The 50 Questions that Didn’t Free My Mind

Because I’m terrible at posting around the holidays and especially the standard New Year post, I’m continuing on with business as usual (after a 2 week break, but that’s beside the point). I may get around to something like a “this is what I’m doing in 2017” post in a week. Maybe never.

I was checking in on my Day Zero list earlier and ended up browsing the site for inspiration. For what, I don’t know. But while browsing I once again saw “answer the 50 questions that will free your mind”.

I’ve looked into this list of questions before, and all I remembered was that it wasn’t stunning. But when I’m bored, I do boring things, so I figured I’d give it a whirl.

My mind feels no more liberated than before. None of the questions felt ground-breaking. I’m not sure what all the fuss is about. And I don’t know what any of this says about me. But, for the sake of it (and because I like the sound of my own voice), I figured I’d share. (Yes, I’m starting to recognize when my INTP comes out to play. Look closely and you will, too.)

The 50 Questions that Will Free Your Mind

  1. How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are? It depends on the day. On Saturdays I’d be 19 at best. By the time I hit Thursdays after a regular work week, I’d at least 28. Some days I’m an angry old lady.
  2. Which is worse, failing or never trying? Never trying. Failure can at least be learned from, and at worst… well, some of the people that are killed are people you don’t like, right?
  3. If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do? Societal pressure. Expectations that are too high. The pursuit of perceived happiness. No confidence in our own abilities. Not enough faith. No motivation.
  4. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done? Very likely, considering I can’t stop talking. But I can multitask.
  5. What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world? People’s perception of God.
  6. If happiness was the national currency, what kind of work wouldmake you rich? The kind with sunshine, fresh air, distant horizons, and more words than I know what to do with. But happiness for some people is mass murder and chaos, so I don’t want this national currency.
  7. Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing? Neither. I haven’t settled, but neither have I found the momentum to pursue my beliefs. I am making money (if less than I’d like), and I firmly believe that money is, sadly, integral to the modern life, so there’s one thing I’m doing that I believe in.
  8. If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently? I would probably either be in a relationship with children or be an old cat lady by now. I would have settled into my life’s work. I would move to someplace I love. But once upon a time, this was the average lifespan, and people were still people, only with lesser technology.
  9. To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken? Scale of 1-10, probably 6 percent of my life is controlled by myself of late. Maybe 7. I make my own decisions, but I tend to check with others before doing so, and I have limited myself and my ability to move forward. But up until I got my license, maybe 3 percent.
  10. Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things? Doing the right things, even if it’s in a haphazard way.
  11. You’re having lunch with three people you respect and admire.  They all start criticizing a close friend of yours, not knowing she is your friend.  The criticism is distasteful and unjustified.  What do you do? Not participate. Indicate that I know her. Glare at them. Leave. Stop admiring them. Possibly resort to high-pitched screaming to distract them.
  12. If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be? I wouldn’t, because a newborn child wouldn’t understand, and if I only have one chance to say something, I wouldn’t waste it on empty advice. To a child old enough to understand, I’d tell them to dance more.
  13. Would you break the law to save a loved one? Depends on what I’m saving them from, and if I had help. Also, define “loved one”.
  14. Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity? Often.
  15. What’s something you know you do differently than most people? The way I develop and run with ideas. My brain is a disaster and I have a feeling the world would be destroyed already if everyone’s brain worked the same way.
  16. How come the things that make you happy don’t make everyone happy? Because no one is perfect. And, for a balanced society, not everyone can hold such time-consuming interests as reading and hiking.
  17. What one thing have you not done that you really want to do? What’s holding you back? Publish a book, and a combination of my own procrastination, self-doubt, and fear are holding me back. Second to that, mastering a second language, and I also blame procrastination and a poor attention span for this.
  18. Are you holding onto something you need to let go of? Probably. I’m a pack rat.
  19. If you had to move to a state or country besides the one you currently live in, where would you move and why? Wyoming for its government and scenery, or Switzerland for the same. Baring those, Norway, but only for a brief period.
  20. Do you push the elevator button more than once?  Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster? No, because no.
