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09-13-2010, 02:52 AM #11Certified Live Training Graduate Lounge Member
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02-22-2011, 07:52 PM #12
Go Packers! Such a tribalist opener... but I'm really from Mexico, so it comes from a good place. I hope your lives are as eventful and exciting as mine is turning out to be! I bet your stories are getting each day more and more outrageous (as they well should), however I must first disclose a caveat: This review contains personal information which friends have described to me as “shocking”. I will share it in hopes that it might help he who finds himself in similar waters, or might identify with such struggles. I will focus on inner game and personal change rather than specific techniques. I waited over a year to write this in order to avoid any leftover enthusiasm from the seminar to seep into my discourse. I also wanted the numbers to speak for themselves. This is my most honest attempt to review the bootcamp and recount 12 months of personal growth since I took it.
BC with Braddock in DC, January 2010.
Prior to 2010, I had opened little over 100 sets in 6 months of self-training. This averaged to roughly opening one set every 2 days, which is not surprising given my self-image at the time. After the bootcamp last January, my numbers increased drastically at first, yet dropped as the months went by. The instructors explained the importance of keeping track of every set, so it’s safe to say that I opened 570 sets in one year. That means 1.3 sets a day, and an improvement of 160%. That weekend in DC I opened more than 20 sets each night, a feat which used to seem impossible and now is relatively easy. Now that these facts have been stated, I shall explain in detail why Love Systems changed my life for the better, and gave me the tools to better deal with my problems.
My mother died in October 2008, aged 53. I arrived quite late at the scene and was told that it was an accident, the circumstances of which were pretty shady. Gaze down, I inquired no further and entered denial for the better part of two years. The depression that ensued caused me to isolate myself, and after months of being miserable I finally decided to take matters into my own hands. The techniques in the Mystery Method enabled me to get a girlfriend, and to seriously consider a Bootcamp in order to further challenge the beliefs that had clearly restrained me for most of my life. However, even after the course, there was something holding me back, and driving me to become a self-help junkie (not necessarily a bad thing). I read most of the NLP literature out there (in order to somehow help myself and others), and for some time I found yours truly believing most of it. It was this obsession which distracted me from opening sets and to which I attribute my numerical decline as the months went by. Luckily, Derren Brown’s Tricks of the Mind reminded me to think more critically (it is ironic that I first heard of NLP because of him). This is not to say that I regret my exposure to NLP or that it does not contain scattered nuggets of truth here or there.
But I digress. When I was finally ready (about 3-4 months ago), I slowly pieced together the sad truth about my mother’s death, which turned out to be by her own hand. After confronting some family members who had “protected” me, and frustratingly watching them squirm under the irrationality of untruths which they might themselves now believe, I grew quite bitter. I read books on suicide and joined a support group to get through this crisis, yet these pursuits offered little in the way of pragmatic advice, and much in the way of self-pity. Add to the mix finding out that my godfather, whom I believed had died in a car crash when I was 5, turned out to be a martyr of the gay movement in my native country. He was murdered by homophobic catholic soldiers and the details were never revealed to most of us until I started diligently and scientifically digging for skeletons in the closet (sigh...). These two conclusions shook my reality to its core and made me question everything I held true. They also explained a lot regarding my early years and why a good looking fellow like myself (blame it on the genes... mommy was a 10.5) had such trouble socializing. Had I not learned to be more assertive and aware of body language, I may have never learned the sad truths about my family.
During this process, however, some of Braddock’s words stuck with me... echoes about not letting the outside world affect your inner state, and not reacting to the actions of others. I revisited the interview on how to be an Alpha male and on Inner Game, where the morbidly tall sensei echoed such wisdom once more in his charming “southern” accent. At the end of the “tape”, he recommended Psycho-cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz, claiming that “it will change your life.”
The text in question did not disappoint. I will be ever grateful to Braddock for pointing me in this direction, and to Maltz himself of course for writing the thing quite ahead of his time (the neurological community’s consensus back then was that the human brain did not change). Not only have I now “forgiven” my family (the book explains why forgiveness is a self-contradictory concept, stemming from unnecessary condemnation), but I finally feel like I am becoming the man I want to be. Thanks to the healthy mindsets that I learned in DC, which have been gradually implemented into my life, it can now honestly be said that my mother’s suicide was the best thing that has ever happened to me. It was her final and warmest gift. I write this without any cynicism or resentment whatsoever. I am grateful that she sacrificed herself (however compulsively) in order to open my eyes and help me challenge the beliefs that led to her demise.
I want to be clear: I am not “there” yet. My goal for 2011 is to reach 2000 sets, an achievable aim which requires me to open roughly 4 a day. I am still not “good with women” in the sense that most instructors use the term, and I still don’t have a plethora of choices, but I am well on my way to getting there. I hooked up with 3 people this summer (the previous 2 summers gave me one romance each), I’ve had 2 same night lays, and at the time of writing there is a cute blonde whom I approached during the “day” on her way to my place to have a shower with me. This semester I had my first fuck-buddy and last month I closed a girl whom I'd mostly gamed through text. I am getting phone numbers left and right during the day, and I have re-discovered my undying love for coffee shops. I finally set things straight with an ex whom I used to feel had “wronged” me, and who herself still felt unnecessary guilt regarding mistakes she made by virtue of not being the infallible “angel” I had assumed mammals with such fortunate neotenic adaptations to be.
During this epic roller-coaster ride I have been lucky enough to be accompanied by little voices in my head, the kind that schizophrenics worldwide can only envy. I refer to the magnetic roars of lions such as Jeremy Soul, Dubbsy, Nick Savoy, Sam Harris, Braddock, Calabrese, Daxx, Mystery, Christopher Hitchens, and last but not least, my own dad. I have finally learned how to admire this dignified old man because of something we often vaguely refer to as “getting” it. Life is not about rehashing the past, or playing it safe, or expecting the world to feed you happiness with a silver spoon. Life (in the present moment) is our only true possession. A man never knows the length of his own fuse. We just don’t get two of these, despite what some Shiva-fearing folk might opine.
AFCs and KJs (read: sexually repressed males) around the world may be wondering whether or not three thousand dollars is too much money to pay for a 2 day course. Why not use that money to buy a nice car or fancy watch to obtain the same elevated social status? I invite moral equestrians to consider this: if a man is willing to spend that much money on something intangible, often against the advice of his friends and family, then what does that tell us about him? It sounds to me like he values himself over all things (as he should), and is aching to unleash his personality upon the world. The beauty of invisible capital, in the case of emotional education, is that nobody can steal it from you, spit on it, or scratch it up with a keychain (without forcefully opening your skull, that is). It is yours alone, and ages like wine. We have been trained to ignore and suppress our emotions the moment we began our “education”, and have been trained to believe that cognitive, language, and mathematical skills hold the key to happiness. However, it is emotions that drive people’s decisions. I learned this the hard way. In fact, I cannot think of anybody who has a better excuse to study pick-up than me, yet this should not discourage anyone in more “functional” circumstances. If you are reading this, chances are you seek permission to do what you were born to do. I hereby grant you such permission. Psychologists across the world, Dan Savage, even women themselves are begging you to step back into your “First Life” and fight the repressions and inhibitions of your culture’s infancy that have kept you on a leash all these years. Whose other permission slip do you need?
03-11-2012, 08:46 AM #13
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