If this doesn’t take you back to The Social Network, then my friend please stop reading this and go watch the movie first. I mean if you google “Pretentious Douchebag” you will literally get Andrew Garfield storming towards Jesse Eisenberg (portraying Mark Zuckerberg) where we witness one of the many amazing scenes in the movie. I had never heard these two words together in one sentence back in 2010 and after 12 years I caught myself mumbling the words in one of our skype meetings. I am not going to write how I think a person that I work with is a douchebag. No, fuck that; no victim mindset on my blog. I am going to write how I sometimes feel that I am the pretentious douche. Gradually becoming the character that I despised. If this feels like a therapy session, then there is no point avoiding the rabbit hole. Let’s strap on and might as well enjoy the ride.
I was never a good follower and saw myself as a rebel, sometimes without a cause. Many may understand what I am talking about and I salute those who are still rebellious, pointing the finger to the system, not getting sucked by the capitalist lifestyle, and living life on their own terms. I, on the other hand, am a part of an organization that I preached against. Practicing the repetitive boring tasks that I learnt back in school. It happened so fast. Now that I step back and take a good look at myself, I can see the hypocrite that I have always hated. The safety zone has got me by the balls and the thought of leaving it scares me to this day. Why you may ask? Why not just rip the Band-Aid and be free? Well, if I had the fucking answer I wouldn’t be calling myself a hypocrite.
In the multiple Tom Bilyue Impact Theory podcasts that I have listened, I was encouraged to try different activities and discover my passion rather than hoping it would knock on my door. I took Tom’s advice and began listing activities and experiences that I always wanted to try. It was winter and snowboarding was the first in line. Three years have passed and missing snow season is not an option for me. From tennis to boxing and archery classes, I have mastered looking stupid and I actually enjoy the feeling. My amygdala will always try to avoid the experience. Once you understand, however, that your brain has evolved through years of evolution to push back against uncomfortable situations, you will learn to reframe thickheaded stupidity as the first step towards mastery.
Just to be on one page, I am not trying to bash corporate lifestyle like how Andrew destroyed Jesse’s laptop in that scene; seriously why are you still here and not watching the movie? In fact some may even find joy being part of a large organization following chain of commands. If so, then more power to you. Speaking from experience, being part of an organization was the best business university that I have ever attended. What I have learnt in my years in different departments was nothing compared to numbing classes that I wasted in 4 years of so called university. This is what plays with my temper, a fucked up broken system that encourages teenagers – in certain majors – to study hard for a degree that is absolutely useless in the first place. We can talk more about that some other time.
So here I am, finding pleasure in writing and sharing my experiences with anyone who finds my blog readable. Not looking for promotions, ads, or anything to sell. What I have understood is to try anything that grabs my attention, at least once. I may not risk my safety zone and burn my ships at the shore as a motivational maneuver to escape the matrix. I will, however, risk looking stupid in order to wake up the rebel within me. This topic keeps taking me back to Phil Knight’s memoir Shoe Dog, a wonderful book that I highly encourage everyone to read – after watching The Social Network of course. There are multiple beautiful lines that I could quote from the book, but the one that links well with this article is “purpose does not come the first day, it is built over time.”
If you feel stuck in a corporate maze feeling that you are pretending a character that you are not, then know that you are not alone. I am not going to hold your hand and tell you that everything is going to be alright. No, fuck that; no victim mindset on my blog. I am, however, going to tell you that you need to get your ass off and work on acquiring different skills once you are done with your 9 to 5. Once you reframe your day job you will also realize that through all the bullshit repetitive tasks that you are assigned to do, there are nuggets that will strengthen your arsenal and prepare you for your hero’s journey. It’s the time to take responsibility and allow your hypocrisy to act as a motivation. So, what are you waiting for you lazy monkey? Easy, I am only talking to myself. Or am I?