The past week I had a conversation with a gentleman regarding trouble he’s having sticking with his recently adopted low-carb diet. He explained to me that when he gets stressed his habit is to calm this stress through consuming a few different foods that are “Diet Kryptonite“, meaning that they consist of high levels of both fat and highly processed carbohydrate. As the conversation continued, I dug into his mind using the Socratic method, to ascertain where this habit came from.
This is one of those things that any man focused on improving himself should do every once in a while, sit down, outline habits you perceive as contrary to your goals, or unproductive and determine where they came from. As Scott Adams says, we are biological computers, and we often internalize small fragments of code that end up having massive consequences on how our operating system functions.
When I made my first attempts at self-improvement I failed quite spectacularly, often due to habitual behavior. Thus, I found myself in the position of engaging in “Self-psycho-analysis” to try and determine the source of some of these habits that I’d ingrained over the years. Furthermore, determining where these habits came from so that I could avoid ingraining new ones that conflicted with my goals.
Seemingly innocuous messages that you received in childhood can stay with you for a long time, and continue to influence your behavior in a negative or positive fashion for decades. Some learn ineffective use of defense mechanisms, others self-sabotage, accept mediocrity, and never challenge themselves to go beyond their comfort zone.
Where do Habits Come From?
From the time we are born, we are socialized by our families, our peer groups, and many other influences. The classic “Kid raised by the TV” for instance is a person who is largely socialized by a fictional environment created in order to convey a coherent narrative. Humans learn by mimicking other humans, by internalizing values and mindsets from other humans, and through the reactions they experience from other humans.
Something that happened to four year old you, may still remain in your subconscious and influence your behavior 20, 30 or 40 years later, sometimes even more. When Freud spoke of the super-ego, these types of internalized childhood events and messages, may be deeply ingrained in your inner rule-keeper, and thus override progress that you need to make in order to gain a balanced ego and ID.
To draw some examples of each, a person to whom it is communicated that he is worthless, often reacts in one of two fairly predictable ways, he either develops a superiority complex or an inferiority complex. Thus, he either tends to grow into a narcissist or into a codependent. In the case of the former he is ruled by his ego, in the latter he is ruled by his super-ego.
A person to adopts the habit of food as a coping mechanism, most likely learned this from a relative or member of their peer group who had this exact habit. One can argue that “well my entire family is fat it’s genetic” however this is often only halfway true, as it may also point to a family that all have internalized food as a coping mechanism. This is an example of the ID overriding both the ego, and the super-ego.
The Effect on Game
When it comes to game and seduction, we are also dealing with ingrained habits and narratives. A man who adopts a blue pill framework will develop a habit that can be categorized as “blue pill game”, where his habits when it comes to attraction mechanics is based around the narrative his super-ego has internalized from childhood.
This includes such truths as the “just be yourself” and “soul-mate myth”. The flawed logic of “if it your approach did not work this time, she wasn’t the right girl”, the egalitarian myth that both sexes think and function in the same manner, and many others. These myths and fallacies that he has internalized serve as the foundation of his behavior, and repeated behavior become habits.
Thus, when the blue pill man arrives in the manosphere, whether he arrives on this blog, another blog, the red pill reddit or various other places, he has to unlearn the various “truths” that he has internalized, often without being aware of it throughout his life. This is in many ways a very traumatic event, and the man often goes through the five stages of grief when he begins his journey. He also must internalize new habits in order for his behavior to appear natural.
This is one reason for why the early PUA advice used to be “learn 2 – 3 openers and do 100 approaches”, over time this will become the man’s natural response, furthermore, it will help him get over issues such as approach anxiety. In essence, it is a form of cognitive behavioral therapy for blue pill men. However, in order to get to this point, the man must identify the habits and ingrained beliefs that are holding him back.
The Socratic Method of Habits
For those unfamiliar with the Socratic method, it is an epistemological method consisting a cooperative dialogue which aims to stimulate critical thinking, to draw out underlying presumptions and ideas through asking questions. In the classical method, one questions hypotheses in order to bring forth inherent definitions and contradictions in order to weaken the hypotheses that are being questioned.
In the book “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” author Robert Kiyosaki demonstrates the power of perspectives when it comes to money, when he contrasts the different perceptions Rich Dad and Poor Dad have when it comes to money and wealth. If one believes that any person who gains wealth is a bad person, or have acted in an immoral manner in order to attain this wealth, it follows that if one attains wealth, one must judge oneself as morally wrong. This can often lead to self-sabotaging behaviors when it comes to money, and thus prevent one from reaching goals in this specific area of life.
In the same manner, the internalized beliefs one has regarding sexual relationships can lead to self-sabotage in this area. The classic example of the orbiter who never makes a move demonstrates a belief that by concealing his intention and slowly letting the female discover what a fantastic nice guy he is, she will take on the burden of rejection and deductively conclude that he should be her mate.
