We found 92 Reddit comments about Man's Search for Meaning. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.
Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl.
Frankl (RIP) was a Holocaust survivor and a psychiatrist. His book examines what gives a human life meaning, using his experiences in the death camps as a framework for his theories. He particularly examines the mindsets of fellow survivors, and details the mental processes they went through to survive the camps. One of my favorite quotations from his book reads,
>It did not really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us. We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead to think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life—daily and hourly. Our answer must consist, not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual.
It's a book that asks a lot of the reader, but, to add another quote from Frankl, "What is to give light must endure burning."
This is hilarious, do you have some type of learning disability? Why is it you run around trying to deny the holocaust, you realize Hitler is literally on record calling for the extermination of jews as early as 1920, right?
This shit is just absurd dude, you're a disgusting piece of shit and you need to never breed. I can't even fathom how stupid a person has to be to be a holocaust denier at this point, for the love of god educate yourself:
>How did anyone here crawl out of their emotional wreck and become functioning and content members of society after leaving?
First, the existential vacuum is real when leaving the Church and so is the excruciating loneliness. You're not alone and you can make it through. For me, a big part of the answer was just giving it time (cliche, I know, but still true) and just surviving the long, miserable days that followed my loss of faith.
Second, reading books helped. Lots of books from others that have previously dealt with these existential questions. Some recommendations are:
For those interested, his main work is Man's Search for Meaning.
Thats exactly where this quote is from. What makes it even more powerful is that this thought is in response to being sent to a concentration camp to die.
If Frankl could maintain this mentality while being worked to near death and having to constantly outsmart gestapo, no one here has any valid excuse as to why they can't cultivate that same mindset.
Seriously, everyone get this book. Its like 200 pages (if that) of some of the most compelling writing you'll ever read.
Here is a few:
Starship Troopers - the book, not the movie
Man's Search for Meaning
12 rules for life an antidote to chaos
Man's Search For Meaning is the most tragically uplifting book you'll ever read about the holocaust. I strongly recommend it. (Edit: It's a very quick read.) As a matter of fact, it's probably time for me to read it again.
Frankl wrote extensively on his experiences as a holocaust survivor in Man's Search for Meaning
>putting your needs above others
Have you ever heard of the term "paradoxical intent"? It was coined by a guy named Viktor Frankl. He was a holocaust survivor and psychologist who wrote a book on how to find meaning/happiness in a world that's total shit.
The term refers to the fact that in many areas of life, the harder you focus on something, the less likely you are to achieve that end. Finishing or not prematurely finishing sex, for instance. He argues that this generally applies to the pursuit of happiness. In his own words: "it is the very pursuit of happiness that thwarts happiness." Happiness results in finding meaning/purpose in life-- not in pursuing happiness. Look no further than most celebrities. His book's a quick read if you're interested. I'm sure you'd find it in your local library, too.
So let's consider TRP in this context. These folk have taken a route almost-universally acknowledged to lead to short-term happiness but misery in the end, and they're so damn happy about their choice that they spend their time convincing strangers on the internet that they're totally happy. Longitudinal studies are clear: long-term, meaningful relationships are key to happiness in life. You're listening to a bunch of 20-somethings offer (likely fabricated) anecdotes over the advice of actual research.
Listen to evidence, not reddit
I was you, about two years ago. I had fully committed to being a great dad and a great husband, but had stopped developing as an individual. Figuring that out is an excellent first step to, as you said, getting your life back in balance.
Here are two books that helped me:
Man's Search for Meaning, by Viktor Frankl: It's a short book by a Holocaust survivor that deals with controlling your attitude at all times, and having perspective on where you are compared to where you want to be.
A Guide to the Good Life, by William Irvine: A good modern take on Stoicism, or the philosophy of taking life in stride. Contrary to common belief, it's not about eschewing all emotions and being joyless; it's about embracing joy in all things, acknowledging and preparing for grief but not letting them overwhelm you, and being mentally present in day-to-day life. Plan for the future, but don't forget to take joy in the small moments of the present.
Edited in links.
The existentialism is real in the wake of losing your worldview. All the pep-talks in the world about "go live your life, the world is amazing!" meant nothing to me. I didn't know how to move forward. For some of us, the loss is huge and the existential dread (with its accompanying anxiety and depression) is absolutely consuming.
Ultimately, the study of philosophy and the nature of existence was the way out and the door to a meaningful post-Mormon life for me. I read and studied a bunch of stuff, but the below list was some of the most helpful. I ultimately chose to go with a personalized form of stoicism to fill the void left by Mormonism. Others prefer secular Buddhism, etc. If you still like Jesus as a moral guide (like I do in a lot of ways), this is a great short podcast about Jesus as a moral philosopher.
