I'm losing my edge to the kids from France and from London.
August 6, 2009 8:19 AM Subscribe
It doesn’t matter how many goals I achieve, I never feel good about myself. It’s really beginning to be a real drag. It’s even starting to keep me up at night. I sit up in bed thinking about how much of a loser I am all night long. It’s really insane. How do you feel like a success?
posted by anonymous to Grab Bag (35 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
I recently turned 30, so I think that’s part of it. I have also had the same dead end job for the last 6 years since I finished college. I thought it was going to lead to something, but it hasn’t and now I feel I have wasted so many opportunities in my 20s and have nothing to show for it. I don’t know how to leave. I am so specialized in this stupid job that I don’t know how to move on. Humanities degree, obviously.
But, you know, it shouldn’t make me feel that bad. Many people smarter than me don’t even have jobs these days. I also have a family and worked all these years at this job to support it. It gave me the flexibility I needed to keep my family going. There were great reasons to stay, including raises and health insurance, but I regret staying so long. Really, really regret it. I was going to leave YEARS ago, but things kept coming up. Health, collapse of economy, little things like that. So I am still here, feeling bad about myself. I compare myself to mythological people from high school, imagining them all rich and happy and in wonderful careers. What the hell? I didn’t care about them then, why am I comparing myself to them now? And I don’t even talk to any of them, so it’s not like I am comparing myself to anything real.
This is the part that just drives me crazy: we are all doing well. My wife and daughter are doing wonderfully. I love my marriage. We have no debt. Finally live in a great apartment. Have money in the bank. I am totally sober. All of these things I worked damn hard to achieve. But I don’t feel like a success. I feel like a total, complete loser. Ashamed all the time of my job, my past decisions. My self-worth is totally shot. Maybe my hedonic treadmill is stuck at a higher setting than most people because objectively I have achieved plenty for my age. Not a lot of 30 year olds are picking out high schools for their kids to go to next year. But, I feel so far behind people my age that had their 20s to actually craft their career.
I am just giving this as a bit of background. I know that I have to quit my job and find a new one. Besides the voice that tells me I will end up at Burger King, I am just worried that once I achieve the goal of a better job, it will just be something else. For a while I hated myself for not being sober. So I got sober. Then I hated myself for being totally broke. So I saved up a sizable amount of money. Then I hated myself for having such a crappy apartment. So I got a great one. I mean, how the hell do I ever feel good about what I have done? It’s this endless struggle and it doesn’t matter what I achieve; I always end up at this place just feeling like a loser.
So, how do you savor your success? How do you feel like a success?