Friday, July 16, 2010

You, Too, Can Learn From A Selfish Horny Loser

This is a re-post. Sorry, I really am. I have something I really want to blog about but I am under a huge deadline. Yesterday, I threw up something totally slapdash and it didn't sit well with me. But this, this is one of my favorite entries. I hope you enjoy it. xoxoxo

This post is totally long and worth it.

First of all, WOW, so many new readers. What I love even more is that so many of you are commenting. As, you know, it's very important because comments, to me, are better than getting on the scale and losing 10 pounds.

Today, we're talking about a topic you guys had a lot to say about: How To Get Out of A Rut.

I was reading this article in "Elle" magazine called "Danger Man" by Phillip Nobel about a man who walks out on his marriage, kids, his life. He committed to this life - the family life and then he realized, he didn't want it anymore.

"I was bored, Just bored... I had one thought and couldn't shake it: This isn't the life I was meant for."

It's kind of amazing how socially acceptable it is for men to create a certain life for themselves, marriage, kids, the house and cars and then walk out of it when it all becomes too much, to routine, too boring.

But then I got to thinking, maybe there's something we can learn about that.

It's incredibly selfish and self-centered to just leave and barring that a woman is going to be devastated, cry a lot and start drinking martinis at 3:00pm because her life has gone down the tubes... it's kind of admirable what men do.

Okay, now you hate me. Let me rephrase. Today, we're gonna learn a lesson from Selfish Horny Bastards, but in order to do that, we have to look at the action of walking away from a life that doesn't work for you.

So take the whole "walking out on his wife and kids" thing out of the equation, that's depressing. Just focus on the walking out on "High-functioning misery" as the author of the article calls it - that takes courage.

You wanted to know how to get out of your rut and I'm going to tell you:

YOU NEED TO BE BOLD. Bold like a Selfish Horny Loser.

Men are bold all the time. Why can't we be?

If I look at myself, I once was just too polite to walk out on a life I was not enjoying. I had worked so hard at a job I hated that I thought it was admirable to stay. The right thing. I had already invested so much time.

I don't want to start over.

I don't want to take a pay cut.

What if I can't hack it in a new job and then I get fired and END UP WITH NOTHING?

I imagined myself living in an over-turned dumpster in a back alley rooting around for leftover pizza in a trash can. (Everyone knows, of all trash food to eat, pizza is the most safe.)

THEN I GOT BOLD.

Okay, semi-bold. Semi-Bold is when life gives you a sign that this job ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY just isn't for you anymore. For me, that came in a scared-out-of-my-mind emergency room visit, my heart rate was at 230 BPM when it should be like 80 or 90.

The doctors thought I was on cocaine. I thought, "OMG, I wish my life was that glamorous! I want to be that girl!"

Then reality set in. "This job is killing me. I have to leave."

I had to face all those really scary questions that we all avoid by watching tv, surfing the internet or keeping so busy we can't possibly register a THOUGHT INTO OUR OWN HEAD.

My friend who is a writer, like a totally famous writer with shiny awards and stuff, said to me he gets the best ideas by just being silent right in the morning right when he wakes up. He said something smart like he always does that I should have written down but kind of forget.

But the idea was that your conscious, which we ignore all damn day, is kind of speaking to you in the wee hours, in a way we can't block out, so the most truest thoughts will come to you. (Just like they often do in your dreams).

So I did it. I did it a few times. It said:

"What happened to you? You wanted to be a writer but you're so damn afraid to really pursue it that you hide in a job you hate that is eventually going to kill you so you never have to risk having a career you could love. Yeah, good plan."

My conscious is such a sarcastic bitch.

So I was like that Selfish Horny Loser who, for my first time, didn't think about anyone else but me. And I did what I wanted to do. I walked out on my old life.

AND THEN I WAS SHOCKED BY WHAT HAPPENED.

I enrolled in a class at UCLA in sitcom writing. That teacher liked my work and tried to get me an agent. That didn't really work out but high praise from this former sitcom writer turned teacher got me to end the career that I hated and take a job as a writer's assistant.

It was a 70% pay cut. And no, I'm not kidding.

I was terrible at my job. I could only type with two fingers. The writers probably didn't love that I couldn't type their notes fast enough but when I was accepted into a prestigious writing program, people were really sweet to me. They listened to some of my ideas, I got an agent.

Two years later, I had my dream job. Because I was BOLD. Because like the author of that article, I was tired of living the life I wasn't meant for.

It's amazing the things we make sure we have in life. We whip out our credit cards and make sure we have rockin' clothes, big screen TVs, trips, cars, iPods. But we don't use that money to ensure our own happiness - like quitting a job we hate, taking another and supplementing the difference in pay with a zero percent credit card, a loan, etc.

This is just one part of getting out of a rut and we'll talk about more. I just thought a natural place to start is with a job because not only do we spend so much time there (70% of our waking day) but for a lot of us, okay for me, it defines a lot of our self-worth.

