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In a bad spot right now in life, need advice :/

#1

First of all may I begin by saying thanks to Wendell & Level1 and its community I would not be who I am right now, for the better or worse. I’m using a fake account for this topic because of obvious reasons.

I am in a pretty bad spot right now, and I do not know simply what do with my life. I am from Spain, 19, and male. I graduated from High School 1 year ago and went to a what is considered a second-tier college here in Spain to study CS, because my grades in High School and the SAT were bad.

I had never actually “coded” or had done anything remotely CS related before I went to University.
I chose CS mainly because I’ve always been interested in tech but just let’s just say in the “informative” or “consumer-oriented” aspect of it, never really having acquired a useful skill throughout all the years I’ve spent in front of a computer being an introvert in High School, other than I guess English. And so, during my first semester I failed all of my finals.

I also don’t know how to study or actually learn things by the way.
I failed all of my finals because of a combination of reasons, but I’d say the biggest one by far is my own laziness and lack of will to actually work, and also me not being “smart” when it comes down to math and such, with which I’ve kinda struggled all my life, which makes you think “oh, why did you go into CS, then”.

I do not know. The job market sucks here in Spain and I find CS interesting in general, but I seem not to have either the brains or the willpower to actually become a proper engineer.

Now, after dropping outta Uni this last June, I’m staying at my parents’ home for a year, getting my driver’s license and such and preparing for Vocational School next year, which I couldn’t get into this year because in my region of Spain you could only apply during the Month of May and I fucked up.
I am planning to choose “Web Development”, but I haven’t done anything throughout this last summer and up until now, mainly because of my laziness and medical reasons (I am fine now) and because of another reason I am not willing to talk about. But now I have lots of free time, and it got me thinking: “Is anything related with software or web development” the right track for me? Sometimes I think yes, it’s the wrong thing for me to do, but it seems like one of the few stable careers nowadays that guarantee you’re not gonna be unemployed, especially here in Spain. But I just don’t know how to force myself and activate my “working mode” and achieve whatever I want to do.

During all my years in High School I also lied to other people about who I was,… I even told them I made trailers for DICE and made money online, so now I have no friends I can speak in town where my parents live because other than the fact that they’re all in university I am ashamed of all of those lies I told and the false persona I created to justify my introversion. I’m depressed, in a way. I’m scheduled to see psychologist in 2 weeks, so we’ll see what they tell me.

My parents are poor, and I’m spoiled in my own way, but this year I at least have a roof on my head :confused:

Anyways, if you’ve made it this far, thanks in advance.

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#2

some guy somewhere once said your two best friends in life are your future self and your past self.

don’t do things that’ll make your future self hate you and own up to the mistakes made by your past self.

also, you should be ashamed for lying. own up to it and tell people the truth. you’ll either find out they’re douches who weren’t really worth being friends with or you’ll actually gain the chance of having a friend again.
so either way it’s less to worry about and you’re better off for it.

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#4

You would be surprised how many people are in the same boat as you. The best advice I can give is to find any work, set a routine and make goals. I couldn’t find work when I graduated college and I do regret isolating myself while applying to a couple places a day.

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#5

Own up to the lies. Trust me, in the end, it will do you better. Take it from someone who used to be a chronic liar. I lied about everything. Till one day my best friend had had enough, and told me to either own up to my lies, or we’d be done. Up to that point, I’d lost every friend I had. It was his ultimatum that made me see the error of my ways.

I"m not saying search people out and go tell them the truth. But if you run into them? And they ask? Yeah, tell them you were just trying to make yourself seem cooler, cause you wanted to fit in. Or that you had low self-esteem. (Which doesn’t seem far off from the truth.)

If they’re any sort of decent people, they’ll understand. And more often than not, give you a second chance.

After today though, keep to telling the truth as much as possible. It will help you in the long run.

As for finding what you want to do in life? Don’t wait. Take initiative. Don’t do what I did and coast through life relying on other people to do things for you, or provide for you. I did that and I’m currently homeless, living off the kindness of my best friend. I have been lazy my whole life, and have fucked my body up, and my mind. I don’t think I can work anymore, at least not in any hard labor, and I’ve got no attention span unless I force myself. Which is getting harder and harder.

