We live in odd and contradictory times. On one hand every man believes he is an original. A unique snowflake. Special.
I see the Snowflake Complex in my email inbox every day. “I know you wrote this, Mike, but what about me and my situation?”
Yet those same “originals” regularly copy and rip off blog content from me and others.
If you are so original, why are you copying everyone else? Why do you act like everyone else? How can you live an original life?
There’s a way to become an original. It’s not what you’ll hear about in a self-help book.
Stop finding yourself. Start testing yourself.
Navel gazing (or Omphaloskepsis) may have had noble roots. One can learn much about himself and the world through living an examined life. Yet navel gazing has taken on a new meaning in a culture of narcissism.
If you want to find yourself, what are you supposed to do?
Take a few personality quizzes, sit around, stare inside at your stupid emotions or talk about your mommy and daddy. Magically some insight is bound to occur.
Yet that hasn’t worked for you, has it? When has sitting around emoting like a teenage school girl or bored housewife ever helped you divine insights into yourself?
Trying to “find yourself” is something bored housewives in lululemon pants do. They perform some stretches, read Eat, Pray, Love, and go around saying Namaste.
Where did this “find yourself” crap come from?
We live in a weak, self-indulgent, undisciplined society. In a society where weakness is elevated as a virtue, no one cares what you do. Doing is hard. Imagining and speaking (the cheapest of currencies) are valued above all else.
Do you doubt me? Live a decent life. Be a good parent. Donate to charity. Feed the poor. Volunteer in your community.
As we are always a product of our culture, this weakness embedded itself in our unconscious minds. We’ve been brainwashed into believing that insight comes from what passes as thinking rather than through challenging yourself.
Hence why we spend too much time thinking and emoting hipsters rather than taking action like men.
Test yourself to find yourself.
Who are you? How are you different? There are many ways to find out. You may not like what you discover, which is one reason thinking (where you can imagine yourself as some hero) is elevated over doing (where reality sets in).
You think you’re tough? Go to the gym. Hit it hard. If you’re too sore to return, you’re a pussy.
You think you’re a ladies man? Go talk to some women. Find a woman who is so attractive that other people look at wonder what she is doing with you. Until then, you’re a woman who reads too many Twilight and 50 Shades of Grey novels.
Discover who you really are.
Right now you’re a copycat. You don’t know who you are. And that’s OK.
Everyone starts off as a brainwashed conformist. The system has spent a lot of time ensuring that you’re a good little boy who doesn’t cause any trouble.
There is no shame in being pathetic. There is great shame in refusing to find out who you really are.
“What if, on your last day, you met the man you could have become?”
Test yourself long enough and you will find yourself.
There are no short cuts. Self-help books and sites like Danger & Play can help you learn a trick or two.
But the other 90% is your responsibility.
How can you test yourself?
“Do something that scares you each day.” – Unknown
The fear you feel is your unconscious mind reeling against a test. In school you felt some sort of fear when a pop quiz happened, even if you knew the subject matter well.
I felt a rush of adrenaline when taking the California bar, even though intellectually I knew it’d be an easy test for me to pass. That fear of failure, of not being enough, always lurks.
When you face your fears, you become someone new. The conformity slowly dies off. The brainwashed, sloppy, whiny, pathetic little lamb doesn’t want to die.
What are you afraid of?
It doesn’t matter to me. My fears are different from yours and my path differs from yours.
Find and face your fears and then you will become a true original.