Tendency to fail

2 years, 5 months ago

Recently, after meditating for sometime i have realized that i have a problem that i must solve to have the life i desire. Whenever i am doing or pursuing something as soon as it gets difficult i quit. I give up. I make excuses, rationalize that i didn’t really want it or that it wasn’t worth it. This…compulsion has led my life to where i do not wish to be, going to community college(because that’s the only place that would accept me with my grades) and living with my parents at age 19.

Reflecting, i realize it started my second year of high school, that i sought out a peer group that shared my fuck it mentality. I had Mono for three months and thought a lot about death and life. What is the point of anything if eventually it all fades? I have no support from my friends, who think i am crazy. i assume that if they admit i have a problem then that means they do too.

I want to do great things, unheard of things that will fill my life with vigor and passion. travel is on my mind and i want to hitchhike to the grand Canyon from where i live in WA. Teaching English in Korea also sounds pretty fun. But before i do that, i must conquer, nay destroy this unhealthy habit i have, to build myself a better life.

I applied to go up the Valhalla in Montreal a while back and i was rejected. I applied to every university in my state and was rejected. After a period of depression and deep thought i know that when the going gets tough, i quit, and that’s why i am not good enough for the dreams i have.

But i want to change. I want to seize the life i dream of. The first step is to identify the problem and admit to it. that is what i am doing with this post. If you get this far down, thanks for reading and any advice or wisdom would make me tremendously grateful.

November 1, 2012 at 11:35 am

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Profile photo of Cameron Cameron (@cameron) 2 years, 5 months ago ago

Hey @charisma,

I know exactly how you feel, and at 22 it’s no different. It’s odd how when you’re younger you imagine that getting old is the answer to living, when in fact age has nothing to do with the life you live. To get the best experience out of life you must just BE, you mustn’t think of what will give you validity in the eyes of society, but what gives you validity in the eyes of yourself.
It’s hard to truly live by this concept, although i am fully aware of this truth, i still struggle with it everyday. Taking small steps is definitely the key to overcoming your dilemma. What i have found helps is making smaller goals that i can accomplish and progressively work to bigger ones. Along with each of these small goals i journal the purpose i am doing it for, as well as the experience or the path i took in accomplishing the goal. Its really difficult to do at first, but trust me, it is a mind opening experience that will help you grow and realize your true calling in life–wherein you will encounter tribulations but instead of quitting you will be so passionately connected to achieving your goal that you persevere through them.
1) Think of an easy goal
2) Write down the steps you think you need to take to get to that goal
3) Start taking those steps
4) If you encounter a problem, write down why it occurred and an idea of how to overcome it
5) After you achieved your goal write what you enjoyed, learned, and could do differently next time.
6) Repeat for the rest of your life…eventually you will find yourself working on a project you truly enjoy, with a purpose in mind that will help you see it through til the end.

I hope this helps!

Profile photo of Casey Casey (@charisma) 2 years, 5 months ago ago

Thank you so much for replying. I know exactly what you mean when you say that young people feel that growing older is the answer. I will for sure try your suggestion. :)

Profile photo of Sasho Stoyanov Anonymous (@) 2 years, 5 months ago ago

I found out another thing. It’s not bad to lose yourself and feel whatever you feel exactly without excusing yourself. It’s not bad because most people would excuse themselves and wonder what others would think of them. So taking the risk to be completely yourself would be also good for the folks doing nothing but watching others. So go out and “fail”. Boo hoo.

Profile photo of Miss Michal Miss Michal (@missmichal) 2 years, 5 months ago ago

One of the things I’ve been turning over in my head lately is my persistent expectation of failure. I also graduated from HS with dismal grades and my college academics were undistinguished at best. I remember, in high school, that I would plan out my classes for the coming semesters with *no expectation that I would pass them*. Part of this was ADHD, I guess, which just meant I was a diesel engine in a gasoline school system. I could learn just fine, I just didn’t do it their way. But having failed at high school primed me for the idea that I would fail at everything, which plain is not the case.

Currently, I’m on the hunt for a job. I was laid off in July, after having grown into a job that almost invariably requires a college degree. I was amazing at it, and this has given me the impetus to go back to school (I transferred my university credits to the *community college* because it’s an extremely practical solution) to do something I really want to do. I’m still terrified of failure, though! So maybe, @charisma, as I address my advice to you, some will bounce back.

Thing One: At home with your parents is a perfectly appropriate place for you to be at age 19, and community college is just fine too. Both are safe places to incubate your dreams and can be springboards to the next level. Squeeze every drop out of your CC experience and find lots of opportunities to contribute. If you need help, get it. Be completely present and let go of any ideas about where you “should” be.

Thing Two: “What is the point of anything if eventually it all fades?” Anything you want it to be. And the fact that it doesn’t last forever is what makes it special.

Thing Three: ” i am not good enough for the dreams i have.” Bullshit. This is an excellent excuse for giving up, and will only perpetuate the behavior you’re trying to stop.

The conclusion I’ve drawn, then, is that you’re being much too hard on yourself. And I am too. As for practical ways to keep going when the going is tough, I’m working on that. I’ll bet there has been at least one time when you stuck through something that you didn’t want to. What did you do then? Duplicate that bright spot. It might not hurt to make a list of such accomplishments and keep it handy.

I look forward to hearing what you decide to try.

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