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To everyone who joined these forums at some point, and got discouraged by the negativity and left after a while (or even got literally scared off): I'm sorry.

I wasn't good enough at encouraging people to be kinder, and removing people who refuse to be kind. Encouraging people is hard, and removing people creates conflict, and I hate conflict... so that's why I wasn't better at it.

I was a very, very sensitive teen. The atmosphere of this forum as it is now, if it had existed in 1996, would probably have upset me far more than it would have helped.

I can handle quite a lot of negativity and even abuse now, but that isn't the point. I want to help people. I want to help the people who need it the most, and I want to help people like the 1996 version of me.

I'm still figuring out the best way to do that, but as it is now, these forums are doing more harm than good, and I can't keep running them.

Thank you to the few people who have tried to understand my point of view so far. I really, really appreciate you guys. You are beautiful people.

Everyone else: If after everything I've said so far, you still don't understand my motivations, I think it's unlikely that you will. We're just too different. Maybe someday in the future it might make sense, but until then, there's no point in arguing about it. I don't have the time or the energy for arguing anymore. I will focus my time and energy on people who support me, and those who need help.

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The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket
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Ahab Offline
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Post: #1
The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

WARNING: This is long and anecdotal. If it is misplaced, I apologize. I do feel it is of some use for those who are trying to remember how much the 'mainstream' to 'alternative' income SUCKS!

I got hired at Target about a month ago. They took three weeks to process me because of some misdemeanor convictions I received when I lived in Texas (there was some inconsistency the HR department was too incompetent to handle.) I recently got out of what one could call a 'six year sabbatical' of what I identified at the time to be depression. As I came to accept my own laziness, I paradoxically became what I wanted: more productive, and with more self-control. The proponents of Law of Attraction tend to forget how hyper-intention, positive or otherwise, can fuck up your Wu Wei (as some second rate Chinese poet calls it.)

I've been doing a lot of (what society sees as) 'productive stuff' lately that has been good for my own personal growth: I cut off from the majority of people who were wasting my time with mindless negativity, and I stopped feeling compelled to get intoxicated to ease myself. Soon came a complete and utter lack of suicidal thoughts, a sense of contentment, and healthier eating/exercise which led to forty pounds of fat loss. At some point, possibly due to the influence of beer which I had still occasionally partaken in, I decided "what the hell? Getting a job can't hurt."

So after the three weeks of bullshit back and forth, I finally get a call confirming my background check was consistent and asking me to come into orientation the next day. I got my first paying job in over a year. It was nice, until all of a sudden I started to understand why I didn't work for over a year again; family and friends were showering me with congratulations, saying how proud they were that I finally "strapped down and got a job."

"What the hell?", I thought. I was perplexed. I had started to make all sorts of accomplishments which were making me a better developed human being. I was proud of those, but getting a job? A job is a damn job. I had just conquered a six year wrestling match with a neurosis and started to achieve a level of contentment and self-actualization that most people never really attain with both eyes open, and I was getting praised for my ability to get work as a stocking serf for Target? I was fucking amazed.

What it really does is show what value society, even those close to you, will put on an unemployed twenty something college dropout, including many of the fairly Bohemian or creativity driven. Subconsciously or not, they can be prone to likening you to some kind of leech to society. Because they took their time to pay their dues, or are taking their time to pay their dues, they assume you have to suck the semen of wage slavery just like the rest of society does. I had started to realize this, perhaps remember this (if you read my rants from 2007 and 2008, you'll find I was very anti-work at the time), but I decided to shrug my shoulders and remember that glorious paycheck I was bound to receive for some work.

By the third day in, I was already at the fucking cusp of distaste. The work was monotonous, and I felt dehumanized. That was expected, but the bullshit really started when I was scheduled to get off work at 9 AM, and much to my horror I HAD TO COME UP WITH AN EXCUSE TO LEAVE AT MY SCHEDULED TIME EACH DAY. At some point one day, I told one of the workers with seniority that I was scheduled to end at 9. "Oh, that's never right. It's more like 9:45 AM that you get to leave, if that. If you do leave, you'll get written up," she told me.

