While sitting in jail... there were many thoughts that permeated my mind.
Incessant and persistent, some more enjoyable than others. I could use my Iron mind to destroy them absolutely and force more manageable contemplation.
But... Sometimes, in places of absolute difficulty, you should allow the thoughts and feelings that come.
They are messages from the universe.
So I opened the iron door, and allowed myself to think what I thought. Some of the days I would be hopeful, others pessimistic.
Both had advantages and disadvantages, it was difficult to decide which mindset I truly preferred. So, the universe decided to tell me.
I was stuck inside of a 3 metre cell, 24 hour a day lockdown, zero yard time…
Lock yourself in your bathroom without your phone or laptop and try to sit for an hour. Then try 96 days.
After about 5 weeks I had the ability to finally choose a movie to watch.
I picked The Shawshank Redemption.
That movie hits different from inside a jail cell.
Red said something while discussing the suicide of Brooks.
"These walls are funny. First you hate 'em, then you get used to 'em. Enough time passes, you get so you depend on them. That's institutionalized."
That is the Matrix.
On a long enough time frame... many grow to love it.
In the movie they talk about how institutionalized men are the ones who have given up all hope.
Red says "hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane"
Hes explaining how Jail (The Matrix) is easier to accept if you understand that you will never escape.
As soon as you believe there is another way, you feel pain. You feel frustration.
And this is the difference between pessimism and optimism. If you truly believe you are screwed, the system is against you and you’ll never get out, a strange sense of calm comes over you.
You feel comfortable with inaction, because its doesn’t matter anyway, does it?
When I accepted I may never get out of prison, I felt BETTER. Isn’t that insane? When I was optimistic and hopeful that I was innocent I would look at the walls around me and feel terrible.
The hope made me feel worse.
I would make frustrated phone calls and read legal books and think of the best possible way to defend myself.
But, now I am free. Maybe if I didn’t make those phone calls, I wouldn’t be.
Sure, if I stayed defeated I would have felt better inside the cell.
BUT I WOULD STILL BE INSIDE OF THE CELL. I NEEDED the pain and NEEDED the frustration to escape.
If you truly want to achieve the impossible, you need to be hopeful that you can finally be free and you need to feel angry that you are still inside of your prison cell.
A lot of you may think you’re not in a prison cell.
In jail, they decided when I woke up, when I slept, when I ate, where I went.
In your life, your boss decides when you wake up and when you eat and your bank decides where you go.
You’re in jail.
You are not free.
If you believe there is no way to escape you’ll instantly feel better. Like I did while I was pessimistic inside of the jail cell.
If you believe you can escape you’ll become temporarily enraged… but you WILL escape.
You need to feel the blood in your veins accelerate as you look at those who live outside of all conceivable parameters while you are ABSOLUTELY AVERAGE.
The most beautiful women on the planet and the most important men on the planet have precisely zero desire to speak to you.
You couldn't pay them to waste their time because you are INSIDE of a jail cell. You’ve never been free.
What could you possibly know? What stories could you possibly have?
You are INSIDE of the matrix. These people design the matrix. They built your life and they control your life.
They have zero desire to interact with you. You do not matter.
And you will never matter unless you become Free.
The true story of The Shawshank Redemption is one of optimism versus pessimism.
Red, who is negative, is shown by Andy, who is positive - that even impossible odds can be overcome with careful planning, diligence, patience and HOPE.
Andy struggled in jail.
But Andy escaped from jail.
Red was too much of a coward to feel the true pain of enslavement - and this is why, he remained enslaved for so long.
Do you understand what I am trying to say to you?
Careful planning. Diligence. Patience and Hope.