The tyranny of self-improvement

I noticed many people running and cycling through the metropolis and even more people perfecting new skills all in addition to maintaining mature relationships, healthy sex lives and home schooling the offspring. This is admirable and telling. I wonder why this surge in self-improvement and perfection seeking not just during lockdown but even 2020 P.L.D (pre-lockdown).

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Personally, I have more time because I am one of the lucky ones who can work from home. So at the moment I save a lot of time which I would normally travel through the metropolis. And I have to admit, when all this started I made a huge list of things to do. As time went on Netflix and Disney became more important and with it biscuits and tea. My neighbours used my list to roll a big joint and get the entire road high. Thanks for sharing. 

This got me thinking, do I need to complete a degree in psychology whilst on lockdown or do I need to attend evening classes to master a new skill A.L.D (after lockdown)? No. Neither do I need to get fit or become vegan or Buddhist or whatever. I need to become nothing.  Together with fitbits, calorie and step counting apps, many of us have bought into this self-improvement mentality which I dare say is new to our time. I can’t remember my grandparents ever scheduling running sessions, counting steps or learning something after work. What utter bs is this? Why do we do it? Why do we want to improve ourselves to death? Who told us we were not good enough? 

At work we have targets, we rush around all day, just about earning enough to pay our bills and in addition to this we invite apps into our life that hold us accountable even more. Like our bosses are not breathing and shouting down our necks already. Like we are not done yet. And now we need to validate ourselves by becoming OFSTED approved homeschool teachers, making fancy cakes and cooking three course meals whilst at the same time losing weight and learning three new languages. No thanks!

I start a rebellion right here. I am no longer a hamster in a wheel. Join my programme. I propose a self indulgence programme. Back to the past. When people came home from work, had a nice meal, a drink and just chilled out. Half a sit up in the morning to get out of bed and half a sit up at night to lie down again. In between, get through work without getting fired for shouting at the boss. Clock out after 8 hours. Join a union and support it. Leave the work phone at work, don’t check emails. No 50+ guys in lycra huffing and puffing to meet a self-set app controlled running target. No, let’s relax. Let’s chat to the neighbours, if you like that sort of thing. Go for a walk or sit on your arse, who cares? Let’s do nothing. Be off work and on life. Hm let me overthink this…

#felicityfauxpas #observationsfromthemetropolis #tyranny #self-improvement #self-indulgence

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