How To Thoroughly Screw Up Your Life Cover

How To Thoroughly Screw Up Your Life

When I was 9, we were at a lake. There were ducks walking around.

I fed some of them and more and more ducks flocked towards me. It was a blast.

Eventually, however, they backed me into a corner, right up against a tree. I fell over.

Needless to say, I was angry at the ducks. I had scraped my elbow.

I now realize I should have been angry at myself. Because this story is a metaphor. A recipe for disaster. Whenever it plays out in life, it works to a tee. And it’s not just me.

Life Is Full of Ducks

  • When you’re 6, put down your imaginary Superman cape, because otherwise, you’ll never be a big boy.
  • When you’re 10, get a pair of Jordan’s, because otherwise, you won’t be cool.
  • When you’re 15, ditch your best friend for the hot guy, because otherwise, you’ll never make prom queen.
  • When you’re 18, make it into a good school, because otherwise, you’ll be a black sheep.
  • When you’re 21, stay close to home, because otherwise, you’ll lose your friends.
  • When you’re 25, pick the stable job, because otherwise, you’ll never be able to start a family.
  • When you’re 29, get married fast, because otherwise, you’ll be too old.

Choosing to Choose

There’s only one thing these ducks are pushing you towards: Making the big choices in life on a whim and spending the rest of it obsessing over trivialities. If you let it, life will back you into a corner you can’t get out of. Until you fall over. That’s what happens when you keep feeding the ducks.

The more things you do because of what you’ll be if you don’t, the less you’ll like who you are when it’s too late.

You might check all of society’s boxes, but none of your own. You’ll only scrape your elbow. To quote John Lennon:

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

There’s more to it, though. Life is what remains after your choices, but there’ll be very little left if you don’t choose at all.