Life has been crazy lately, and I haven't seen my daily writing habit in months. I have a hundred blog posts written, but I forget exactly where they are, and I remember thinking none of them were amazing. So I'm in that position that I created that habit to get out of: it's the night before a post is "due", I'm unwilling to skip a day, and I've sat here for an hour writing intro sentences for a million different posts.
I wanted to write about how, when giving advice, I used to always just tell people to do exactly what I do. In time, I realized that the best way to support someone is to give the advice that will bring them closer to their goals and desires, rather than what you'd do with their resources to get to your own goal. I think I already wrote that post, though, and I'm not sure if I posted it or not. Then I realized that I spent about four hours today explaining to my friends why they should buy bitcoins and possibly buy a plane. So maybe I'm not so good at that, after all.
I scrapped that post and came back to an empty box. What am I thinking about these days, I asked myself?
Well, I have one cool project I'm doing, but it would ruin it to talk about it before it's done, so I have to wait on that. I know exactly what the blog post is going to be, though, and I can't wait to write it.
On Wednesday I'm flying to Boston to see my family. I go on all sorts of crazy trips all year, but my favorite ones are just hanging out in houses with my family. I just did that for Thanksgiving and I'm about to do it again. But what's there to write about that? Family's important? Try to have a good family if possible? My mom once made the point that my siblings will be the people I know the longest in my life, so those relationships are really important. That's a good lesson, but I can't stretch it out into a blog post.
Next month I'm going to Romania. That's a random story, but I expect it will be much more interesting after it's over, so I can't write about that. Plus it's one of those stories that involves other people who might not want to be written about.
The gear post is coming. I have all the gear and I just need to write it, but it's too late to take photos and make links and all that. I'm going to try to have that one ready for Friday.
I have a few more cruise stories, like this one where a prank went horribly wrong and we really offended some people and spent a bunch of time trying to make it right, finally succeeding in the end. I've told that story a bunch of times in real life in the past week, though, and the moral of it is that I can be a jerk by accident sometimes. Anyway, I think I might turn my readers against me if I keep talking about cruises all the time.
It's been almost exactly nine years since I started writing this blog, which is pretty wild to think about. I was twenty-three when I started writing, and now I'm thirty-two. It's been a packed nine years, and I feel so fortunate to have written it all down. I scroll through the archives sometimes and I can see some of the turns my life's taken, goals I've set and achieved, goals I've set and forgotten, and a bunch of posts I hope no one will ever read, but that I won't delete.
I started this blog to capture a very short period of time. I was going to adjust to this crazy sleep schedule called polyphasic sleeping and I wanted to remember it after all the delirium had passed. Polyphasic sleep was a hot topic back then, so a bunch of people started reading. Some stuck around when I got off the schedule a few months later, so I kept writing and never stopped.
But I started the blog just to capture a moment of my life for myself, and that's been a big chunk of the benefit I've gotten from it. A bigger one is the people I've met, but capturing events and emotions and interactions that would have otherwise blurred into the past has been fantastic.
Sometimes those moments crystallize into a good blog post, and I sometimes worry that I give the impression that everything I do works out perfectly and teaches a lesson and is meaningful. Of course, that's not how anyone's life is. Sometimes it's one thirty in the morning, you should have written something earlier, but you got caught up talking about poker and planes and bitcoins, and you now find yourself staring at a blank page. Maybe those moments are worth capturing as well, but even if not-- at least the page isn't empty anymore.
Photo is from the national park on Lanzarote. Chosen to symbolize how fertile my mind is for blog post ideas at the moment.
The end of the post got me thinking-- is anyone still around who started reading during the polyphasic thing? I would be really curious to find out.
By the way, if you're a Sett blogger and have been pasting posts in, give the editor another shot. It's come leaps and bounds in the past few months and is quite good now.
Speaking of Bitcoin, I don't believe I've seen you post anything about this on your blog yet and it'd be interesting to hear what your thoughts are on the matter. In addition, you could couple that conversation in with an update of your current investment plan/philosphy which we haven't heard about in awhile.
Every so often I like to kick myself (though not as hard as I've learned the truth about markets) regarding how I didn't invest even 100$ in bitcoin back when it was a 11$/coin nerd currency which had no liquidity and could only buy goods from the russian souveneir store and silk road. Imagine I could've been 7,000$ to 12,000$ richer as of writing if I saw the boom potential (which to my defense no one really saw coming tbh).
I like to think this is near the top but we all thought that back when it hit 200$ after the cyprus incident. It's sunk back down to $750 as of writing but I'm thinking if you're speculating the good times may be over. How high can it go and if it does go that high what supports it? Another reason I still haven't bit is the fact bitcoin's speculative nature counters it's goal to become a stable currency. If a merchant may lose 90% of their profit from last month's sales overnight then adoption will be slow from that crowd. Counter to counter - a merchant carrying bitcoin might make a nice doubling/tripling of profits if we have another unlikely superboom so speculative merchants will buy in.
TLDNR: Didn't see the bitcoin train coming - and missed it. Though I can imagine the even deeper regret of people who bought pizza for like 3 bitcoins a year ago and now realize they've spent 2,100$ on it.