Take care of yourself, and try to do what you can to keep your interest in something. Maybe you’ll find you like coding. I"m starting to get myself into it more and more. Hoping to be able to find some sort of work with it. With my working restrictions. But it’s hard. And I have a tendency to start stuff and stop when it gets hard.

If I can manage to try and keep myself honest, and try and learn new things at age 37, I think you can too.

Best of luck, and kind regards to you.

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#6

Own up to the lies. Trust me, in the end, it will do you better. Take it from someone who used to be a chronic liar. I lied about everything. Till one day my best friend had had enough, and told me to either own up to my lies, or we’d be done. Up to that point, I’d lost every friend I had. It was his ultimatum that made me see the error of my ways.

I"m not saying search people out and go tell them the truth. But if you run into them? And they ask? Yeah, tell them you were just trying to make yourself seem cooler, cause you wanted to fit in. Or that you had low self-esteem. (Which doesn’t seem far off from the truth.)

Indeed, you’re more than right, I need to clean myself up. But I actually don’t get too see those people to whom I used to lie for years before I went to Uni at all nowadays, so I am wary that when I do, I rather than telling them straight out this that and the other, I will obfuscate the truth and won’t actually tell them straight like it is but tell them incomplete truths that still make the lies I used to say “plausible” . My mind’s fucked up, crap.

More than indeed.

I won’t lie (the irony, crap): That’s more than sad to hear and I hope you get back on “the good” track soon because that’s depressing, really depressing to hear. You have a great friend to whom I am sure more than thankful, and I’ve read out what you said out loud just to try to make myself understand that I need to take action now.

Take care of yourself, and try to do what you can to keep your interest in something. Maybe you’ll find you like coding. I"m starting to get myself into it more and more. Hoping to be able to find some sort of work with it. With my working restrictions. But it’s hard. And I have a tendency to start stuff and stop when it gets hard.

Same, I also find it hard to concentrate.

You can do it and I can do it too then :slight_smile:

You too and same!

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#7

Yep, we humans love routines for some odd reason.

One of my biggest problems also is that because I used to be a chronic liar for years and years, now I find small goals simply “boring” or “too small for what I deserve”. That’s why as another comment said, I need to tell those people to whom I’ve lied throughout the years that what I said were lies.

I couldn’t find work when I graduated college and I do regret isolating myself while applying to a couple places a day.

At the end, did you stay in the area where you graduate from College or you moved out somewhere else?

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#8

some guy somewhere once said your two best friends in life are your future self and your past self.

Too true. I remember there was a HIMYM episode where this kind of thinking or “state of mind” was part of the plot.

don’t do things that’ll make your future self hate you and own up to the mistakes made by your past self.

Yes, indeed. I’ve actually been trying to fix that (unsuccessfully, may I add) through the establishment of “Personal Constitution” for myself, but I always end up ignoring whenever something doesn’t go according to my plan.

also, you should be ashamed for lying. own up to it and tell people the truth. you’ll either find out they’re douches who weren’t really worth being friends with or you’ll actually gain the chance of having a friend again.

Got nothing to say other than more than indeed.

so either way it’s less to worry about and you’re better off for it.

Yep, i need to clean up my mind for sure.

Thanks for your piece of advice!

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#9

I don’t necesarily want to seem preechy about the Jordan Peterson thing, but he talks about this stuff a fair bit. And more than that, he provides practical advice on how to get out of such a situation.
His latest Q&A video, and almost every one, he goes over it briefly. Usually he refers to his future authoring program, something I haven’t done, as a guide to help you get out of a hole. It involves a bit of writing about yourself though. That’s probably why i haven’t done it. But my situation isn’t so bad.
If nothing else, the whole 12 rules for life are a good foundation for fixing up yourself, repairing relationships with friends and family, and getting what you want out of life. It sounds a bit like a fair tale, but he seems to be basing it on years as a clinical psychologist, talking to people. One of the reasons he has a fanatical following around the world is because this stuff does help people, and it’s stuff that isn’t being taught.
Worth a look.

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#10

It might not be a popular opinion, but hear me out.

You basically have admitted to being lazy, not very responsible, and lacking real motivation.

