The Dysfunction of Infinite Feedback

In so far that we had praised the extraordinariness of the invention of the Internet and other technology that “connect” us, there is always the other side of the equation.

Beyond hacking, beyond privacy, beyond other social issues, I find there is a bigger underlying trend that needs to be look at — the amount of feedback we receive because of all these inventions.

Let’s define feedback first. Feedback is an evaluative reaction or response to an originating process or activity.

We know feedback is useful for us to improve in whatever we are doing. Complicated machinary would always have a feedback system to adjust, adapt, and correct a subsequent action from the prior one.

Individually speaking, we have parents, friends, relatives, co-workers doing that.

But we are living in a modern world of technology, and in this society through the Internet and various other technology, we can get as many different feedback as there are people out there in the entire world. Thus an enormous amount of feedback.

That causes two perceivable problems.

1st one has to do with the amount of feedback rendering all the feedback completely useless. Just remember what happens when you put a microhpone to the speaker that its sound is coming out of. You get this unbearbly sharp, squealing sound becase you have created in infinite feedback loop. Our brilliant Internet and social networks can precisely create such a loop, and having too much feedback and having too much options are the same, where one gets completely confused.

2nd problem has to do with the quality of feedback. Feedback allows us to improve in so far that it is a constructive response. When one has as many response as there is Internet users out there, the quality naturally goes down the drain. Worse yet, when one takes them seriously, one likely becomes immobile because when someone who has many judges watching his every moves and beat him with a stick when he does wrong, he simply cannot move. Or, he can only move when everyone approves and we know that’s nearly impossible.

Applying the above perceivable problems that are currently affect every facets of our modern life — the individual, social, cultural, national, and finally global level — we have a world that is mostly confused and thus chaotic, and also a human social entity that is mostly unadaptive and unable to do what it needs to do.

I mentioned the above 2 problems without mentioning a key… issue. The media companies. Wherein if you add their “selling of drama through exaggeration and twisting of the facts” — be it news or TV programs — that serves to amplify the two said problems, it is only natural that the world is as absurd as it is now.

And we cannot blame the media companies either, because they do what they do only because it DOES sells.

One last observation is how we seem to find truth in only what has feedback coming from the news/media and the majority population connected by the Internet and technology. What has little to no feedback from those places, what cannot become famous, has no meaning and is not important. Is that truth?

Here ends my rant of the day :)

This post is more or less just an observation but is very much related to three posts from the past. You read and connect the dots :P

Originally posted 2010-03-14 21:56:48. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Is There A Time in Your Life When You Finally Get It…

I share with you this article that I stumbled upon that I truly enjoyed.

… when, in the midst of all your fears and insanity, you stop dead in your tracks and somewhere the voice inside your head cries out…ENOUGH!

Enough fighting and crying and blaming and struggling to hold on.

Then, like a child quieting down after a tantrum, you blink back your tears and begin to look at the world through new eyes.

You realize it’s time to stop hoping and waiting for something to change, or for happiness, safety and security to magically appear over the next horizon.
You realize that in the real world there aren’t always fairy tale endings, and that any guarantee of “happily ever after” must begin with you… and in the process a sense of serenity is born of acceptance.
You awaken to the fact that you are not perfect and that not everyone will always love, appreciate or approve of who or what you are… and that’s OK. They are entitled to their own views and opinions.
You learn the importance of loving and championing yourself… and in the process a sense of new found confidence is born of self-approval.
You stop complaining and blaming other people for the things they did to you – or didn’t do for you – and you learn that the only thing you can really count on is the unexpected.
You learn that people don’t always say what they mean or mean what they say and that not everyone will always be there for you and that everything isn’t always about you.

So, you learn to stand on your own and to take care of yourself… and in the process a sense of safety and security is born of self-reliance.
You stop judging and pointing fingers and you begin to accept people as they are and to overlook their shortcomings and human frailties… and in the process a sense of peace and contentment is born of forgiveness.
You learn to open up to new worlds and different points of view. You begin reassessing and redefining who you are and what you really stand for.
You learn the difference between wanting and needing and you begin to question the doctrines and values you’ve grown up with, or should never have bought into to begin with.
You learn that there is power and glory in creating and contributing and you stop maneuvering through life merely as a “consumer” looking for your next fix.
You learn that principles such as honesty and integrity are not the outdated ideals of a bygone era, but the mortar that holds together the very foundation upon which you must build a life.
You learn that you don’t know everything, it’s not your job to save the world and that you can’t teach a pig to sing.
You learn that the only cross to bear is the one you choose to carry and that martyrs get burned at the stake.

Then you learn about love. You learn to look at relationships as they really are and not as you would have them be. You learn that alone does not mean lonely.
You stop trying to control people, situations and outcomes.
You learn to distinguish between guilt and responsibility and the importance of setting boundaries and learning to say NO.
You also stop working so hard at putting your feelings aside, smoothing things over and ignoring your needs.
You learn that your body really is your temple. You begin to care for it and treat it with respect. You begin to eat a balanced diet, drink more water, and take more time to exercise.
You learn that being tired fuels doubt, fear, and uncertainty and so you take more time to rest. And, just as food fuels the body, laughter fuels our soul. So you take more time to laugh and to play.
You learn that, for the most part, you get in life what you believe you deserve, and that much of life truly is a self-fulfilling prophecy.
You learn that anything worth achieving is worth working hard for and that wishing for something to
happen is different than working hard toward making it happen.

