Why losers stay losers
I was also playing around with the thought of why “losers” have a hard time of making it to where they want to be.
I’m not saying “loser” in a negative way, because I’ve practically been one most of my life. I just couldn’t figure out a better word.
Of course the initial realization that being a loser is just a made up concept helps a lot, but I’m talking about actually turning the downward spiral to the other way.
So, I’ve been talking about momentum a lot and in my opinion it’s one of the most important concepts in self-improvement. I like to combine it with Stephen Coveys downward and upward spirals.
As you can guess, “losers” are people who are in a downward spiral.
This means that there’s a negative momentum in one’s life. All the unbeneficial habits have piled up on one another and that has led to one feeling like a piece of shit.
The problem is that all the traditional advice for getting out of this state is bullshit. It’s advice that works on people who are in slight upward spiral or somewhere in between, but it’s not applicable to someone who’s in deep shit.
I’m talking about advice such as “just go get friends” “go out to socialize” “just get your act together” “go get a job” etc.
When one has an overwhelming negative momentum in their lives, the thought of doing practically anything feels too discouraging.
Every once in a while someone in downward spiral realizes that it might be possible to do something to change this kind of crappy life.
Unfortunately, they are making the mistake of trying to take too big of a leap.
They try to put their reverse gear on while driving downhill (with heavy cargo).
There’s a reason why people in upward spiral can do all the things they do – it’s because they’ve already been doing it for a long time. For some it has accumulated from childhood, some people have gotten slowly to it later in their teens and so on.
It makes no sense for someone with huge negative momentum to be even able to change their patterns so quickly.
So what happens when you put on reverse gear while driving downhill (like 60mph / 100km/h?).
Shit breaks down, son.
There are deeply seated habits engrained to ones brain and if that person doesn’t have knowledge about them, they’ll probably fall back to them before a new one is made to replace the old ones.
For someone who’s crippled by social anxiety the cure is of course desensitizing, in other words, going out and talk to people and realize that ones thoughts and feelings were horribly over-estimated.
HOWEVER, the pattern of anxiety may be so deep that if one tries to go outside, shaking and trying to mutter out a word, it may and often does backfire on them.
Back to the square one they go.
I did this same mistake so many times and I’ve cried myself to sleep way too many times because of that.
So how to get actually out of this kind of downward spiral?
Small steps and right, applicable knowledge about ones condition.
A plan is good – no more jumping in to the ice-cold water, but tipping a toe and getting used to the temperature.
The problem is often to stick with this plan, at first it may seem like a great idea and one makes some progress, but once the initial burst of motivation ends, it’s hard to keep going.
One has to be aware that this period of being excited about it will eventually end.
One also needs applicable knowledge, whether it is being more social, getting rid of depression or getting good with women.
For some people the environment encouraged healthy relationships and emotional health, but for a lot of people this didn’t happen. They’ll have to learn it from other sources to replace their current, unpleasant conditioning.
Usually this can’t happen (there are exceptions of course) without external resources such as great books, because it’s really hard to be able to get into that same kind of learning state that small kids are naturally in. We’ve already been brainwashed into certain kind of learning process, when what we should really do is trial and error with true openness for the process.
This trial and error + openness has to be replaced with pre-learned concepts that one still has to try out (theory+action). Just “learning” from books has never done anything for me – action is always what counts.
Instead of just trying what works, like a child does, you are given concepts that ‘should work’, but you’ll have to try them out anyway to verify and actually print it into your ‘muscle-memory’. Depending on the concepts and situations, some things work better for others and some for others.
Also, if one has deep depression, it undermines any kind of learning process. I’ve experienced this and I can’t imagine learning anything when feeling like shit. That has to be taken care before anything else.