I’ve had my share of weird experience with girls.

I’ve had a random girl ask me my number, a girl suddenly giving me her number, girls asking me for private piano lessons, girls confessing to me, and other weird things that make me freeze on the spot and blush hot red.

I’m not handsome to many’s standards. I have a weird shape of a head. My height is only decent. My body type isn’t muscular. And I’m not at all charismatic or eloquent with words. I think I just have my weird cool character and my undeserved talents. I perform on stages. I play various musical instruments. I compose. I draw. I play and build things with technology. And I look smart (mainly because of how un-talkative I am).

And thanks to this, I seem to give off an attractive enigmatic aura to the people who’d have enough time with me.

And I enjoy knowing this.

 

To be liked by many, or to be loved by a few.

 

 

I enjoy basking under the spotlight of being liked.

Though flirting is a game that always has me at the oblivious side, but in the end I like it knowing that someone’s into me.

It strokes my inflated ego.

It gives me super-confidence.

It makes me feel that I am special.

My selfish, egocentric, insensitive self enjoys the reassurance.

But recounting all of these, I begin to ask, “What do these things matter? What good is it for people to like me when I myself am detached? What does it matter if I am liked by many, yet I cannot love someone the way I want to love someone?”

Just like every other single guy out there, I too want a significant other.

 

To be liked by many, or to be loved by a few.

 

 

This is then where I begin to ask myself,

“Why do I want to have a girlfriend?”

It’s not like that having a girlfriend will save me from the loneliness from this world.

It’s not like having a human lover will fill the vast expansive limitless space within my heart.

And it’s not like human love, sex, or marriage, is the ultimate goal of life.

 

It’s not.

 

You may respond, “But God said that it is not good for a man to be alone.”

Yet even before God created woman as our partner (and even before Our Fall), He created something first for us. A life; A purpose; Work.

 

Work to rule over the other creations of the earth.

Work to take care and to cultivate the land.

Work to love and serve one another.

Work to strive for justice and righteousness.

Work to have the Gospel told.

 

To enjoy Christ. To glorify God.

 

 

This is then where I stop to care.

 

To be liked by many, or to be loved by a few.

 

 

I am sharing my INTJ-ness to the world by sharing one of my weekly evaluation template that I have developed and have been using.

I am fond of evaluating my life, strategizing around it, setting systematic weekly and daily goals, rinse and repeat. Of the 7-day week, I take a day off to contemplate, journal, plan, and strategize. I guess this is an INTJ personality thing. I do this mainly because this helps me to see my life from a bird’s eye view, see where I am currently headed,  and see what things I need to do for me to achieve long-distance goals. This also helps me to internalize things better, help commit events to my memory, and in general make me feel more responsible of my life.

You are free to use this Weekly Evaluation Template (W.E.T.) for free and for your benefit, except that it remain to be free. If you do decide to use it, I would greatly appreciate it for you to share to me any results and feedback in using it.

Why am I doing this, you ask? I guess you could say this to be one of my nonsense experiments

 

================================================================

Weekly Evaluation Template (W.E.T.)

  1. PAST
    1. GOALS:
      1. What were my goals for the week? (Write and list them down.)
      2. Did I hit my goals for the week? (If yes, elaborate and evaluate. Then, feel good! If no, evaluate and learn from it.)
      3. Am I getting closer to my long-term vision?
    2. HABITS:
      1. Did I read for atleast 1hr this week? (What is the title and who is the author of the book(s)? How is the book? Review and evaluate.)
      2. Have I exercised this week? (If so, how many hours in total have I exercised?)
      3. Have I read the Bible every single day of the week?
    3. DEVELOPMENT:
      1. What new thing(s) have I learned this week?
      2. What are the things/skills that I still need to develop, for me to move forward faster?
    4. EXPERIENCES:
      1. What accomplishments have I made?
      2. What setbacks have I experienced? (How did I handle it? Could I have handled it better?)
  2. FUTURE
    1. What goals should I focus for the coming week? (Are the goals SMART? Are the goals in-line with my core principles? Are the goals pointing to my long-term vision?)

 

================================================================

 

What do you think? Do you think W.E.T. can help you in any way? In the case that you’ve been using it, how has it been? Let me know under the comments section below!

So I had a clinical depression that lasted some weeks, if not months.

But I finally started to beat it down until it became nothing but a pulp!

Through books, articles, videos, lessons, prayers,
and most especially my experience,
I can share to you how I beat depression.

Because you certainly can!

blackdog
“What have I got to do with you pal?”

BREED OF THE BLACK DOG:
Depression In Its Definition

Depression is a sickness.

It is a serious and deadly one.

It is  a major cause of
unproductivity, loneliness,
sadness, vices, insanity,
and even suicide.

It robs its victim’s peace of mind,
focus, need to sleep,
and ability to think properly.

It can be a vicious and destructive loop,
like a poisonous pit that entraps
and slowly kills its hapless victim.

It slowly destroys life,
until the victim loses vitality,
even the will to live.

