Red Pill TheoryInstant Gratification (self.TheRedPill)

submitted by TRP VanguardWhisper

I'm eating a burger as I write this.

It's a pretty good burger... 50/50 wagyu and elk, duck bacon, mozzarella cheese, some kinda spicy barbeque sauce but not nasty and sugary like southern style, more southwestern. Bun's a tasteless disappointment of gluten-free "bread", but that's hardly anyone's fault other than my own digestive system.

Nicest thing about it is that someone brought it to my door. I just clicked some things on the internet and someone brought me food, and I can concentrate on writing weird stuff for you deranged monkey boys instead of driving my ass downtown or even talking on the phone with some minimum-wage retard who doesn't speak American.

So why the fuck am I writing an article about my lunch? Have I finally lost the plot? Am I about to start taking restaurant selfies and posting them on instabook or facegram?


I'm talking about food (and more importantly, food delivery), because last time I talked to ya'll, about something a little more fundamental, a sizeable number of people choose to "agree" with me by recapitulating the Yorkshiremen Sketch, like this:

A large problem with today’s society is we’re a bunch of wanters. Everything is so instant...messaging, food, online shopping.


Instant gratification is the death of character, and self respect.


Indeed. You become addicted to gratification.

This shit is eternal. Every time society starts working right, or simply hasn't stopped working yet, technology advances. And every time technology advances, old farts decide that young people have it "too easy", and either it's going to ruin them, or it already has. I'm sure that at some moment in prehistory, Angrinak thought that Tholo was ruining his character by hunting aurochs with these fancy new Clovis points.

So I'm here, having polished off my instant-gratification-and-duck-bacon burger, to rant at you why, yes, there IS something wrong with young dudes right now (as if we would be here if there weren't), but, no Dr. Van Winkle, your diagnosis is not correct.

The average timid, depressed millennial who limps into TRP looking to fix his life has not been broken by the presence of instant gratification, but by the absence of non-instant gratification.

Saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay whut? Whisper, you just said the same thing twice!

No, I didn't.

It doesn't matter that I can make someone bring me lunch right away so I can write. What matters is that I have things to work on that are neither so easy that I can succeed instantly, nor so hard that I cannot ever conquer them. Real goals that require long term work give life what most people call "meaning", although it can be better described as a sense of achievement.

It doesn't matter whether the average millennial can summon lunch with one click, or images of naked nymphs with another. He's not depressed, hopeless and ineffectual because everything is too easy. If everything were too easy, he would be getting a lot more things... easily.

No, his problem is that he doesn't believe in his ability to succeed at difficult tasks eventually. If his initial effort doesn't lead to success, he doesn't give up to avoid hard work... he gives up in the belief that hard work would yield him nothing. He's not being lured away from real girls by images of naked sluts... he's using the images of naked sluts to anesthetize his feelings of hopelessness of ever succeeding with the real girls.

How did we get this way?

Well, to grossly oversimplify, around about the mid-1970s, a bunch of middle-aged harpies with PhDs in Education (from the French "Edu", meaning "like psychology", and "cation", meaning "but with even more bullshit"), decided that there was a thing called "self-esteem", that "self-esteem" was really important for children to have, that constant praise and celebration of everything about them would bolster children's "self-esteem", and that failure would damage or destroy it. So they adjusted public school practices, and "expert" advice to young parents, accordingly.

Well, it turns out that scienceism isn't just dumb... it's dangerous. Consider the work of this negligent mass-murderer, for example.

And so, like so many of the projects of scienceists and ivory-tower intellectuals, the action they took achieved the exact opposite of the intended effect. Each succeeding generation of young children, constantly praised, and sheltered from any difficult task which might lead to failure, did not develop a high self-esteem. They hated their participation trophies, they knew their accomplishments amounted to nothing, and yet they were terrified to try anything difficult, because all of their young lives, they had been graded on avoiding failure.

Self-reliance (a very different thing from self esteem) in adulthood comes from the repeated experience in childhood of trying a difficult thing, and succeeding through sustained effort. Without this experience early on, the later adult will be very afraid to try new things, believing failure to be both inevitable and permanent. This continues the pattern of deprivation of challenge, and lack of self-reliance.

Thus, the problem we see is not one of general excess and abundance, but of specific scarcity and starvation in the very midst of that excess.

[–]1Sauruk 171 points172 points  (14 children)

I've found it incredibly freeing to realize that there is actually a ladder that I can climb, and that I'm not actually amazing right now.

[–]DocZTheRockstar 51 points52 points  (7 children)

When you are at the top of the ladder, climb back down and go up a different ladder. Just keep learning.

[–]2chazthundergut 51 points52 points  (5 children)

Yea but don't climb down. Move laterally, and then keep moving up from there.

[–]yungbuster 38 points39 points  (3 children)

I think he means that you have to start from the bottom of a new ladder... Moving "ladderaly" 🤔💭

[–]DocZTheRockstar 11 points12 points  (0 children)


Let's say move up one ladder then keep finding new ladders. Hobbies, creativeness, corporate, just do whatever interests you!

[–]DoneScannedIt 1 point2 points  (0 children)

And that each time you start at the bottom, you build more (mental) muscle-memory of getting through those longer efforts that require a long term plan, focus and goals. It ipitimizes many fundamentals of TRP.

