Autoimmune Protocol | Day 6 // Wednesday

7 AM. wake up feeling puffy, like when you have too much salt the night before. It’s probably due to taking kratom yesterday due to feeling horrible. Sigh. Continuing with the diet.

8 AM. After my 100 mg pill of caffeine kicks in, a euphoria comes over me and I feel normal/good. My mind thinks towards working – building a project I’ve wanted to build for a long time.

11 AM. Was productive / organized my bedroom / realized I’m kind of being engulfed by malaise and depression, and that I must be incredibly wary. Don’t worry folks, I am confident I will get out of this one. I’ve done it many times before. Usually, the second I start medicating with caffeine, unhealthy food, and other things, the symptoms disappear.

But I’m not doing that this time. I am healing this time, which means I am going through this with an open mind, self love, and high consciousness. Who knows, maybe within a month or two I’ll be back to normal.

Discussed with the parents last night how every time I try to heal my body/mind, I end up giving up after about two weeks and running away. I ran away to colorado, I ran away to New York. I ran away to Arizona. But this time, I’m not running away. I’m going to stay here in this town which I don’t love. I’m not going to cover this one up with new business ideas or applying for jobs. I’m going to get past this.

“no mental state lasts forever”, “this too shall pass”, “bloom where you’re planted”.

5 PM Earlier I was feeling horrible. I went for a bike ride and felt like I was going to pass out. Which has never happened. Being 95 degrees out doesn’t help.

I read online that this might be due to not enough fat. At first glance, I thought, “of course I’m getting enough fat – I’m eating meat. Then I realized, I’m probably not getting enough fat to really use it as fuel, so I ate a bunch of coconut oil and olive oil (lol) on salad and in smoothies and stuff. I ate a absolutely gigantic salad about an hour ago and I suddenly became hyper focused on work and euphoric. Temporarily, there is no depression.

This is scary, but at least I’m glad I documented it. I was feeling horrible and then i literally ate salad and my mood changed.

I’m working through a lot of mental issues right now, lol.

Not just food issues.

“I eat because I am unhappy and I am unhappy because I eat” – fat bastard

9:30 PM I just had a realization so profound that I absolutely had to capture it. The reason I have depressive symptoms – in my life in general – is because I am subconsciously afraid of using my brain.

In my mind, somehow I have been programmed that to “work” (mentally) causes strain. This is most likely due to years of resentment towards being “imprisoned” in a school. I never felt good in school for whatever reason. This is most likely a combination of: poor diet, poor sleep habits, resentment towards being kept from what I love. So my response was to shut down my brain.

My brain was reserved only for those activities which I held dear (after school activities.)

But I think at some point my programming took over and I lost my ability to even enjoy these side hobbies. Suddenly my ability to enjoy everything was diminished.

It turns out that I fell into an engineering career despite myself, because during college I was given much more freedom. That freedom of when/how much/what I will study, combined with results-oriented culture (exams, projects) was great for me.

Yet there is this feeling deep down that all effort is bad. Perhaps this comes from incorrectly interpreting zen and taoist teachings as championing laziness.

I once mentioned this particular neurosis to a zen meditation teacher who I respected and admired. I told him that I am always attempting to “conserve” my energy.

He told me that there is infinite energy. You just have to tap into it.

This whole lifestyle of taking drugs, drinking alcohol and coffee, eating poor foods, and taking shortcuts – it is all on the assumption that there is not enough energy to go around. It is a “fighting for survival” type of existence.

My hope is that through this cleansing process I will eliminate this mental neurosis, and uncover further ones. To make clear, permanent progress towards developing a more sound body and mind. To transform my innermost psyche into one more willing to actually live life.



Hacking, and Living out of a Bag.

I’m writing this blog lest I cease to exist. Over the past few years I have become somewhat a ghost. I feel that I’m melding with the internet and losing any personality I once had before I started my career. Not that I mind, I rather enjoy it, and if it weren’t for the fact that the coffee which I so desperately love may kill me, I may do it forever.

Or perhaps I am worried that my personality won’t be shown – I am so reclusive and self centered that I rarely find the time to communicate my intricate inner life. From the outside, I may look positively bland, which is terrifying and understandable. But reader, understand that there is infinite depth in this bearded computer hacker.

