Living a Serious Life

Tandem21's picture
Rank: Gorilla | 620

I was recently watching Chappaquiddick and there was a line that stuck out to me "You can choose to live a serious or non-serious life but if you choose to live a non-serious life I won't have much time for you." Joe Kennedy to Ted Kennedy as a youth.

That being said, what are some of things you gain/lose living a serious life over a non-serious life, and vice verse?

Once I took my trading job I think my life took a turn to the serious side, granted I still have some mindless fun with buddies now and then, and play hockey rarely, but I have found myself becoming more and more serious about work thus always keeping an eye on positions, always looking at the markets etc.... I've been career driven forever but now that I am actually here it feels like things and I myself may actually be changing faster than I realized. I'm making more money than I imagined I'd be with the background I come from and things are going well, but I do think things are taking a turn to the serious side and my downtime is no longer downtime as I'm always on. So I'm curious what we gain/lose from living this type of life versus another.

What are your thoughts? I'm sure many of you have been here.

Comments (67)

Dec 9, 2018

Oops -

Dec 9, 2018

I'd probably not take advice from a) a movie or b) a family full of drug addicted, drunks, murdered and degenerates.

Dec 9, 2018

I was just using it as a reference for a serious life or non-serious life, not defining as they do. I don't know how the Kennedy's define(d) either.

Funniest
Dec 10, 2018

Imagine being so blue-blooded you are still mad about JFK becoming president.

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Dec 10, 2018
TheStory:

Imagine being so blue-blooded you are still mad about JFK becoming president.

He'll probably hold onto the Obama thing for the next 40-50 years too.

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Dec 10, 2018
TheStory:

Imagine being so blue-blooded you are still mad about JFK becoming president.

His constant blind unbridled rage towards 'da liebrulz' is always pretty anusing.

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Dec 17, 2018

Soooo.... blue bloods mad about Kennedy presidency? Popular comment does not compute

Dec 9, 2018

I dont think that is a correct way of seeing the world, serious or non serious, to me it is just a good life or a not good life. A good life is all subjective.

A good life for you might involve a focus on career at the stage you are in, but I would ask what you are working for? If your passion is found in the perfection of trading, you are living the good life.

I have three core passions:
1. a career I enjoy and have/develop skill in
2. few but deep relationships
3. The mountains and the ocean: Sailing, hiking, mt. biking, rock climbing, camping

My life is focused on balancing the three of those things as much as I can.

EDIT: I realized my mistake, a non-serious life would not perform the introspection to figure out what their passions and priority's are. The serious life is the only one I can imagine living.

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Dec 10, 2018

very true

Dec 22, 2018

Your top priorities are really close to what I think and have been pursuing, and your comment really resonated with me.

I wanted to ask, how have you been managing that balance? Have you been happy about how you've managed it?

I'll be graduating UG soon with a really good job at a BB in NYC coming from a non-target, but I've been feeling so burned-out recently. Just visiting with family and visiting an REI reminded me so much of the stuff I really enjoy, and I'm not sure I've been addressing it enough recently.

Dec 9, 2018

No, I have been frustrated because I am not balancing it well. I have limited PTO and I do not live near the Mountains (I grew up and went to school in the Rockies). Also, my parents are getting older and they live far away. That being said, I am early in my career, I am learning a lot and I already switched jobs once 6 months ago. I have told myself that I will start looking at jobs near my parents/near the mountains once I have been at my current job for 1 year. My wife makes better money than I do and she is ready to slow things down with her work in the next 6 months also, so it is just a timing thing.

All that being said, we make the most of our PTO.

My advice, I never thought about how big of a difference good PTO makes, there is not a lot of point to having a lot of money if you cannot spend it on the things you like. If PTO is important to you, make sure you negotiate for it as much/or more than salary.

TLDR: In the balancing act, I feel that I need to put more weight on my career early on and have been sacrificing other priorities for that.

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Dec 9, 2018

https://media1.tenor.com/images/aec16f3020b8aad37169367d045cfbe6/tenor.gif?itemid=5026763

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Dec 10, 2018

Rather than "serious vs non-serious" it should be "examined vs un-examined" life. No point of being serious about something that is not important and getting you nowhere like a hamster on a hamster-wheel vs taking measured steps while using minimum efforts to get what you want.

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Dec 10, 2018

Came here to post this. Good stuff.

Dec 10, 2018

You Came here to Post a link to Plato's Allegory of the Cave?
Are you in 7th grade Literature class - how is that your first instinct / automatic response?
Read some Nietzsche, untermensch.

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Dec 10, 2018

Plato is the single most damaging and overrated thinker in the history of the Western world. If OP wants direction on living a good life, he should read Aristotle. Isocrates and, although he was more of a political figure, Pericles, are both substantially better thinkers than Plato whose contributions to the modern West were actually positive, and often erroneously attributed to Plato, both of whom have material related to what OP is asking.

I come from down in the Valley, where Mr. when you're young, they bring you up to do like your daddy done.

Dec 10, 2018

Plato sucks. Be an intellectual like me and Read Aristotle (Plato's student who just regurgiated all of the same shit using metaphors that were less apt/more complicated)

If you really want to know about a good life, then read the stoics. Start with everything Seneca had to say.

Dec 10, 2018
Naoki Hanzawa:

Rather than "serious vs non-serious" it should be "examined vs un-examined" life. No point of being serious about something that is not important and getting you nowhere like a hamster on a hamster-wheel vs taking measured steps while using minimum efforts to get what you want.

