How to Improve Social Intelligence ūü§Ē

Social intelligence is a skill that is decreasing by the day. As technology has progressed, we interact with people less and spend more time alone.

Improving social intelligence is a daunting task, and one might ask if it’s even possible to do so.

The answer is yes, but it’s rather complicated.

Think of social intelligence as a skill that has to be sharpened to be effective.

If you don’t practice and apply the principles consistently in a variety of situations, over time you lose the skill and hence your social intelligence lowers. This is simply because you are less in touch with reality and social dynamics.

Social interaction is what tells us valuable information about ourselves. We can’t be isolated if we want to have strong social skills.

Introverts are going to always need more social practice than extraverts. Unfortunately, we tend to prefer being alone more, but that often causes us to form irrational assumptions about ourselves and others because we aren’t receiving any kind of data or feedback.

So the bottom line is – if you want to improve your life and social skills — start talking to more people every day. Join groups, events, and optimize your social media. Do what you can to make friends and put your shyness aside. End of story.

 

The Truth About “Happiness”…

Ironically, you might actually find when you give, you receive exactly what you need back to be sufficiently and fully happy.

Happiness is not attained from “getting” things, possessing things, or owning things.

Happiness is a light, expansive energy of contribution and engagement with the world.

You might think life needs to be heavy, difficult, a struggle, or painful to achieve your dreams.

You might think you need “discipline” to force yourself to do something unfulfilling just to make money or please others expectations.

This is a lie, and it’s dangerous to believe in.

If you want to be happy, ask yourself: “What can I GIVE others?”

Ironically, you might actually find when you give, you receive exactly what you need back to be sufficiently and fully happy.

However you are best able to serve the universe is exactly what will make you happy.

Share your gifts and talents and the world will be a better place.

Make Your Life Like A Movie: Pay Attention, Stop Questioning, and Take Action!

Do you kind of wish your life was more exiting, romantic, and cinematic? If you pay attention to the right things, it can be!

Your attention is the most powerful thing you have in life. It’s not how strong you are, how good you are at something. It’s what you pay attention to that determines where you will be in 5, 10, 20 years from now. That’s why successful people are successful and miserable people are miserable!

If you’re focusing on negative attributes, you will life a life of mostly negative attributes. This seems extremely over simplistic and basic, but it’s absolutely true. It’s the whole concept of the Law of Attraction, which says like attracts like. You attract what you embody, what you are…not what you think or want. Audit yourself: On a day to day basis, what kind of thoughts go through your mind? Are they filled with gratitude and joy, or victim mentality, attachments, and suffering?

The question then is, how do we focus on desirable qualities so that we live a good life?

The truth is, you have to come to a point in your life where you stop questioning “how” you’re going to do things. You essentially must let go of any kind of logical interpretation, or thinking, about your methodology moving forward. You have to absolutely stop nitpicking your own temperament, and simply take action. The “how”, the “planning” and “strategizing” will only weaken your power in this process because you’re overly concerned with the outcome you are attached to.

To be more concrete, what I mean by taking action is a literal embodying of what you desire in life and propelling yourself into the world as that thing you embody,. Yes, I’m asking you to literally BE the qualities you want in life. This doesn’t mean “acting” them. This means ASSUMING YOU ARE “THEM”.

Ask yourself this simple question: What can I do to make this month a movie? Start living like you’re directing your own film. Throw in contrast, awkwardness, laughs, romance, joy, hustle, spirituality. Literally say to yourself “I’m tired of the mundane, I’m going to push myself to the limits for the sake of experiencing life to the fullest, regardless of what happens–I will learn and grow in the process”.

This does not mean be oblivious to the world around you or resort to drug abuse and reckless behavior. Awareness is super critical to your success, and if you’re bumbling around and blindly thinking you know it all, you will 100% fail in your endeavors. You have to be mindul of what’s going on — this means¬†looking¬†at everything happening around you, and spotting the trend before others do. You have to pay attention for all of this to work. It’s like that quote from Rounders — if you can’t spot the sucker in the room, it’s you.