Anyway, I found the below very helpful in my transition:
Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil. I went through a phase of being a "hardcore punk" as an early adolescent - this book made me appreciate the music a lot more but the "culture" a lot less.
Also, much later, I read Victor Frankl's "Man's Search for Meaning". I always hated philosophy and was miserable when I was forced to take it in college, but this is the one book I did not sell after the end of the course, and reread multiple times. It is overwhelming and sad but really gives a touching and life-changing account of the beauty of the human spirit, even in situations of utter horror.
I'm actually a big fan of Man's Search for Meaning. Recommended reading for all humans.
Sure. There's a bit of a story arc where I came to my senses first, then discovered I wanted to unfuck my life, and leanfire principles is a part of that.
The one that started it all was The Art of Happiness. I was miserable and herein the Dali Lama shocked my life with his assertion that the goal of your life is to be happy. I had a mindset that I had to suffer in order to be worthy of good things in life.
Then, if I recall correctly were non buddhist books, but in the realm getting your head straight:Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life: I saw this man's TED talk.
& How to Stubbornly Refuse to Make Yourself Miserable About Anything
These two go great together to discover that its all in your head and you can change that. I had a terrible inner dialogue and was able to be rid of it. Life Changer!
The I think I read The Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety probably 10 times over the last 4-5 years & listened to the audio book when falling asleep. This one really underlined how miserable we make ourselves striving for security that isn't to be had. There is wisdom here that constantly reveals itself long after having read it.
The Pema Chodron Audio Collection was a constant go to also.
My most recent listening are lectures by Ajahn Brahm of Buddhist Society of Western Australia - These lectures really turned me around to moving past the pain, fear & worry about changing my life.
\^\^ I really like listening to these while falling asleep or with a nap on the couch on Sat/Sun afternoons.
Some other notables:
Fuck It: The Ultimate Spiritual Way : Saying Fuck It when you're miserable due to expectations and attachments has a real emotional response vs the above which can be very cerebral.
Man's Search for Meaning: Sometimes it's hard to grateful when wrapped up in our own lives. I read this once a year as a refresher. When I'm being ungrateful I try to remember what others have put up with and it calms down my complaining mind.
The Art of Disappearing: Buddha's Path to Lasting Joy : more from Ajahn Brahm - There is a better way to live our lives and not be miserable. Simplicity and lean fire go really well together.
More minimalism than buddhism, but they jive well together:
Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life
Goodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism
Above all I feel these are all about snapping out of the nonsense mindsets & habits many of us have.
First, you're not alone. I was in my early 30's when I lost my faith and it took me 2 years to get over the depression and existential vacuum that Joe's lies left behind.
I was able to eventually work my way through it without meds or any serious counseling, but it was a grueling couple of years. Everyone has to figure out their own path, but what helped me most was reading from others who had faced the same existential vacuum and found a way to navigate it. A few titles that I would highly recommend are:
This is tough. Your main priorities must be to reduce social isolation & move away. My best suggestion is to apply for any job, move in with BF (or talk to BF's parents about the situation). Go back to college, study anything, get college friends or ask the college to help. Dont get pregnant.
Read Man's search for Meaning.
Over the past several years I've personally gravitated toward a blend of stoicism and "secular Christianity." I know many others go the route of secular Buddhism (Noah Rasheta, who is also an exMo runs secularbuddhism.com which you might want to check out) and others (most?) simply go the route of ethical hedonism.
I personally gravitated toward stoicism because it isn't a religion and has no real religious underpinning. Instead, it's normally referred to as just a "philosophy of life." It has worked well for me as a backfill to religion. You'll also find that different people have different views of what it means to "practice" stoicism, so it's nice in that you can kind of adapt it to fit your personal preferences.
Here are some recommendations if you want to look into it:
You're welcome. My dad's a G.P. and he got copies of these for every one in my family. They are amazing.
Other good ones to look at are:
Ah yes. You are exactly correct. In the grand scheme of things, everything is meaningless. But it does not then therefore follow that there is not meaning to be found in life.
My favorite author on this is Viktor Frankl: neurologist; psychiatrist; and Holocaust survivor, his psychoanalytic theory of logotherapy was informed by existentialism and his experiences in the Auschwitz concentration camp.
According to Frankl, meaning can be found in life in 3 ways: by creating a work or doing a deed; by experiencing something or encountering someone; and by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering. So basically our choices are accomplishment, love, and perseverance.
In Man's Search for Meaning, Frankl states that "Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather must recognize that it is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life; to life he can only respond by being responsible."
