Autonomy and Personality

How can we gain control over our lives and create the reality which we want to live in? How can we increase our autonomy and decrease our incentive salience system (the system which drives unconscious behaviour towards rewards, this system is theorized to be the main reason for addiction), how? So far we have meditation, mental contrasting, and habit control. Meditation allows us to develop our ability to direct our attention. Mental contrasting, which means focusing on the benefits of a decision and then the obstacles to maximize motivation, and habit control, which involves discovering the habits which are preventing us from reaching our goals and setting up “if X happens, then I will do Y” statements, thus replacing the bad with the good. So far we have these three methods to increase our ability to act on our cognitive desires or judgements. We know our incentive salience system is strong, and will in fact take over in certain circumstances, but we also know that we can train our cognitive ability in order to take control over our lives when we are in good health.

But then the question becomes, what kind of reality do you want to live in? If I’m going to be honest, I find our reality rather boring… I grew up playing video games and going on fictional adventures with my friends, playing through intriguing realities in order to find fascinating objects or achieve incredible goals. In a way, these games encompassed a lot of my culture. It was all quite fantastical. I’m fairly open minded, so lot’s of different fantastical and novel ideas attract my attention, I’m also quite extraverted, so I need people to experience these things with and laugh and enjoy their company. I’m also naturally quite low in conscientiousness, so I often attempt to hack and trick my way to victory, taking shortcuts and putting massive amounts of research into finding the most efficient way to do anything. I’m also high in agreeableness so I don’t like conflict, I like working with other people on a productive task. And finally I’m quite low in neuroticism so I don’t worry about things too much. What would encompass all of these things? I’m not sure… But at least my thinking through it may give you an idea to figure out where a great position for you life should be!?

Also, if you are interested in a personality test based on the big 5 theory of personality, which seems to be the dominant scientific theory at the moment, you can find the test here.

Hustle it up!

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