All I’m saying is the simple truth that if you pay attention to what’s going on around you (which you can cultivate through daily meditation & mindfulness practice…I will make a blog post on this soon), and then plunge in with a strong desire to live a “cinematic” life — you will see insane, beautiful changes happen. Just make sure you’re doing all of this to be compassionate and give value to the world. If you’re doing it for personal gain, you might get what you want in the short term but the karmic recoil is very, very strong, and you’ll end up in a worse place than you started later down the road.

The summary is: Let go of attachment. Jump in. Pay attention. Stop questioning. Execute.

Life is too short to settle for the mundane. If you’re not happy with where you are, guess what? You can change it! I’m telling you it’s 100% possible as we speak. All you must do is embrace everything that happens in this process and be aware of what’s going, both internally and externally. That’s it!

 

 

“Confidence” is related to your job more than you think…

If you aren’t excellent at your job, you will not be very confident in most areas of life.

This is easily explained by the psychological concept of a dominance hierarchy.

Being at the top of a dominance hierarchy is a fancy way of saying “having a respected status or ranking” in a competitive social & work environment.

If you are low in a dominance hierarchy, your serotonin and dopamine levels will be low. You will almost always not be sufficiently happy. 

Why? Because you and everybody your work with knows you aren’t that valuable. Your services and skills simply don’t hold their weight to harder working, more intelligent workers. It’s not easy to say that, but it’s usually true.

If this happens, you will be neurotic. You will have that nasty voice in the back of your head that feels out of place and undervalued. This can plague you for years. Especially if you’re in sales or highly competitive environments and you’re not cut for that cloth…

The truth is…

People who contribute value to an organization receive value in return. 

The solution is to pick a job, career, or vocation where you’d be a big fish in a small pond. Even if that means downsizing, or working in a less competitive environment if you’d be better at your job.

What skills and natural aptitudes do you have that would put you at a competitive advantage?

Note: I’m suggesting to be self-aware before making any kind of career decision. If you aren’t smart enough for a job, you will have a miserable time pursing it as a career. This means social intelligence, too. Also, I’m not arguing “status = confidence” in a superficial manner. Rather, the purpose of this article is to show how confidence is related to being good at what you do…and “status” or “respect” results as a byproduct.

What you think? Leave your comments below!

Being open-minded is a double-edged sword

Being open-minded is a gift. You have a thirst for knowledge and experience. You’re never satisfied with settling on the ideologies society gives you. Constantly searching, you flow like water–assuming no definite shape or form.

Highly creative people are very open. Crafting art, writing a brilliant story, or dazzling a crowd with a speech–these people are true Artists.

Unfortunately, open-minded individuals lack a concrete identity. They’re sort of Pan like–adopting every idea¬†in a wild, unrestrained manner.

Think about it–if you’re always open to some other possibility, how can people make sense of you? You’re constantly changing and evolving uncontrollably.

This can make it difficult to hold a traditional job, relationship, or identity. It can even make it hard to be in touch with yourself.

All hope is not lost, however. If you struggle with a fluid identity by being super open…

Here’s the antidote:

Create and share ART.

Humans live to experience art. This gives you one form you can rely on. People might not fully grasp everything about you, but they can appreciate what you produce–your art.

Art isn’t just tangible things. YOU are Art.¬†

The world needs YOU to share YOU for the sake of the globe to continue spinning. 

Peace!

-Seth

What do you think? Leave your comments below!

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“Take Your Pills” Commentary. What’s Adderall REALLY like?

I just finished watching the new Netflix documentary “Take Your Pills” which discusses the rise of Adderall and amphetamines and ADHD. What’s so great about these little blue monsters?

Adderall is a powerful drug. Only one methyl group from Methamphetamine, it can cause a myriad of health problems and psychological issues. As someone who has struggled with attention problems, I will discuss my experience with Adderall in hopes that it takes away any glorification of Adderall this documentary claimed.