[–]p3n1x 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You have a personal position. You should try to start at the bottom of all other ladders.

[–]TRP VanguardWhisper[S] 3 points4 points  (1 child)

[–]Do not send modmail to my personal inboxCrazyHorseInvincible[M] 2 points3 points  (0 children)


[–]Luckyluke23 2 points3 points  (2 children)

i'm not doing the best right now, but I've had some small wins lately ( and the red man group is helping HEAPS)

to know I can EVEN better than is incredible. for a period of time there I didn't think it was possible, then it started to happen. you just have to TRUST that you can do it. you have to believe. you also have to know that you aren't going to get it today. it's going to be tomorrow and in some instances, it might not even be tomorrow. but someday.

I can tell you that, even though the lows are SOUL CRUSHING, Knowing that I am better than yesterday. I can't tell you the feeling.

[–]p3n1x 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Thermo Dynamics. Never weigh your victories against your losses. Take wins for what they are and move forward.

[–]Bear-With-Bit 113 points114 points  (1 child)

Late 30s here checking in. I've been exercising this sort of self-reliance in the last year.

My business has been beating the shit out of me, or rather, I've been permitting it to do so. What else could I do? I got my ass to the chair, wrote out a plan, and kept at it. Now I do this once or twice every week in a dedicated notebook, reviewing the goal and the strategy to get there.

I hate doing nice things for myself, so it took a lot within me to go on my first trip overseas that wasn't a wedding. It was a blast. Currently planning a second one. Two trips in one year! I've never done anything close to this before.

I used to live in a cool, gentrified neighborhood, but I had to get out of there. It's still the fucking ghetto, despite the $12 avocado toast and the soy almond hemp rice chai iced latte. I moved to a quieter, more boring, more suburban area, and to my own surprise I couldn't be any happier. I didn't think I can pull of such a relocation, but I did.

I hate being undisciplined with fitness, so I got a dedicated notebook (see a pattern?) for this year to see how many times I go to the gym to lift. I don't exactly have a goal -- well, just going to the gym itself is pretty much the goal -- but it does help to see I've been lifting just about 2.5 times a week this year so far. This is a huge improvement from last year, and it shows.

All this work and working out have led me to neglect my creative projects. I somehow have to find a way to get those back in the picture.

If you don't like something about yourself or your life, there's a good chance you can fix it. I can't make my 5'7" frame taller, but I can become stronger, wealthier, and happier every year, every month, every week.

I am bigger than my problems.

[–]ThrowFader 173 points174 points  (5 children)

He's not being lured away from real girls by images of naked sluts... he's using the images of naked sluts to anesthetize his feelings of hopelessness of ever succeeding with the real girls.

Holy fucking shit you are a genY USSS.

This is a very well reasoned analysis into the current state of affairs. Men don't have enough things to do to be men anymore. Thus they do not trust in their abilities as men.

Self fulfilling prophecy.

[–]Senior Endorsed Contributormax_peenor 15 points16 points  (2 children)

Self fulfilling prophecy.

And a self-correcting problem, but not for any specific individual. My eldest got it beat out of him in the military, but unfortunately it doesn't help most of his generation. He's smart enough and aware enough to see how things are, but like any of his peers without their heads buried spleen deep up their asses can see, fixing themselves leaves the same problem. There is a sea of apathetic shits that are going to ride their self-loathing and society itself into a soldering crater.

So as I say, enjoy the decline. When the real suffering begins, they will stop worrying about their last Most Improved medal and start thinking about their next meal. Those that are fundamentally ambitious will forge the next world; those that can't face it will disappear from the earth.

[–]growingstronk 2 points3 points  (1 child)

What do you mean when you say that fixing yourself leaves the same problem?

I’m not sure if you’re referring to the psychological level of not fixing your thinking or the sociological level of saving yourself but not saving society

[–]Senior Endorsed Contributormax_peenor 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You answered your own question.

[–]Plebsin 13 points14 points  (0 children)

This is definitely one obstacle that men have toward socializing with girls and eventually having sex with them. When a man sees a women they like in person, they tend to use their brain to SIMULATE being with the girl rather than making it a reality by actively going after the girl. Mental masturbation is truly a bitch and needs to be overcome for some of us to get our dicks wet.

[–]Screenwatch23 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Meh im iffy on this i feel like a good majority of us are stem majors to an extent. Im a musician of 11 years and programmer of 3 with a 405 Deadlift. My point isnt to brag but to prove that a lot of people are like me and have faced many challenges but still dont do well with women.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorFieldLine 18 points19 points  (21 children)

No, his problem is that he doesn't believe in his ability to succeed at difficult tasks eventually.

How do you reconcile this with Imposter Syndrome?

[–]CosmicSpiral 35 points36 points  (15 children)

Impostor Syndrome is an interrelated but different psychological phenomenon. Both are about the failure to internalize the implications of behavior in the real world, thus resulting in failure to maintain a cohesive identity.

  • Impostors attribute their success to luck/deception because they have no self-generated standards for intelligence, fortitude, etc. Hence why they are terrified about being exposed as "frauds"; it's other people's opinions that are paramount.
  • OP is criticizing a generation raised to have confidence and faith in themselves, yet "themselves" is a nebulous blob of BS as it isn't defined by their actions. Depending on your mileage this is an insidious form of societal narcissism. I don't buy entirely OP's argument in its current form though. For one, some statements are generalizations for the sake of bashing. Millennials aren't "sheltered from any difficult task which might lead to failure"; the issue is their challenges are dictated by artificial constraints and checkpoints = they are learning how to game "systems" instead of testing their limitations. Modern-day college is a prime example of this phenomenon.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorFieldLine 2 points3 points  (9 children)

Impostors attribute their success to luck/deception because they have no self-generated standards for intelligence, fortitude, etc. Hence why they are terrified about being exposed as "frauds"; it's other people's opinions that are paramount.

Maybe my terminology isn't consistent with what we'd find in a psych textbook, but I understand imposter syndrome to mean an unjustified fear of failure (in contrast with a fear of letting others down).

If we can get real for a sec I'll tell you that I work with some really, really smart people. Like, people who operate on a whole different plane with the ability to rapidly synthesize and generalize information incredibly quickly.

I may be smarter than the average bear, but to succeed in my field, I need to be... better. I'm giving it my all, and I'm just not good enough.

So it's not that I'm concerned about being discovered as a fraud; I'm afraid of the implications of actually being a fraud.

[–]CosmicSpiral 2 points3 points  (7 children)

Maybe my terminology isn't consistent with what we'd find in a psych textbook, but I understand imposter syndrome to mean an unjustified fear of failure (in contrast with a fear of letting others down).

There are plenty of aberrant reasons to fear failure. Pessimism, paranoia, OCPD, pathogenic beliefs, etc. Imposter syndrome is one of a subset of mental patterns that might lead to said conclusion, but it's not the root of the issue.

I may be smarter than the average bear, but to succeed in my field, I need to be... better. I'm giving it my all, and I'm just not good enough.

I have good news: you don't have impostor syndrome! Maybe you're putting yourself down via unwarranted comparison, but that's another can of worms altogether. You have something resembling a criteria to measure and evaluate your prowess, plus you are not disparaging stuff you've done.

So it's not that I'm concerned about being discovered as a fraud; I'm afraid of the implications of actually being a fraud.

For someone suffering from it, they are one and the same. The basis of impostor syndrome is ambivalence, a disassociation between actions and identity. Another way of looking at it is the impostor prioritizes the semiotics of expertise (grades, trophies, job assessments, etc.) and conflates them with characteristics that generate them. Being exposed matters since they interpret personal showings of intelligence, valor, and so on as a performance. In their minds it's not real, just pretending to be something they can't judge for themselves...but others can. Intelligent people suffer from it most acutely (it's pretty much the antithesis of Dunning-Kruger) due to the necessary rationalizations that come with the package.

On a tangent, I suspect it exists on a gradient. IS should be close to nonexistent in simple, local communities where naked demonstrations of character are required before assuming communal roles. It should increase proportional to the frequency character traits are measured and represented in abstract ways, strongly correlating to complexity in role specialization and social hierarchy.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorFieldLine -1 points0 points  (6 children)

Your attempt to psychologically profile me isn't appreciated, nor is it particularly helpful.

In particular:

I have good news: you don't have impostor syndrome!

I don't know why this is good or bad news. I've presented a problem in the context of the OP, and I am looking for a solution. Unless psychology (as a field) has a fix to a specific issue -- which it usually doesn't -- attempting to give the issue a title isn't useful or even necessarily accurate.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorRian_Stone 2 points3 points  (4 children)

Honestly, I don't know about rocket science, but I've been around plenty of smart, stupid people.

I always treat it like working out. No one gives a shit about your low 1RM numbers, they are too busy worrying about their own low 1RM numbers.

Even the stupidest guy at MENSA is a member.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorFieldLine 0 points1 point  (3 children)

I don't work in rocket science anymore, if you were being literal (pretty sure you are familiar with my background). But maybe I'm just being a sperg here and missing the point.

No one gives a shit about your low 1RM numbers, they are too busy worrying about their own low 1RM numbers.

Right but the point isn't that I'm concerned with what other guys think. Your analogy doesn't work because when it comes to weightlifting I know the precise, well-defined steps to increase my deadlift. I know with 100% certainty that I am capable of succeeding eventually.

Not so when it comes to being "successful", however any individual chooses to define it.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorRian_Stone 7 points8 points  (2 children)

Naw, it was just a saying. Rocket science as a proxy for 'smart person occupation'.

I rant about irrational confidence a lot, and for good reason. A few things, in no particular order

  1. You're in the game. Someone assumed you belonged there, who the fuck are we to question their judgement?

  2. There's always a bigger fish. I've never been the best at anything, but I'm better at the thing that the better man is weak at. Generalists may be shallow compared to the specialized pros, but they are wide. You'd be surprised how often that matters

  3. If I'm the smartest guy in the room, I'm in the wrong room. this isn't a feelgood either, that's how one gets better IMO

  4. People are too busy worrying about themselves to worry about you. the weightlifting does make sense here. You think the rest of the people in the room are inspiring pillars of competence and confidence? Trumps not the most gifted politician, by far, yet he beat all the best and brightest that was there, who worked a lifetime to get into that position. Clearly being the smartest guy isn't the key to winning anything.

  5. Accept you'll fail. Most of us will never have a groundbreaking impact. Also, most of us will never be so incompetent as to cause harm to others. Meh, no matter where you aim, you'll hit somewhere close to the mark, assuming you didn't have a retarded goal to begin with.