Join the military.

Before you start screaming ‘Oh fuck no!’ at the computer think about it like this.

Most countries have a 4 year contract (as a generic thing). This will do a few things for you if youre smart about it.

  1. Cure that laziness.
  2. Teach you responsibility and MAKE you grow up.
  3. Secure employment for the length of the initial contract.

You may be limited in options initially but in my personal experience (and I am ex-military - Australian Army) if you show some drive, maturity and initiative, you can be moved to a different branch than where you start. So even if you have to go in as infantry, you might be able to move over to Intelligence. Unless you can go directly there at recruiting, but if you dont have skills I doubt it.

Save your money throughout this time. Think about where you want to be in 5, 10, 20 years and plan for it.

Even if you hate the military when you are in it, you will be a mature, hard working and skilled individual when you leave, and you can always pay to do a computer course after you leave, because unless you really fuck up with money, you will be able to afford it.

I loved my time in the military and I am really grateful for those experiences.

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#11

If you want some great advice about CS, not everybody in the tech industry started off with a CS background and some fields you rarely need as much coding experience–yes it can be great to know a bunch of programming languages but keeping that knowledge is the hardest part. Motivation to code outside their comfort zone is what most developers try once a week/month.

When I spent time in IT it was mostly a “maybe I’ll try it and move on” during my undergrad days, at the time period I was a web developer who did server admin work but if you’re motivated you’ll learn or teach yourself stuff along the way…

Edit: Had to redact part of the post, I’ll blame it on a certain friend who got malware by looking up Linus Drop Tips memes :space_invader:

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#12

Your well spoken. Able to engage in this thread well.

Your 90% of the way there. Just get out into the workforce and see where you land. It can be surprising.

At 19 you cant go wrong also doing an apprenticeship like say electrician. Trades are always needed and a sparky / CS guy would be a handy person to know.

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#13

I am sorry but I know who Jordan Peterson is and what he says and no, thank you very much.

I don’t want to seem rude, but no, thank you very much.

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#14

Yes, as I said before I am going to vocational school next year so we’ll see how it goes :slight_smile:

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#15

Heh, my parents won’t allow me -literally- and the Spanish army from what I’ve been told, unless you join a “professional” academy it sucks for a “regular”.

So I’ve read all of you said, and I am haply that you loved your time in the military and I respect it, especially their rescue corps, but it’s a non-option to me, for better or worse because of my parents -I’d literally loose them because they really don’t want to go me to go to the military (I’m Spanish but I’m of a immigration background, my parents are from Ukraine, dad fought in Afghanistan, so they’re very anti-military because of his really bad experiences there).

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#16

So this is patently false, and it seems like the root of the problem, to me.

I was homeschooled for elementary and highschool, and my mother was chronically ill. There were lots of days where she couldn’t get out of bed. As a result, I “graduated” highschool knowing not very much. Most of my time I spent modding Mount & Blade. My parents sent me to community college to take a couple of classes after I graduated, pretty much to ease their concerns about me being a potential imbecile. (Community college is like junior college if you aren’t familiar). Those classes went well, but they were incredibly easy. Then we moved, and I somehow got accepted into a state university.

I had no idea what I wanted to do, so I picked a random major and went for it. I lived on campus and made absolutely no friends, and got my ass handed to me. My GPA was in the square club my first two semesters. If you aren’t familiar with that terminology, that’s when you square your GPA and it goes down. I loafed around, I played video games, I drank heavily, I spent money I didn’t have. I hated school, I hated my home life, and I hated nearly every second of my existence.

Then one day, I was standing outside of my Chem 2 class a few minutes early, one of the rare occasions that I actually went, and my chemistry professor was waiting there as well. He said hello, and asked how the class was going. I told him it wasn’t going great, and he told me to come by his office after class. I had nothing better to do, so I did. He explained a lot of the stuff I was having trouble with, and so I started going by after just about every class to talk to him about chemistry. Eventually, he started asking me how my other classes were going, and got me to go find help for those classes.