I was beginning to feel suicidal again - luckily I know how to deal with suicidal thoughts like a pro by now. I applied some of these coping mechanisms to work life, knowing that killing myself was not an answer but probably just an indicator of needing to add some yin/yang bullshit to my perspective (seeing the bad and good and not focusing on one or the other.) I was already physically sick that day, so I went into a moment of primordial anger that I kept bottled up.

Like how a depressed person can sometimes take refuge in knowing they have the option to commit suicide to get through the day, I took refuge in knowing that I could quit any time. I continued on for a while, and started to feel OK. Next thing I know, the bitch who told me I couldn't leave until at least 45 minutes after my scheduled time is gone (she had clocked in at 5, I had clocked in at 4), and it was already 12 PM. Even my supervisor had left, and there were two people finishing up, so I took my leave.

The final straw came when I came home from work, exhausted as hell. I told my Father that I miraculously got through work, and that I was looking forward to the couple of days off. Instead of doing the normal "just get some rest" line, he decided this was the time to go off on a work ethic tangent. "This job sucks, and it shows you that you have to go to college to get a better job." I'll spare you the rest of the rant, but it was the fuel coming from a workaholic who was reared by a Protestant work ethic, full of the kind of "when I was nine years old, I wanted a watch that cost eight dollars, so I worked hard fixing bicycles for three months to get enough" anecdotes.

Naturally, I was infuriated about what he said, but as I started to rest it dawned on me: this was coming from a man who is currently out of work. He has spent his whole life in the Job Racket, working from one person to another. Even though he makes six digits a year now, he's gone through hell and back in a system that is cold and uncaring. He might have a salary, but he never made the slightest passive income. I also started to realize something very distasteful to my sometimes cynical robot thoughts - a lot of people would be better off running their own damn business. They may not make as much income, but their talents can be better used to create real fucking value for people on their own terms, not corporations disguising themselves as people.

I then remembered about a year ago actually sitting down and learning how to actually read Nietzsche for the first time, from a Philosopher who was offering free group discussions that specialized in his field. Like many people who read Nietzsche in High School, I didn't understand the exact nature of what he meant by Nihilism. The more I studied with Todd, the more I realized: it's the will to Nihilism, the processing of foods and the switch from the times of agriculture (where people actually churned their own damn butter and made their living by their yield, not their hours of work) to a time of industry and technology with little meaningful return.

I woke up again, and soaked in the reality that I was living this will to Nihilism by giving up even an hour to working for a major corporation. The Aha! Moment shortly came when I woke up; QUITTING MY JOB WOULD DO NOTHING UNLESS I ETERNALLY RESIGNED FROM THE JOB RACKET AS WELL.

Just because I was willing to endure hours of psychological distress did NOT mean it was good for me. I had realized this intellectually years ago (again, rants from five years ago on here), but I didn't take firm conviction into it until I really "paid my dues", not unlike the poor fools who meditate for years on end to achieve "enlightenment" due to unrealized false modesty. But the great liberation was that I didn't need to quit my job, and subsequently the job racket, because I was incapable of psychologically doing it: it was that I had a sense of purpose, confidence, and self-respect which said "I have better things to be doing for the world by not having a damn job."

I phoned in sick, and then the next day turned in my name badge. I resigned. Most people can empathize with the idea of quitting a position in wage slavery, but it's the inner freedom that really makes this work. Now begins a path of pursuing website building and small level passive income ideas which will work me to something where I can create value for others and myself in a balanced way (just as with my method of seeing the good and bad without focusing on one or the other too much.) And you know what? I'm fucking DANDY with this.

It's already harder work than I had anticipated in the giddy energy of leaving my job, but I'm back to having inner accomplishment, well being, and a sense of confident, playful engagement with what I'm doing instead of creating value for a company who's profiting more off of me than me and the company equally. If I fail, I will fail, but instead of being scared about getting 'written up' and being one step closer to losing my income stream, I'm able to look at my failures without such insane anxiety. I will have failed at making income, but I will have failed trying to find some way to benefit others and myself in a mutual way.