Foremost, I am a hacker. I have an engineering degree, but those days are long gone. I do believe that there is a place for engineering in the software world, but not in my world. I have no interest in building perfect, reliable systems. My interest is in building software that works to prove a point. Software that is alive, with all the bugs that come with it.

The decision came shortly after school. I got straight A’s on my algorithms courses in school, and I was recruited by the big name companies (Amazon, Linkedin, Google)… I just had to pass the interviews, which took a lot of preparation. Or I could join a startup which needed engineers and would hire me on the spot. I’m glad I chose the latter.

Years later, during an interview for Uber, I immediately ended the interview after the first question (write an interface for an iterator in Java.) I declared that there wasn’t a “culture fit.”

Anyway, I build systems, mostly by myself, very fast, and to prove a point. This is a startup mentality, and I don’t suppose I’ll ever grow in maturity to the point where I put this mentality down. It’s too fun. Instead, my career question has switched to: “where can I find a company/business that needs to rapidly prototype a technical solution to a problem that would provide them massive benefit if it were solved?”

The above question led me to my current position as the interrim CTO of LiveVoice, inc. It’s a company with 25+ years of experience in the call center industry, but they need a new platform built from the ground up in order to allow customization and rapid growth. This is where I come in. My current challenge is to build the whole system in a couple of months. They’re so used to working with slow dev agencies that they didn’t believe this was possible. I am very happy to be getting paid a salary + some equity to be a hacker. So right now my career is going well.

I currently live out of 1 or 2 bags. I have an Osprey 40L international travel bag, which can carry my laptop as well as about 4-5 changes of clothes and various other knick knacks. I also have a suitcase that contains more knick knacks. I am moving to New York City to live out of AirBnB’s with nothing but my Osprey bag and perhaps the suitcase.

Let me back up, I’m in Atlanta right now. My car broke down last night and I’m staying in Midtown on Williams street right next to the adult swim headquarters. I was watching adult swim last night, which was a weird feeling. Anyway, I’m staying on the 11th floor of a Hilton Garden Inn that was $200/night. After a long road trip from Denver, my car’s wheel got bent by a piece of debris in the road. I was almost home to Tampa where I’m going to drop off my WRX and all my things for a few months. I’m going to put a tarp over it and go to NYC.

So the NYC experiment is to live out of AirBnB’s. You get a good discount when you rent for a month or longer. I went to college in Orlando, went to SF after college, moved back to Florida (Gainesville), moved to Tucson, AZ for a year, and then Boulder, Co. In Boulder I bought furniture and tried to settle down. However, I was unable to settle down since I work remotely and I felt isolated (story of my last two years.)

The reason I feel isolated is because I work remote, at least I think. I Can recall living in Gainesville and working for Sharpspring as a happy time, surrounded by coworkers who became my friends. I have been seeking that. So I am going to NYC to work directly with the founders of LiveVoice. We’ll be in a WeWork every day, building out the system. I expect this will be a fun time.

But while I’m there I want to live in an Airbnb. Just to see if maybe in 3 months i can live in 3 Airbnbs in 3 different places in town (Soho, Williamsburg, Park Slope). Maybe this will be the coolest thing ever. Maybe I can set fire to my WRX and all the remains of my stationary life back in Florida. But I doubt it. I’ll most likely end up grabbing my WRX after the 3 month trip and moving to LA or SF, where we’ll hopefully continue to grow the company. Either that or I’ll love NYC so much I won’t want to leave. Either that or I’ll renew my passport and travel the world for a year on Remote Year.

But anyway, I have some real wanderlust. Or not really. I’m not sure, but I can’t stay in one place. This is partially because I’m always new, always passing through. I’ve become a tourist. And I kind of hate that. I would love to set down roots but right now my wandering mind leads me to new and interesting places.

The most important rule I can give myself is that, wherever I am, I should go out and meet people. Because during the past few years I have learned that although seeing the world is nice, and making money is nice, human relationships are more important.

I wish it weren’t so.

But there will be more to talk about that, as well as my other neurotic thoughts, in a future post.