The more I read about personal development, the more I realise that everyone has it all back to front.
The goal shouldn’t be to improve ourselves. It should be to screw up as often as possible because that’s infinitely more interesting.
If we lived in a perfect world then life wouldn’t be worth living. We need to learn how to make more mistakes and I’m going to show you how to do that as efficiently as possible.
Being an idiot should be the ultimate goal, because only a true idiot can…
Idiotic moment number 1 – Let their true love slip away
If you’re lucky enough you might get to meet that one person who metaphorically slaps you across the face, grabs you by the balls (not literally), and makes you believe that you’re living in your own real life version of some generic Jennifer Aniston movie.
In other words – you see someone you like and amazingly, they seem to like you too.
Yes ok they may be in a relationship, but if everything was straightforward, then it wouldn’t be a very good romantic comedy would it?
The ‘comedy’ being in the hilariously inept leading man who hasn’t a clue what to do and ruins his only chance by hesitating to the point of travelling back in time.
I didn’t just have one chance though. Oh no. I had three! THREE!
Sometime in late 2004 – laying on my bed, hugging no less… and didn’t make the move after she virtually told me to do so. Chance gone and I would have to wait a couple of years for another one.
Sometime in late 2006 – We’re both single and we start seeing each other – Awesome right?
No of course not. I come across like an idiot and she thinks I’m an idiot. Back to square one.
Sometime in 2011 – After basically forgetting about her for 5 years, we meet up and it’s like old times. It’s all going well and I acknowledge this is my last real opportunity with her. What do I do?
Not a lot.
2013 – She’s engaged. Not to me.
What an idiot.
Don’t worry, you can do it too!
Anyone can acquire this inability to get the girl/boy of your dreams. All you need is a huge dose of enthusiasm and a massive lack of courage.
The trick is to focus on this one person above all others. Place them on a pedestal. Those in the dating industry sometimes refer to this as ‘one-itis’ and as long as you ignore other potential suitors and totally limit your dating options to this one magical person, you will get absolutely nowhere.
Remember that when you are alone with this person, you should make them feel extra special and bonus points if they strongly hint to actually having feelings for you.
The key now is to do absolutely nothing. Leave them hanging like Houdini at a bat convention.
With enough practice and, like any skill, lots of repetition. You will finally master the dark arts of true incompetence around the opposite sex.
Idiotic moment number 2 – Get into a mountain of debt
As Freddie Mercury once sang – ‘He’s just a poor boy, from a poor family’, but that all changed back in 2002 when I was given the shiniest toy a poor boy could ever dream of having.
Yes – I was given a credit card! It had a £4000 credit limit. It was gold!
If you’re wondering how many Dollars that equates to… well, it’s about a Billion! At least that’s what it felt like at the time.
I can’t even count to 4000 and now I have all this spending power. What shall I do?
Buy myself some much needed musical equipment?
Use it for something sensible like driving lessons or to move out of home and into my own flat?
I think you’re guessing where I’m going with this. I didn’t do any of these and instead, I blew most of it on nothing of any merit whatsoever.
If I remember correctly I did buy The Simpsons – season 2 boxset on DVD. That was nice. I also bought an Xbox. That was fun. Also if my memory serves me right, I lived on Domino’s pizza for a whole week at £15 per order.
After blowing it all within 2 years I decided to get out a £6500 loan to pay off the credit card. Which I did but after paying it off, and then spending the £2500 cash I started using the card again…
What an idiot!
Don’t worry, you can do it too!
First of all, why bother getting a really good career when you can just fill in a form and get sent money for nothing? It’s the future man.
You can even do it more than once. Here is a free bit of advice if you’re on low income… you don’t have to be totally honest on the form either. Nobody checks.
As soon as you receive you shiny bit of treasure, immediately buy the first thing that comes to mind. It will almost certainly be fun for a while and if we can’t enjoy life, what’s the point right?
Continue racking up those purchases. Go on many wild nights out, buy your friends drinks, eat out and get takeaways instead of bulk buying groceries from the supermarket. These little insignificant amounts will quickly add up, so keep going. Eventually you will hit that credit limit.