I wanted to provide a proper anecdote in the hopes you might get some benefit from it. If you can't psychologically handle the drudgery of work, it's totally fine! It does not guarantee you're neurotic or any of that bullshit. There's nothing to be proud of about making shit wages doing what you hate, and if you feel you can find a way to do something more beneficial for yourself and others, remember that you are probably capable. The job racket has never been different from the extortion racket except the values: The job racket extorts your time for a little piece of the pie (mostly false security), and the 'illegal' racket extorts your money for a little piece of the pie (mostly false security). Peace.
11-13-2012 12:54 AM
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SoulRiser Offline
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Post: #2
The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

Well said, sir.

It really is sad that people view getting a job as such a 'good' and 'wholesome' thing to do, like it's the very definition of having a better life... but then I suppose they didn't know about all the other progress you made?

I know what you mean about getting away from people with negative mindsets... that does wonders for a person. So simple, yet so effective...

And yeah, it's definitely better to do something that allows you to provide value to people in the best way you can, without holding you back in any way. I suppose it's theoretically possible to get a job working for someone else where this is still possible, but I think it's rare, or at least difficult to pull off.

"If you can, help others; if you cannot do that, at least do not harm them." - Dalai Lama
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11-13-2012 03:15 AM
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Ahab Offline
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Post: #3
The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

YES. Purging negative people kind of sucks (especially if you have a lot of empathy for the people you gotta get rid of), but the shit works all too effectively. In the end, I realized I was wasting their time as well as mine by keeping them around, pretending the chemistry isn't bad when it is. It works in a way just like a romantic relationship, only there are less demands and energy being expended. But you know how it is. I ended up being the phone-therapist for so many of these people, and I had to let them go. I'm currently in the process of letting go one of my closest friends, of whom my loyalty to ending up costing me several other friendships that I don't regret losing. But it flows as it's supposed to.

There's still great people out there with great visions that are worth joining up, I'm sure. For now, I'm working on a content based website dedicated to applying techniques for greater actualization. The only problem is I only have a specific, narrow perspective on overcoming obstacles (my own), and I don't want every post to turn into a constant 'me me me look at what i did audience' like a lot of great blog writers tend to over-do (Steve Pavlina is a good example, though he isn't a terrible writer by any stretch but I know the shit can get old.) Should be an interesting obstacle.

"If you think you know what the hell is going on, you're probably full of shit." - Robert Anton Wilson
11-13-2012 03:42 AM
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Miller0700 Offline
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Post: #4
RE: The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

Nice story. I can relate too now that I'm pressured to find a job of some sort.

Previously known as Derchin.
11-13-2012 03:46 AM
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Absnt Offline
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Post: #5
RE: The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

Pretty interesting. I have a shit grocery store job I've been working for like 5 months and I go to college. Sometimes I work 35+ hours a week. I recetnly said fuck this and cut my horus back by giving some away to this other dude who needed the money more. I definitely think this shit is getting to me. Bringing me down. Kind of cutting into me. But I can't afford to not do it.

After next year I'll probably get an I.T job or an internship. Not sure how much longer I'll be able to take this shit. Eventually I'm definitely going to start a business of some sort. I'm not going to get a big house. I'm not going to get an expensive apartment. I'm going to live as cheaply as possible doing what I want to do to support me until that takes off and allows me a more comfortable lifestyle. I just have to deal with college for now. Meh.

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http://blog.darknedgy.net

Edfreedom.org -- An organization for more freedom in education.
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(This post was last modified: 11-13-2012 07:35 AM by Absnt.)
11-13-2012 07:34 AM
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SomeRandomHuman Offline
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RE: The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

That just sucks that you have ro work extra. From what you are telling me, jobs sound just like school! Jobs sound like an extension of "the system" except money is what makes you do it.
11-13-2012 09:38 AM
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Ky Offline
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Post: #7
The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

The rabbit hole deepens.

