The Overwhelm Equation

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This Sunday Secret’s going out late. And it’s more of a personal rambling than anything. Maybe some of you will find it useful, maybe not.

I had lots of ideas floating around in my head last week but never made the time to commit them to long-form writing. That’s the challenge of working with ideas. Life distracts you. (This one of the reasons I’m liking Twitter more as a short-form writing tool.)

In light of that, I thought it’d be a good time to share a useful mental tool I find myself returning to over and over in times like these.

It’s called “The Overwhelm Equation.”

I learned this from entrepreneur coach Alex Charfen. His whole thing is about helping entrepreneurial personality types create momentum in their life so they can make their greatest contribution.

While I’ve yet to make my greatest contribution, I can say that the stuff he teaches has helped me tremendously on a practical level.

If you’re anything like me, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. And I don’t mean losing your cool and snapping or anything like that (though that could happen), I simply mean feeling overburdened with mundane tasks without a clear sense of where you’re going.

It’s the struggle of having a head full of ideas, yet the external problems of daily life continue to compound… largely because you devote so much time to your ideas.

And yet your huge log of ideas and experiments take you nowhere, leaving you spinning your wheels fast and still remaining stuck.

Ideas are great… if you can put them to use through meaningful contribution. Otherwise, they’re just a distraction that prevents you from solving problems related to money, children, and other household stuff. (Or vice versa.)

For this reason, I’ve returned to Alex Charfen’s Overwhelm Equation this past week:

Overwhelm = Unknown Outcome + High Pressure & Noise

Unknown outcome means you don’t have a clear target you’re aiming for. You’re doing stuff. And you can say what you’re doing is “good”, but what’s the objective?

I’ve felt this way with my Red Pill Bible Guy stuff. In spite of having such a small audience, I get regular feedback from men of faith who’ve said my blog posts, emails, and tweets have opened their eyes to the truth.

But it’s not enough for me to simply share ideas. I’m realizing I’m wired more like an architect than a scholar. The scholarship is simply fuel for my vision… the design problems that need to be addressed for creating a new infrastructure.

This past week I’ve gotten clarity on where I really want to go. I realized Red Pill Bible Guy is a small piece of a larger picture; a mechanism to draw together the right kind of men.

So clarifying the desired outcome lifted a heavy burden off of me. In due time, I will be unfolding that vision as I figure out how to communicate it in a way that might make sense to people other than myself.

The other part of the equation is the “high pressure and noise.”

For me, the pressure and noise comes primarily from two places:

  1. Money
  2. My physical appearance

The money issue is one that might appear strange to some. I haven’t had a 9 to 5 job in almost 2 years now. I’ve never missed a rent payment. And I have the skill set where I could make a decent income as a marketing consultant.

And yet, I am unable to do so. Not for lack of skill or even fear of the phone, but for lack of desire.

I honestly prefer driving around in my car at night delivering food for Uber Eats, DoorDash, Postmates, etc.

It barely covers the bills, but it affords me time to think, learn, and create.

I loathe my marketing consulting work even though the pay per hour is great. I only have one client and I’ve put zero effort into acquiring another.

I figure it’s better to be poor and free than committed to something I hate.

But man does it suck to be short on cash sometimes!

The other area of pressure and noise for me is my looks.

I’m not ugly. But I have psoriasis on my legs, upper arms, back, and stomach. Sometimes it even flares up on my face when I eat too much sugar.

Sugar.

My personal vice.

Such a simple thing. Yet the root of so many problems.

I often find myself in a negative reinforcing loop:

  1. Eat sugar
  2. Psoriasis flares up
  3. Feel ashamed of my body
  4. Don’t initiate sex
  5. Feel like a hypocrate for writing about sex
  6. Get stressed
  7. Eat more sugar

It’s funny how “big problems” often have such mundane roots.

My other troublesome issue is with my style and grooming. I feel mentally and spiritually strong, but I feel that my appearance does not reflect that at all. I just look like a skinny guy with a bad haircut wearing jeans and worn out branded t-shirts.

For a long while, I never put any thought into my appearance. It seemed unimportant to my personal/spiritual development. It wasn’t even important for sexual success in the beginning. I believe my wife was attracted to me partly because of my ability to create momentum, and partly because my personality reminded her of a (lost) positive father-figure from her adolescent years.

Assocations are powerful. And sometimes you just get lucky 🙂

But now, when I look in the mirror, the man looking back at me looks entirely incongruent with who I am on the inside.

Except for my eyes. When I was younger, my eyes looked vacant, like a boyish daydreamer. Now, they look more intense and focused, more “battle ready.”

I truly believe that a person’s face is only partially inhereted from the parents. Much of a man’s facial appearance is derived from how he concentrates his attention over the years.

Regardless, I’ve realized these past couple weeks that there are some things I need to do over the next 6 months or so to prepare myself for the role I was designed for… to put on my “uniform” for the work to be done.

I hope some of you found some inspiration in this personal rambling. I will keep you all informed of any new undertakings.

Thank you for reading!

~ JT

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