If one believes that “Chad” who has great success with women achieves success as a result of morally reprehensible behavior, then it follows that in order to be a morally “good” person, one must reject all behaviors that “Chad” utilizes in order to attain sexual success. If it turns out that “Chad” when it comes to women is like “Rich Dad” when it comes to money, it follows that one must eliminate the very qualities, mindsets and behaviors that lead to success in order to be morally good. In essence, in becoming the “anti-Chad” the man internalizes and behaves in a manner which is fundamentally anti-seductive.
This internalized belief often begins with a boy’s mother, sisters or other female relatives, who in absence of an alpha male role model, will aim to shape the man into a suitable “Beta Bucks” for a future daughter-in-law. They will aim to shape the man into the man women say they want and think they should want deductively, not the man they want as demonstrated through their behavior.
If one were to use the Socratic method to attack this habit, one would start off by asking a question akin to “What do I believe about sexual relationships?“, a process that would culminate in a list of beliefs that this man has about women, men and the relationships between the two. Thereafter, the man must review all of these beliefs and the behaviors in which they manifest, in order to create a second list of beliefs, traits and behaviors that must be removed.
Summary and Conclusions
Over a life, every person will end up adopting habits and beliefs that limit their ability to reach their goals. Most of this is done subconsciously through certain flaws in our mental software.
Your life is the net value of your good habits minus your bad habits. I remember reading an article years back where a guy who was training to be on an Olympic weight lifting team, also found himself quite overweight, despite having a habit of training hard and often, he also had a habit of rewarding himself with cheeseburgers, fries and soft drinks post workout. You can out-diet poor training practices, however you cannot out-train a shitty diet.
The “Blue Pill Narrative” is built on such ingrained beliefs that the man must work through and reject as part of a red pill journey. For instance, a man who holds the belief that “Women do not care about looks at all”, can easily rationalize being grossly overweight, neglecting his hygiene, style of dress, and various other aspects of physical appearance, and still believe that the HB10 who is his soul-mate will still find him. Another man who adopts the belief “All women care about is looks”, can likewise neglect his personality and intellectual development in favor of a strong focus on appearance.
Self-Improvement is often a life-long journey, and progress on such a journey is often much slower than the person putting the effort in would like it to be. In order to stick it out, it is important to identify the beliefs that will hinder progress, and adopt beliefs that support the sacrifices that must be made as part of this process.
I engage in almost constant self-improvement in various areas of my life, and one of the most commonly faced challenges is what is themed “concern trolling” on the Red Pill Reddit. Wherein a person with whom you are close will question your methods and motivation, under the guise of being “concerned about you” in some regard. Former pushovers who start enforcing their boundaries, learn the word no, learn that they do not have to justify, argue, defend or explain their actions to everyone in their life, are often attacked by people they have relationships with who notice that the person “is not acting like themselves”, which negatively impacts the people who are used to exploiting the pushover. Former fat dudes are often cornered by “concerned” parties who question whether they are being healthy, if they are hurting themselves or try to convince them that “you have lost enough weight now” despite the person still being over 20% body fat. In an ironic twist, these people were never “concerned” when the person subsided on diet of fast food and gallons of high-fructose corn syrup.
Rational Male is fond of advising that men must become their own mental point of origin, however this is a difficult task when they have internalized beliefs, behaviors and habits that are based in having an external locus of control. To move from an external to an internal locus of control, one must increase the power of one’s ego and ID while reducing the power of the super-ego.
Perhaps the most insidious part of the blue pill narrative, is that behavior according to socially supported and outlined behavior in a deterministic fashion affects outcomes. In essence, your rewards are a function of how good of a cog in the machine you are. A blue pill man internalizes that having a strong sexual frame in a conversation with a woman is bad, standing firm on his own values and beliefs contrary to social pressure is bad, conversely that hiding his sexual interest and changing his values and beliefs to match those of society are good.
In this case, a simple cause and effect relationship is part of the narrative, wherein “Do as society wants and you will be rewarded”, however if one starts to analyze this simple social contract, one starts to realize that while historically it has been somewhat accurate for the great majority, in later years it has began to break down. Where the gentlemen who grew up in the 1940s and 1950s, often could follow the social blueprint, learn a trade/get an education, get a job, work hard, get married and live the American dream, this is largely a dead effect, yet the cause is still championed as the “right way to live”.
The means of manipulation are often fear, obligation, shame or guilt based, and thus developing your own approach to morality is paramount. if you are still mired within a system of morality that is holding you back, and one that makes you easy to manipulate, the bad pieces of software have an easy access point into your system. By developing your own code of ethics, and morality, you are in essence building your own set of anti-virus software, that drives out malicious code as it attempts to infect the system. Furthermore, this code of morality serves as an anchor for your frame, that acts as a firewall, preventing attacks against your system.