Maturity and self control

“How long are you going to wait before you demand the best for yourself and in no instance bypass the discriminations of reason? You have been given the principles that you ought to endorse, and you have endorsed them. What kind of teacher, then, are you still waiting for in order to refer your self-improvement to him? You are no longer a boy, but a full-grown man. If you are careless and lazy now and keep putting things off and always deferring the day after which you will attend to yourself, you will not notice that you are making no progress, but you will live and die as someone quite ordinary.
From now on, then, resolve to live as a grown-up who is making progress, and make whatever you think best a law that you never set aside. And whenever you encounter anything that is difficult or pleasurable, or highly or lowly regarded, remember that the contest is now: you are at the Olympic Games, you cannot wait any longer, and that your progress is wrecked or preserved by a single day and a single event. That is how Socrates fulfilled himself by attending to nothing except reason in everything he encountered. And you, although you are not yet a Socrates, should live as someone who at least wants to be a Socrates.” ~ Epictetus

The modern painful transition to adulthood and encouraged immaturity

In the Valley, it’s pride. They’re all terrified of saying I don’t know. It’s like an extension of school full of people-pleasers, it’s conditioned into them. It’s sad to see old men pretending to be teenagers. Their model of maturity (where they’re going) is defined by going backwards, it’s bizarre. Kids don’t know shit, it’s a pseudo-religious secular argument about purity from worldly corruption when children are only pushed in media because of pester power (how annoying they are) and having spare pocket money to burn (from their parents). They aren’t more creative, they’re more reckless (and very rarely it pays off, an availability heuristic), most studies for magnum opus peak at middle age because one is both learned and experienced.

Such a result is not surprising, given what we know about neurology. In adolescence, our brains are quite pliable and moldable, and are easily shaped by the experiences and tasks we pursue and work at every day. These experiences create well-worn pathways in our brains. In our mid-twenties, our brains start to “set,” and “excess” neural matter is pruned away; that which we’ve been regularly using stays, while that which we haven’t exercised is reduced. Thereafter, while our brains remain “plastic” and changeable, creating new habits becomes more difficult to do. All of which is to say, that if we train our brains in our youth in how to tackle adult tasks – how to plan, delay gratification, stick with a challenging task, work in a disciplined manner, etc. – performing these tasks in our thirties, forties, and beyond is much easier. If, on the other hand, our brains “set” before we’ve ever challenged them, picking up adult habits becomes a much more difficult endeavor.

Children need a gradual increase of REAL responsibilities. Millennials are especially bad for this. Only athletes and the elderly need the gym, a form of empty exercise, it does nothing for the calories burned. The rest of us should get enough exercise actually accomplishing something – doing chores, running errands, building something, volunteering, ANY-THING.

Real meaning manual labour type of work. It helps boost immune function, bone density and muscle strength.

So, the second reason growing up is so hard to do, is that rather than gradually being initiated into the world of adults, we’re often expected to take on mature responsibilities all at once. Without a couple decades of training, this can feel like a shock to the system, which leaves you drowning in a world for which you haven’t been prepared.

It’s deliberate encouragement of dependence.

Learned helplessness.

Developmental timing could fill in gaps genes miss

“Closely related organisms share most of their genes, but these similarities belie major differences in behavior, intelligence, and physical appearance. For example, we share nearly 99% of our genes with chimps, our closest relatives on the great “tree of life.” Still, the differences between the two species are unmistakable. If not just genes, what else accounts for the disparities? Scientists are beginning to appreciate that the timing of the events that happen during development plays a decisive role in defining an organism, which may help to explain how species evolve without the creation of new genes.

“A great deal of science is focused on understanding how a single gene functions in the cell,” says Hammell. “But we are learning that when a gene is active is just as important as what it does.”

Developmental stages are marked by the activation or repression of a specific and unique complement of genes, like individual notes within movements of a song. The order and duration of when these key  (or notes) are active (or played) within a given cell is controlled by a class of molecules called microRNAs (miRNAs). A single miRNA gene can control hundreds of other genes at once. If a miRNA turns off these specific genes too early or too late, the organism will suffer severe developmental defects. But little is known about how the activities of these miRNAs are regulated.”

Idiocracy is happening: dysgenics is making our brains shrink

“Which brings us to an unpleasant possibility. “You may not want to hear this,” says cognitive scientist David Geary of the University of Missouri, “but I think the best explanation for the decline in our brain size is the idiocracy theory.” Geary is referring to the eponymous 2006 film by Mike Judge about an ordinary guy who becomes involved in a hibernation experiment at the dawn of the 21st century. When he wakes up 500 years later, he is easily the smartest person on the dumbed-down planet. “I think something a little bit like that happened to us,” Geary says. In other words, idiocracy is where we are now.”

Reminds me of something