From what little context you've provided I assume that you are right now facing unavoidable suffering in the form of a hard realization. Life is questioning you right now by giving you the realization of meaninglessness. This is good for you are being given an opportunity to respond. An opportunity to show Life that you are worthy to endure the struggle of this knowledge and keep going. You are strong enough.
I'd highly recommend the book I've linked to. If you don't want to buy it, send me your address and I'll have it shipped to you. I'm serious.
EDIT: Also check out this essay.
Been there. Looking for meaning in life, and not finding it in the same things other people seem to. I just finished reading Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. I think it's the best book I've ever read for feelings like this, and I plan on reading it again every time I feel like this. A source of both perspective, and hope that things will get better.
I highly recommend his book, it's got some good insights. Nothing to do with having children though. It's just a good book about how people can find happiness in their own lives by making their own meaning. Very relevant to childfree I think, since we all find our own happiness in our own ways, even though people may tell us that our path is "not correct" in one way or another.
If you want to read a philosophically oriented book that might actually help you feel better you should read Victor Frankl's Man's Search for Meaning.
Can’t recommend Man’s Search For Meaning enough if you’re looking for a quality self-help book
I love the crap out of books. One of life's greatest joys is learning and books are such an excellent way to do it.
Business books you should read:
I've had issues relating to depression and anxiety for well over 15 years. I actually quit drinking 4 years ago in part because of how it would throw me for these emotional roller-coaster rides that drove me down even further. Things have gotten much better and I've sought help but its still a daily process for me, which is now much more manageable. For some reason a long time ago I developed a stigma against myself in that I believe I'm weak for not being able to handle and "control" these issues, but that couldn't be further from the truth. There is a large sense in relief in accepting it as part of who you are and as condition you can learn to live with. I would encourage you to seek professional help, and to keep an open mind. For me relief didn't come in the form of medication, but through other practices such as meditation, building a support group, seeking spiritual growth, and learning how to identify and communicate effectively when this is starting to take me for a ride. I have found the writings of Viktor Frankl to be my inspiration - though nothing ever changed for me by just reading a book... its the actions I have taken as a result that have really helped. I feel for you, and I wish you the best.
> One can continue to learn to see things from an observant perspective to circumstances instead of a reactive perspective.
Viktor Frankl's idea where supposedly anyone can bullshit themselves into thinking even the most dire of circumstances are not that bad? What is secret to making that work?
No excuse for this, period. Being raised without a father doesn't mean you become a Nazi and run someone over at a rally.
There's a great book that changed my worldview on this subject:
I dealt with similar issues after the initial euphoria of quitting wore off. Drinking had been a way to avoid dealing with things that I needed to deal with in my life.
There is a lot of good advice in this thread. What matters is to work at it (because it is work), and to find what will work for you.
I know for me, this book (Man's Search for Meaning) was very helpful in finding a way to orient myself in the world that was right for me. But for you it might be therapy, or AA, or getting out in nature more, or getting to church more, or exercising more. It could be anything - you have to find it.
By quitting drinking you have given yourself a tremendous opportunity. You can now build yourself into the person you want to be. It's hard work, but to my mind it's the main reason we're alive in the first place.
The Feeling Good Handbook It's a DIY Cognitive Behavioral Therapy guide. (Half the book is about medication- you can skip all that). I followed the instructions and found it tremendously helpful.
Man's Search for Meaning It will put everything in perspective
Pick up one of JBPs Self Authoring products. Proven effective, and backed by clinical data. Figure out who you are and develop a vision and plan for your future.
I don't know if you are a reader, but this book has really interesting perspectives.
(FYI I'm not trying to make an argument that "he had it worse so you have nothing to complain about. I just find that he had an interesting perspective on life.)
In the particular part I'm talking about, he talks about how each person is unique in who they are and what they have to offer to the world and what they are able to do. He gives the opinion that if you aren't there to do what you have the talent to do and what you could do for the world, nobody else will be able to do it the way you could. In that way, you are unique and irreplaceable.
I think he does a better job of explaining it than I do and I would really suggest reading it. I mean if you are thinking of suicide, I would generally say don't do it. Obviously I can't stop you but I would ask you to read that book first. I think it has a very powerful message.
