We complain about everything. You can’t find the right job. Your boss doesn’t respect you. Learning a new language is too hard. You don’t have enough money.
We readily pass blame on to others, whilst not lifting a finger ourselves. We delude ourselves with ideas of grandeur, that our incredible intelligence & talent is only being held back by the actions of others. If only they knew our full potential.
Yet we remain paralysed, shocked even, as the world continues to not give a shit. The world hasn’t even heard of you, but you wait expectantly for it to lay out the red carpet & lead you to your dream life. You expect it to hold your hand the entire way, diligently removing any barrier in your path.
But why should the world give a shit? What have you done to be noticed? You’re delusional to think — & wrong to expect — that your situations will be resolved by other people or events.
So, should you just become all apathetic & nihilistic? Or just remove yourself from society so you don’t have to deal with the constant sucker-punches to your ego & the oppressive weight of the world bearing down upon you & crushing your dreams? No. You should fight back. You should make things happen.
“I hate my job”
Complaint without action is particularly prevalent when it comes to job applications. I see my friends in dead-end jobs that they desperately want to get out of. We have the same conversations. I encourage them to leave. Discuss a few first steps about how to make it happen. They get motivated. Forget about it by Monday. Do nothing.
This cycle happens literally every single week for a vast swathe of humanity. Distracted by work on Monday. ’Fuck my life’ by Wednesday. Down the pub on Friday.
Yet when I discuss specifics, it’s just painfully obvious why they never seem to make any progress.
“I applied for a couple [meaning literally 2] of job applications, but got rejected.”
Unless you have a CV that Elon Musk would be proud of, this is genuinely laughable. You really think that every person that picks up your CV gasps in amazement as they pore over your 5A*’s at GCSE or your 3-month work experience at a law firm?
You are absolutely deluded to think that you are noticeably better than most people around you. You may even be a lot better in person. But your CV is most probably not.
What do you think would happen, however, if you sent out 10 applications? Or 100?
Last year, I sent out 80+ when applying for jobs last year, with a conversion rate of 7 final stage interviews & 4 final offers. My CV is good, but not exceptional. I’ve started my own company & worked in a variety of product teams in different countries. So what? So have a million other people.
I don’t say this out of pride. I do it to highlight the fact that under 10% of companies asked me to interview. That’s a low success rate. So you think 2 or 3 job applications will do it? You are, as previously stated, deluded.
My point is this: if you complain, then be willing to take action to resolve that problem.
Hate your job? Apply for 100 other positions & you’ll likely have a number of exciting offers on the table.
Hate your boss? Explain to him whatever you issue have or just fucking leave.
Complaining about how hard it is to start a business? No one gives a shit. Start improving at the things you find hard. Start reading. Attend events. Find mentors.
Start taking responsibility for your lives. Stop talking. Start doing.
Do you remember a moment when you’ve ever given up on your dream? Maybe a career path? A business you started? The dream girl you never asked out?
I imagine you remember it as this event completely outside of your control. That you felt the world was conspiring to take it away from you. That these unstoppable forces outside of your control were determining the outcome of your life & you were left there, helpless, unable to do anything about it.
The reality is that you, most likely, did not take action or were not willing to make the sacrifices necessary to make that happen.
I had to build a business whilst freelancing in a company I detested, yet understood why I was doing it. We complain about our situation A LOT. It actually motivates us quite effectively. But we are willing to put the work in & make sacrifices. We take action.
You think it’s fun waking up at 6am when it’s cold & dark outside? You think we like missing out on hanging out with friends? You think working all Saturday is how we want to spend our weekends? No, but we are willing to make that sacrifice.
I knew that being unhappy in my job & lacking purpose is unacceptable to me, so changing that was a necessity. Without happiness & purpose, we can’t enjoy any aspects of our lives.
Start taking responsibility
So next time you complain about something in your life, stop & think. Are you willing to put the work in to change it? Is it so bad that you /must/ make change? Or are you happy to live your life with that nagging feeling festering, unresolved in your mind?
It’s easy to get paralysed by inaction, not knowing where to even start. Stop making excuses. If you’re willing to put hard work in, then you’ll find a way. Stop complaining. Start taking responsibility.
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