up my GPS guided rental car to his house in Summerlin, a Las Vegas suburb.
Steve and Erin greeted me at the door and brought me into their living room. A quick glance around shocked me a little bit. Despite constantly pushing himself into strange and extreme life experiments, his house seemed normal. Just like you, he has couches and pictures of his family on the mantle.
Maybe I expected some sort of laser-festooned spaceport.
The next four hours flew by. As it turns out, we have a lot in common. We've both been programmers, professional gamblers, and bloggers. We have experiences with raw food, veganism, polyphasic sleep, and a number of other things.
Although not in a totally linear fashion, there were a few big topics we spent a lot of time talking about.
It was really fun talking to someone else who had been through the polyphasic experience. At Erin and my prodding Steve did a mini performance of his Toastmaster's speech about Polyphasic sleep. It was hilarious and brought back some funny memories of that sleep-deprived transition period.
Going polyphasic is such a uniquely bizarre experience that you can't really talk about it with someone who hasn't been through it. We reminisced about the amazing dreams, the difficulty of falling asleep in the car, the trials and tribulations of oversleeping, and the strange phenomenon that causes 20 minute naps to feel like they lasted for hours.
Steve said he's occasionally tempted to get back on the polyphasic sleep schedule, a temptation which I may have fueled a bit by telling him how much easier it became once I went raw.
I think his attitude of, "It's programmed in my brain, I think I could easily get back on" is a lot better than my, "it was the hardest thing ever, but I've done it before so I could do it again" mindset.
I had always been curious why Erin hadn't ever tried it, but she told me that it was because of the kids. If they both slept at the same time it would leave a lot of unsupervised time for their young children, and if they slept in back to back blocks, it would take up a lot of time and defeat the purpose.
Steve didn't really want any advice on pickup, other than a few thoughts on the philosophy of it. This surprised me, but he's definitely decided on a direct, open, and up front approach. I don't necessarily think that this is the best idea (I think it's better to start off indirectly), but I don't think it's anywhere near the worst either.
It was particularly amusing to hear Steve and Erin use all of the pickup terminology. They talked about a few times they'd used social dynamics tactics for non-pickup related situations, like wanting to meet authors they looked up to.
The big one. As you probably know, Steve has decided to become polyamorous. I'm particularly interested in this because I feel like even if I don't yet have the emotional fortitude and mindset for it, I do think that it is the "right" way to live, in the same way I think that being vegan is the "right" way to live.
Maybe a better analogy is that just as I think that anger is a weak emotion that should be eliminated, I also believe that jealousy has no place in a great life.
I'm actually pretty close to understanding and adopting this mindset now, but that's for a future post.
A few points that Steve Pavlina blog readers are probably wondering about:
- Yes, I believe Erin is onboard. I could see a bit of reservation on her face once in a while, but much more often was excitement for Steve's new project. There is just no chance that she's being unwillingly dragged along with this whole thing. She's supportive and emotionally ready for it.
- He has already has a prospect. He asked me not to write about her, but I'm sure you'll hear it from him sooner rather than later.
- I was bowled-over impressed with the level of communication and honesty between the two of them. Steve didn't shy away from talking about girls he was attracted to or expressing his enthusiasm for his new adventure. Erin responded right back with total acceptance and support. It's overwhelmingly apparent that they really do have a great rock-solid relationship.
I'm back reading every post on his blog because of his new induction to the polyamorous lifestyle. I've really enjoyed and resonated with all of his posts about it so far.
As you must know, I am in no way spiritual. I don't believe in God, spirits, the paranormal, or anything like that. Or at least... I didn't.
I had no plans to discuss psychic powers with them because I didn't feel like there was anything positive I could say about it. My existing belief was that Erin was probably a very intuitive person who was really good at cold reading and offering general advice that could be interpreted by believers as psychic influence.
Very shortly into our conversation, almost out of nowhere, Erin said that she could tell that I was going to be a speaker, communicator, and teacher. Interestingly she pointed to the copy of my book which I brought them and said that I would teach people, but that it wouldn't be about that stuff.
I found that interesting because I had come to meet them under the auspice of being a pickup artist, but she was certain that it wasn't my "gift".
She went on to say that I would "show people places they'd never been" and that my unique perspective would be to show people that they are not limited by the things they think are limited.
I was ready now, she said, but I felt like I had to spend a couple years to really build enough experience.
It was a dead on assessment. It didn't make me think that she was psychic, but I was definitely certain that she was one of the more intuitive people I'd ever met.
But later I became convinced that psychics probably exist, and that if they do, she is definitely one of them.
She shared a dozen or so stories with me of readings she had done. There is absolutely no doubt whatsoever in my mind that she is not lying about them. I don't think either she or Steve would ever lie under any circumstances. It's just not the kind of people they are.
She has asked me not to write about specific elements of her readings, but here are some common threads seen throughout all of them:
- She is VERY specific. We're not talking about the expected, "You will face difficulties in the next two years but will overcome them," but rather things like, "This specific organ in your body is in critical condition and needs immediate medical attention." The next day her client would go to the doctor and find that she was exactly right.
- She does not change her mind based on feedback. I assumed that if a psychic said something like, "Your brother has cancer" and the subject said, "actually it's my sister", she would say, "oh yeah, that must be it." Not Erin. She had many examples where she'd say, "No, that's not it. It's your brother" and would end up being right.
- Skeptics became believers. A lot of people who contact her for readings are skeptics. They find out about her from Steve's site and then decide to test her by getting a reading. I asked for stories from these people and she had a lot of examples.
I know that this isn't proof that she's really psychic, but it's enough evidence that I believe that it is more likely that she is really psychic than not. Even if some of her stories are seen through rose colored glasses and I'm only hearing the best ones, there were still enough very specific examples that I have no other possible explanation for it.
Barring firsthand personal experience, it's about as convincing as it gets. A friend is getting a reading from her soon, so I will follow up with his thoughts.
I was reeling for the next couple days. I still feel a little bit foolish believing in psychics, but there's no way around it.
More than anything Steve and Erin were just wonderful people. Whenever I meet people from the internet, even well known people, I always expect them to be a little "off". Steve and Erin were exceedingly warm, great conversationalists, and undeniably genuine. They were very easy to talk to and spend time with and I certainly look forward to the next time our paths cross.
For more information on them, visit their web sites: