Time Capsule #28

On inner dialogue, the Eastern Front, and the 3 biggest decisions in life.

✏️ In Conversation with the Self

Rule your mind or it will rule you.


Inner monologue is the conversation that runs (often amok) in one's mind. Perhaps one of the biggest misconceptions of the human psyche is the idea that you are your thoughts; I think the inner monologue is better characterized as some semi-autonomous entity which, whilst being able to wander independently without guidance, can be controlled, or at least reined, with adequate awareness and deliberate practice.

The capacity for internal dialogue is likely unique to the human species, facilitating critical thinking, self-reflection and emotion. It is tied to the development of language, is integral to the discovery of new knowledge, and is essential to decision-making processes. However, the inner monologue can, if not properly managed, have a mind of its own.

One must learn to master and direct one's internal dialogue, which can be accomplished through techniques such as meditation and deliberate thought insertion — thought-watching is an important component of meditation and is a useful tool for mastering the internal dialogue and heightening awareness of the self. When one is aware of particular thought patterns or ruminations, one can choose to watch them and allow them to pass by instead of fixating on the thought and elaborating further upon it; whilst one cannot dictate the contents of every thought, one can learn to pick and choose the thoughts which one wishes to spend his limited mental bandwidth on. The utility of directing one's internal dialogue is apparent in the strategies used to treat mental health conditions. Often patients are told to employ positive self-talk, which acknowledges the emotions and psychological conditions of the moment but with an aim to view them in a more positive light. Conversely, negative self-talk is often a contributor to psychological disorders such as depression, anxiety and bulimia, where individuals are no longer able to control their internal dialogue and fixate on particular thoughts or beliefs. External phenomena may exacerbate such thought patterns, and the individual can get stuck in a dangerous psychological loop.

Make sure your worst enemy doesn't live between your two ears.

Laird Hamilton

Studying your own inner monologue is an eternal process, however, with time you will learn much about yourself and your conscious and subconscious tendencies. The ability to choose which thoughts you engage with facilitates careful decision-making in difficult situations and will save you many, many hours of unnecessary negative self-talk.

We suffer more in imagination than in reality.


📸 Photo of the Week

Happy 154th birthday Canada.

📖 Book of the Week — The Eastern Front by Norman Stone

A comprehensive account of the Russian Front during the 1st World War. Much of mainstream media and Western culture focuses on the Western Front only, but the war in the East was just as fierce, and its effects on world history were just as important — the conclusion of hostilities on the Eastern Front was a turning point marking the end of Tsarist Russia and the rise of Bolshevism. A great book on one of the most misunderstood and key events in modern history.

💭 Quote of the Week

The three big decisions - what you do, where you live, and who you’re with.

Naval Ravikant

🔭 Sunday Best

PostdatesDivorced? Ghosted? Friendzoned? Postdates will get your stuff back (or send back stuff to your ex). NYC and LA only.

The Degeneration of Public Administrationtoday’s bureaucrats speak and think in a language of social-managerial gibberish.

Sergei Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 3performed by Khatia Buniatishvili.

💡 Food for Thought