You’ve probably noticed that a lot of young men want to be alpha at all costs—without asking themselves why they want to be so alpha.
They want to get every girl, be admired by every man. They want to earn all the money, have all the toys. They want to dominate every room they enter, be the top dog in every show.
But these guys rarely ask themselves why they want to be at the top of every heap. Why is it that they want to win every contest. Why do they want to bang every girl. Why do they want every man to admire them.
Because aspiring to something without a reason is foolish. You have to have a sense of what sort of life you want to live. If you don’t, then you won’t know what’s important—which battles to fight—and what is unimportant—which battles to ignore or walk away from. You’ll fight all your battles with equal intensity—and likely wind up losing them all.
You have to decide what you want.
In my own case, when I was around 24 or so, I consciously decided that what I wanted was true freedom.
By “true freedom”, I mean to be independent of government, of my peers, of any societal norm. I didn’t want to be rich—I wanted to not be beholden to anyone or any thing. I wanted to be able to do what I wanted, without anything holding me back, without anyone telling me what I could or could not do. I wanted to be able to say whatever I wanted, without being worried about how my words might affect my position. I wanted to be able to think whatever I wanted, without being worried that a simple thought might hurt me or set me back.
True freedom. And I remember the moment when I decided that this was what I wanted above all else.
It was 1992. I was working at a law firm in D.C., a fairly prestigious one, as a project assistant. This was nothing more than being a glorified clerk—but it gave me a lot of insights into what the reality of being a white-shoe lawyer would be like. I was thinking of taking the LSAT and going into law. So I was basically assaying a possible life—which was why I paid attention to the goings on inside the firm.
There was a partner at the firm, whose name I have forgotten. He was the lead attorney for a fairly large insurance company—so of course, this partner did very well. The rumor was he pulled in several million a year—and this was back in 1992.
He was also a powerful man within the firm. Early on, it was made clear to me that if this partner called, I’d better jump. I saw associate attorneys—as well as junior partners, or partners with less seniority—jump sky-high whenever this partner glanced their way.
I got the picture. Whenever he turned my way, I jumped.
That summer, this partner was supposed to travel to Europe on vacation with his family. It was his first family vacation in over ten years—his wife and kids put a lot of planning into the trip.
As I keep saying, this was 1992. There was no consistent cell phone network in Europe, yet. So for the four weeks of his vacation, he had a list of every single place he was going to be at, plus the phone number. I saw this document: Neatly typed, each page was a day, and there was a list of every restaurant, every hotel, and every tourist spot he was going to visit with his family. At no time was he more than 10 minutes away from a phone. And this was the summer, when the judicial system goes to sleep and everything slows down.
But the big client, the insurance company . . . it had a big case that was active, even though there was nothing pressing. Still, the Big Client got nervous, what with their big bad law firm partner away on vacation in faraway Europe.
So . . .
So they told the partner that they didn’t feel “comfortable” with him being away for so long.
So the partner canceled the vacation.
That’s when I realized that the partner was a slave. He drove a fancy BMW, he had a big house in Maryland, he had a beach house in South Carolina, he wore $1,000 suits and $2,000 shoes, he could have me and 100 other people at the firm jumping up and down on one leg, if he wanted, but . . . he was a slave, as beholden to his client as if he’d been wearing an iron collar and chains.
When I heard that he had actually canceled on the vacation, I realized what I did not want to be—no matter what.
I realized that I’d prefer to be dirt poor and begging for food money, than to be a slave like that.
Since that moment, everything I’ve tried to do or accomplish has been in service of being truly free. I don’t have any Big Client whose ass I have to suck, I do whatever I want whenever I want it, I sleep with whomever I want, and live wherever I want. Say whatever I want, and think whatever I want. I am truly free.
By knowing exactly what I want out of life, I've also saved myself a lot of energy, and saved myself from needless aggravation: I’ve only ever been “alpha” when I needed to be alpha. I’ve known which battles to fight, which ones to safely ignore, and which ones to walk away from.
I think it’s necessary to develop yourself, lift weights, read books that matter, eat right, maintain your appearance—all of it. But once you’ve gotten to that state, I think it’s crucial to know what do you want from life: What kind of life do you want to lead. You have to know what you’re applying your red pill insights in order to achieve.
Everything is a tool, and red pill wisdom is no exception: It is a tool, but it can’t determine what kind of life you lead. Only you can.
TL;DR: It’s necessary to apply red pill insights to your life, but you need to consciously decide what kind of life you want to lead, so that you don’t wind up fighting battles you don’t need to.
Coach Red Pill