I don't know if my message is getting across, or if you just disagree with it. I've had enough of my former sailor buddies thinking I pulled a fast one on everyone with my new career trajectory, I just put in a modicum of effort, didn't worry about taking a few risks, and a healthy dose of anger to stop sabotaging myself.

And I won't be giving a corporate TED talk, but I won't be laid off for incompetence either. gives me breathing room to write a book or do a podcast, good enough for me

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorFieldLine 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I'd like to consider this for a bit before responding; I just want to acknowledge that I read and appreciate the advice.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorRian_Stone 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Take it or leave it man... No response required

[–]CosmicSpiral 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Your attempt to psychologically profile me isn't appreciated, nor is it particularly helpful.

It's helpful to realize you don't have imposter syndrome, just a lack of confidence. Unless you truly believe you don't belong in whatever profession you're in at the moment.

I don't know why this is good or bad news. I've presented a problem in the context of the OP, and I am looking for a solution.

The solution is to realize that success in a field depends on many factors and to stop comparing yourself with top performers. You have control over whether you can improve in your specific domain, and that often doesn't mean becoming more intelligent in the abstract sense. Some people are just naturally gifted...so what? You can build your total knowledge base, become more diligent work-wise, be more decisive at crucial moments, etc. Dedication to self-improvement eventually outstrips natural talent.

[–]R3v4mp3d 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You got me really curious: what domain are you working in and what are these people doing that is making them seem so incredibly smart?

[–]literallyflea 0 points1 point  (1 child)

This is an interesting perspective but I'm not sure I full understood it. In what sense do millennials learn to game systems and how does this differ from previous generations?

[–]CosmicSpiral 2 points3 points  (0 children)

To use college as an example, the circumstances and attitudes it take to graduate are often vastly different than the skill set needed to succeed on the ground. It's a shibboleth among the upper-middle class that degrees are necessary for steady white-collar careers, a sentiment true to the extent businesses don't bother to provide job training. Their main purpose is signalling one's fitness for the job market (a trend beginning to reverse as employers realize such stringent demands were both unrealistic and useless for filtering new talent)

What does it take to graduate from a college/university with decent grades? Does it take intelligence in the fullest sense (interdisciplinary thought, the ability to analyze one's domain from a meta-narrative perspective, juggling and evaluating multiple criteria simultaneously, invent/synthesize new concepts to adequate described desired phenomena, etc.)? Is real-life experience needed to understand the externalities and additional demands placed on you by the industry?

Not at all. You can get by with a grasp of memorization, enough perceptiveness to mimic the teachers' hidden biases and perspective on the subject, and social savvy to establish social connections. Some degrees require a modicum of intellectual independence as a matter of course: dissertations and certain mathematical theses demand comprehensive understanding of the subject. But for the most part you can parrot prevailing wisdom without understanding why the philosophy is currently dominant or whether it has problems with coherence, consistency or application.

Furthermore the virtues inculcated to excel in the classroom are different than those needed to do well on the job. The harshest critics claim college is a breeding ground for conscientiousness, compliance, deference, and homogeneous thought. They're not entirely wrong on that front. College is designed to mold students to depend on the approval of authorities and conventional thinking. In some professions groupthink is prized above actual competence (think animation and the liberal arts).

This is neither developing adolescents into admirable adults nor giving them a realistic portrayal of the industry they seek to work in. It's playing a series of complicated games tangentially related to the profession itself. u/Pascolino has pointed out that these milennials aren't stupid whatsoever, but they are used to playing by a set of rules non-applicable to the real world. The insular world of progressive politics and its mixture of hypocrisy and petty, childish internal politics is another example of detachment from reality.

[–]1SexdictatorLucifer 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wow, hadn't ever heard about Imposter Syndrome, good wikipedia read. I'm sure everyone experiences it to certain degrees (its basically just a complicated way of saying self-doubt) and I definitely can relate to some of it's mechanisms. Go ahead and read about it if you haven't dudes, I think we can all admit to being affected by patterns of self-doubt, and this "syndrome" is just a breakdown of these patterns. Make it easier to recognize them when they come up in your life. Especially if you're applying TRP principles. You will inevitably have a feeling of fraud once you start rapidly reaping the benefits. It will seem too easy, it will seem like you're cheating the system. I think I might write a post about this after some more reading on the topic.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorRian_Stone 3 points4 points  (0 children)

we self sabotage all the time, whats one more thing to ignore?

[–]HS-Thompson 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Pretty much every very smart or accomplished person has some version of impostor syndrome. It's kind of necessary, there's some base level of fear or anxiety that's needed probably to keep a musician practicing when they're already one of the best in the world, or a businessman taking genuine risks when they already have $100MM to their name, and so on.

It's normal to have some level of irrational fear. There's a difference between a core belief and fear however.

[–]notpahimar 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Maybe it's that fear that made them so successful in the first place.

[–]Hungryshark211 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Somewhat unrelated, but I get fucking pissed when people try to diagnose “syndromes” or behaviors like they’re a fucking psychologist after spending 5 minutes on google. I had an ex who thought she was so much smarter than everyone else and would diagnose everyone she met. A few months later she came back to get some attention from me. After I put her in her place she said (copying this directly) “I think you want to believe that I was mean to you so you don’t feel as bad about our breakup. It’s a coping mechanism to lie to yourself without realizing it so you feel better “ she also self diagnosed her dumbass with hetrochromia and bipolar. Not the first time I’ve been “diagnosed”. Idk, shit just pisses me off. Just had to get that out.