More importantly, you learn that in order to achieve success you need direction, discipline and perseverance.
You also learn that no one can do it all alone, and that it’s OK to risk asking for help.
You learn the only thing you must truly fear is fear itself. You learn to step right into and through your fears because you know that whatever happens you can handle it and to give in to fear is to give away the right to live life on your own terms.
You learn to fight for your life and not to squander it living under a cloud of impending doom, realizing that a positive attitude is a choice you make every morning when you wake up.
You learn that life isn’t always fair, you don’t always get what you think you deserve and that sometimes bad things happen to unsuspecting, good people… and you learn not to always take it personally.
You learn that nobody’s punishing you and everything isn’t always somebody’s fault. It’s just life happening.
You learn to admit when you are wrong and to build bridges instead of walls.
You learn that negative feelings such as anger, envy and resentment must be understood and redirected or they will suffocate the life out of you and poison the universe that surrounds you.
You learn to be thankful and to take comfort in many of the simple things we take for granted, things that millions of people upon the earth can only dream about: a full refrigerator, clean running water, a soft warm bed, a long hot shower.

Then, you begin to take responsibility for yourself by yourself and you make yourself a promise to never betray yourself and to never, ever settle for less than your heart’s desire.
You make it a point to keep smiling, to keep trusting, and to stay open to every wonderful possibility.

Finally, with courage in your heart, you take a stand, you take a deep breath, and you begin to design the life you want to live as best you can and are extremely thankful for all the blessings in your life.

Author Unknown

Originally posted 2009-01-24 00:15:50. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Journey to Success

Notice I have changed the tag line for this blog from “As the Journey Continues…” to “Journey to Success”. This is a way to signify a new stage for myself, a new mindset in seeking, and also a focus for this blog. Let’s take a look at the most important word in the phrase, the definition of success from dictionary.com:

  1. the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors.
  2. the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.
  3. a successful performance or achievement: The play was an instant success.
  4. a person or thing that is successful: She was a great success on the talk show.

Those are good definitions that all apply to the word success. However, let me break down I have in mind about success.

I believe an individual would have to define success himself because success entails so many areas of life, despite the fact that we often associate success only with career, fame, and wealth. Here at this blog, the core of the success breathes constant self-improvement, personal development. I will talk about personal experience and learnings within the realm of personal development. I want to share them here because hopefully all of you can get something of out this, to get to a better life, to get to a happier life, while allowing me to keep track of my own thoughts and ideas.

Financial success is an element that enables easier access to success in other areas of life, which is why this blog owes it a category, the “Personal Finance” category. Hopefully I can provide some interesting and helpful ideas for everyone in that area also.

Back to the topic of success, one thing that comes to mind immediately is the philosophy of wushu mentioned in Jet Li’s Fearless, where wushu implies the strengthening of one’s body, mind, and soul all together. That basically covers the ground but to be more specific, success for us should also envelops improving ourselves mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually, and financially. To achieve this, we have to understand that life takes us on a path of constant self-discovery and we shall learn from the choices we make, good and bad. Here I will quote Jet Li, “The biggest enemy of Jet Li is Jet Li. I need to beat up myself. Today, we need to become better than yesterday, and tomorrow better than today.” As such, the path to success is a relentless pursuit of personal development.

With that, I will leave you to think about the kind of success and the kind of personal development that you seek. I would love for everyone to share and provide comments on this blog. Thanks!

Originally posted 2007-02-20 01:36:24. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Lifting 300 lbs and Breaking My Back

Picture this scenario:
My friend D is a big muscular guy, 5′ 9″ and 200+ lbs while I am 5′ 5” and 130~ lbs. If D tells me, “Dude, go lift 300 lbs, it’s good for you.” and then forces me to do it. What would happen?

Before answering, let us jump to the conversation I had with my good friend, D, the other day at lunch, where we touched on the subject of the on-going war in Iraq. I would like to bring it up because I think that some comments from D are insightful and they go something like this…

D’s comments (paraphrased and with some of my interpretation):

Can’t we just leave those people alone? We are trying to help them but do they even appreciate it? They hate us. Why are we trying to help when they don’t want the help? It is just another form of bullying. We should just get out of there and leave them alone. What gives us the right to go in there and just slap on a democratic goverment when they had no idea what the heck democracy is in the first place? Let them evolve at their own pace.

My response:

Exactly, that is exactly what the problem is. They went in Iraq and enforced a democratic goverment out of no where. People had no idea what it is, and how are they suppose to make use of it? We would serve them better if we educate them critical thinking for themselves and their own society, and THEN freely choosing upon those thoughts, which are some of the most basic elements of democrary. (but at this point, I also think, hmmmm, look at America these days, Americans aren’t even thinking very clearly these days… anyways…)

This is exactly the problem! Now let’s go back to the scenario I told at the beginning and answer the question. If D does force me to lift 300 lbs, small guy as I am, I will certainly just break my back and hate him forever. THAT, I think, is a suitable analogy to what’s happening in Iraq.

With that said, we are led to the very thing that we should remember in personal development. The idea is to take small steps toward improvement everyday, which is what we should advocate and educate, instead of using shortcuts to propel to immediate success, which either will likely not work or just end up taking longer. Life is an evolution. Healthy changes need to be steady and continuous. Now I may not lift 300 lbs today, but if I work toward it everyday doing weight training, I will be able to do that. Whether I want to is another story :P

PS. This article has the naive assumption that US is still in Iraq to secure safety for the people there, not for the oil, not for any unspoken political reasons.

Originally posted 2007-04-28 00:34:15. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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