On Change

(Epistemic Status: Mostly a personal life update and retrospective on the blog – lexical-doll is one year old as of April 11, exciting – I think weekly posts started in May though)

It’s common after writing a blog for awhile to do a retrospective at milestone marks, such as the anniversary. The threads tying my personal life and observations to this blog are fairly inextricable – so I feel it’s a good time to look at both and how they feed into each other. I’ve gone through a lot of phases with regards to my social memetics. I discovered that when you spend hundreds of hours on a skill, you get better at it. I discovered that dichotomies are an exciting way to damage people’s epistemics. I discovered that sometimes you go in weird tangents  and like to pretend those never happened. The personality framework I “awakened” to a little over a year ago is still there, but it’s much more adaptable than when I started out – codifying my thoughts the way I have in this blog, I think, has helped that process. I’m going to take the opportunity to list my 5 most “phase defining” posts, in terms of how I changed over the past year:

  1. On Untested Social Realizations – I think this post definitely was part of the series that began my understanding of social reality. It’s less the actual insight given the post, and more the framework that social can be systematized and strategized, without completely burning one’s reputation. I consider this the Light phase of my development – everything was really pleasant to just realize and iterate on.
  2. On The Filter System, Archetypal Lenses, and Narrative – This post is probably where I started going a little crazier than was healthy. The posts leading up to this were definitely fuzzier and more spiritual, but I think here is where I went into what I call the Narrative phase, or the “perception is everything, nothing is real” idea. Very fun, but it’s honestly astonishing I didn’t kick myself into full mania.
  3. On Good Girl, or How Society Does Most of The Work – This post is probably the demarcation for the Dark phase. My aesthetics around social became extremely overtly manipulative, even if playful. Everything was intentional, had a reason, etc. I think I had a lot of fun in this phase, but this is where I started actually burning social capital by my social maneuvers. My social skills decreased to a degree that was noticeable because I went far too into the conversational meta. Not proud of this phase, honestly.
  4. On Narrative Decoherence – This post was about the end of the dark phase. I had sufficiently alienated people I liked that I was getting called out. My narrative was falling apart, I felt really pressured and unable to live up to my past self. I think this was just kind of the Lost phase. I didn’t know what I was doing, how to improve, what aesthetics I should correct to. It felt unpleasant, but I think it saved me to some extent.
  5. On Why I Like Fairy Tales – This is about where I found my aesthetic again, in a way that was less harmful to people. Still a very egotistical, self driven narrative, but in a positive agentic way that people could participate in. It wasn’t about storifying my life or living large so much as…taking the rougher path in hopes of an uncertain future. It’s more resonant and sympathetic. This would be the Fatalist phase, and I’m still there. But…it’s nice and despite the fatalism, I carry myself with a lot of enthusiasm for my future.

 

My life has drastically changed again, almost year to the day after I started this blog. I quit my job to study programming and other things that catch my fancy. I have a lot more free time to develop my social theory and meet new people and do interesting things. Change is constant, whether they be big changes or little changes – even over a year I can pick out 5 distinct flavors of self. I’m fortunate to have a record of this – I expect with applied thought you also could find some number of phases. I hope that life keeps changing – I value dynamism and reaction pretty highly.

Overall, change is net positive, I think. I’ve made mistakes with my volatile nature, but I’ve also made great choices by not getting locked down into one mode. I look forward to the future of my writing, both from a technical perspective and what thoughts I’ll generate. I anticipate writing more about productivity over the next few months, since it’s going to be important to me taking advantage of my newfound free time. This is also a bit of a request – if you have any suggestions for projects I should take on, places to see, or productivity tools I might benefit on, please comment! Here’s to what will hopefully be a productive and interesting next year for lexical-doll.

Discussion Questions: What got you into this blog in the first place? What do you think my best posts are stylistically? What are the best posts in terms of subject matter? What is your favorite lexical-doll post? How has your life changed over the past year? Did you have discrete phases?