0 ways to profit from being a zero

Jim Esch
4 min readDec 22, 2021

You can learn a lot about yourself once you understand nothing.

In 12 simple, easy steps, let’s look into what being a zero means and why it doesn’t matter.

Photo by Eirik Skarstein on Unsplash
  1. Zero is a cipher. You need nothing to complement your fullness. “Reality, what a concept,” Robin Williams once said. Zero is a concept, too. Absence of quantity, no influence. No harm, no foul.
  2. Zero is the identity element for addition. Adding zero to yourself reproduces your identity. The identical self zeroes out unto itself. Nothing between you and the mirror image. That’s zero. Which is another way of saying that something is produced when adding nothing to it, because something was already there. Are all the words we read and write ciphers for shards of our identity? Do we need to add them to complete ourselves? You already were something before. Adding zero confirms this. We need zero in our lives.
  3. Zero indicates the absence of any or all units under consideration. Imagine (remember), you feel absent from yourself once a job concludes or relationship breaks. There is nothing left to work on, nothing left to say. You are a sum of zeros. Hollowed out. Nothing to see here. Move on. Zero signifies the emptiness you feel. It’s the opposite of meaning. But the absence is full, and it hurts.
  4. Zero indicates an initial point or origin, or an argument at which the value of a function vanishes. In January, when the new year turned, your initial point had some quantity and vector strength. The future was looking up. Gotta start somewhere. Let’s go! Now at year’s end, you experience the vanishing point. Your functions have faded to white, the big fat zero (as if vanishing could be big, which it isn’t, because it has no quantity). Actually, zero is the invisible point before you realized you were zero. Maybe like the instant before the big bang, or after the last gasp.
  5. Zero is a temperature. Zero is cold. Depending on the scale, your zero feel is either freezing, or somewhere deep below that. All you tried to achieve this year at the job, whatever it represented, has turned to crystal, suspended in time like the asterisk formed inside an ice cube.
  6. Zero is a sight setting that enables a firearm to shoot on target. As in zeroing in on your objective, goal, task. Maybe…


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