The antagonists of our lives

Right now, my #1 mission in life is getting a book done.

Starlight Season 1: Extraterrestrial, Supernatural, Unconventional.

It’s an episodic short story collection written in the style of a TV series’ 13-episode-long first season. So far, 10 of these stories are complete, and I’ve written 1/3 of the 11th. I just need to finish that one, write two more, and this project is good to go, ready to be published.

(I published some of it on this website back when I was thinking of making it a web serial instead)

When I started this project in early 2021, I wrote the first 4 stories/episodes in a bit over a month, half-wrote the next three that summer, then shelved it. I got back to it in late 2022. Wrote the bulk of a later story + fragments of another, then finished up my half-written ones. Since then, I’ve worked on it so much and with such joy and enthusiasm that it’s now 10/13 of the way there.

My progress with this book is anything but linear. Most days, not a single new word gets written. Sometimes, I skim through it and only make minor edits to words and punctuation. Some days, I write as much as 10 pages of new content after weeks on end of writer’s block. Some days, I write just one good paragraph or page before being lost on what to write next.

I used to be unable to predict when I’d have a day of creative flow, and when I’d have days or weeks on end of a creative drought.

Why is it that when I started this project, I wrote a literal THIRD of it in under two months, then had no damn clue where to take it from there? I used to be lost on this, but I had a spontaneous realization today that perfectly explains it.

These stories never start effortlessly flowing until I clearly define the villain.

Character versus WHAT?

A homicidal alien from another planet?

Her insecurities about having felt unwanted and undesired in high school? That the Devil promises to fix… For a price?

A suicide cult that consumes the willing participants’ hearts?

His slow, heartbreaking, crippling realization that working as a black-ops alien-hunting agent means he’s rapidly outgrowing his former normie civilian life and can no longer relate to nor connect with his peers beyond the bare minimum superficial things? And now he’s relapsing with his old drug habit to cope with it?

A time loop where after a lonely, many-years-long dry spell, he finally meets a woman who’s interested in him, then wakes up 24 hours earlier without her in his arms every time the loop resets? And he doesn’t even attract her every time he meets her?

A psychopath dark magician from 200 years in the future whose plan to plunge our Earth into Hell is seemingly unstoppable?

Interesting stories, right? I hope reading this got you pumped to read Starlight once it comes out.

When I have the “Character Versus WHAT?” question fully figured out, that’s when I have work days where I’m unable to stop writing scenes because I enjoy the process too goshdarn much. All of these stories and scenes are fantastic enough to be left in the final product.

This realization came from me contemplating my own life. Past seasons of it, and my current one.

The problems I faced, that defined those seasons, are exactly what made them INTERESTING.

This post was originally going to be a private journal entry, but I think it’s too cool of a concept to be kept to myself.


Past seasons of my life.

Ben Foth versus WHAT?

My mission in high school was to FIGURE MYSELF OUT. Where do I fit in? How great can I be? How much can I accomplish? Those 4 years were defined by me testing my limits – physically, sexually, socially, academically, resiliently. My antagonist was PURPOSELESSNESS. I was deathly terrified of failure, returning to being the complete loser I was in elementary and middle school, rather than a real man who’s worth something and who people truly respect. I was sick of everyone looking down on me, and decided to make something real of myself. Which I did. Excellently.

My first year of college, alcohol was my antagonist. I was addicted, regularly getting blackout drunk by myself, attempting a slow suicide by liver failure. I was depressed, disappointed, feeling like life was denying me missions and girls I could sink my teeth into, no matter how much I’d put myself out there or how many risks I’d take. Every party I went to that year aside from literally ONE was boring and meaningless and lacking in energy, which prompted a spontaneous suicide attempt one night. I’d escape from my disappointing, purposeless “career path” and barren, hopeless “dating life” into 10+ consecutive drinks while binging YouTube. Ben Foth versus Death.

Summer 2017, my antagonist was misalignment. I was determined to give up adolescence and feel like a Real Adult™. A successful grown man with a job and a girlfriend and a lifestyle. I was already addicted to challenging myself and testing my limits. The question I spent that summer slowly answering was “What’s worth it? Who’s worth it? Who and what am I destined to be rejected by, and who and what will effortlessly give me purpose?”