In case anyone wants to learn more about Stoicism here are the titles of books written by some of the men mentioned in the video:
There is no easy fix to this. I am almost 30 and struggle with it frequently. Personally for me what helped the most was being in school getting my bachelor's in child and family studies. The degree doesn't do alot if youre looking to make money when youre done but it was heavily focused on self growth and development. Some of the books we read included "parenting from the inside out" "7 habits of highly effective people" (Cliche' I know), and "A man's search for meaning". While these books were useful tools, it helped that the professors I had encouraged people to discuss their lives, struggles, Journal (but constructively, not just your struggles but when you overcome them, and set goals for yourself, document your downfalls and triumphs and review when youre down) and to stay off of social media. Unplug completely. this is something I still do when I feel overwhelmed with being a single parent. Also I know it is hard but if you can have your little one help with all the mundane stuff (like housework) it can help make it a sharing moment rather than I need to get this done moment. (I personally struggle with that from time to time, I don't know if you do). I am sorry youre struggling, please keep your head up. you will raise a strong woman and when she is older you are allowed to have fun with her while all those friends will be raising babies.
I am sorry that you lost your friend. Suicide is a devastating tragedy for everyone who is touched by it, and I hope you have support in trying to make sense of this.
I am a psychiatrist. I have treated a countless number of people who have had severe depression and/or attempted suicide.
Now obviously I don't know the specifics of your friend's case - what kind of treatment he had, what his life situation was, or what was going through his head when he acted on the suicidal thoughts - but based on what I have seen, I have a hard time believing that a compassionate God would allow someone to go to hell for dying of suicide, when I have seen for myself that in many cases suicide is not so much a willful rejection of life, but more like the choice of someone who has been trapped in a building that's on fire and chooses to jump out of a window to try to escape the flames.
In my opinion, this belief that people who die of suicide go to hell is from the stigma that our society has regarding mental illness, not truly something that comes from God.
Based on my experiences, I truly feel that most people who make an attempt to kill themselves are actually ambivalent to some degree. There is, at least in many cases, a part of them that truly doesn't want to die. The problem is that they are caught in a situation where their ability to cope is overwhelmed by the pain they feel, at least temporarily - and sadly sometimes circumstances lead people to act on these feelings before the situation can be resolved.
A pretty significant number of suicide attempts occur impulsively - in the setting of a sudden crisis or under the influence of alcohol or drugs (since drugs can take away the inhibitions and fear that might have otherwise stopped the person from acting on these thoughts).
I think the question of "Why does God allow suffering?" is one of the biggest questions for any religious person, and I don't think I can give you a satisfying answer. Personally, I do not see mental anguish as being all that different than physical agony - the mind and body are connected, and one can affect the other.
If you have never read it, I would strongly recommend taking a look at CS Lewis's book "A Grief Observed" (on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Grief-Observed-C-S-Lewis/dp/0060652381/ ) . He is brutally honest about the pain and confusion he experienced after his wife died, and I think you might find some comfort in his reflections about suffering in spite of religious faith. Another book that I think is helpful in trying to make sense of great loss and suffering is Viktor Frankl's "Man's Search for Meaning", a reflection on how he and other Holocaust survivors tried to find a sense of purpose in spite of such hopeless and senseless suffering : https://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X/
I think it will ultimately be up to you to try to decide what meaning you will attach to your friend's death and how you make sense of it in the context of your beliefs.
> I have experienced depression in my life & it's not something that you can necessarily reframe into a positive experience.
You should read this
I noticed that a lot of what he is saying is that he has no purpose, I had the same feeling as him, I linked a book down below to a book called man's search for meaning, it help me when I was feeling when I couldn't take it anymore. If anyone else here is suffering try reading this book it will connect with you in a deep also if you feel alone shoot me a pm and I'll listen if you need that.
A good book I recommend: https://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X
Man's Search for Meaning
by Viktor E. Frankl
off the top of my head:
Meditations, with The Inner Citadel as a reader
Letters from a Stoic
A Guide to the Good Life by Irvine
Do The Work by Pressfield as well as The War of Art by Pressfield
Managing Oneself by Ducker
Man's Search for Meaning by Frankl
What Predicts Divorce by Gottman
Models by Manson seems to be popular on reddit
So Good They Can't Ignore You by Newport, as well
I'm currently reading Triumphs of Experience by Vaillant and find it insightful.
I think it’d an important topic to think about in a daily basis - not in a weepy fearful way, but just to appreciate the time left here on earth. When my dad passed, it hit me hard and I realized how much I had squandered my life being miserable, tense, and angry. I think death helps break you out of your shell. I do imagine myself near death every so often, and it helps take me out of the worries and concerns I have during the day.
Here’s a solid book on the topic:
And of course the classic by Viktor Frankl:
And if Alan Watts is up your alley:
There are several books that really inform his works, but the main two that are easily accessible are:
I have to say that of these books, Frankl's Search for Meaning helped me through some incredibly tough times in my life. It's enormously accessible and inspirational, an easy read that is worlds apart from the philosophical texts I'm accustomed to from school, i.e., it's never dry, pedantic, or inscrutable. You don't need a background in philosophy, much less existentialism (in which it is well steeped), to get something of value from it. The concept of logotherapy - that there is meaning to be found in your life that can give you the impetus, the reason to survive (and succeed) in any situation, however harrowing that may be - is both simple and profound.
