Help Me Refactor Myself I am Lost

by Pausecafe 2 min read8th Nov 201814 comments


I am going to start with a simple description of who am I so any advice I get can be in context . I live in what economists call a third world country, jobs are meh , unemployment is high and for someone in his final year of undergraduate in an Applied Mathematics specialty the only job that exists is Teaching which really sucks as you'll get set in a place away from society and with the lack of infrastructure it's just not within my sight . Fortunately I have savings enough to let me go abroad to France my dream is to pursue a Masters in cryptography and study artificial intelligence by myself these two things are what lits my brain and find challenging enough to work on .

I am different to the rest of my classmates and few friends I have . I think it's because I am heavily influenced by things that to them seem irrelevant . I like philosophy a bit I've been reading a lot of stoic writings mainly Seneca,Epictetus and Marcus Aurelius's Meditations . I like reading and I spend a lot of my time doing it . And according to some personality tests I am an INTJ I don't know whether this is considered science but from what I've read about the personality type it's literally a copy paste of who am I so I believe in them .

I discovered MIRI 1.5 years ago and I was astonished by it's proportions so I immediately hoped on their study guide and picked up couple books I read them and worked trough few problems given I already study math I thought I'll supply myself with my other interests on the side so I somehow forgot about the whole thing and spent the time fumbling around .

I lack discipline and I don't know how to fix this one .

I have been programming and studying the topics of my interest in a chaotic way , jumping from one thing to the other and just consuming . After reading this particular Sequence I was just mesmerized the discipline this person has is something I've always dreamed off . Recently I've been taking on a personal project which is big in size and complexity . But today I am officially burned-out .

I came to the conclusion that what I have been doing the past 3 years (since I discovered AI and later cryptography) is plainly wrong I have a bad learning habit and I've found myself spending countless hours consuming stuff without structure just filling my mind . I know I am burned out because the past two weeks I've done literally nothing productive except browsing the web and watching TV Shows . I want to change I feel like this lack of structure and motivation and purpose is too overwhelming I find myself dabbling between things . At this point I spent a 70% of my time multi-tasking and maybe 20% actually learning the 10% is spent dreaming about the infinite possibilities of life .

I don't know what kind of advice I am looking for , but if I believe my problem is that I am in a hurry , hurry of what I don't really know . I feel like I have to learn and do everything at once with 30 tabs spanning 10 subjects open at once , I have a passion for everything a legitimate passion that I feel like is never satisfied . This made me realize that I have been choosing velocity over direction and convincing myself that I am doing the opposite .

This makes me feel empty and dry and cynic , I don't have any friends to discuss this subject with and after discovering LessWrong sometime ago while searching for a curated textbook list I decided that this is the best place to ask for advice .

This also affected my school performance as I just feel lost . I want to fix this and I hope I'll find advice solace here and improve myself .

P.S : English is my third language therefore I apologize if there are any bad grammar and punctuation .