How we coin ourselves out of happiness

And why unhappy people dislike happier people.

Warsan Garrow
6 min readSep 3, 2023

--

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

Some things become self-explanatory with time; I do not believe in limitations in self-actualisation, personal growth or interest. I think every individual has endless opportunities, at least somewhat of a spacious range of possibilities, to delve into in terms of personal development(ideally).
However, that concept seems too foreign to most people. The limitations societies impose on private persons, self-righteousness on to sovereign rights, how we frown on taking healthy risks and bravery, especially in women. The way we judge those who are capable and manage to carve out their paths.
Other generic expectations imposed on us are relevant to most people despite how far we think we have evolved individually as humans.

Ironically, that same concept is kept alive and renewed as we evolve. One reason is immigration. We underestimate the foothold migrants have on their newly acquired territories. Or how amazingly progressive countries turn out to be so disappointingly backwards.

Things that unite us are the things we have in common. We are divided and driven by different motives, and though we can think alike, be present in the same spaces. Consume the air from the same environment; how we process and interpret everything around us is different. And that should be a good thing.

Some people are genetically lazy or have limited interests; others are more inquisitive and willing to explore their career interests and options; they have hobbies and, therefore, often more things going for them simultaneously.


That is part of having a life.

Some don’t like change and feel content with keeping their afterschool jobs and pursuing that further into a career. Thus, accessible brain-dead jobs are where they want to be until they reach their retirement age. That idea doesn’t necessarily pose a problem in the general sense. Those opting out of climbing the career ladder might have their reason or are self-confirmed lazy.
And it is okay to have nothing to aspire to, no dreams to pursue while standing at the starting blocks of the rest of your adult life. At the beginning of the rest of their lives, some simply opt-out.

I find that disappointing because I prefer to look at it as an investment portfolio rather than something cumbersome to avoid deciding on and ending up with the easiest option.

For that same reason, I can’t fully comprehend why someone purposely would choose the most mundane accessible job to pursue as a career.

There are some things that exemplify the typical individual who limits their lifepath options and chooses what’s safe and achievable for them over THAT, which requires slightly more work.

What’s more, The one thing most of the individuals I was privileged to talk to about this was their overall interest on a broader spectrum was limited as well.

But that, too, in itself, can be considered a possibility. So long as one feels comfortable in that.
Whatever floats your boat.

Is contentment enough to keep a positive outlook on life?

Most people who have been doing the same accessible job appear to be dissatisfied.

They only have little going for themselves outside of their often blue-colour jobs. They don’t seem to be intrigued about the world around them either. Their interest is usually limited to the TV shows they watch, taking their dog out for a walk and holidaying not too far away from home. A short drive to the nearby camping side with their fuel-sucking vintage camper Van year in, year out will do.
They are more likely to be smokers, and another common aspect they share is their chronic lack of motivation for almost everything: their ability to complain about monetary resources and their jobs exceeds any other working group. Yet, they are eager to spend their last buck on the substances they are addicted to and enjoy consuming. Self-discipline is not their expertise.

They are also obviously reluctant to initiate or actively engage in something they could be passionate about, such as a new project, a sport, etc. Most of them lead quite passive lives, which they seem genuinely satisfied with. But, there is some regret going on within themselves. That internal turmoil causes friction and resentment towards the outside world and other individuals they have nothing to do with but like to hate, especially foreigners.

Was there more to settling for an up-for-grabs brain-dead job after all?

A small percentage of these people started with much potential, and their choices weren’t necessarily limited by reduced mental capacity but rather by a poor sense of self and judgment. That’s where much of the regret lies that is now unfortunately reflected in society at large and others with a different outlook on life.

Some individuals felt it was their responsibility as they did not need the money, while some had grounds to settle for less due to unforeseeable circumstances. Others were given no choice in their career options. And thus, ended up settling for something that seemed attainable. And continued doing that without further personal growth realisation.

I don’t think those who choose to cling to their easy-access jobs stumbled upon these jobs by accident and then suddenly decided to stay.

Their career choices were deliberate because they knew even those jobs could help them get loans and pay off life-long mortgages and other debts they would undoubtedly accumulate. Thus, sacrificing their entire life was worth it, and so was the misery.
They did not have the guts nor the courage to opt for something more intellectually stimulating, but despite that fact, they kept showing up for the jobs they dreaded.

Not society’s fault.

The slight sense of contentment these individuals found in their jobs proved not a strong enough indicator to keep an optimistic outlook on life. And though, that is a common sentiment shared by those stuck in blue-colour for decades.
Their pessimism and lack of self-starting abilities weigh on society.

Even though much can be attributed to their personal choices, some see themselves as the primary victims of a greater systematic conspiracy that never granted ‘people like them a chance’. And these are not even marginalised individuals but rather plain working-class White folk.

Imagine being a White person stuck in a mundane job that requires two brain cells for thirty-plus years. That is the recipe for clinical depression. It is almost natural and expected of someone in that situation to spend half their lifetime complaining.

These sour krauts were the actual rebels, recognised by their angry resting face and loud demeanour, now covered in wrinkles as they age poorly.

Imagine White folk, instead of flourishing in their natural habitat, willingly choosing semi-brain-dead jobs as their prominent careers while simultaneously conscious of their whiteness. Standing on their privileges, living in this oblivious bubble of thinking highly of themselves and having full knowledge of the endless possibilities they could have had.

Instead, they comfortably settled for something easy that cost little to no effort.

They still clock into their lousy jobs, even at an older age, managing to complete the total twelve hours, except now they are so at ease they can do their jobs with their eyes closed. They persist in showing up, bored out of their minds, claiming space.

A blue-colour job for thirty-plus years, alongside people one considers beneath themselves that barely speak your language. On top of that, being fearful and threatened by the fresh flow of high school and college dropouts entering the workforce, stealing your no-brains-required job.

Thus, their self-annoyance and stagnancy in this job are mostly projected onto others, including the system. Not being able to afford to work less, coming to terms with the fact that it is too late to switch careers, and also can’t afford to retire earlier. Imagine being in that state of overall deprivation and then still showing up to the same job that is basically a burden to you, only to avoid loneliness, thus to socialise, hide for at least two hours, and disturb the normal flow of things.

There is enough reason to hate on everyone with more than two brain cells capable of avoiding and refusing to roll around in the pig slum.

Though the resentment and anger at times are somewhat understandable, the way it is projected towards others and how it’s impacting actual working-class and first-generation immigrants cannot be justified.

However, these dynamics teach us a lot about the actual state of our fellow White ‘human beings’. Self-inflicted wounds are the primary reason people coin themselves out of the happiness clause and despise the happier crowd.

--

--

Warsan Garrow

Observer, Critical Thinker, General Enthusiast & Passionate writer❣ My work is intended for educational purposes.