  21. Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton? Worried genius. I’m already practically there. Fine. I have the worried part down.
  22. Why are you, you? A combination of environment, genes, and God’s weird sense of humor. And people with bad grammar. They have made me into what I am.
  23. Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend? No, because the friends I want complement me. I can’t complement myself. (Fine. Sometimes, perhaps, I’ve been nice enough to my friends, but usually I’m a bear to be around and I don’t invest enough in relationships.)
  24. Which is worse, when a good friend moves away, or losing touch with a good friend who lives right near you? These days, losing touch. 100 years ago, moving away.
  25. What are you most grateful for? Words. Grace. Music. Light. The color blue.
  26. Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones? This question is stupid. But the second, for the sake of it.
  27. Is it possible to know the truth without challenging it first? Yes, if you have enough understanding of related areas of truth and can thus draw educated conclusions. But challenge it anyway.
  28. Has your greatest fear ever come true? Considering I’m still alive and I haven’t lost my mind (that I know of), no.
  29. Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset?  Does it really matter now? I can’t remember what I ate for lunch yesterday. I don’t even know how old I was 5 years ago. So apparently it doesn’t matter.
  30. What is your happiest childhood memory?  What makes it so special? I can’t choose. Or I can’t remember. Probably the general sense of well-being before I realized our family was relatively poor.
  31. At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive? Whenever I created something beautiful. And some of the books I’ve read. And when I played some new music as loudly as I could bear.
  32. If not now, then when? Tomorrow. Always tomorrow.
  33. If you haven’t achieved it yet, what do you have to lose? Potential. Opportunities to learn and grow. Money. Dignity.
  34. Have you everbeen with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever? I rarely say nothing, but I’ve come close, and yes.
  35. Why do religions that support love cause so many wars? Because they’re human religions, not a Biblically-founded relationship, and they don’t support unconditional love. They support their worldviews. Humanity is not predisposed to goodness, buttercup.
  36. Is it possible to know, without a doubt, what is good and what is evil? Yes.
  37. If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job? Probably not immediately, because I’m weird like that. I’d put some contingency plans in place and make sure my replacement was settled. I’d still have a real job if I had telekinesis. I’m too lazy to be daring.
  38. Would you rather have less work to do, or more work you actually enjoy doing? More I enjoy doing.
  39. Do you feel like you’ve lived this day a hundred times before? No. This one is colder.
  40. When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in? When I quit my last job. Then I got distracted and hit my shin on something, and there was a noise.
  41. If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today? No one I don’t already see nearly every day. I would spend more time figuring out how to save them. Obviously if this event doesn’t kill me it isn’t the apocalypse.
  42. Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous? No…. Where’s the profit in that? All you have to do is get plastic surgery or murder someone important to achieve either. And both are subjective in any case.
  43. What is the difference between being alive andtruly living? Living is messy. Being alive is as organized and predictable as possible. Living is realizing potential, pushing boundaries, discovering, learning, and growth. Trees are alive; they aren’t living.
  44. When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards, and just go ahead and do what you know is right? When it’s nothing astronomically huge that could result in death or other cosmically bad things, like losing your job.
  45. If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake? Because who likes failure?
  46. What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? Dance. Tell more people about Jesus. Cry. Stop brushing my hair. Not shave as much.
  47. When was the last time you noticed the sound of your own breathing? Only every day. Usually when I’m trying to sleep.
  48. What do you love?  Have any of your recent actions openly expressed this love? Reading, and yes. Gardening, and no, because they’re dead; they’re all dead. Eating, and it’s such a committed relationship that I do it every day.
  49. In 5 years from now,will you rememberwhat you did yesterday?  What about the day before that?  Or the day before that? Yes. Maybe. Probably not.
  50. Decisions are being made right now.  The question is:  Are you making them for yourself, or are you letting others make them for you? In my workplace, other people make most of the decisions, because I operate in theories more than practicalities. In my personal life, everything is dictated by my bank account, and she is a terrible mistress.

 

Tada! I don’t feel as if I’ve accomplished anything outside of wasting a little time. But if anyone else wants to try this out, let me know. Maybe you’ll be more serious about it than I was.

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