[–]wanderer231988 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Well to be honest, her words are exactly what bipolar person would have said. If it is not bipolar, it is something else from cluster b personality disorders.

[–]xWasx08 39 points40 points  (0 children)

Eat more burgers while you write articles. Spot on sir.

[–]Appex1 11 points12 points  (2 children)

This post is spot-on. It's not until a year ago, my father has been telling me the exact same thing. That children are praised for every minor "accomplishment" and are therefore afraid to fail, should they do something similar and not succeed. It's funny how everyone is praised for absolutely everything. Of course we end up building a generation of losers if it continues like this.

I remember when I was a kid and my school was having this soccer tournament with some other schools and EVERYONE was getting a medal at the end. They gave every single kid a medal, even the teams with the fat losers who barely even touched the ball. And if this is society's plan to reward everyone, whether they were good or bad, kids won't have a desire to succeed. And I was the perfect example of this before I pulled myself two years ago.

[–]Senior Endorsed ContributorRian_Stone 4 points5 points  (1 child)

That children are praised for every minor "accomplishment"

I remember when I was a kid and my school was having this soccer tournament with some other schools and EVERYONE was getting a medal at the end

such a weird thing. everyone tends to use distanced langauge, even when it's personally affected them

[–]Endorsed ContributorRuleZeroDAD 1 point2 points  (0 children)

It's hard work to be the main character in your story.

For most, they are best left to be supporting characters, dispassionate narrators, or, in their wildest fantasies, the deus ex machina "Mary Sue."

The key to being a protagonist is the "Pro-" part.

[–]Ezaar 21 points22 points  (10 children)

That burger sounds pretty good.

[–]Chitlinsandgravy 2 points3 points  (9 children)

Fuck yeah it does. I'm in my post work out fast tho. Shit be callin me, son.

[–]Ezaar 6 points7 points  (8 children)

I had a breakfast burger today. It was a hamburger with eggs. Boy was it good.

[–]Chitlinsandgravy 2 points3 points  (7 children)

Doesn't sound as good as his Greco-Roman beef burger, baby daddy bacon, a side of feta fries and baby oil.

[–]Ezaar 1 point2 points  (6 children)

Maybe. I just know mine was good.

[–]Chitlinsandgravy 1 point2 points  (5 children)

Did it come with a side of baby oil...? Doesn't matter, had food.

[–]Ezaar 1 point2 points  (4 children)

It came with black coffee. Food is good fam. Your name also sounds tasty.

[–]Chitlinsandgravy 4 points5 points  (2 children)

Just got home from the gym. Post workout meal: 50g protein shake, and a Garbage Burger.

A slice of ham, 3 pieces of bacon, beef patty, tomato. Threw away the bun.

Wish you were here.

[–][deleted]  (2 children)


[–]Senior Endorsed Contributormax_peenor 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Well, you know, you do need to occasionally eat and fuck. Multiple times a day, even.

[–]CowboyEpicurus 4 points5 points  (0 children)

That sounds like a pretty good burger. You must live around a big city, because I could never get a fancy internet burger delivered in my neck of the woods.

Speaking of self-reliance, people need to reconnect with nature better - watching nature fulfil it’s yearning to continue living year after year, over far greater timespans than each of our lives, watching this and realizing one is part of this great harmony is by itself fulfilling.

You needn’t become an hermit in the woods, but take an opportunity to appreciate a tree in the park and the time it has spent patiently reaching for the sun.

[–]HS-Thompson 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Fantastic post. Just chiming in as a certified older guy. This concept is fucking dead on:

His problem is that he doesn't believe in his ability to succeed at difficult tasks eventually

As someone that's seen myself and a lot of people around me grow up and succeed and fail over the span of decades, I'll just reinforce this point. You can pretty much predict success for any man, if you observe that they have the confidence to know they will eventually prevail if they keep trying.

And if you don't have that confidence, the way to get it is to start with small, straightforward, difficult tasks that are immediately around you, and work your way up from there.

[–]positivecrystal 7 points8 points  (3 children)

He's not being lured away from real girls by images of naked sluts... he's using the images of naked sluts to anesthetize his feelings of hopelessness of ever succeeding with the real girls.

dude...should i stick to /nofap then huh

[–]kurdishpower01 0 points1 point  (1 child)

As long as you don't believe in that energy crap then yes

[–]notpahimar 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Fapping is a waste of potentially productive time.

[–]neveragoodtime 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Is it fair to say women are rewarded for avoiding failure, and men are rewarded for achieving success? That as education has become feminized, men are being taught to avoid failure rather than chase success. Men that chase success and fail are punished more harshly today by society’s application of feminine values. While men who don’t chase success are rewarded with the same medal the hard workers receive. As the cost of failure increases, and the rewards of success decrease, the value of opportunity decreases.

Think of what’s happened to cold approaching women. It used to be considered friendly to approach and make conversation with strangers. A man was free to whistle at women, and perhaps 1 in 100 would respond to his advances, while the others would ignore him and move on. Now, whistling at the wrong woman can end with him on the sex predator list. Why is an opportunity with one woman worth risking that penalty? It’s not.

