I spent the last several years working on flaws that I wanted to change and got to a point where I feel pretty good about all of them. That left me with a curious list of flaws I didn’t want to change.
It’s starts with a conversation I keep having that I wish I was greedy. I wish I cared enough about money to do things for it and it alone. But I don’t. Money comes and goes and anything it gets you comes and goes. Plus I’ve been poor my entire life, I’m excellent at being productively occupied while broke, actually I’m much more productive because when I have money I go out having fun. And as I’ve also said recently, I hate just having fun.
All that said I recognize it’s why I have a shitty apartment and boots that are rotting like lepers. I understand the use, the need, for money and what it could provide I just don’t care enough to do anything about it. I wrote out a list of my life goals and none of them had to do with wealth or creature comforts, it’s just not a priority.
I’m right all the time. Meaning I’m certain when I talk. There are a few conversations with a few people that I consider my intellectual peers where I’ll come with curiosity and an open exchange of ideas but most of the time I’ve put in years of thought toward the things I talk about and people come back with cliches or disingenuous lazy arguments. It takes a great deal of intelligence to convince me you’re not a moron and I usually talk to morons like they’re morons.
Basically I’m opinionated and rude. And I don’t mind it too much, generally it keeps people I don’t want to talk to from talking to me.
I do like likeable people though. I like that person who’s sweet to everyone and a warm attitude will get you a lot further in life than intelligence. I just don’t have the patience. I’m sure it’s possible to be nice without being dishonest it just takes twice as long. I know some nice people who walk into a room and have 15 people that they don’t truly like coming up to talk to them. Useless small talk like that disgusts me.
I’m solipsistic. (I use the word a lot, look it up). The narrative of my life is all I really think about. I’m interested in the world in an intellectual way, I care about some people in a way I struggle to define, but really I feel I’m on a mission and anything that doesn’t directly impact that is just scenery.
Meanwhile the classical definition of a good person is someone so humble they’re ego-less. And maybe I could do a bunch of acid and feel at one with everything in a fourth dimensional way but I’d prefer not to be a damn hippie with nothing but false insight and self congratulation.
I’m still struggling with the grey area between behavior and self-identity. It’s easy to say a person can become whatever they want but that’s actually an external idea. It’s true you can choose how you behave, is that the same as choosing what you are, what you become, what you really see when you look in the mirror? If it were we wouldn’t have a seeming epidemic of the imposter effect.
Furthermore the crux of what I’m exploring right now is that I don’t want to change. Isn’t it odd to know that some attributes are held as good, that I fact hold as good, and I choose not to aspire to them?
I feel like I say this too often but most people work this problem in reverse. In any situation a trait is being lauded they claim it as their own. It’s a lazy but comforting way of being because you never have to think about what you aren’t. So much cognitive dissonance goes into people feeling good about themselves – the idea you can be anything at anytime if you just believe, the idea that you can describe yourself with a generic list of positive traits and no definitions or examples – it placates the fear that growing up means making choices that limit future choices. You can’t be an NFL quarterback and a Nobel prize winning chemist. Those are both products of life-long, exclusive focus. And a lot of people rather than face those choices head on just end up coasting to their death.
Maybe, on the other hand, a lot of what I do is just trying to make being hard on oneself a virtue and I just envy the people comfortably living a life.