For those reasons, I think that this book and likely all the others in this list (I'm familiar with most but not all of them, so I could be grossly over-generalizing here) were chosen. Yes, Kant, Hegel, Nietzsche, et al. did have a tremendous impact on modern thought, but that's not what this list is about. The last thing I would do is throw one of their books at a person who is looking for relatively simple, accessible, and practical words of wisdom. No philosophy degree required to jump into Mr. Holiday's reading list.
I recommend a kind of obscure YouTube channel called Real Atheology.
The website plato.stanford.edu is very helpful.
Also, a book I'd recommend is "The Hiddenness Argument".
Make sure you read Bart Ehrman's books on the New Testament. You owe it to yourself to look at the NT through the same scrutiny you did the BoM.
I also recommend you definitely read Victor Frankl's "Man's Search for Meaning." This is a life changing book.
Finally, I recommend some of the Greek and Roman texts like Marcus Aurelius' "Meditations" and "On the Shortness of Life" by Seneca and Epictetus' "Enchiridion." The endeavor of dealing with our mortality is not new, and reading ancient non-Christian authors on living a good life is very helpful.
1.- [Man´s Search for Meaning] (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/080701429X/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=whacrhogymabe-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=080701429X&amp;linkId=b7502d4b24e703179203783ca1aecf93) - Viktor Frankl
2.- [Brave World] (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060776099/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=whacrhogymabe-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=0060776099&amp;linkId=2f25c9c58432eb79d75d0301d7bfc15e) - Aldous Huxley
3.- 4 Hour Work Week - Tim Ferris
4.- [Start Up Nation] (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0446541478/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=whacrhogymabe-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=0446541478&amp;linkId=1570aaf14626b3c83c80115430565640) - Dan Senor
I am sure that you've done this, but just in case you haven't: make sure to contact the program(s) you're looking at applying to and see what that the prerequisite classes are for each. I got my masters in clinical mental health counseling and my program required a number of basic psychology courses are prereqs.
Aside from that, don't worry too much about what you don't know. If you're looking to get a jump-start you can read through a basic theories textbook (like this one) or some seminal works by notable authors in the counseling/mental health fields like Man's Search for Meaning, Cognitive Behavioral Theory, or Reality Therapy for the 21st Century.
If you don't have a background in psychology then some of these might feel a little abstract, but don't worry! You don't have to understand everything to begin exploring your interests.
I hope this is helpful!
okay, now, it's a ton of information so you will have to make sense of it yourself :)
Some of videos have scientific articles attached to them, so if you want to analyze in detail don't forget to view them below the videos.
http://shynesssocialanxiety.com/system/social-anxiety-1a/ - you can get his book, even though it's about shyness, and social anxiety, he talks very simply about the power of controlling your thoughts.
Some solids in my life:
You're defining this hypothetical and any other dimensions that comes along with it. I'm not sure what kind of answer your going to expect because issues of compulsion are going to be a case by case basis on real world embodied individuals.
If you looking for modern science about the gambit of addictions I might recommend When The Master Becomes The Servant I wouldn't say Powers is a "Peterson" type but his field is about this subject.
One person Peterson has cited is Frankl. You might enjoy Man's Search For Meaning very short book.
I recommend Viktor Frankl's Man's Searching for Meaning.
I think you've gained more than you realize. Well, depending on what your LDS life was like. For instance:
Based on that quote selection, I think you would also enjoy this book. Same setting. Longer form. Puts life in perspective quite a bit.
Thanks for the rec!
Homework: Once a day remind yourself “I love myself. I love myself because of my mistakes. I’m human and I am open to learning and change.”
> I'd feel as if I'm lying to myself.
That’s why they say we have to “learn” to love ourselves. You can tell yourself all day that you suck, you’re worthless, dumb, ugly, all kinds of bad thing that aren’t true. Even if “I love myself” comes across as untrue, say it until you mean it. Fake it till you make it right? :)
Five minutes once a day. Sit in a chair and close your eyes. It sounds silly. It feels ridiculous. But say it until the phrase starts making sense. And then apply it to the closest person in your life. Whoever that would be. Your mother, dad, sister, brother, uncle. Whomever. It’s like learning a magic spell that you decide you are willing to cast on yourself and the people you love most. It takes practice like any skill.