We see this play out in all areas of society, men explore, and once it’s safe, women follow, pushing men out to explore the next frontier. Men went to high school, until women entered and pushed them to college. Men went to college, until women entered and pushed them to grad school. Now women are entering grad school in droves and I don’t think men know where to go next. Men take the risks for success, then women come in once the risk of failure has been reduced to 0. I think we see the rise of side gigs and entrepreneurship as a way for men to pursue risk for success.

[–]Endorsed ContributorKeffirLime 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Although I agree with you I still stand by my statements. I don’t think it’s a case of either or, rather a combination.

Let me elaborate a bit on my comment:

When faced with a task our minds do a cost benefit. What is the reward for the effort it takes to achieve that reward?

When evaluating all our options, logically we choose the item with the lowest effort to highest reward ratio.

So when we consider the alternatives to our desired task, often we are left with a similar chemical reward in our brains for far less effort.

Modern society has more and more of these alternatives available.

The result is we find ourselves choosing the alternatives that somewhat mimic the object of our initial desire as it has a much more appealing effort/reward ratio.

Coupled with an aversion to failure and we have modern society.

[–]TheLongerCon 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I actually agree with this, I don't think "self esteem" from school is the problem, kids are perceptive and they know their place in the hierarchy from a young age, regardless of what adults tell them.

I think the problem with technology is that it tricks the brain into thinking it can achieve something with minimum effort, which leads into avoiding going through the hard part of the learning curve which is required to learn everything that's worth learn.

To become good at anything hard in life a few things are required

1) One must be capable. 2) One must see a reward in learning the thing. 3) One must not have a substitute for the reward that requires less effort.

Yes a guy who jerks it to porn would rather have a women, but feel he can't have it. But if the porn didn't exist, his sex drive would likely take over and force him to learn game. Porn is a anesthetic yes, but anesthetics are dangerous in the long term because they cover up pain, pain which is useful as a motivator. They get just enough satisfaction to stop trying, but not enough to stop being depressed.

Even the most mediocre humans can do incredible things if they feel their backs are against the wall, but in modern society they rarely have that feeling.

[–]1LowCreddit 2 points3 points  (3 children)

It is a sobering moment when you realize that the mission of modern public education is to turn children from energetic, curious, and intelligent beings into lazy, busy-worked, and obedient slobs. The elites want the dumbest and most ignorant people possible who are just barely capable of running the modern widget factory. The easier they make it to run the widget factory, the more aggressively they dumb down the children. The Protestant Reformation created the most educated and free human societies that the Earth has ever seen and the elites have been trying to reverse that safely ever since.

Scientism is just the modern church used to push predetermined beliefs onto people who think they are too smart for religion. It is no different than the institutions used in the past. It is just one more method used to control your mind and manufacture consent.

[–]TRP VanguardWhisper[S] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

It is a sobering moment when you realize that the mission of modern public education is to turn children from energetic, curious, and intelligent beings into lazy, busy-worked, and obedient slobs. The elites want the dumbest and most ignorant people possible who are just barely capable of running the modern widget factory.


/u/Halitenina /u/TheRedPike

[–]modTheRedPike 0 points1 point  (0 children)


[–]politicallyunique 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Hmm, as someone currently in the modern education system it seems to be the exact opposite of that. This is a huge load of crap.

[–]Redpillandrew 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I agree with you on the ROOT of the problem. Still, we should also avoid instant gratification and continuous dopamine spikes.

To be clear, the most relevant moments in which it was clear to me that I had to do something with my life, I was abstaining from the above cheap dopamine sources.

They're not the root cause of the syndrome, but they numb your thought, 'cause everything is fine when you have your hamburger.

I upvoted you to provide instant gratification. Cheers

[–]Non_Merger 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Up-vote for highlighting the shitshow that Ancel Keys initiated.

[–]2popthatpill 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Keys doesn't get anywhere near enough shit. He should be dug up and hung in chains.

[–]MakeMenGreatAgain44 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Very well written article. I agree with you for the most part. But one thing that needs to be clarified is that low self esteem is a complex topic. It can be caused by a lack of achievement and therefore it is a good propeller towards success. Otherwise, low self esteem could be caused by some inherent issues such as when someone underwent a terrible abusive childhood and was left with the impression that they are worthless. Success and achievement would not improve such a person's condition. For example, the recent robin Williams was successful but committed suicide due to underlying issues with self.

[–]aaaGreg 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Wtf is duck bacon

[–]NormalAndy 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Oh 'resilience' is also an important concept here. How to bounce back from failure.

Lance King does some good work with it- trying to get it into the education system too. This is a good read.


[–]drawden63 1 point2 points  (0 children)

As a Yorkshireman I can confirm that sketch is 100% true.

[–]NorthEasternNomad 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Duck bacon. I need to eat more duck bacon.

Because this is fucking gold, and the OP is a Quiet Genius.