My second year of college, modern society was my antagonist. I had an intense spiritual awakening at the end of Summer 2017 that radically shifted my perspective on life. I intuitively grasped all the basics of Reality Creation and Manifestation. I could viscerally sense demons, and started to get a mild sense that there was something “beyond the veil”. I learnt to generate my own feminine energy alongside my masculine energy, instead of relying on girls for it. Most of all, I woke up to how FAKE and FORCED most peoples’ lives are, and how easy it is to manipulate them if you promise them sex, status, security, and safety. Whereas in first year, I’d assumed everyone knew their place in the world but me, and I was literally the worst person I knew at holding frame.

In my early 20s, the challenges of building a business, getting good at marketing and sales and product were my #1 villain for a few seasons, then the government was #1 for another (2020 was a year), and after that, my grief became the main antagonist of my life.

I spent my early 20s feeling like my life ended when I was 20, constantly grieving who I used to be before a bunch of traumatic shit happened. It was like I died that year, and early-20s me was some ghost separated from the physical world. I’d constantly wish I could close my eyes at night and wake up in 2016 again knowing what I know now.

Now I’m 25 and feel reborn, like my life is only just beginning. I barely ever think about high school or college or 21-24 anymore. I know the beautiful future I deserve and I have faith that I’m 100% in alignment with it.

How’d I win?

I only won against these villains when I surrendered to them. Allowed them to be as they were instead of fighting them.

I overcame my teenage insecurities by accepting that I simply can’t “make it” doing things I’m not built for, that I don’t have the genetics or innate inclinations to succeed at. Competitive sports. Music. A normie career path. A normie social life. Also by realizing how good I actually had it in high school. I felt like I belonged to the community. I was on my edge in all ways, constantly expanding myself and my competences. No one noticeably disliked me (except when I deserved it). For once, even if I was relatively unpopular, I had some good friends. I was just some chill guy people enjoyed talking to and having around, rather than the complete social outcast I was in middle school.

I overcame alcohol addiction and went months on end sober a couple times by accepting that I’d simply been dealt a bad hand my first year of college, and that better days were ahead of me. Those better days were Summer 2017, even if I FAILED to get the job, the girl, or the definite place in the world. The real soul-lesson I had to get from those days was that it’s okay NOT to have those things, and if I define myself by them, I’ll be miserable and stuck in the system.

A year later, high-3D-consciousness me realized that I could never build a meaningful life staying in the system, penetrating it, or fighting it. All I could do was leave the normies behind and ascend into 4D, with more meaningful, intellectual challenges and trials than I used to have.

As for getting over my grief and all my other trauma, I can’t tell you exactly how I did it. I don’t entirely know how. Certain books helped. Starlight and other creative writing helped. Telling myself the brutally honest truth about why my college days weren’t actually that great helped. I gave myself time. I gave myself compassion. There’s no formulaic 69-step plan to overcoming your psychological bullshit that’ll work. You’ll win against it at your own pace.

I don’t have much else to say on this subject.

Because facing and overcoming our life’s antagonists is a different process for everyone. All I can do is tell you my stories, show you some love, and trust you to be capable of fighting your own villains without my advice or my help.

I can’t deny you your life path by “fixing it” for you. A lack of conflict, tension, and occasional hopelessness would make your story a terrible one.

Before I close this article off, I’ll be vulnerable about my current antagonist in life.

Manifestation issues

2022 and 2023 were not good years for my mental health.

It’s getting better, now that I’ve learnt to treat my holistic health, especially mental health, as an EDGE, rather than simply a problem that needs fixing. It’s the biggest edge in my life at the moment.

This thread by Matt Stephens got me thinking constantly about it and my own neurodivergence. God bless him for making it.

This year, I’ve made concrete plans to end it all at least a few times, deciding to cut this life short and wake up in a new one where I don’t have these manifestation issues, and I have challenges I like way more than this seemingly impossible one.