And then you can get another one and start all over again! The fun literally doesn’t stop.
Idiotic moment number 3 – Allowing your job to affect your health
Between the years of 2001 and 2005 I worked at a huge supermarket chain called Tesco. It’s like the British version of Wal-Mart for you non-natives out there.
It was by far the worst job I ever had but you know what? I still couldn’t leave the damned thing.
Sure I met a lot of cool friends there and we had some fun times and great nights out but the bad times made all of that redundant.
The place was run by a bunch of sadists who loved nothing more than inflicting pain and misery unto all those that crossed their path. I know what you’re thinking – ‘Yeh yeh, but all retail jobs are like that.’
Ok smart ass, how about this…
- Banned from going to the toilet unless granted permission
- Banned from having a drink of water unless during a designated break time
- Given a written warning over something that never actually happened
- Suspended for witnessing an incident but not being involved
- Being asked to actually punch a manager by the manager in question
It was during this job that I started to develop an irregular heartbeat – well I say irregular, it felt like the rhythm to a Tool song at twice the speed. The headaches were pretty bad too and my poor back was taking a battering due to the amount of physical labour we were all put through.
I still didn’t leave. Oh I had opportunities. I actually wanted to become a guitar teacher way back in 2004 but I was too afraid of leaving something ‘safe’ to do the exact thing I am doing now. I effectively wasted 8 years.
Day after day I kept returning for more punishment. Masochists generally pay money for that level of abuse but they were paying ME for it. It’s just a shame I wasn’t into that sort of thing.
Some of the darkest times of my life occurred at that job, but it was like a dodgy marriage – You put up with the shit in the hope that it will all turn around at some point.
It didn’t. What an idiot.
Don’t worry, you can do it too!
Let’s be honest here, finding a new job is a lot of hard work. There is no guarantee that you will even find anything, there is an economic crisis you know.
Sometimes you will have days where your soul will be crushed and your head will be filled with jealously and resentment for those who are happy with their lives.
Good, embrace that feeling and do nothing with it whatsoever.
Stay where you are. It’s relatively safe and money is money right? Just focus on the next 30 years or whatever until you can eventually retire and pick up that easy state pension that may or may not exist.
If your health is taking a downturn then at least you can have some time off sick, so that’s something to look forward to! You will even get paid for it.
Take that you assholes – Winning!
Things to remember…
Risk taking is overrated and applying courage and free will to a situation is likely to get you into unnecessary trouble. It’s always best to leave this to the professionals!
If there is anything in this life that’s worth doing, it’s probably going to be too hard for you so save yourself the hassle and don’t do anything. Easy is always better.
Do the exact OPPOSITE of everything in this article 🙂
You make me feel a lot less insecure detailing my own idiotic moves, and I’m a lot older than you buddy!
I am glad to be of service! 🙂
Thank you for the eye opening article. I liked the last suggestion… Do The Exact Opposite.
Thanks Gabrielle, I was hoping that everyone reading would reach that part and see the point of the article!
I don’t understand how someone with such mental capacity, can not have succeded already..
Damm you’re smart, 5% of people can write like this, fluently with sarcastic and ironic humor in the middle, all tese articles seem effortless… and then you alone worked at tesco? strange
Sorry for my bad english
It’s never too late to turn your life around. Also this:
“Tomorrow (noun): a mystical land where 99% of all human productivity, motivation and achievement is stored.”
Nice blog, very down to earth; just discover it few days ago. It’s my morning before-i-start-to-work-read. I like to read of your struggles, that’s how we learn and strive to improve, it also makes you more human and relatable 🙂 Thx
Thanks Martin – I like that descriptions of tomorrow.. it’s the day that never comes!
Wow, great article.
I was also dumb enough to do all 3, too. The third one was the worst. I worked so hard for such messed-up, evil people that I couldn’t type without an insane amount of pain. Turns out I destroying the cartilage in my fingers. Took me about 2 years to recover. They still hurt once in a while when typing.
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