Adderall floods your brain with dopamine and norepinephrine. Basically, it lights up the “feel good” neurotransmitters that allow someone to focus on tasks for longer periods of time.

People with ADD and ADHD have fragmented attention spans. They are easily swayed by environmental distractions, absorbing too much stimuli. Their brain is overloaded with too much at once, resulting in the inability to get anything significant done–because their attention centers are “burned out”.

Basically, it’s a symptom of dysfunctional or low dopamine levels. The more a person switches from one source of novelty to another, the weaker attention span they have. If you have a weak attention span and can’t get much done because of it, you almost certainly have low dopamine levels.

This is a significant and rising problem: With low dopamine, you feel unfulfilled. You aren’t confident to stick with things. You give in to distraction, and give up too easily. You become susceptible¬†to making poor decisions, seeking drugs, and becoming depressed.¬†

The real solution to raising dopamine is to focus on tasks for longer periods of time and eliminate distractions. A good example would be reading a book, running, or walking in a forest. These activities restore healthy neurotransmitter levels.

But why bother when you have pills, right!? That’s the mentality society has come to now. We want instant access to everything, and Adderall is no exception. Spending time diligently, and disciplining yourself is too much work. Eating wholesome foods is a hassle. Good parenting is too much work. Pills are more efficient apparently.

Negative Effects

I don’t take Adderall much anymore because I couldn’t relax on it. Here are some of the side effects I experienced:

  • Emotional blunting (when taken every day): I felt robotic, and unable to feel naturally happy.
  • Anger: People would irritate me for no reason. People were like obstacles I wanted to get out of my way. (When I’d go grocery shopping on Adderall, every person in the aisle seemed like roadblocks).
  • Stress: Inability to relax until 2am. Nonstop “let’s solve problems” thoughts. Racing mind and heart rate.
  • Lower dopamine levels when not on it

Positive Effects

  • Significantly increased conscientiousness: I followed through on every commitment I had. I cleaned my house. I connected with coworkers and friends more openly. I finished projects I kept delaying.
  • I felt more motivated to do mundane things, like dishes and cleaning.
  • Around 50-80% decrease in social anxiety.
  • Increased peripheral awareness.

Anyhow, I’ll be honest: Adderall really helped me¬†in the short term rut of my life. As an adult with attention problems, I finally felt like I could accomplish more. However, the side effects are just too intense for me to bother taking it often. It might seem alluring, but trust me, it’s not.

I recommend having 2 or 3 strong cups of coffee before ever considering Adderall. I wouldn’t wish it upon my worst enemy. Seeing that 11% of kids are being diagnosed with ADD and ADHD (and most likely taking amphetamines) is really, really scary.

Stay sober guys.

What do you think about ADHD and amphetamine use? Leave your comments below!

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Being “Spiritual” is No Substitute for Psychiatric Evaluation…

I feel that I have to write this article to clear the air. Since most of my audience seems to be spiritually-inclined people, I feel obligated to present a counter argument to what I normally write about. 

A lot of people resort to spirituality in the midst of a life crisis. It helps them appreciate life in more subtle, holistic ways. Fantastic.

Many people learn to cope with alternative lifestyles, meditation, and healthy eating. Awesome.

Others have latent mental illnesses and resist psychiatric evaluation, thinking being spiritual is enough. Not good.

Let’s be real here: Mental illnesses are legitimate problems. Telling someone with mental health issues to “go meditate for a bit, smoke a blunt, and eat some kale” is dangerous. Instead of seeking professional help, they believe they can do it on their own. This is delusion, and it’s often difficult to fix once habituated.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with mental health issues, do not resist seeking professional help. I’m not saying to go around¬†searching¬†for a diagnosis, but just be aware of the professional support that is out there and can drastically improve the quality of your life.

Thanks for taking the time to read this article.

Peace -Seth