Author: Jon Waterlow

Join The Unknown – JJ Bitters Interview

Poet, writer, philosopher and artist JJ Bitters joins us this week midway through a tour through Europe and Africa. And he’s just come out of the closet… OK, not that closet! JJ originally wanted to create art without ego, so he chose the pseudonym ‘The Unknown’ to keep is identity separate from his art. But can you survive and get the word out that way – and how much of yourself can you pour into art which is intentionally disconnected from you? JJ has written about mental health, psychedelic discoveries, deep philosophical questions… and lately he’s been writing children’s poetry...

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Why Nice Guys Suck – Sex & Relationships Series

What’s wrong with being a Nice Guy? Isn’t that what everyone wants in a partner? No, they don’t. Nice Guys aren’t nice. Nice guys are a problem – for themselves and for the people they want to seduce. Because Nice Guys aren’t what you (or they) think they are. They’re the people pleasers who never truly ask for or say what they need. They’re the approval-seekers (or disapproval-avoiders). They’re the fixers and the caretakers who’re always keeping a mental balance sheet in their minds: Because I do X for you, I should get Y in return. But it’s all left...

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The Modern Stoic #22: Stop Quoting, Start Creating

You know those people who can quote passages of Shakespeare, have read all the great novels, and who always seem to have an aphorism to hand? Well, fuck them. Having a moribund storehouse of other people’s knowledge isn’t the same as being smart, let alone creative. In Letter 33, Seneca doesn’t want us to learn the Cliff Notes version of anything; he doesn’t want us to post brief quotes on Instagram; and he certainly doesn’t want us to keep hiding behind other people’s wisdom, however valuable it might be. Or, to put it another way: It’s good to know,...

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The Modern Stoic #21: What Progress Really Means

This one’s about staying the course, knowing how to recognise progress from how it feels, and the dangers of internalising other people’s narratives of what your life should be. In Letter 32 Seneca wants us to stay the course, rather than endlessly making fresh starts and chasing fads. As he puts it, ‘We break up life into little bits and fritter it away’ – Seneca That can cheat us of doing the Deep Work we need to make progress, rather than endlessly skimming the surface and thrashing about like a hyperactive child in a paddling pool. But we’re not...

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Finding Clarity In Life With Philip McKernan – Jon’s Retreat Experience

After a successful Go Fund Me campaign, Jon raised enough money to spend an intensive weekend retreat with coach, speaker, author and emotional terrorist Philip McKernan. And he’s still reeling from what happened. So what happened, and how’s Jon doing today? It was an intimate event at a hotel in a tiny village. They spent most of it locked in a room with a man whose speciality is relentlessly asking some of the most deep and searching questions about yourself, your life, and your relationships with people, money, and even to your own identity. It’s what Jon’s calling McKernan’s Emotional Cheese-grater....

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