Man’s Search for Meaning might be a good book for you to consider. It’s not an overly religious book as the title sounds, but it’s about a man who survived concentration camp.
> but I need a kind honest word in private from time to time, from someone I care about
That’s it exactly! That’s what we’re looking for in this practice of making a statement to ourselves. It’s not about praising you. It’s about fundamental basis of love as the starting point, like a mother loves her child. It teaches us to begin there and move forward. This is the private moment.
In Taoism it’s called the “inner smile”. In Buddhism it’s called “loving kindness” (or metta practice). In the West we just call it an affirmation. A moment to dispel the negativity encountered throughout the day to reaffirm our relationship with ourselves and the people we love around us.
> It makes me feel I'm useful and not wasting my time and resources on something bound to fail.
That’s what being an individual is about. Waste your time on what is important to you! You deserve to feel better about yourself. :)
Remember to avoid seeking perfection. On the way to success are are many many failures. It’s not about the 7 falls. It’s about getting up 8 times.
Have you seen the movie 16 candles or The Breakfast Club? You’re in good company when it comes to not liking our looks. Especially at high school. But we can’t choose our face or body, they kind of choose us. Remember not to compare yourself to others. Just be you.
However you used to write, try to pick that up again. If it was journaling, ask for some journals for Christmas and birthdays. That spark can be rekindled if you pursue it. A couple paragraphs a day should be doable.
Never consider your opinion stupid. Uneducated, maybe. But it’s better to say it, especially now, and get feedback from your friend than not say it at all. And Russian is not an easy language (from what I’ve heard) but you could study it in college or whenever high school is over. Put things on the back burner but don’t count them out when you’re dealing with the present (like grades and exams, etc.)
Be his friend. And that’s it! Don’t put so much pressure on yourself. :)
> The fact that I can't fit in anywhere speaks for itself. I'm not a part of any social group
Whose choice was that? You have to sign up or you don’t get invited. Take a chance on the things you love. And always remember you do what you would want to do anyway and the right people will come along. Reach out to people you like but don’t normally talk to. There are interesting people just a conversation away. Hang in there!
You could read man's search for meaning. It's a great read.
Man's Search for Meaning changed the way I view life, and helped me immensely in readjusting after my sister passed.
It's about exactly what it sounds like - How humans find meaning in their situation, and find their way past their obstacles. It sounds like a self-help book, I know. It's not. It's more about philosophy. The author has somewhat of a unique insight into the search for meaning, from his experiences in a concentration camp.
Edit: Added link. Also, as a book nerd, I can't resist plugging a few more.
The Picture of Dorian Grey - beautiful imagery, wonderful level of detail, interesting story. Great book.
Animal Farm - deals extensively with how power corrupts. Very relevant in this day and age.
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde - Dark and dingy, deals with the struggle between the self we present to the world and the monsters inside of us. If you have a strong "dark side", you'll probably like this one.
The Prophet - Quick read (2 hours, maybe?) and thick with philosophy. Another one to change your perspectives, much like Man's Search for Meaning.
There are plenty more, of course, but I don't want to spoil the fun for everyone else.
Maybe spend time volunteering? Helping others would at least make your time useful while you figure things out. If you have time, that's great. Time is the ultimate item of value that we will never have enough of and can never have enough of. Take it and put it to good use, for others if you can't figure out your own. IMO, life frankly doesn't owe you a purpose; you get to make that up on your own.
But since you came here looking for a book suggestion, try "Man's Search For Meaning" by Victor Frankl (https://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X )
Read this book, too, "Man's Search for Meaning" by Viktor E. Frankl: http://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X
Sounds like you are in a bad place. I don't really have much advice but I will recommend two books. /u/cyanocobalamin has already rocomend a good book, the one's I want to add are:
Not contemporary but a must read in the field of psychology, or in life really. Man's search for meaning. It is a short, but profound read from one of the field's best.
>Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
-- Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning
Learn to live in that space. It takes time. But, within that space, you can determine whether or not your anger is justified, and how to respond appropriately.
You sound like you've got something(s) in your life which are pissing you off. Not dealing with those things or being unable to do so may be leading you to displace that anger onto things you feel empowered to show frustration towards. It's a power dynamic. If one feels helpless to change a thing, one tends to ignore it as much as possible. In that situation, one will often have a shorter fuse toward other things.
I remember when I had the same issue, I got a book on the history of the Samurai. I brought a highlighter and sticky notes to a cafe and tabbed the hell out of that book. I noted every clan, every distinction of the clan, famous swordmakers, beheading "showings". I took to those stories to heart. Those men exhibited such amazing discipline that I wanted to follow suit.