(I always reminded myself of all my reasons to live soon after, so don’t worry about me. These were always temporary feelings I didn’t follow through on. Even when I was in the middle of deliberately ODing a couple weeks ago, I realized it was a shitty decision and turned back from it)

Now, what do I mean by “manifestation issues”?

What do I do when no matter how hard I train at the gym, progress comes slowly, if at all? And that’s if I have my strength in the first place, since all of 2022 and occasionally in 2023, I was dealing with fatigue that had no apparent cause.

I fixed this one. After initially being clueless about what was sapping my strength, I realized it was demineralized water + blood sugar crashes from heavy drinking. I have both these things in check now. I drink spring water instead of filtered water. I pay more attention to my muscles’ need for glucose.

What do I do when no matter how hard and smart I work on business stuff, no matter how great a coach I am, how many deep, insightful, nuanced emails or articles I write, I only work with 1-3 new clients a YEAR?

I gave up on my dating/relationship coaching business a long while ago, though I still left the door open and occasionally advertised it just to feel like I’m doing something with my life.

I accepted that despite me being a fantastic coach who radically shifted all his clients’ lives, I’m just not mass-marketable AS THIS. My Twitter hasn’t grown since 2020. Marketing the business on Instagram and YouTube and Facebook was a flop. And despite having a mildly successful TikTok presence, even that didn’t get me a single new client. People don’t want to listen to my dating/relationship advice, and that’s okay. I’m not your guru. You don’t have to live like I do, nor think like I do, nor have the same values and ideals I do.

I feel intensely in alignment when I write Starlight, and once it’s published, I’ll find out if I’m marketable as an author. Even if it doesn’t sell, I’ll be extremely proud of myself for accomplishing it, make it a 5-book series anyway, and move on to a new professional edge, experimenting with new purposes until I find one that has a market for ME AS IT.

I have complete faith that I’ll optimize my health and wealth. Few insecurities here. I still have some girl stuff to work on though.

What do I do when no matter how attractive, masculine, fun, ambitious, courageous, and interesting I am, I still can’t find a girlfriend-worthy girl?

I’ve tried everything to get a girlfriend this last decade. I took as much responsibility as I could to align myself with a version-of-self who’s got a special, sexy girl in his life. Getting in fantastic shape. Coaching/mentorship. Going all-in on my values and ideals. Surrendering to God and trusting Divine Will on everything. Facing my fears, leaning into tension, and approaching a bunch of girls at parties, bars, the mall, parks, cafes, on the street, etc… I’ve even extensively employed Manifestation and other esoteric practices to make this reality happen.

Every girl I 100% believed I could have been a great couple with since I was 20 has been into me too, but she either already had a long-term boyfriend/fiancé/husband, or she was single but self-sabotaged out of shyness and fear and inexperience despite me doing everything right. There were also times where she was older than me and that was her deal-breaker. In hindsight, I wouldn’t have been happy making a girlfriend of any of these girls. Up until recently, I’d had a horrible time discerning whether a girl was into me because she liked ME, or just because I knew how to be attractive, masculine, and fun.

I’ve never even had a BAD romantic relationship. No crazy ex-girlfriend. No heartwrenching breakups. No drama-filled fights. No intense honeymoon phase followed by a sobering comedown where we realized we really weren’t the people we’d idealized each other to be. I really cannot relate to guys who tell these stories. I became a dating/relationship coach because I’m the sort of guy who attracts girls for sex, and I had some wisdom I used to think was valuable, not because my high school girlfriend broke my heart and slept with another guy or anything.

Oh fucking well.

C’est la vie.

I’m okay.

Truth is, I’ve made a massive amount of progress on this seemingly impossible “manifestation issue” in the last little while.

It’s serving me exactly as it is.

Why don’t I just GIVE UP?

Stop making an antagonist of my inability to find a special someone?

This version of myself will die once his season is over. Not by suicide, but by love. Just like skinny, geeky me died when he randomly started lifting weights and realized he can take deliberate action to improve who he is + that being a strong, dominant, masculine man is very much in the cards for him. Just like sexually hopeless me died when he finally slept with a few girls he liked, and learnt more about how to properly treat a woman from one fantastic fuck than from months of experimentation in the field. Just like professionally hopeless me died when he decided to surrender to the creative strengths he actually has, rather than trying to force himself to be an athlete or a businessman or a normal job-searcher with a resume.