I'm not saying it's something to do today, I'm saying, it's time to lay in bed in the morning and let those thoughts come to you. If you can't, if it's too hard, it's journal time.

What do you want to do with the rest of your life?

What makes you happy?

How can you get there?

Are you ready to be bold?


This blog is dedicated to being mini-bold, semi-bold and gia-normously BOLD.

I would love if you would Twitter this post or put it on your Facebook if you think it might help someone else!


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16 comments:

Leah said...

I love this so much! I have been trying to talk myself into doing this. Doing what I love. Just need to figure out what that is. :)

Nikki said...

You're 100% right. And I think I am being bold - I'm almost at the "rooting around in dumpsters for pizza" stage but - I'm surviving and I'm trying to figure out what makes me happy. I've walked out of my old life (tho it's trying to dig it's claws back into me) and I'm still walking... the really good stuff's gotta be just around the bend...

adventure grrl said...

Leah, glad you like the post. Write things down on paper. Listen to your dreams, journal. It helps. Nikki, I am watching your progress and I will root around in those dumpsters with you! Can you hear me cheering you on all the way from L.A.? I HOPE SO!!!!

Jamie said...

Holy Crap, girl! Are you in my head??!?!?! This is exactly what I needed today! I'm going to read it again later but I so appreciate you reposting this! I love when things come along at the perfect time! ;)
Happy day to you!!! xo

zenLizzie said...

Most of my best decisions have come at moments where I was feeling sorry for myself and then just snapped out of it. "Waa waaa. Why is my life this way?" turns into "Ok, fuck this. It can't get any worse, so I might as well start taking some risks." And thats how I quit my job, signed up for grad school, moved for the 100th time, ended bad relationships. Sometimes, even during the decision making, I'm surprised at my boldness, but so far it has definitely proved helpful in getting out of bad situations and on to things I never thought I could do.

Quinn said...

You are so damn inspiring. The truth is that being bold is so terrifying, isn't it? I am trying to overcome this and just do what I love. This was a great blog. Thanks for re-posting it! I am going to try harder to be bold in my life.

Annie said...

Love your blog!

VSoup said...

I'm ready for even "semi-bold." This post is so speaking to me. I'm just stuck and I'm letting the fear keep me stuck. And I can see more and more time passing... Wow. I needed to read this today, thank you. So inspiring.

MrsFatass said...

So, I'm embarassed to say that we've followed each other on Twitter, swapped some tweets, you know, but I only came to your blog yesterday. I've almost read the whole thing. I do that every once in a while - find a blog, like what I read, and have to back up and start from the beginning. Yours is one.

Daisy637 said...

This really moved me. My whole life there is only one thing I've wanted to do and I have no idea what is holding me back - fear of failure or maybe I like that I can just dream and idealize that one career. (sigh) But I really, really loved reading this - and I swear, I'm going to do something about it too.

Mar said...

I'm one of those stuck in a rut peeps. I have no clue what I want to do, and am too busy dealing with the here and now to be able to reflect on what that is. Besides being terrified of what that might entail of course. I have nothing but the utmost awe and respect for those who are able to just make that change and do everything necessary to make their dreams come true. Keep up the good work!

thehorizontalyoyo said...

Why aren't we bold? Is it because we don't have the cajones? Is it because we're people pleasures? Is it because we're the good girls who always do what is expected of us and not what we truly want?

Yes. Yes. YES!

14 years ago, I got stupid bold. I realized that I was in school because people expected me to be. I dropped out of college and ran away with my boyfriend (now husband) down to FL where I stayed for two weeks until I ran out of money.

12 years ago, we got bold as a couple. My Man Beast went down to FL where he thought he had a job waiting for him. He didn't and my (then) 2 yr old son and I joined him a month later. We lived hand-to-mouth in hotel rooms, homeless shelters, and a car.

2 years ago, I got bold. I put my kids in public school (after homeschooling them for a couple of years), got a job as a substitute cafeteria lady, took a parapro exam and got a job as a parapro. Then, The Man Beast thought I should go back to school because I had passion where he didn't. So I did.

I am a 34 yr old woman taking a second stab at school. When I graduate and teach in a classroom, I will be 37. To say it scares the crap out of me, is an understatement.

But I realize that life is not meant to be an item on a to-do list or worst, something to be dictated by other people or crappy circumstances. Life is meant to be embraced. We only have one chance at it - why not make it count?

Anonymous said...

This post just sat on me like a weight last night. Today, I think of it more as something that will set me free. I can do the hard work now or really regret it later. I love your "in your face" posts even though you might not mean for them to be that way.

-Sienna

GoGo said...

I'm in a rut. Big time. It's so easy to distract myself but it's there, ugh. I can't decide what is worse all the hard work to get out of it or the work to ignore it. Thanks for writing this. Wow, it's just exactly how I'm feeling right now.

Anonymous said...

Holy shit, I read this the first time you posted it and I ignored it. Life got in the way. Damn, woman. Damn.

Daisy said...

I'm in love with you and I am so in love with this post. (sigh) Good for you girl, preach!