Aaaaaaand, when I met up with the chick, i would have the book in my bag. Eventually, she saw the book that was tabbed to hell. BOOM. She thought that was sexy as hell (don't stage it/force her to see it). She KNOWS that you have greater ambitions in life. That is pure catnip. ~10 years later and I still have that book. She isn't around, but that book is, and it is still catnip.
The trick is to maintaining a schedule time to devour the book. When she asks to hang out during that time (and she will target that time), tell her that you are a bit busy during that scheduled time. Say, "How about afterwards?"
Other good books about discipline:
Rules for a Knight
Man's search for meaning
Also, turn off your ringer/vibrate on your phone. Put that phone in a backpack. It took me until 23 to figure that one out. Ignore the phone. Why does she need an immediate response? She doesn't.
If she gets frustrated, she will take it out on you sexually. No joke. She will fight for your attention. Just keep up with that book. Even if you do get your intended reaction from her. You put that book down and you'll be worried all over again. Not fun, is it?
If she is really young, she might try to make you jealous. If that is the case, she is bad news. I doubt that you will get here, but it is a red flag to remember. Find another girl who will see that tabbed book. Profit$$$
Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
The Last Days of Socrates by Plato
It has been a while since I read either of the two, but I really enjoyed both Deep Survival by Laurence Gonzalez and Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl.
They both address the ability to continue on in the face of adversity. How people are able to keep going when things get really shitty, and how you can as well.
Regarding naps. I wouldn't worry about them. I mean, literally, don't worry about them—take yourself through the seemingly-superficial structural routine of laying down, on time, everyday, comfortably, turning on your alarm, putting down your phone, closing your eyes—but don't worry about achieving sleep. Don't try to clear your mind. Don't try to keep your mind busy. Just lay there. Your goal right now isn't sleeping during naps. It is just being there.
The point right now is that you signal to your body that these are the times available to sleep, in order to reinforce your goal cycle. Sleeping at these times will come later.
If you find your mind going haywire in all directions during the naps, that's fine. No big deal. But one thing to try: Try thinking about only one thing: staying awake. Keep your eyes closed, but occupy your mind with only the thought (not with actively pursuing strategies) of staying awake. This is called paradoxical intention and is a common and well-supported psychotherapeutic approach (from Viktor Frankl) toward reducing insomnia. Try applying this during your core sleeps, as well. Your insomnia may not be psychosomatic, but if it is, and I can speak from personal experience here, this has a good shot at helping.
Man's search for meaning
How about when you're in a nazi concentration camp?
This book might be of interest to you.
Have you read Man's Search for Meaning? It probably won't answer your questions, but it deals with a lot of them. Viktor Frankl was a psychologist who was imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp during WWII and as a result, developed his theory of Logotherapy which assists people in finding meaning in their own life.
I don't agree with everything he says (I don't believe that suffering well, in its own right, is enough of a meaning but I also was never in a concentration camp) but it might help you frame your thoughts.
Go find meaning in your life. Find a place to volunteer so that you can make a difference. Here is a good read. http://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X
You can try some books, I found the first one helpful, although mine was more of a negative thoughts type of depression at the time
You can also try http://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1381268776&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=mans+search+for+meaning there is an Audiobook version as well.
Fail fast, fail often. Pretty much the advice of every person who has found profound success in some area of their life.
Even if there is a person or persons working against you oftentimes it is their actions influencing yours through the filter of your opinions/perceptions.
Hamlet:What have you, my good friends, deserv'd at the hands ofFortune, that she sends you to prison hither?
Guildenstern:Prison, my lord?
Hamlet:Denmark's a prison.
Rosencrantz:Then is the world one.
Hamlet:A goodly one, in which there are many confines, wards, anddungeons, Denmark being one o' th' worst.
Rosencrantz:We think not so, my lord.
Hamlet:Why then 'tis none to you; for there is nothing either good orbad, but thinking makes it so. To me it is a prison.
Hamlet Act 2, scene 2, 239–251
As well, even in the case of a person being in the complete control of other(s) it is still largely a matter of perspective. There is an excellent meditation on this in the form of 'Man's Search for Meaning' by Viktor Frankl:
And apart from all this, my conduct is the only thing I can control and so I can only influence things through my conduct. The conduct of others is none of my business beyond being a factor in my decisions, like any other aspect of my environment.
I am in charge of my life.
Reading your request, I instantly thought of Man's Search for Meaning. It's part actual story, part inward journey, of a man who survived the camps during the Holocaust when everyone around him perished. It's a short read, but honestly one of the most uplifting and powerful books you'll ever read.
My favorite cookbook
Man's search for meaning
My favorite series
Mostly because I suggest everyone read those books.