(Every time I’ve worked a normie job, they didn’t even look at my resume before hiring me!)

Just like when I write Starlight, my progress with my personal problems is anything but linear. If I can write 10 pages in a day after weeks of nothing, I can get a fantastic girlfriend like *snaps fingers* after 25 years of nothing.

My “manifestation issues” are my friend, not my enemy.

I had a sobering realization earlier this week:

I will not be happy with a “normal” girl. This isn’t who I’m aligned with. If things worked out with any of the girls I pursued at 20-24, I would be miserable with them in the long-term. They would tolerate me till our deaths because I check all the boxes of what a great, successful man should be, yet never give themselves 100% to me. I would tolerate them out of sheer duty, treating them as an edge, a responsibility, a fun sexual partner, and a fitting mother for our children. Yet we would never unconditionally love each other, no matter how well we attempt to “make it work”.

Our individual psychological profiles would never “click”.

When Matt Stephens sent me down the neurodivergence rabbit hole, I did a ton of research. When I’m exploring intellectual space, I get obsessed with figuring out the latest framework, the latest model, the latest series of cool concepts and ideas. Neurodivergence was this week’s intellectual rabbit hole I had a super fun time exploring, thanks to his amazing thread there.

I felt like a huge burden fell from my shoulders when I admitted to myself…

I will never be happy in a relationship with a neurotypical girl.

This is the real reason I’ve never had a girlfriend before, yet had an easy time attracting girls for hookups and the occasional few dates since I “figured things out” sexually. This is also why I was in so much pain attempting to date neurotypical girls ever since my dating life began. This was my body and soul telling me they’re WRONG for me, like a GPS telling me I won’t reach my intended destination if I keep going that way.

Since I’ve completely given up on the possibility of ever being with a girl whose psychological traits cluster around the middle of the bell curve, I actually feel content with being single. For the first time since before 2018, I’m not agonizing about “when” I’ll finally meet a girl I’m compatible with. I lied earlier when I said I’m CURRENTLY dealing with “manifestation issues”. They’re only the most recent antagonist of my life I’ve overcome. What’ll the next one be? I don’t know. I’ll wait and see.

I understand the Law Of Attraction. I talked about it extensively a couple blog posts ago. You are Fated to get exactly what you ARE, and to live the realities you correspond to.

The girl I’ll effortlessly click with will be the sort of girl whose emotions are intense and unstable, who’s obsessive over the most random shit, who has a high IQ, whose brain acts like an Internet browser with 20 tabs open at once, who feels profoundly incapable of socially relating to most people who just want the normal things in life, who feels overwhelmed and hopeless every time she tries being “normal” and finding a place on the conventional path.

Because that’s how I am too. Even if I don’t always show it.

This is the type of girl I will be able to strongly relate to, feel mutually understood by, build a life with, and easily unconditionally love and cherish.

So why would I ever settle for someone who isn’t that way?

As someone who spent his teen years and early 20s constantly setting goals, taking action, getting into trouble, seeking knowledge and improving his mindsets…

I’ve learnt the hard way how limiting these things are after a certain point. If they work for you, do them. Absolutely do them. Some people can keep expanding through them for the rest of their life, but I’m not like that. They’re not my edge anymore.

As someone who used to pride himself upon being an ambitious hardass who’s constantly on the grind, doing challenging things in the pursuit of great achievements, giving up this way of life was more difficult than any work or action-taking I’ve ever done.

Yet also, more rewarding.

Self-acceptance has been the most difficult challenge in my life so far. Yet every time I give up on trying to change who I am, or to change my life path, I become happier. I feel lighter, more energetic, more in alignment, more like I’m living an interesting story rather than waiting for one to begin.

No sales pitch or anything this time. I’ll just give you one last reminder to read Starlight Season 1 once it comes out. It’s the finest thing I’ve ever written. 😉

Keep living life,

– Ben

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