I’d sat so many interviews and I’d failed all of them.
I’d either not been the right fit, or they’d been looking for something else, or I didn’t have enough experience, or I hadn’t been able to answer all of their questions, or I didn’t have the “balls.”
I felt stuck. I didn’t know what I was supposed to do. What else could I do?
“I don’t know if I’ll ever get a job,” I said to my mum with tears in my eyes.
* * *
I realised that I was living by the expectations of others and that I wanted to stop doing it immediately.
I didn’t know what I wanted to do instead. But at least I knew what I didn’t want. At least I’d admitted to what I didn’t want.
I felt angry when I realised I was always living by the expectations of others. I felt like they had no right to expect me to do whatever they wanted me to do. It suddenly seemed absurd that I’d been doing that.
* * *
We’d had a good date, but then she started making excuses, and I felt pissed off.
Why was she making excuses? Why didn’t she want to see me again? Why couldn’t she just make this easier for me?
I thought, “Why are they all like this?”
And then I laughed. Because I hadn’t learned something that I thought I’d learned.
“They” (meaning women) weren’t all like that.
All the women I was choosing were like that.
That’s a different way of seeing it. That helps me to stop blaming every woman in the world and to start taking responsibility for my choices.
Every woman I’d been with, or been interested in, had been the same. They’d all been indirect, none of them had liked me being direct, and I’d had to try so hard to persuade them that they did indeed want to be with me.
But, of course, there was only one common denominator in choosing those women.
It was easy to blame them.
It was easy to say “why aren’t they being direct?” or “why don’t they like it when I’m direct?” or “why are they making this so difficult?”
Well, I say it was easy. But I lived with that attitude for years and no relationship I had ever worked out and I put myself through a lot of pain. Does that sound “easy” to you?
But, let’s say that I’m wrong. That me believing I’m the common denominator for everything in my life is incorrect. Even if I’m wrong… isn’t it still just a more useful belief to have?
Because if you don’t believe you’re the common denominator then you’ll never look inside. You’ll never think about taking responsibility. You’ll always blame other people.
You’ll be powerless.
I believe I’m the common denominator in every choice I make. And, even if I’m somehow wrong, that still gives me power. Power to do something different. Power to change. Power to make my life better.
I was the common denominator when I was always living by the expectations of others.
It wasn’t their expectations that were making me do things I didn’t want to do. It was me making a choice to do things I didn’t want to do.
Again, even if their expectations were somehow making me do things I didn’t want to do, how useless is that as a belief? Again, it makes me powerless.
I was the common denominator in me failing all my interviews.
It wasn’t that all these interviewers were out to get me. It’s that I wasn’t doing enough to convince them that they had to hire me.
Again, even if they were all out to get me, what kind of a useless belief is that? Isn’t it more useful to take my power back by believing that I wasn’t doing enough to convince them to hire me?
Beliefs aren’t real. You might as well pick some useful ones. Ones that set you free rather than hold you back.
Let’s say you don’t believe you’re the common denominator in your life.
How is that helping you? Does that make you feel in control? Does that make you free?
Forget about it being “right” or “wrong.” That doesn’t matter now. What matters is whether or not it’s a useful belief.
If you believe you’re the common denominator in your life, then you’ll be able to change your life.
If you don’t believe you’re the common denominator in your life, then you’ll be waiting until life changes you.
Which do you prefer?