I'd just like to point out that big business isn't all bad - it's bad to work for, though, if you value your individuality. Small business is where the game changes, anyway. Starting your own business, or applying to a recently-started business, is the way to go.

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11-13-2012 09:44 AM
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Ahab Offline
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RE: The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

(11-13-2012 09:44 AM)DoA Wrote:  The rabbit hole deepens.

I'd just like to point out that big business isn't all bad - it's bad to work for, though, if you value your individuality. Small business is where the game changes, anyway. Starting your own business, or applying to a recently-started business, is the way to go.

No, not all big business is terrible. My father has worked for corporate at several different big corporations over the years, and while most of them do suck it's not all cut and dry. That said, being an underling sucks, I agree. Working for a small business is nicer and more fulfilling, though I've had mixed experiences. Just depends on the business, I suppose.

"If you think you know what the hell is going on, you're probably full of shit." - Robert Anton Wilson
(This post was last modified: 11-13-2012 05:19 PM by Ahab.)
11-13-2012 05:18 PM
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xcriteria Offline
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The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

Great writeup -- thanks for sharing, Ahab!

I'm reminded of this video, an ad for a blogger and one of many paid communities offering support in carving a path outside of a traditional job:
Trailblazer - Get Paid to Be You [5 min]
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwZYQAVMOTI

The challenge often is, how do you go about earning a living. The idea that college is the only path to success, the golden ticket, is worth reflecting on. Some people have the freedom to live with family or friends for free, but often this can't last forever, and one is caught between being The Thing That Would Not Leave -- http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Ma...ldNotLeave -- or facing homelessness -- see Invisible People's Youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/invisiblepeo...eos?view=0 and click "Load More" a bunch of times -- LOTS of interviews with a wide range of people who are struggling with homelessness.

Check out College Reality Chat for materials on the question of whether to go to college, from a range of perspectives: http://collegerealitychat.com/ -- I'm working with CRC and it will eventually be a much more comprehensive resource.

Also, check out unCollege -- http://uncollege.org -- challenging the notion that college is the only path to success.

Then again, what is success? Short-term, long-term? In between? What if one's definition of it changes?

There are some great articles, including describing metaphors of career, at this blog: Running in a Forest: http://runninginaforest.wordpress.com/

This article from Michael Ellsberg, author of The Education of Millionaires (which questions the idea that college is the only route to success) provides a good summary of Chris Guillebeau's book, the $100 startup, here:
The $100 Higher Education: Chris Guillebeau on Inexpensive Startups as Real-World Education
http://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelellsb...uillebeau/

And yet, my own attempt to form a startup in 2010 -- focusing on educational technology -- turned into a monumental disaster, especially last year. Since then, I've been on the edge of homelessness, trying to figure out a way forward based on developing a participatory documentary series that helps other people find their way forward, learn effectively in the age of open information (including hundreds of free and open college courses on sites such as http://coursera.org and TED/TEDx talks), and connect with others in a way that leads to some kind of productive exchanges. Being branded a "leech" is no fun, yet so many think "get a job" that Ahab references is the only path forward. There are many other approaches than that and college, yet every path includes risk and tradeoffs. Hopefully some of them involve worthwhile learning experiences, and those experiences can be transformed into better maps and guides for others to navigate the sea of options, that too often just seems like a handful.
(This post was last modified: 11-14-2012 02:50 AM by xcriteria.)
11-14-2012 02:49 AM
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Post: #10
RE: The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

Quote:YES. Purging negative people kind of sucks (especially if you have a lot of empathy for the people you gotta get rid of), but the shit works all too effectively. In the end, I realized I was wasting their time as well as mine by keeping them around, pretending the chemistry isn't bad when it is.
Good point. It's kind of like what happened when I ragequit the forums a couple months back. It sucked because I really did care about the people, but all that negativity was actually making me depressed. Shutting it down was like a huge weight off my shoulders. But then I realized it wasn't the forums that were making me depressed, it was my reactions to it, my need to make things be a certain way... that was the problem. So now it's back, but I refuse to give a damn about little things that don't matter, that's what the ignore button is for... let the trivial things sort themselves out, I say! xD

IRL, there are a few people I should probably work on getting rid of as well...