It lasts from weeks, to months,
and even years.

But the good news is,
healing is just waiting for
you to take hold of it!

Taking Hold of Healing

Again, depression is a sickness.

It is an abnormal state of the human physiology and can be explained by the neurochemical imbalances in a person’s brain.

In my own personal case, I decided to take a proactive approach to cure my condition.

I studied, I researched, I read books, I conducted personal experiments.

I did what I saw that I could!

Until finally, after a week’s effort, I can finally say that I beat it.

From my experience, here are the steps that I took that greatly contributed to my healing:

  1. Physical Wellness
    • Physical exercise is a major key factor in my healing. It not only releases happy hormones in your brain, but it also keeps your body’s wellness in check. From my 100 pushups, I moved higher to include repetitions of whole body circuit training and doing 100+ pushups every day. It was physically taxing, but this was a strong investment towards the healing that I needed. But you don’t need to do the pushups, just get some serious workout.
    • Sleep routine is also one that I made sure to contribute to my physical wellness. Depression can be caused by irregular sleep patterns (which I am guilty of), thus I deliberately scheduled my time and my sleeping pattern to make sure that I only get the enough sleep my body needs for its optimal performance and healing.
  2. Identify Your Triggers
    • Writing down what contributed to my depression helped me alot. This is not only a step towards healing, but it is also a safety step to ensure that I’ll be resistant to it in the future. I thought that this is a step to learn. And it was.
      Write down all of the possible triggers, and learn how to deal with them.
  3. Appreciate Life
    • Deliberately desiring for a shift of mental perspective.
      I did what I could to experience new things, from eating new things, to going to places, to reading new books, just so I could gain a better perspective of life. Depression usually messes with a person’s point of perspective as it did with mine, but it should change. It is supposed to, for the sake of healing. And it can.
    • Learning to notice the small but nice things of life.
      I learned to realize that all the things here on Earth are really just bonus things. All the possessions, status, assets, enjoyment, and everything in this life are just bonus things that have been given by God. So they are worth to be appreciated. Physical life is temporary. We don’t deserve most, if not all, of the things that we currently have. It is all by God’s grace.

  4. Read the Bible Daily
    • “I have no right to be depressed when I’m not even reading the Bible.”
      That’s what I made sure to think everytime I wake up in the morning. Coping with the sickness, it has become very, very difficult to read the Bible. Every since the sickness got me, it takes supernatural strength of me to do it! But I pushed myself. I pushed myself. Because truly, I have no right to be depressed when I’m not even reading what the Creator of the Universe has to say to me on a daliy basis.
    • Worshipping and thanking God for everything.
      For the air.
      For the life.
      For His love and trust.
      For my family and my friends.
      For my computer.
      For my clothes.
      For my job.
      For everything.
      No matter how small or big.
      Even when I did not feel like being thankful.

      Because we should not live by feelings nor by what we think, but by faith.

    • Prayer.
      Again, it takes supernatural strength of me even to pray!
      But I knew that it is God’s will for me to be healed and for me to learn from this. So I prayed and declared healing everyday.
      I also thank the prayers of my family, friends, and my brothers and sisters in the Church.

      There is no use in focusing your mind on the sickness, instead focus your mind towards perfect healing.

  5. Taking Time
    • Healing is a gradual process.
      Don’t beat yourself for being sick just like what I did to myself, be it physical beating or mental beating. It takes time. I even asked for a rest period from my job. I withdrew temporarily from all of my commitments for me to gain the time that I needed. I don’t necessarily encourage this step to everyone because personalities greatly differ from one another. But just realize that it can take time, and that you can shorten that time if you decide to be deliberate.

I pray and desire the healing of everyone who is currently suffering from this condition.

If you are one of them, I want you to know that you are not alone.
I also hope that my experience and my new knowledge contributes to your accelerated healing.

Because there is healing in Jesus’ name.

black_dog_ecard_heel

I have my fair share of unlikely struggles.

Having lived through 20+ life years, I have experienced some of the weird battles that my fellow INTJ brethren are apparently destined to experience:

The thirst for improvement…

The quest for perfection…

The rules of sociality…

But one of the long battles that has also been stirring inside my brain is religious faith.

Together with my INTP cousins, we, the INTJ and INTP, represent the “personalities of logic”. Our brains are simply wired for it. We are skeptics. We are thinkers. Our brains are wired for reason.

But not that I am struggling with faith that I reject faith. Quite the contrary.

Because I am a Christian, and I still am.

Because no matter the depths and the lengths of my thinking and seeking–for the roots and purpose of life and how the world came to be and how it should be–I am still grounded on the solid rock of belief where an all-powerful Creator exists:

That everything in our realm of space and time was created and is being governed….

By Something which our physical bodies are not even able to comprehend…

By Someone Who is of greater class and thinking ability than us humans…

Because science and logic doesn’t necessarily clash with “God things“. I believe they support each other. That God blessed us with the gift of science and logic for us humans to experience a glimpse of His majesty.

