Hope last entry wasn’t too boring for you, because this is more of the same.
So I talked about how I was unpopular and socially awkward, especially with girls. What I didn’t mention is how grateful I am for that. The reason is, all those people that were popular and comfortable with girls early on turned out to be losers. Not to be mean, but it’s true.
I don’t know why that is, but I think it’s partly this. At least with popularity. Just, the people who became popular, it became important to them, it was something that they needed and wanted to maintain, and it became their priority. Whereas, with like me and my friends, we didn’t have that, it wasn’t a priority for us, so we found outlets in other things, like academics.
It’s not that simple, of course. Like, one reason we did concentrate on academics is because we had that ability, and not everyone has that. So it’s not like everyone who is unpopular tries to do well in school, or that if a popular person weren’t popular, they’d do better in school. But, what I’ve noticed (my opinion) is that for people who can do well, if they’re popular that just gets in the way, impedes their academic success. Just, other things are more important, and they don’t need it.
This is just a generality and you can disagree with me. There are exceptions, of course, especially at these weirdo schools like Whitney were everyone is a nerd, so academic achievement is a popular trait. But, I dunno, it’s just what I’ve seen with people I know. Those who can do well academically get sidetracked by popularity, and even with the rest, I mean like with my friends, we weren’t all brilliant, we went to different schools and whatever, but we all turned out pretty well, I think.
Same thing with girls. Like I keep saying, it’s related, because the cool people were the ones who were comfortable with and attractive to girls. But yeah, when I was younger, I pretty much hated those people. Not so much because they were bad people, but more because they were what I wanted to be but couldn’t. I’m sure at the time I thought I was better than they were because I did better in school while they were all caught up in their coolness, but honestly, it wasn’t like a choice. I would have been them if I could, but I couldn’t because I was too dorky looking, and so I wasn’t. It all comes down to them being what I wanted but couldn’t be which made me hate them.
Which is exactly why I’m so glad I wasn’t. I don’t know, I just think if I had been popular and cool with the ladies, I would have gotten sidetracked and I wouldn’t be where I am today. Just, going to a nice school, having a decent job, all that. It’s all about delayed gratification, in my mind. In the end, those people who weren’t popular as kids and nerdy and whatever become popular and attractive later in life, because the world likes successful people.
Even beyond that, what happens in life after school, or even during school, is that you hang out with people like you. So, you’ll find your group, and I’m convinced that anyone can be popular; it’s just a matter of finding the right group. So, popularity will come. But success requires something else, and I think popularity in childhood hinders that. This actually came up in Perspectives, just how these academic achievers were social outcasts in their youth. I don’t know, I just really think popularity hinders you.
So like, with my kids, I really want them to not be cool either. I’m just convinced that it will hinder their performance and priorities and all that. But it’s a delicate balance. Because, I mean, some unpopular people end up just kind of going off and being complete rebels in the end. I really don’t know how it works out. But, seriously, I really don’t want my kids to be popular too early.
So anyway, it’s all about delayed gratification. Just, I’m really grateful that I wasn’t cool and that I focused on academics because it was good for me now; I get to enjoy what it brought me, and all the stuff I didn’t get at the time I get now. Not just that but stuff like piano. I hated piano lessons for so long, but I’m extremely grateful now, because I have this training that not everyone has, even those that are musically talented, and I get to enjoy it now. Delayed gratification is a good thing.
So here’s the problem now in my life. All those things, it’s not like I wanted to do it. I delayed gratification because either my parents made me, or I had no choice. Piano, my parents made me stick with it. Academics, I focused on it because I didn’t have a choice to be popular. I’m just so grateful it turned out that way because there’s no way to do that on my own.
But now it’s not like that. My parents aren’t there and I have a choice in things anymore. I’m not sure what the equivalent is to when I was younger. Maybe something like work. I don’t need to be a gunner, but I should work hard, that’s Biblical I think. I’m sure good work habits will reap rewards both in this life and even in heaven. But like, there’s nothing to make me do that. If I want I can just choose to screw around, staying up late watching movies, hanging out with my girlfriend, whatever. Just, I have these options now where I didn’t before.
I don’t know if work is a good example, but whatever. My point is, just generally in my life now I’m finding that there are times I need to delay my gratification for something better, especially with spiritual disciplines, but because I don’t have to, and all my life I’ve only delayed things beca