Quote:For now, I'm working on a content based website dedicated to applying techniques for greater actualization. The only problem is I only have a specific, narrow perspective on overcoming obstacles (my own), and I don't want every post to turn into a constant 'me me me look at what i did audience' like a lot of great blog writers tend to over-do (Steve Pavlina is a good example, though he isn't a terrible writer by any stretch but I know the shit can get old.) Should be an interesting obstacle.
Allow guest posting? You'd need some traffic before people will really post much though. Or perhaps later on, add forums.

"If you can, help others; if you cannot do that, at least do not harm them." - Dalai Lama
Help & Support - Get help with leaving school, unsupportive parents, and more.
Click here if school makes you depressed or suicidal

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11-14-2012 04:38 AM
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Ahab Offline
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Post: #11
RE: The Joy of Quitting The Job Racket

xcriteria: Much appreciated homie! Glad to get in touch after I deleted my dreaded Facebook account. I was always lurking on your links and resources. I'm currently at the behest of my immediate family's compassion, which has been a useful tool for the time being. Were I living on my own again, I probably do what I did then: a combination of playing street music and labor ready to score adequate dirt cheap rent under crust punk land lords, and my former heavy weight champion source of nutrition: malt liquor. I know you're in NYC, so imaginably so it is much more difficult to have the balls (or ovaries) to get a start up going on, knowing failure is almost certainly inevitable at some point.

(11-14-2012 04:38 AM)SoulRiser Wrote:  Good point. It's kind of like what happened when I ragequit the forums a couple months back. It sucked because I really did care about the people, but all that negativity was actually making me depressed. Shutting it down was like a huge weight off my shoulders. But then I realized it wasn't the forums that were making me depressed, it was my reactions to it, my need to make things be a certain way... that was the problem. So now it's back, but I refuse to give a damn about little things that don't matter, that's what the ignore button is for... let the trivial things sort themselves out, I say! xD

IRL, there are a few people I should probably work on getting rid of as well...
Timing and reaction to me are probably the most important skills to work on. Naturally, my main active interests are martial arts and music, so this comes into effect. As I work towards facing opponents who are longer-trained and more thoroughly rational in their fights, content goes out of the door and being able to intuit when to let the body do its muscle memory work is far more important. In music, I have some more freedom to think than in a fight, but it is of almost equal detriment to play a song while I'm thinking too thoroughly. Having a strict tempo by metronome is useful to practice with alone, but as I play with more and more drummers, I remember how organic timing is: a metronome can tell you where you yourself deviate, but its purpose is solely to REACT to the click (or in between the clicks, if subdividing.

I believe it applies the same way to dealing with human relationships: we as a species who can be defined as different from animals by our ability to bind time just as they bind physical space. When reaction is planned to a precise degree, deviations which follow can flow naturally. To not make this point too abstract: if you're dealing with a person who exhausts your psychological or physical resources, reacting is, according to Captain Obvious, essential to knowing how to handle that person. The problem usually comes with friends when your reacting has become robotic, as though to a metronomic, instead of organic. Being in a constant flux of repetitive reaction with the same person usually indicates the time to up the tempo or bail. One of the great joys of friendship is being able to have to adjust now and then in ways you didn't expect, but feeling nourished instead of compromised. Too much of the same robot, and humanity becomes useless.

I don't know how it deviates with one on many though; one on one is usually where I encounter difficulties, and I haven't run a forum in over 6 years now, though I do know how easy it is to get pissed off and try to function through heaps of difficult people, especially when the forums aren't as strict about orderly rules and gray areas are often the moderating dilemma.

"If you think you know what the hell is going on, you're probably full of shit." - Robert Anton Wilson
11-14-2012 09:30 AM
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