Ask Andrew W.K.: My Friends Resent My Success
Photo by Ashley Eberbach
How do I handle sharing my goals with my friends? I'm not trying to brag, but I'm a guy with ambitions. I want to do cool things and I want to talk about them, but I feel like it makes my friends resent me. How do I tell people my dreams without them thinking I'm an asshole?
Quit talking about what you're going to do, and just focus on doing it instead.
If your "friends" try to bring you down, stop hanging out with them. I had a few friends that often tried to discourage me, and when I shared my dreams and plans, they usually found a way to bash them. I eventually had to either stop hanging out or stop sharing with them.
I noticed that when I told most people around me what I was working on, they either didn't believe me or just said I should "grow up." They thought my goal of becoming a Professional Partier was impossible. In their minds, they honestly thought they were being nice, talking "sense" into me, and helping me realize that the world doesn't "work that way," that you "don't get to do what really you want to do in life."
They weren't mean people. They really thought they were helping "wake me up to the real world," a world they honestly believed was made up of constant frustration, dismay, and failure. It was painful to share and listen to them, so I decided to spend more time on my own and in my own head. A few years later, all my dreams came true. Now those same people don't have much to say to me at all, and that's fine, because I'm too busy partying to talk to them anyway.
The world is a mysterious place. Dreams and goals work out better when they're kept inside you and allowed to manifest from within your own soul. For some reason, sharing your desires with other people has a way of making them not come true as easily. I don't know why it is, but it just usually works that way.
It may seem contrary to our instincts -- it's natural to want to share your excitement and express your desires, but when it comes to making your deepest and truest dreams into reality, it's best to swallow them into your subconscious mind and let them blossom out of your inner self. I don't know how the world makes it happen this way, but if you try this approach I guarantee you'll see better results. Even when you're very anxious to tell someone about an idea or dream, try to contradict that impulse and instead swallow the dream deeper into your soul with a satisfying and calm sense of confidence that it's already on the way to becoming a reality.
Many people will disagree with this method, and of course sometimes you have a very special and trusted team or family that it's helpful and necessary to share with. But most of the time, don't talk about what you want to do, and just do what you want to do instead. Put all the energy you would usually spend telling other people about your dreams into making them happen. A dream is precious and fragile. Keep it safe. Keep it secret. Keep it alive.
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