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:
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:
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:
If Erin is really a psychic, she should go for Randi's million-dollar prize.
LOL!Polyamorists is for single people who don't want to attach themselves to family, How can you be one when you have kids?How can you share your precious freetime between new interests and wife? After all someone as to take care of kids!Imagine the resentment:You are longing to HUG your passionate but it is your wife turn...
Unless of course you are loaded and can afford nannies.
When they decide to come home, if ever, will the other half ready?If ever?
This is good for gays and couples who don't have kids, or they are grown up, and their passion has vanished.
I prefer my man desire a woman for the shag, NOT for love!!!!!
Tynan, of you're still reading this long-defunct post, I'd like to comment that if I were you, I wouldn't take the words of the scientific community too seriously.
For some, science is almost like a religion. It's not that they set out to be closed-minded, it's more that they just absolutely *cannot* see anything outside the confines of science. (A perfect example of this is Michael's post.) They're good people, usually, but they're brains seem to be wired differently than the rest of us. Bless 'em, they can't seem to absorb the fact that some things just won't fit neatly into a scientific framework.
It makes you wonder about the quality of their interpersonal relationships. Just for fun, I offer you this hypothetical conversation:
Wife: I love you. Husband: Give me a cite.
In all seriosness, though, I'd suggest that you not allow any of them to tell you how to think. We all ought to paddle our own canoes, and make up our own minds for ourselves about everything.
Oh, wait! You do a fantastic job of paddling your own canoe already. Good on you! Keep truckin'.
I used to enjoy Steve's blog posts.
No matter how you shake it... "polyamorous exploration" within a marriage is an excuse to live out a fantasy as a reaction to selfish desires - and points to some serious, deeply rooted problems.
Yes, perhaps there are some marriages where BOTH parties actively want this sort of lifestyle. But given that they've recently divorced - obviously that was not the case.
My guess is that Steve never had much of a love life prior to getting married, and now that he's become somewhat of a proverbial cult leader (intended or not), his ego is distorting things and he's reclaiming the experiences that he "should've had" years ago.
At the expense of his wife and kids.
Not to mention, the widespread loss of respect among any of his previous fan-base that has a shred of integrity and/or the capability to read between the lines and recognize simple human selfishness.
It's one thing to desire self development - which is healthy and an ongoing process.
But not when OTHERS are hurt as a result. And I don't buy his comments that his kids "love the new screwmates" and that everything is working out just fine.
Kids need stability and integrity.
My advice to Steve is to accept imperfection in himself because he's HUMAN, and not to justify selfish acts as some sort of "new experience".
That's a bullshit excuse to avoid responsibility.
This will all make lots more sense in coming years as Steve gets to watch first hand as his kids have to deal with a broken family because Daddy likes doing the nasty with raw-food-eating bimbos more than with the woman who has birthed his children.
Way to "create your own reality", Steve.
Now you can say goodbye to half your assets, more than half of your readership, and your self-respect.
This IS repairable, but it will take being honest with yourself, your readers and your family.
Just some thoughts from a former SP fan who just watched a role model take a dive off the deepend.
P.S. I'm not knocking Steve's divorce. Maybe it just wasn't working out - and that's none of our business, either.
My problem is with the JUSTIFICATION and "glorification" of dealing with nothing other than horniness/selfishness within a marriage.
The RIGHT thing to do if it wasn't working out is to get divorced ammicably and THEN start putting on leather costumes and banging starry-eyed female fans when you're *single*.
When you're single, you can at least preserve your self-respect, and you no longer have to invent these complex & "spiritual" excuses when you wanna screw around.
That is what a real man would do - have the honor to end things before starting something new.
After reading Erin's article on "Solid Evidence for Existence of the Afterlife", I can't help but say that it falls way too short of offering any "Solid" proof.
It should be remembered that the corner stone of any psychic "talent" is the existence of life after death. If it cannot be established that there is no death after "death", then the whole psychic thing is mistaken.
Erin claims that she speaks with dead people. That she can give you the thoughts and opinions of the dead. That the dead, especially those to whom you were closely related to, become prophets after their death and that they foretell future events of your life. And that the dead in some "ethereal" way learn a lot more about health, your body organs and other professional matters that they knew nothing of when they were alive.
Whether she is sincere about her claims or not is only a side issue. She might be convinced herself that she is actually getting these messages from the other side of the grave but her sincerity does Not prove any fact whosoever other than that she is sincere.
The matter of more concern is do these "messages" she gives come from the dead or do they originate from her own brains or even the brains of the sitter?
And are we supposed to be impressed that he has a "prospect?" I mean it's painfully evident that the guy isn't exactly setting the bar terribly high.
That's for damn sure.
As a motivational speaker, I can't believe what I just read. Motivational speakers, gurus, life coaches, are supposed to be role models. We are suppose to inspire people to achieve the greatest outcomes of their lives. I don't see how this could possibly be inspiring to others. I am committed to constant and never ending improvement. I don't see any area of Steve's life improving from this. I don't see this inspiring the majority of his readers.
When I was 21, I got married because I got my girlfriend pregnant. I knew it was not the right thing to do, but I wanted to take responsibility for my own actions. I knew that I wanted to be the best father that I could be. We had another baby three years later. I gave my marriage my very best. I tried and tried to make it work for my children's sake. I ended up with a terrible marriage. I knew that the right thing to do was to get a divorce. When my son was 5 and my daughter was 2, I went to court and got 50/50 custody. I pay a lot of child support to my ex and lost a lot of assets in my divorce. However, my divorce was one of the best things I ever did in my life. I ended up having my children about 80 to 90% of the time. I found more happiness than I ever had in my life. I eventually found the woman of my dreams who I plan to marry in the near future. My children are incredibly happy, in fact they love my fiance more than they love their own mom. I went on to have ten times the success that I had when I was married. This success allowed me to pursue my dream of becoming a motivational speaker so I could inspire people to make their dreams come true. None of this would ever be possible if I didn't get my divorce.
I am living proof that everyone has a soul mate and I can't wait to get married. Please enjoy some pictures of me, Cristina, and our kids at http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2007179&id=1104070076.
Steve, if you read this. Get a divorce. You can't put a price on your happiness. Don't worry about how much money you will lose. Look at all of the amazing things you will gain. Your happiness will inspire you to take your life to the next level while experiencing extraordinary growth.
"You can change the world one thought at a time."
Alright, rocketeers... this post is on a subject that's near and dear to my heart.
Whenever people hear about the polyphasic sleep schedule, they come up with reasons they couldn't do it. I don't know why... It's really awesome and everyone should want to do it. By far the most common excuse is :
"But I love my sleep. I would never want to give it up."
I’ve always thought a complete list of the Internet’s top personal development blogs would be a fantastic resource. As the saying goes, great minds think alike. Steven Aitchison and Brendan Baker have put together some awesome lists over the past couple years that clearly took a tremendous amount of effort to put together.
I’ve found lots of great blogs through their lists. There were also many blogs that didn’t resonate with me, but that’s to be expected with lists as large as the ones they’ve compiled. I’ve benefited hugely from Brendan and Steven’s lists, and I greatly appreciate the effort they put into them.
Reading there lists inspired me to put together my own list of personal development blogs, but from a different angle.
What’s Different About My List?
Well for one my list only includes 32 blogs. Why 32? Because 50 and 100 are just too many. At that point you’re beginning to sacrifice quality for quantity, and it’s been shown that when you give people too many choices they get overwhelmed and refuse to pick any of them. I also decided to use 32 rather than 30 because it’s unconventional and goes against the grain which is a huge part of personal development.