I know exactly what you mean. Didn't see that train coming either. However, these thoughts don't help much, because you could've invested in maaany things and made similar amounts of money – if you knew the right things to invest into.
Also: Why don't you now go ahead and buy bitcoins? In 3 years from now, you might make a million and will write the exact same post again: Why didn't I see that train coming, when Bitcoin was only 1,000$ each? Answer: Because, like 3 years ago, the future of bitcoin is pretty uncertain. 3 years ago, even spending 20$ on it was "too much", since you paid that for a toy, for "hot air". You could spend 20$ every day on some stuff that might be valuable in the future. Who knows.
So I guess, these thoughts aren't helpful, but we still indulge in them because we like to think:"Man, what could I do with 20,000$ right now?" Human nature, I guess :)
I didn't even check yesterday but bitcoin fell to 522$ briefly (now up to 625$ish) on news that China exchanges stopped taking it or something or other. Could be a potential buying op. here but it remains to be seen whether the slight rise is a harbinger to an even bigger selloff back down to 200. In that case a selloff from 600 to 200 would be a disasterous 66% loss if buying in now.
In truth, this is one of your better posts lately. The lessons get old after a while; this one feels honest. I started reading before I read the game, but after polyphasic, and the best posts have always been, "I did this fun thing, enjoy it with me." Sure, this one's not going to be ranked among the penguin story, the bounced check recovery, and your spelunking story as one of my favorites, but I connected with you while I read since I am also working on something amazing and can't share (not even with family).
I know the lesson posts get linked to from lifehacker-news or whatever, but blogging is a format of continuation. We follow because one thing leads to the next. I wonder if that's not as easy with pre-canned posts?
Its surprisingly wonderful that you are so open about this. I absolutely loathe that feeling of wanting to say something but really having nothing perfect to say or just being unable to say it in the way you want to. Kudos to you for sucking it up and articulating the horrors of being unable to articulate. And I hope you know that posts like this may not seem inspiring because you yourself felt the labor of writing them too much, but they are accidentally monumental and inspiring all the same!
Mr. T! I'll wave in your general Boston direction on Christmas. I'm in Somerville building my custom, stealth RV which I'll be driving to the left coast in a few weeks to my new hometown of SF. I'm sure our paths will cross before long. Enjoy your family trip.
"Sometimes worry that I give the impression that everything I do works out perfectly and teaches a lesson and is meaningful. Of course, that's not how anyone's life is."
This was my favorite bit. Sometimes it does seem like your life is perfect. Effortless. Glad to know it's not. -- Like someone else said, this post was good because it was 'real'. Like listening to a friend.
Happy New Year!!
I've read every post since day 1.
I had been reading for awhile when I had you speak at UK & we rapelled off of that bridge.
The list of ways in which you have educated, encourage, inspired & affected me deserves its own (lengthy) post, but for now, I guess I just wanted to say thanks & that I've enjoyed watching you "grow up" and getting to experience the pieces of life that you have shared in the past (almost) 9 years. Keep going. I'm rooting for you & looking forward to reading your next book(s) and your next 9 years of posts.
I started reading when you were into polyphasic sleeping. I was also reading Steve Pavlina's experience with it too. I have long stopped reading his blog, but I do remember a post where you met him if I remember right. Your blog has kept me as a reading because it is always entertaining. I stuck around for the adventures and crazy ideas and I plan on sticking around. I do like the moral and advice posts, but what keeps me coming back are the gear posts, buying an island, how you got 450k FF miles (upcoming post, right?), housing a swimming pool inside a house, etc. Keep 'em coming!
Thanks Tynan, this was actually the perfect post for today IMO... it's so true that things don't always work out as planned and your openness to just spill the 'morning pages' style stream of consciousness onto the page helped me today. Not because I imagined your life was all perfect (that is crazy talk) but this post for me also represents how things working out the way we want isn't always in everyone's best interest (including our own). It's what you do with what the day brings (or don't do this case I guess) that really makes life so great and seemingly perfect to others. Glad you captured this moment, and all the others along the way too. I hope one day we'll cross paths in our travels, greetings from Thailand and happy new year.
if you come to Romania I'll be more than glad to give you some advice about what to see and what to do. I live in Bucharest, if you do a meetup here with your readers I'll come surely, it would be nice to meet you in person.
Hey, I'm from Bucharest also. Nice to see I'm not the only one from this part of the world following this blog :) .
Yeah, I think kindred spirits find themselves even on the great flow we cal Internet. Sites like Tynan's should have more reach to people for the great information you can find regarding productivity and meaningful way to live your life. If you want to be great you should not follow the usual trail that everyone use.
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."
That's a picture of me drinking a strawberry lemonade.
I've spent most of my career - half my life, as of this writing - making videogames. I'm a computer programmer. I manage teams, too, and a lot of my thinking is around the work of management: how do we work with other people? How do we help others do better work? How do we help people grow?
I've done a lot of cooking. I've done a bunch of woodworking. I've given a bunch of talks at industry conferences. I like to travel. And so on.