Now, some five years later, I’m in graduate school working on a PhD in Biochemistry. I never ever thought I’d care enough about chemistry, let alone do well enough at it, to be here. Along the way, I learned how to think, I learned how to study, I learned how to work hard, how to motivate myself, and how to work when I wasn’t motivated. And it’s still a daily struggle, there are plenty of days I lose to just general laziness. It’s gotten easier, but it’s still not easy.

There are a lot of people who have been in your position, and a lot of people who are willing to help you, but you just need to go get the help. If the people you ask at first aren’t helpful, find new people to ask for help. It’s not an intelligence thing, it’s not even a laziness/willpower thing, it’s really just a learning curve that you have to overcome. There’s no shame in getting some help.

I also want to point out I was nowhere near the person I am now when I went to school. Seriously, it’s like night and day. In 5 years, you won’t be either. But it’s going to take that whole time to get there. You don’t magically become a hard working, motivated, and efficient person overnight. It takes a lot of struggle. But it’s a marathon, not a sprint. So take it one step at a time, and just don’t give up. I promise, you’re capable of a lot more than you think.

Yes, indeed. I’ve actually been trying to fix that (unsuccessfully, may I add) through the establishment of “Personal Constitution” for myself, but I always end up ignoring whenever something doesn’t go according to my plan.

My advice here is think deeply about one or two things that are the most important virtues to you, and establish them, as Art of Manliness calls, your “NUTS”: non-negotiable unalterable terms. Just one or two, physically write them on a piece of paper, and refuse to violate them at all costs. Don’t make them too hard, either. Plenty of time to scale up later but this is just to practice being disciplined.

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#17

Quoting just this line but this entire post is gold. I applaud you for your drive, inspiration, and future accomplishments.

Everything @COGlory said, despite anecdotal, is applicable to your situation @Viscalobo.

I was in the same situation explained above. I hated school, I hated living at home, I just wanted to party, drink, smoke, play games, watch movies, whatever I could to “be free”.

I had a different wake up call. I played guitar, and someone explained the analogy of mathematics being similar to playing guitar. What happens when you first pick up the guitar? It sounds like a cat dying. Maybe it just goes “dooooooo” because you pluck one string.

What do people usually do after that? They either say “This is hard, I quit” or they say “I’m going to get better at this” – If you apply this line of thinking to any subject, you can succeed. No one is “bad at math”, you just never practice. Maybe you do practice, but you spend the hour or two in pure frustration and constantly reinforcing your negative beliefs about yourself. This doesn’t do anything to push you forward, either.

You need to change you. If you sit around and feel sorry for yourself, or sit around and think about what you should be doing, that won’t yield any results. Time will pass the same, best to spend that time doing something that progresses you with the time.

“Don’t let perfection lead to procrastination.” Pick a task and start. I recommend, aside from The Art of Manliness, reading Deep Work and The Practicing Mind. Those books do a good job demonstrating habits and practices to get through school, learn a new skill, or really change an existing behavior you don’t like (laziness, for example).

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#18

@Viscalobo I think you’ve gotten some great advice here so I won’t try to say the same stuff over. I can share some of my own experience.

I just turned 21 a week ago from today, and am a sophomore CS student at a solid state university. Despite being a sophomore I’ve actually been in college for 2 years already (at a local community college / junior college) where I was majoring in business, but absolutely hated it and switched to CS.

Sometimes I feel immense regret for not realizing this sooner. It’s gonna take me an extra year to graduate, and I pursued business purely out of a fear for higher level math. Because of where my birthday lies, my parents also delayed my grade school a year, so it feels like I’m 2 years behind. I can still be very lazy, but am doing very well in school so far.

Point is, life is not the linear ‘A to Z’ process that we imagine it to be as a teenager. It’s easy to feel disheartened by it seeming like everyone else has ‘done things right’, but even if they haven’t faced those kinds of obstacles yet, they will. It happens to us all.

Otherwise, follow the other advice here and go with your gut. If you’re interested in web development, start small with writing basic static pages. As long as you’re doing something you are on the right path.

P.S: As others have said, you truly come across very well in written form, that is huge these days, I’m astonished by the amount of people who can’t write properly lol.

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#19

IT is really tough, particularly in a country recovering from a depression like Spain. The issue with IT is that much of it can be done anywhere. Why would someone pay you 40 euros/hour to do front-end coding in Spain when they could pay a Romanian, Indian, etc, a quarter as much?

