Life could also be a Mess. Then you die. And thus the mess happens in 4 stages.
Stage One: Mimicry
We are born helpless. We can’t walk, can’t talk, can’t feed ourselves, can’t even do our damn taxes.
As children, the way we’re wired to seek out is by watching and mimicking others. First, we learn to undertake physical skills like walk and talk. Then we develop social skills by watching and mimicking our peers around us. Then, finally, in late childhood, we learn to adapt to our culture by observing the principles, and norms around us and trying to behave in such how that's generally considered acceptable by society.
The goal of Stage One is to point out us the thanks to function within society so that we'll be autonomous, self-sufficient adults. The thought is the adults within the community around us help us to achieve now through supporting our ability to make decisions, and take action, ourselves.
But some adults and community members around us suck. They punish us for our independence. They don’t support our decisions. And thus we don’t develop autonomy. We grind to a halt in Stage One, mimicking those around us, endlessly attempting to please beat order that we'd not be judged.
In a “normal” healthy individual, Stage One will last until late adolescence and early adulthood. For a couple of people, it's getting to last further into adulthood. a get few awaken at some point at age 45 realizing they’ve never actually lived for themselves and wonder where the hell the years went.
This is Stage One. The mimicry. The constant search for approval and validation. The absence of independent thought and personal values.
We must remember the standards and expectations of those around us. But we must also become strong enough to act despite those standards and expectations once we feel it is necessary. We must develop the facility to act by ourselves and for ourselves.
Stage Two: Self-Discovery
In Stage One, we learn to suit in with the people and culture around us. Stage Two is about learning what makes us different from the people and culture around us. Stage Two requires us to start out making decisions for ourselves, to see ourselves, and to understand ourselves and what makes us unique.
Stage Two involves plenty of trial-and-error and experimentation. We experiment with living in new places, hanging out with new people, imbibing new substances, and fidgeting with new people’s orifices.
In my Stage Two, I ran off and visited fifty-something countries. My brother’s Stage Two was diving headfirst into the shape of state in Washington DC. Everyone’s Stage Two is slightly different because all folks is slightly different.
Stage Two could also be a process of self-discovery. We try things. Variety of them go well. Variety of them don’t. The goal is to remain with people who go well and advance .
Stage Two lasts until we start to run up against our own limitations. This doesn’t sit well with many folks . But despite what Oprah and Deepak Chopra may tell you, discovering your own limitations could also be an honest and healthy thing.
You’re just going to be bad at some things, no matter how hard you're trying . And you'd wish to understand what they're . I'm not genetically inclined to ever excel at anything athletic whatsoever. It sucked on behalf of me to seek out that, but I did. I'm also about as capable of feeding myself as an infant drooling applesauce everywhere the bottom . That was important to hunt out also . We all must learn what we suck at. And thus the sooner in our life that we learn it, the upper .
So we’re just bad at some things. Then there are other things that are great for a brief time , but begin to possess diminishing returns after a few of years. Traveling the earth is one example. Sexing many individuals is another. Drinking on a Tuesday night could also be a 3rd . There are more . Trust me.
Your limitations are important because you would like to eventually come to the assumption that a while on this planet is restricted and, therefore, you need to spend it on things that matter most. Meaning realizing that just because you'll do something, doesn’t mean you need to appear the hay . Meaning realizing that just because you would like certain people doesn’t mean you need to be with them. Meaning realizing that there are opportunity costs to everything which you can’t have it all.
There are some folks that never allow themselves to feel limitations — either because they refuse to admit their failures, or because they delude themselves into believing that their limitations don’t exist. These people grind to a halt in Stage Two.
These are the “serial entrepreneurs” who are 38 and living with mom and still haven’t made any money after 15 years of trying. These are the “aspiring actors” who are still waiting tables and haven’t done an audition in two years. These are the folks that can’t settle into a long-term relationship because they always have a gnawing feeling that there’s someone better around the corner. These are the folks that brush all of their failings aside as “releasing” negativity into the universe or “purging” their baggage from their lives.
At some point we all must admit the inevitable: life is brief , not all of our dreams can come true, so we should always carefully pick and choose what we've the only shot at and decide to it.
But people stuck in Stage Two spend most of their time convincing themselves of the opposite . That they are limitless. That they're going to overcome all. That their life is that of non-stop growth and ascendancy within the planet , while everyone else can clearly see that they are merely running in place .
In healthy individuals, Stage Two begins in mid- to late-adolescence and lasts into a person’s mid-20s to mid-30s. Folks that stay in Stage Two beyond that are popularly mentioned as those with “ Peter Pan Syndrome” — the eternal adolescents, always discovering themselves but finding nothing.
Stage Three: Commitment
Once you’ve pushed your own boundaries and either found your limitations (i.e., Athletics, the culinary arts) or found the diminishing returns of certain activities (i.e., Partying, video games,) then you're left with what’s both a) actually important to you, and b) what you’re not terrible at. Now it’s time to make your dent within the planet .
Stage Three is that the good consolidation of one’s life. Out go the buddies who are draining you and holding you back. Out go the activities and hobbies that are a mindless waste of some time . Out go the old dreams that are clearly not coming true anytime soon.
Then you double down on what you’re best at and what's best to you. You double down on the foremost important relationships in your life. You double down on one mission in life, whether that’s to work on the world’s energy crisis or to be a bitching digital artist or to become an expert in brains or have a bunch of snotty, drooling children. Whatever it's , Stage Three is once you catch on done.
Stage Three is all about maximizing your own potential during this life. It’s all about building your legacy. What's getting to you permit behind when you’re gone? What's getting to people remember you by? Whether that’s a breakthrough study or an incredible new product or an adoring family, Stage Three is about leaving the earth slightly bit different than the way you found it.
Stage Three ends when a mix of two things happen: 1) you're feeling as if there’s not much else you are able to accomplish, and 2) you get old and tired and find that you simply would rather sip martinis and do crossword puzzles all day.
In “normal” individuals, Stage Three generally lasts from around 30 years old until one reaches retirement age.
People who get lodged in Stage Three often do so because they don’t skills to abandoning of their ambition and constant desire for more. This inability to abandoning of the power and influence they crave counteracts the natural calming effects of sometime which they're going to often remain driven and hungry well into their 70s and 80s.
Stage Four: Legacy
People arrive into Stage Four having spent somewhere around half a century investing themselves in what they believed was meaningful and important. They did great things, worked hard, earned everything they have , maybe started a family or a charity or a political or Cultural Revolution or two, and now they’re done. They’ve reached the age where their energy and circumstances not allow them to pursue their purpose any more .
The goal of Stage Four then becomes to not create a legacy the utmost amount as simply ensuring that legacy lasts beyond one’s death.
This could be something as simple as supporting and advising their (now grown) children and living vicariously through them. It could mean passing on their projects and work to a protégée or apprentice. It could also mean becoming more politically active to require care of their values during a society that they not recognize.
Stage Four is significant psychologically because it makes the ever-growing reality of one’s own mortality more bearable. As humans, we've a deep need to feel as if our lives mean something. This meaning we constantly search for is literally our only psychological defence against the incomprehensibility of this life and thus the inevitability of our own death. To lose that meaning, or to watch it slip away, or to slowly feel as if the earth has left you behind, is to stare oblivion within the face and let it consume you willingly.