What’s the difference between the weak and the strong? How do they act and behave? How do they treat others, and how do they expect others to treat them?
Basically, how is it that my new favorite greeting is “Go f*** yourself!” Umm, about that…
Change is a small thing; an incremental, daily thing. It consists of the little things you do differently; the smallest improvements in your actions, reactions, and behaviors.
Added together these changes paint a very different picture, and suddenly you seem as if a wholly different person.
But you’re not. You’re the same. Just different. Just freer. Just MORE yourself.
I was a pushover, and it straight sucked…
I was once pretty asshole-ish as I have said. Short tempered with those I loved and likely to say very mean and cutting things (my bad). But with strangers, though, I was reserved and passive. Very freaking passive…
One of the most common things out of my mouth, in fact, was: “I’m sorry.”
For things I did. For things others did to me. For things outside my control, and even outside my involvement. I apologized for everything (except of course when one was actually deserved). Not because I owed them one, or because they deserved one, but because I thought so little of myself that I felt undeserving of better treatment; of respect or attention, or of consideration of my time, space, and efforts, and so I always felt as if my actions and behaviors were imposing on other’s time and attention.
I was a total pushover. I was weak. Not worthy of anyone’s respect or attention.
Someone knocked into me: “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to.”
Someone darted in front of me for the last seat on the metro: “Oh. I’m sorry. I’ll just stand.”
Someone exploded on me for whatever trivial thing: “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.”
Little things. But little things that, when added up, make one feel as if they are small and unimportant; as if they are perpetually the little brother to be picked on, bullied, and excluded.
I hated it, and that total disgust with myself was one of the great motivators in my desire to change.
Last Friday I walk into a club with a friend. Drink times. I head to the bar, stand tall, look beautiful (I think), and the bartender asks me what’ll I have? I tell her what I want and this short, lame dude next to me barks angrily:
“Hey! I was here first!”
The club is packed. The bar extends the entire length of a wall, with people just crowded around vying for the attention of the bartenders. This isn’t exactly a “line”.
The guy tells the bartender his order, as she stands there waiting for us.
The old pitiful weak Adam would have said in response: “Oh. I’m sorry. I didn’t see you.” Or I would have just stood there and took it, and waited another 15 minutes maybe when I could be having fun.
But anyone who knows what it feels like to be THAT person knows it sucks. The little shame you feel for not STEPPING UP. Now I’m changed, though. I’m better. I’m different. I’m DESERVING.
“Dude, go f*** yourself. She asked ME my order.”
I tell the bartender again what I’ll have and she gets them, ignoring the other dude’s request, because she doesn’t care, and because people innately respond to those more assured of themselves, and confident in themselves, all things being equal.
The guy sees this and says: “You KNOW I was here first, which just makes you more of a d*ck!”
I tell him, “F*** you, dude. It’s a bar. Not the line at a bank.”
I grab my drinks and walk off – never giving him another thought, and having never raised my voice or gotten angry as he had.
The Irony of Confidence
Improving your confidence is a strange thing.
Before, I was an asshole who would have NEVER said or done what I did in that bar. Yet today, where I’m “improved”, I’m a nice guy who would and DID say and do that.
In fact, the amount of times I’ve told people to go f*** themselves this year has sky rocketed (comparatively speaking, here).
It seemingly doesn’t make sense. Except it makes perfect sense.
The average weak individual has no standards for how others treat and interact with them. They willingly accept all manner of improper behavior and treatment towards them, and even apologize for it. People walk all over them, and it’s as if they lay in the street to help.
Or…their standards are TOO high, and the smallest infraction of the kingly treatment they believe they are entitled results in them blowing up disproportionately in anger at some teenager at McDonald’s – making $7.00 an hour – because they simply forgot to take the mayo off their McChicken. Their standards are impossible, yet they don’t meet them themselves.
How to be a Nice Guy with Standards
I don’t sweat the small stuff. People make mistakes. People have bad days. And had there actually been a line I would have gladly waited in it.
But you MUST have standards for how people treat you in life. You MUST stand up for what you deserve and are owed. You MUST stand up for yourself. Because NO ONE will respect someone who doesn’t respect himself.
I know I am a good person, with good intentions. I never mean anyone harm nor disrespect them out of vengeance or malice. I don’t deserve to be yelled at or made to look a fool, then.
Nor do others deserve the same treatment from me if they too mean no harm. That’s how I can calmly and politely request a new McChicken if they inadvertently spread mayo on it. I’ll even laugh and joke about it, because their mistake won’t kill me, because I’d rather laugh about it.
It’s nbd, as my friends and I would say.
To this day, though, standing up for myself remains something I am extremely conscious of, and has been one of the hardest things to change about myself. As in all things, it remains a process. Something to improve upon. And I don’t seek out situations which will test it.
But if a guy’s gonna start something over a turn at the bar, then I’m gonna stand up for myself, and you should do the same.
After all…they can go f*** themselves.
Do you have experience as the weak person? Are you working to become the strong? Am I just a total jerk? Leave a comment. You’ll heart it.