Diego Segura

Daily Reflections

I wrote these reflections daily from May to August of 2018. I’ve compiled these all into one book and edited them for clarity. You can find To a Man Much Like Myself (Oct. 2018) at muchlikemyself.com.

On yielding, outlets, and deep reading

On yielding As you observe yourself in conversation, notice how easily you divert the entire conversation to what you want to talk about rather than what everyone else cares to hear. Though this may make conversation enjoyable for you, not everyone wants to hear about your plans, activity, or life. It is common knowledge that people like to speak about themselves, and in order for you to make other people happy in conversation, you should allow them to do so. Even when you are asked about what you do, limit your answers by time. Spend no more than 30–45 seconds explaining yourself, and move on. Be intentionally vague because of the fact that you are on a time limit. If they tell you to continue because they are genuinely interested, then take another 30 seconds or so to explain more. Never default to a long-winded conversational takeover—make it your staple to stay quiet about what you do and constantly yield to others in conversation.

On outlets Develop outlets to allow yourself to speak and expound your thoughts in a controlled manner, and consistently use those outlets to manage your thoughts rather than force other people to go through the same. You have a platform—or a system, rather—that you can consistently release content on and though few will read or listen to it, that is the point. They are not forced to do so, and you are not even forced to revisit the content you release. The goal is simply for you to have a way to write and speak and bother only the people that wish to be bothered by your thoughts.

On deep reading As you read (or tried to read) Marcus's Meditations, it became abundantly clear to both you and me that the ideas are going completely over your head in many instances. What is your remedy? The only way to solve this problem for now is to spend more time reading and contemplating these words. Fear not the fact that you do not understand the text on your first attempt. Don't shy away from high-level reading simply because it takes more effort than usual. Read slowly and think deeply while you do. Contemplation may not lead you to the correct or intended understanding of the words that appear on the page, but it will lead you to exercise a valuable skill: contemplation.

On your own disposition You know that your natural disposition is to provide help to others, as it should be. You should do nothing to change this default. However, since you know that in most situations—whether you like it or not—you want to end up helping others, why do you react so adversely to being called upon for help? Your visibly negative reaction to others asking you for help does nothing other than to make them feel bad for even asking you in the first place. Yet, you end up helping them nearly every time not only because that's the right thing to do, but because you want to do the right thing and help someone else. Control your reactions. Control your emotions. Resort to your reason, and do what you are supposed to do in these moments.

Diego Segura