Every stage of your life, no matter how high up the ladder you climb, will have a problem. By solving one problem you will introduce another, and while subsequent problems can be smaller in severity, there will never be a point in your life when you are free of problems or completely satisfied with everything in your environment.
When I was around 25 years old, a time I was experiencing growing success with the game, I had four problems that bothered me:
- I didn’t like the city I was living in
- I didn’t have enough free time because I had to spend at least 40 hours a week in a job I didn’t care for
- I didn’t have as much disposable income as I wanted
- I didn’t feel attached or deeply interested to the girls I was having sex with
I solved each of these problems over the next few years by quitting my job, selling my writing to achieve a stable income, and traveling to many countries with beautiful and feminine women. I currently have free time to pursue my interests with more disposable income than I need in a city that is better than my hometown in terms of lifestyle and women. But now I have new problems I didn’t have before:
- I don’t have friends in my new city, leading to feelings of social isolation
- I don’t have urgent money and girl goals that motivate me, causing me to lack the direction and drive I had before
- I see women more as a form of entertainment and distraction instead of significantly adding to my life
I know I’m happier now because I would rather live as I am than revert to the life I had at 25, but the difference is quite marginal. The downsides of my current life do weigh on me nearly as much as the previous problems I had, meaning that I’m still preoccupied with issues that I believe is harming my overall quality of life.
If I were to solve my problems today, a new set would undoubtedly emerge. Perhaps I’d have less free time, have to deal with more social circle or girl drama, or feel pressured and stressed by more serious relationships that force me to make larger commitments. Or maybe something spontaneous like a health problem will pop up at the time I was on the verge of “solving” everything.
Even rich and famous people have problems that they didn’t anticipate before they were successful. In John D. Rockefeller’s biography, he lamented the fact that every man who seemed interested in him would hit him up for money on the 18th hole of a leisurely game of golf. People who dreamed of fame and then got it become paranoid about the intentions of others and come to believe that their friends wouldn’t be around had it not been for their star status. Even if you don’t achieve fame, but become wealthy, you may start wondering if your new mini-girlfriend is a goldigger. Every goal you accomplish introduces a cost or burden, and because of that, your overall satisfaction with life will advance more in baby steps than in great leaps, or it may not advance at all.
Of course I’m not giving an excuse for you not to achieve or work hard towards your goals, but we must be realistic on how our day-to-day happiness will change. The sometimes heavy costs of achieving great things tends to balance the problems we set out to solve in the first place, and changing your living environment and lifestyle as I have will introduce new negatives you couldn’t have thought of before.
The buzz of achieving your goals is great indeed, but once the dust settles, it’ll feel less like you’re entering paradise than experiencing a more modest improvement that affects you only slightly. I most definitely prefer my life here in Eastern Europe, but I can’t say I’m twice as happy as before. With the negatives that come from uprooting myself and moving to a foreign land, perhaps I’m only 15% happier. While that is significant enough for me to feel, it’s not the day and night difference I thought it would be.
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