[–]Shaney96 1 point2 points  (3 children)

As /u/ThrowFader put, that part was particularly chord-striking for me. It could be tempting to use this post as a poor attempt at rationalizing not taking action, and I won't use it as such, but, what struck a chord for me (this is some introspective drivel, so pardon me):

The biggest pressure I feel everyday is that of feeling I need to be doing better with girls. I feel my frame is quite strong, yet I feel some anxiety gap, for my n-count is one. I'm getting into cold-approaching in my country as I did ~20 approaches while travelling last month. My successes weren't sexual, however I progressed. However, even if I do get second dates and whatever, I feel like not continuing, like I'll never be able to 'achieve' success. The same goes with my guitar: I play now-and-again because and don't dedicate masses of time into it, for it's like I don't believe I can achieve this non-instant gratification.

Maybe it's because I'm just too much of a pussy and am simply struggling to overcome my fears with approaching women, but I feel this resonates with your post somewhat.

[–]trees_away 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Get your testosterone checked. That drive to persevere past the non-instant gratification pain was severely hindered by my lack of testosterone until last year she I started TRT.

With testosterone you grow a spine and become willing to overcome fear of failure to take the risk of success.

[–]Shaney96 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I will. I've only one bollock so that might have something to do with my 'lagging behind' (each time I meet a new person they're often quick to point out "you're not really that old?!", which I now see as a welcomed shit-test that I always pass. So yeah, I'll be interested to see what my T-levels are at.

I read through your long comments containing how you got that bird in order and the one containing the recording. I honestly feel somewhat inspired. I'm too young to feel bad for not having the confidence to do what you did (I'm 21), so I see it as somewhat inspirational; although I think I'd always be fearful of going that far with a woman due to the possibility of her having control of fucking you over with a rape case or whatever.

[–]trees_away 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Rape charges was certainly a thought that crossed my mind. I tried to be very careful to skirt the line between "this is playful fun in a sexual context" and "I'm punishing you bitch". Again, calibration is key. I know this girl well enough to know that she's a) going to love having the shit beat out of her in a sexual context cause she's a dirty little slut, and b) completely enamored/mind-fucked by me at the moment. She's got me so stinking pedestalized its surreal. She is naturally a "go with the flow" kinda person anyways, so she's prime territory for control/manipulation. So for the sake of my own moral compass, I'm very careful not to abuse that. It would be very easily to manipulate her into anything I wanted.

[–]6ixtyisdead 1 point2 points  (0 children)

At the end of the year we had to pay for our trophy (soccer team)

Imagine what that means to a young boy who knows his mommy pays for that prize

And of course we didn't won the championship

[–]Arrrf 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The average timid, depressed millennial who limps into TRP looking to fix his life has not been broken by the presence of instant gratification, but by the absence of non-instant gratification.

These aren't unrelated, though. Instant gratification tempts people away from non-instant gratification. Porn tempts people away from sex IRL, for example. Social media tempts them away from real friendships. Many people find that the more they remove instant gratification from their lives, the more they find non-instant gratification naturally. It's our nature to seek challenges and work to overcome them, when we haven't been hijacked by dopamine traps.

[–]TheJedi_Lied 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I hardly read stuff on here anymore, but I always enjoy the things you produce. Happy to click this sub and see something you wrote stickied.

So thanks for your hard work

[–]voidstarstarx 1 point2 points  (3 children)

I need help defeating instant gratification. I am in a pretty comfortable spot in my life:

  • Good software engineering job;

  • Above-average programming/public speaking skills;

  • Live alone in a major EU city;

  • Finances are good;

  • Lifting regularly.

Apart from going to the gym, I have zero motivation to work on anything. I used to work on personal projects a lot in the past, but now I just want to watch videos and masturbate after work.

No matter how I look at it, improving myself seems pointless: I don't have a long-term goal and I can't find one. I don't want to be rich or powerful. I honestly just want to become more attractive and to be able to get sex/relationships whenever I want it.

Even though becoming rich or powerful would help me, the fact that the only reason is to get girls doesn't motivate me. I think that leaving a mark on society is pointless. I just don't see the point and it's making me a slave to instant gratification.

[–]S-Blaze -1 points0 points  (2 children)

Dude right away just stop masturbating, it's a vicious circle and the worst instant gratification habit. You lack motivation because of that.

[–]politicallyunique 1 point2 points  (1 child)

That cams out of nowhere... Anyways, masturbaiting relieves stress and is healthy to do occasionally.

[–]S-Blaze -1 points0 points  (0 children)

The guy says that he just want to go home and jackoff, read. Masturbation isn't healthy per se, that's bs. With porn it's downright ''harmfull'' to your dopamine-reward center. Last but not least seminal fluid is a lifeforce that should not be wasted on stupid masturbation lol.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thank you for your contribution.

[–]ashyboye 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Now I'm hungry.

[–]SasquatchMcKraken 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Solid post. Reminds me a bit of the Century of the Self series.

[–]59Aisires59 0 points1 point  (0 children)

A good read, spot on. Thanks.

[–]Youngyoda89 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Burger sounds amazing. Where did you get an exotic burger like this?

[–]thirdincomestream 0 points1 point  (0 children)

/u/Whisper stays dropping bombs on us. Nothing new. Thanks for the great posts.

[–]Endorsed ContributorUrsusG 0 points1 point  (5 children)

Consider the work of this negligent mass-murderer, for example.

I just read the entire wiki entry on him and I don't understand the accusation. It seems that his research has more or less been validated, so what is the implication?