Because the moment we believe to think that our ways are higher
is the moment we realize that we have become highly arrogant creatures.

A Classical Guide

The Art of War by Sun Tzu is a classic material, and one that is very easy to read. It teaches of classic, but still applicable, principles of military war and strategy attributed to Sun Tzu, an ancient Chinese military general, strategist, and philosopher. Even though this material goes back to 1772, the principles taught by Sun Tzu can still be applied to everyday life, leadership, business, competitions, military, games, and other things.

So let’s get started!

On Preparations

The general who loses a battle makes but few calculations beforehand. Thus do many calculations that lead to victory, and few calculations to defeat: how much more no calculation at all! It is by attention to this point that I can foresee who is likely to win or lose.” [Sun Tzu]

In the book, we are first greeted with the first chapter talking about “Laying Plans”. It speaks of the importance of planning and preparing. And indeed, it is of vital importance, not just in military war, but in almost everything. As a young highschool student, I remember preparing for our music class’ recital. I remember practicing tens of hours to deliver my piece as perfect as possible. I literally spent tens of hours practicing, only to deliver the recital piece that will last for only 5 minutes.
Tens of hours of practice for a 5 minute performance.

I find that in any battle, competition, or any endeavor, preparation is a big part in determining success. If one does not bleed in training and preparation, he will surely die in the face of real combat. The chance of winning is determined by the preparation made by the players.

On Feints and Deception

Sun Tzu also emphasizes the importance of “deception” in combat.

When able to attack, we must seem unable.
When using our forces, we must seem inactive.
When we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away.
When we are far away, we must make him believe we are near.

I am a man who has a strong distaste with the use of deception in life. Deception is for the fearful: Only for those who cannot accept the rightful consequences of their actions in life. But even with my values and beliefs, I find that this principle has its logical uses if used in a proper way. As a gamer who finds enjoyment in competition, challenges, and strategic games, I find that this can be a determining factor in winning or losing. In games like Naruto-Arena, or any other tactical or competitive games like chess, I find that deceptive moves can throw off an opponent and can even turn the tide of battle if you are in the losing side.

Don’t get me wrong: Deception is a good technique in war. But it is an evil technique if used for evil, or for one’s own personal gain in life.

Feints and deception should only be used for a greater purpose, not to satisfy one’s interest or any selfish purpose for that matter. After all, using this has its drawbacks, both in social aspects and in the development of one’s character.

On Wars

The good general destroys his opponents. The better general breaks his opponents without resistance.

It should be noted that Sun Tzu does not promote war in any manner. In fact, he promotes victory through peaceful acts as significantly better than using forceful and destructive methods. Having also read “Zero to One” by Peter Thiel, co-founder of Paypal, I can relate this aspect to business tactics. A lot of companies and business thrive in competition, some even make use of aggressive tactics. But in truth, it is much better if one does not participate in an existing competition, but rather, one should enter oneself into a field where there is no existing competition. It makes perfectly sense, both economic health and social health. You do not only prevent making hostile business rivals, you also get to create the “competition” yourself. I find that this can also be applied in career, social, and in politics.

On Speed

“Let your rapidity be that of the wind, your compactness that of the forest.” [Sun Tzu]

“Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.” [Sun Tzu]

I see speed here both in the context of opportunities and in execution.

It has been said that opportunities do not knock twice. Often to be true. That’s why, as Sun Tzu states, “one cannot afford to neglect opportunity.”

Speed in both taking hold of opportunities and in executing plans and actions.

Strategy.
What is strategy?

There exists alot of saying about it, how people glorify it, how some people ignore it, and even how some people blindly follow it.
But what is strategy really?

INTJ – The Master Strategist

I belong to the race of one of the most rare, if not the rarest, personality type — INTJ. We apparently form just two percent of the world’s population, making it a very lonely race of people. This is both a blessing and a curse to me: A blessing because I have been bestowed by the Almighty “rare” gifts and a vastly wide potential, and a curse because of the very unconventional nature and needs of my natural personality.

To be direct to my point in here, I am a natural strategist. I discovered I mostly think in terms of chunks of moves. I have been also capable of strategic foresight (but still nowhere as great) and I have an above-average capability to put myself in the shoes of someone. This mostly allows me to look at a certain topic from atleast more than 3 perspectives.

5 steps ahead
Not accurately true, but not accurately false either.

Not to glorify myself (all glory be to God), but I hope you get my point.
I am here to make a point.

Strategizing

I see strategy both as an art, and a science.
Strategy is not a step, but a process to achieve an end-result.

Also, strategy is completely different from tactics. I find that these two words are often interchanged and misunderstood, but these two things are absolutely completely different.

A tactic is a chunk of move. A method.
A strategy is a chunk of tactics. It is much grander.

I have been reading strategy books to hone and develop my conscious understanding about it. Starting next week, I will be sharing my personal book reviews of books about strategy.

I will be starting with the famous  The Art of War by Sun Tzu, so keep posted next Wednesday. 🙂