This is perfectly how I make my professional moves. +1

Dec 10, 2018
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Dec 10, 2018

The key to a serious life is to make it look easy thus making you not appear so serious and more approachable to most. Those who know, know.

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Dec 10, 2018

Can you expand on this? I don't follow. I'm one of those that doesn't know.

Dec 18, 2018

+1, here's a funny banana

Work hard, work clean, & most of all do not give up.

Dec 10, 2018
Tandem21:

That being said, what are some of things you gain/lose living a serious life over a non-serious life, and vice verse?

The only people who have the option of living a non-serious life are trust fund kids/rich kids like the Kennedys (or I suppose hot girls on instagram)

That quote has nothing to do with hobbies or "mindless fun with buddies." It is about a rich kid applying himself vs. accomplishing nothing.

If you don't take time to do non-work activities, such as hobbies, time with family, etc., you just end up a sad, burnt out old person.

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Dec 10, 2018

I don't think this is totally accurate. Plenty of people don't live a serious life. Think about most of the kids you went to high school with if you went to a non-elite HS.

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Most Helpful
Dec 10, 2018
MMBanker14:

I don't think this is totally accurate. Plenty of people don't live a serious life. Think about most of the kids you went to high school with if you went to a non-elite HS.

What isn't serious about their lives? Living paycheck to paycheck, trying to support a family, and paying a mortgage is pretty damn serious. They aren't going to run for Senate or be a CEO some day, but they probably neither have the capacity nor the inclination.

I do not define a serious life by being in the 0.1% and being a master of industry. I define it by having purpose and responsibility, however rudimentary or unappealing that purpose and responsibility is to the majority of people on this message board.

An instagram model/DJ/travel addict who shows off the tits her dad bought her via bikini shots of herself from someone else's rented yacht in Ibiza does not have purpose or responsibility. A C student from a "non-elite HS" who works hard to pay her bills and put food on the table for her kids because her waste of life husband abandoned her and she got married too young very much has both purpose and responsibility.

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Dec 11, 2018

While I would agree rich kids/trust fund kids have the option to live a non-serious life more easily than someone from a more average family, I wouldn't say they are the only ones.

I spent some time in SE Asia and met quite a few people from normal families living a non-serious life. They would do stuff such as work in Australia for a couple months, travel for a couple months, repeat. Work at a hostel in Asia where food and accommodation is covered plus a couple hundred bucks a week to cover the booze they drank and tours they went on, etc. Their life was lived one week at a time with the money they were making on their own.

One guy I know really stands out, he found some work on a solar farm in Australia making roughly 2k AUD a week after taxes and saved pretty much all of it since he was living out in the middle of nowhere with the rest of the guys working on the farm. Did that for 3 months and is now traveling for 6 more. He is currently on his 3rd time of doing that cycle. Another guy I know is doing something similar but with construction up and down the east coast of Aus.

Not saying this is super common by any means, but I am saying the option is available for a person from even the poorest family in a first world country.

Dec 14, 2018

Is that a bad thing to live a non-serious life though? What you said about the people in SE Asia sounds amazing to me...

Dec 10, 2018

What do you mean by "serious life" ?

Dec 10, 2018

Didn't that guy drive off a bridge?

Dec 10, 2018

I prefer the serious life but things took a turn when i started dating a social butterfly -- my food spend now rivals my rent

What concert costs 45 cents? 50 Cent feat. Nickelback.

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Dec 9, 2018
Jamie_Diamond:

I prefer the serious life but things took a turn when i started dating a social butterfly -- my food spend now rivals my rent

run

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Dec 17, 2018
Jamie_Diamond:

I prefer the serious life but things took a turn when i started dating a social butterfly -- my food spend now rivals my rent

Huge pet peeve of mine. I'm also a relatively private person, so I cannot get along well with social butterflies. And I hate spending money on food.

Dec 10, 2018

I feel like people need to worry less about what other people think of their lives, and more on developing themselves and achieving their goals.. There are a lot of ways to find success in this world through both serious endeavors and what people might consider less serious..

Dec 10, 2018

My best friend is one of America's top residential loan originators at this point. He is now making 7 figures each year. But he told me one time--"bro, I was the top originator in the Mid-Atlantic in [some year right before the financial crisis]. I won [some award]. When I die, nobody is going to care about my origination awards."

What I got from that is that he recognized that what he does is really not that important. When he dies the Earth is going to keep spinning.

Dec 12, 2018

I noticed when I started to take life more seriously my income improved as well as my spending habits. There are points where I miss being less serious, but then I meet up with some old friends and some of them just seem to be stuck in the same spot they were 10 years ago. Sure they are enjoying life and that is great, but you hear about their problems and they are issues that are 100% due to them not giving a shit about tomorrow.

Another thing I noticed when I started to take life more seriously is that I was offered more opportunities to perform. One thing I did was being on the board at my church. It was pro bono work, but I really enjoyed doing it. And I walked away with some good expperience as a result. Also, I noticed I was able to talk to more senior coworkers about things my peers weren't able to. This definitely helped me get ahead of the pack professionally. There have been opportunities presented to me since then that I have had to decline due to lack of time. Ultimately, it is great knowing that people think of me as being a trusted rather than a potential burden.

To summarize, so take life seriously, if time allows find additional responsibility to take on and watch your life blossom.

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Dec 16, 2018
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Dec 18, 2018
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