Unless you’re really hot stuff and have a genuine interest in IT, rather than focusing on administration or coding, I would suggest going into provisioning (building-out physical networks, like installing wifi in a sports stadium) or a local service job/trade like nursing, plumbing, electrician, etc. Those jobs will never be outsourced.

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#20

I think you are trying to figure out your personal truth. But being aware your own truth is deceptive, because you might think you already know but real truth is almost impossible to arrive at through thinking. Not everything can be thought especially your own truths… Instead try to find your true north with subliminal approach, in short by practising everyday. Personal nature cannot be taught or solved by others. Others can give advice but you will have to realize by your own self… like aha moment… And most probably you can’t find it rightnow because you’re not even ready for it… Only way is to pass the torch from your nowself to nextself to one after that until the truth itself reconciles with you. So just think about your next-self as close to your present-self… like thinking what will you do tomorrow, short and manageable and then quickly get to action… That will build your reward system…

You are always changing hence the truth is changing too. Things you are worried about today might not even matter to you tomorrow. What you are today can have little or huge effect what you’ll be tomorrow… It doesn’t define you if you don’t let it. If possible then change your environment and surround yourself with right people. People naturally mimic their environment and people surrounding. You want to be a gamedev then be around gamedevs. Especially good ones and respect them for being good… It’s not that difficult to respect…

The beauty of this system is, being smart doesn’t guaranty success… Many super smart people living losers life at the same time many successful people are not so smart… It’s a relative term but it feels like absolute because society has to have standards and validity. But you can be smart in one thing with enough dedication. You will see countless such examples in society… Find suitable examples and it will help you define your true north… Don’t forget that we are collective species and you can always talk to people who can provide you answers… But you need to ask questions instead of telling stories… What questions to ask is what you need to figure out for yourself and then find who could provide you with right answers…

I know saying is easier than doing… But I am writing here to help you figure out easiest way you can get out of this situation… Try evaluating your decisions based on numbers game. Whether you lie or tell honest truth… No matter what you do, you are always trading in numbers… Put numbers on everything you do… Anything you think is bad put a negative number and anything positive then put positive number… The numbers are your feedback loop that links to your reward system but you have to establish the connection first… Numbers add up positively or negatively over time and builds up huge inertia that can be advantage or disadvantage… Learn to play numbers correctly by being more accountable to other and yourself and you’ll get used to it eventually… Apply it on everything routine, food, social, work and you’ll figure it out…

And don’t worry, you’ll do fine…

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#21

As in my fashion, I’ll pursue a few different topics at once, so it will be hectic and not very nice to read, but it will be as honest as it can be. It also means I’ll be a swearing arse.

First of all, don’t delete posts, finally take some fucking responsibility for the stuff you say and do.

I was also struggling with depression and laziness. I wasn’t in a situation like you, but I also slacked off about school, I had a one year break from school and moved in with my grandma. I had no friends there, I was just locked in my room, coming downstairs just to eat something. I’m still surprised that I managed to do that, but I set out some goals, a plan, managed to get proper resources, and I was learning and programming for about 14h a day, till I started having health issues, like terrible headaches. However, thanks to that, I managed to get on a really decent level in something that I love.

Prepare, think a lot, research, and then just sit down and do stuff. If you have problems with that, do something drastic. I moved to my grandma to a completely different country.

It’s different for every person, this is what worked for me. For you it might be different, but nonetheless you have to make some drastic changes.

You have problems having friends, from what you say you’re really sad about it. I had the same, pretty much. However, I think it’s really good that you don’t have any. First, friends would distract you. Without any, you can really focus on becoming a better person. Second, a lot of friends encourage unhealthy behaviour, so you have a blank slate here. People say that others make us better, and it’s true, however you don’t have to become a better person… you have to become a good person. Not in a sense that you’re evil, but you have to become good at least to yourself - you need to start respecting yourself, be good to yourself, appreciate yourself more. Do yourself good by not being lazy, working hard. You will appreciate this stuff.

I’m still thinking whether or not I should give you some web development help. You should learn to research stuff yourself, but at least for the basic stuff, I can answer your questions and give some advice.

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