I haven't read this book yet but I hear great things about it. I think this book may be beneficial for you to read.
Man's Search For Meaning
I hear what you saying and I do agree. I was more interested in other people's opinion and knowledge. One thing for sure that fasted state was a natural state of being, only recently the calories became abundant. It's not natural to be fed all the time like in our society.
Maybe human body is designed to operate in different gears at different times, one situation is not better nor worse then the other , it's just different. In modern society we are like a car that is stuck in one (comfortable) gear and we are wearing it off. In that case one may look at fasting as detox.
One of the life changing books that I do come back to on a yearly basis is
http://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X . There is a chapter that the author ( who is a Nazi prisoner in Auschwitz states that the prisoners were in surprisingly good even thou they were in almost perpetual fasted (starvation state):
" *... I would like to mention a few similar surprises on how much we could endure: we were unable to
clean our teeth, and yet, in spite of that and a severe vitamin deficiency, we had healthier gums than
ever before. We had to wear the same shirts for half a year, until they had lost all appearance of
being shirts. For days we were unable to wash, even partially, because of frozen water-pipes, and yet
the sores and abrasions on hands which were dirty from work in the soil did not suppurate (that is,
unless there was frostbite)..."
Regarding cancer research, it's presumed that the cancer cells are glucose (sugar) dependent. In the absence of sugar they literally starve. Plus they say that fasting before chemotherapy lessens the side effects.
P.S. I wonder what's your reasons for fasting ? Obviously you are interested in it, otherwise you wouldn't be subscribed to this subreddit.
The problem I see with your list is that it is all non-fiction. That is, it is written by people with an axe to grind, a particular philosophy to push. Not that they are good or bad, but anyone who tells you that they personally know the secret is almost certainly selling you something.
Taking a page from Jordan Peterson - I would suggest that the best books to read are in narrative form. We have archetypes for a reason.
I could some up with a never ending list, but the two that popped into my head are:
Disclaimer: I am not a parent, I am not married and, I am not related to anybody who is neurodiverse. However-I have spent several years working within a few support agencies and non-profits in the field, and have worked with a wide array of individuals.
I do not want this to be a reply that assumes I know anything about your position or difficulties, rather, I want to share some of the most useful ideas that I have learned in the past few years. While these strategies have helped me greatly, I don't claim them to be a quick save for your exact situation. After all, I am able to leave work and if tension rise between me and an individual I am able to switch staff members. You have a far more difficult and long lasting challenge. I am hopeful that they can be of some assistance in any case.
Maybe reading "Man's Search for Meaning" will help you find the right mission for you.
It sounds like your life lacks purpose. Perhaps step outside yourself and try to help others? Volunteer? You're in your head too much. Once you can give yourself to a community, I think you'll worry less about your own problems while providing solutions for others.
I've been there man. Some days I'm still in it. What helped me immensely was starting Brazilian Jujitsu. I belong to an amazing community of like-minded people. Every day I get to help people newer than me while testing myself against people that are better than me. But you don't have to do exactly that, just try to fill your time with a purpose. Look into Viktor Frankl.
Best of luck my friend.
This. This. And This. Link for the lazy. This book changed me.
I am sorry to hear about your life situation. I don't think many people can give you advice on "what to do next" and I am certainly not qualified.
I get the impression that you have a good attitude, and that's quite noble. Do you read much? Again, I have no right to provide you any advice, but check out this book. I very much enjoyed it.
Thanks for this post. I'd like to also recommend "Man's Search for Meaning" by Viktor Frankl.
If you think life is pointless read Man's Search for Meaning.
A potpourri of questions.
" When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves. "
I have worked in the mental health field. No matter what advice you read you are going to have to find something that works for you. I tend to perceive life from an existential point of view. Your choices define you. You cannot change what choices you have made in the past. You can only control what choices you make in the present. Focus on making choices that help you feel fulfilled and that encourage personal growth. Let the guilt be the fuel that drives you to make better choices in the present. Don't make any choices that are going to add to the guilt you feel.
Here is a book that may or may not help you: [Man's Search for Meaning] (http://www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-Viktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X)
As lousy as things seem, your situation has the potential to be really positive.
1- Put all your affairs in order. Go through all your possessions, get rid of everything that's not essential, except for a few things with sentimental value. Living Will, Designation of Health Surrogate, Last Will and Testament, burial/cremation arrangements.
2- Examine your values. What's important to you? If tomorrow were your last day on earth, how would you spend it? If you had 1 month or 1 year, what would you hope to accomplish?
3- Explore and contemplate on the following:
Man's Search for Meaning
This was a good book.
It's about a guy who lived through the nazi concentration camp.