[–]TRP VanguardWhisper[S] 6 points7 points  (2 children)

He's dead wrong, his research was crap, he didn't know you need to do an ANOVA both ways, and he is the author of the obesity epidemic, which has cost numerous lives and led to untold human suffering and misery.

Remember the "food pyramid"? Remember how the federal government and the school system told us we should be eating less fat and stuffing our faces with carbohydrates instead?

This guy.

Have a look around you now, and notice just how many fat chicks there are.

This guy.

Go to the grocery store and start reading labels. Look for sugar in things. Inappropriate things. Like sausages. And soup.

This fucking guy.

Read some internet news about the US healthcare system and how costs are skyrocketing. Read rants by economically illiterate socialists about we need single-payer yesterday.

Yeah, you guessed it... this guy.

If you want to know more about this, other names to look for are John Yudkin, and Robert Lustig.

[–]trees_away 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I see you are a student of Taubes.

[–]2popthatpill 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Lustig is too pro-fruit to be considered reliable.

[–]2popthatpill 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I just read the entire wiki entry on him

Wow, what could possibly go wrong

It seems that his research has more or less been validated

Hilarious. Give yourself an uppercut

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

His ideas have been completely invalidated. We know that saturated fats are not the boogey-man that he made them out to be. It is processed sugar that kills us and causes obesity. It's just not in the wikipedia article. I wouldn't call him a mass-murderer though. Just a moron.

[–]VickVaseline 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Consider the work of this negligent mass-murderer, for example.

Seriously? The guy's name was 'Incel' Keys?? Haha

[–]WhiteGhosts 0 points1 point  (0 children)

i very much agree with this. instant gratification is one of the main reasons why people (myself included0 are battling with depression. you put no effort and get what you want. but thats not how we were taught

[–]jpmgratitude 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The only thing that is truly gratifying and instant is breathing.

[–]RedPilledRoaster 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I disagree with the idea that it's one or the other. Not all unconfident people are instant dopamine addicts, and not all instant dopamine addicts are unconfident people.

While modern society does raise a lot of unconfident people who fill that lack of confidence with vices, we can't just exclude the fact that yes, dopamine and the reward system are major factors, and yes, there are a lot of confident people who also struggle with instant dopamine and its effects on drive and work ethic.

Every time you consider partaking in a dopamine spiking activity, you do a cost-benefit analysis of if the dopamine resulting from having completed that activity is worth the effort you put into completing that activity. This is the basis for your reward system. When you repeatedly bash your reward system with instant dopamine, you corrupt that cost-benefit analysis, which decreases your motivation to partake in delayed forms of reward.

In essence, what causes a lack of motivation may not just be your confidence, but really just the repeated bashing of your reward system with instant dopamine. That hopelessness could just be your mind telling you the effort isn’t worth it due to the fact that you’ve lowered its expectation of effort and heightened its expectation of reward. There are a lot of dudes who hook up with girls but still watch porn. A young man can be perfectly confident in his ability to make 1000 dollars, but he may just be too lazy to do so (because he'd rather watch Netflix right now).

However, that hopelessness can ALSO stem from a lack of confidence in oneself, which is the worst possible case.

The lack of non-instant/delayed gratification in the modern world is due to the fact that there is an abundant and well-promoted amount of instant dopamine coupled with a lack of proper masculine guidance (failure to show how to build real confidence in oneself and the "everyone wins" mentality) which results in a society full of instant dopamine addicts. However I'd say the presence of instant dopamine is much more insidious as it effects both confident and unconfident people.

[–]WolfofAllStreetz 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Just came in to say it's nice to see others living in the gluten free hell I am.

[–]OPWills 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wtf is duck bacon?

[–]KrustyKrabReject 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Why do you consider Ancel Keys a mass murderer?

[–]1Ill_Will7 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Fantastic post. The truth is clearly written here.

Very hard for me to follow through with long term shit because i feel all the work put in will amount to nothing (going to college for 4-6 years and coming out in debt with a piece of paper and no job).

Trying to stay persistent in my sales job but it is also tough to see it through long term but im not trying to fall in my known same trap and keep pushing. Going to give it a year no matter my hamstering to give up.

[–]Arabian_Wolf 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Good writeup.

Whisper, you'll like whatever the asshole Nassim Taleb writes, his books are life changing for me (only read Antifragile and Skin in the Game so far, plan to read Fooled by Randomness next).

[–]ba77ab 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Fucksakes. Genuinely want to throw up the burger I just ate.

[–]Pilliam66 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Completely agree with this. You achieve a long term goal and you get a huge release of dopamine. This then motivates you to seek out more long term goals without you needing to try to motivate yourself to do it.

[–][deleted]  (3 children)


[–]Do not send modmail to my personal inboxCrazyHorseInvincible[M] 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Did you by any chance just hear a low whistle and feel a gust of wind right above you?

[–]b_rolla12 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I don’t get it..:

[–]Do not send modmail to my personal inboxCrazyHorseInvincible[M] 0 points1 point  (0 children)


[–][deleted] -2 points-1 points  (1 child)

Where's JamesSkepp? He is usually the first to sniff out any post that criticizes the scientific establishment and come valiantly to their rescue. The white knight of leftist academia personified.

[–]1Ill_Will7 2 points3 points  (0 children)

damn why all this james skepp hate? i appreciate a different point of view.

If its making you upset than he must be doing something out of the average