[ 6 min read ]
Diary of an artist, Tuesday, July 7, 2020
Woke up 4:30 am
Monday, July 6, 2020
I think we care too much about things like success and achievements. Yesterday I replied to a comment under one of my answers on Quora and I said that the amount of pressure on people (not only young people — people in general) is ridiculous today. I don’t know this for sure, but my guess is that it is far bigger than it was just 30 years ago. There has been this revolution in the world (I mean Internet) and nowadays people are being bombarded far more with messages about other people’s “successes” (what most of us interpret as success) and more and more people (especially young, but older generations too) tend to care a great deal about success. Way more than we used to, although I guess that since we came up with this concept of conventional success we’ve been always caring about achieving it. The society has been imposing this sick idea on us and the majority of us bought into it. And, of course new generations of people keep this habit up.
I think social media is a great problem for a lot of people. There is also a good side to social media, but let’s face it, there’s also a terrible side to it. Social media is great when you’re trying to reach people, and when you want to communicate with them, and when you want to be inspired by them, and when you want to monetize your passion, and when you want to stay in touch with your fans, and when you want to crowdfund and help some cause, and when you want to advertise, and when you want to show people your art, or when you want to learn from people. And this list could go on.
What I don’t like about social media is the fact that on almost all social media there’s a massive promotion of conventional success. Numbers, numbers, numbers. Your numbers on social media are your social currency today. I think it already to some degree replaced some of the older indicators of success. Like college and academic degrees, titles, clothes, watches, cars, houses, travel destinations, private schools to which you sent your kids, etc. They still are relevant (mainly offline), but numbers on social media are far more important in today’s world, I guess. Who you hang out with and who will want to hang out with you depends on how big your numbers are. Big numbers mean you’re a success. Small numbers mean you’re a failure / or not yet a person to be taken seriously. Very few people are willing to view people as a work in progress, or something that doesn’t need to have success or have success as a goal.
You’re either killing it or you aren’t. If you’re killing it, people will want to follow you and associate with you. Not necessarily because of who you are as a person and what you do, but because you’re killing it. And therefore you can be used by people as springboard if they also want to succeed, or if they want to become even bigger. Of course there are different leagues for different players. If you have 1K followers or subscribers usually you need to be “friends” with someone with 100K followers or subscribers in order to be taken seriously by such person. And if you have 50K followers or subscribers usually you need to be “friends” with someone with 10M followers or subscribers in order to be taken seriously by such person. Otherwise this person will not even pay attention. This is / was also a rule in the world outside the Internet, but this game has been massively upped by social media.
Maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit, but I guess this is a correct observation.
Such was this world even before the Internet — no doubt about it. Long time ago we collectively had bought into this idea of conventional success and it stuck with us. We’re far more likely to end up believing that people need to strive for a conventional success in life, than we are to believe that they can ignore the need to become a successful human being. Heck, the majority of people don’t know (aren’t even aware of it) that they can ignore this pressure to succeed in life. That success (regardless of its definition) doesn’t even need to be the concept they subscribe to. That they could live a life in which this notion that someone needs to achieve some version of success isn’t even present.
Tuesday, July 7, 2020
Want to add something to what I’ve written yesterday and then I’ll move on to the next thing, which is caring about the opinions of others (or maybe something else — who knows).
In today’s culture (and, as I said yesterday, I think this culture has a long tradition, but with Internet and social media it reaches new heights) the overwhelming majority of people are way more likely to analyse and ponder what leads to success, what it takes to achieve it, who has a chance of being successful and who doesn’t, etc. than they are to ask the fundamental question, which is Why the fuck do I need to be successful in life?
And I don’t think the opposite of success is (has to be) failure. We’d come up with the idea that it is so. That you’re either a success or failure. You’re not success, then you’re a failure. This is so obvious to most of us.
When we’re trying to catch a bus and didn’t, then I’d agree that we can use those words to describe it. Failure was when we didn’t catch the bus, and if we did catch it then it would constitute a success. This is fine.
But I don’t believe we must do the same with success in life. I mean we can buy into this idea of conventional success and constantly strive for it (that’s totally our choice — but most people don’t know they can choose, the idea that they could ignore it never even crossed their minds), but we can also get rid of this idea that we need conventional success (or any success for that matter) in our lives. In such case, if we’ve gotten rid of it, the opposite of success doesn’t exist, because success doesn’t exist. I don’t think something which is described / understood as an exact opposite of something else can exist if the main thing (that of which it is the opposite) doesn’t exist. In such case if you don’t have success you also don’t have failure. If you’re not a success you also aren’t a failure. You’re neither. Those concepts don’t apply to you or your life (what you do in life in the grand scheme of things, how you approach life). They can only apply to things like making to the railway station on time.
Stuff I’m currently reading:
Pol Pot: Anatomy of a Nightmare by Philip Short (on Scribd).
POPism: The Warhol Sixties by Andy Warhol and Pat Hackett (on Scribd).
Audiobook: Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937–1948 by Madeleine Albright (on Scribd).
The Unabomber Manifesto: Industrial Society and Its Future by Ted Kaczynski (free PDF)
Audiobook: How to Lose a Country: The 7 Steps from Democracy to Dictatorship by Ece Temelkuran (on Scribd)
Audiobook: Mao’s Great Famine: The History of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958–62 by Frank Dikötter (on Scribd)
Audiobook: Ten Caesars: Roman Emperors from Augustus to Constantine by Barry Strauss (on Scribd)
Kafka: The Early Years by Reiner Stach (on Scribd) Definitely a great book!
YouTube videos and movies (since my last diary entry):
A Most Wanted Man (on Netflix)
Babylon Berlin Ep. 1.8 (on HBO GO)
Babylon Berlin Ep. 1.9 (on HBO GO)
The Leftovers Pilot (on HBO GO)
John Baldessari Interview: Art is Who I Am
SDZ65/3 Cejrowski o problemach USA 2020/7/1 Radio WNET
SDZ65/2 Cejrowski o Bosaku i Konfederacji 2020/7/1 Radio WNET
Rakowski: Tel Awiw jest światowym centrum LGBT. Działania Palestyńczyków
Pietrewicz: W Korei mamy do czynienia z kontrolowaną eskalacją. Korea Płn.
Dr Lewicki: UE nie wie jak zachować się w rywalizacji USA-Chiny. Trójmorze
Max Kolonko — #R Jesteśmy Rewolucją — We #R The Revolution
Chinczycy i wirusy przed 2030 — Max Kolonko MaxTV
Max Kolonko kandydatem na Prezydenta Polski 2020 #R REVOLUTION
Jordan Peterson on religion vs ideology
Slavoj Žižek explains ideology
ODPOWIADAM GONCIARZOWI (o Prezydencie, LGBT i sporze “ideologia czy ludzie”)
Katolicy to nie ludzie, ale ideologia! ✝️
Szanowny Panie Prezydencie
ŚWIATOWY DZIEŃ MIGRANTA I UCHODŹCY -Cejrowski- Audycja Podzwrotnikowa
SDZ64/1 Cejrowski: jak rozmawiać z Niemcami? 2020/6/22 Radio WNET
Tatuaże, psychotropy i moja dziewczyna — Q&A #2
Gdy czujesz, że nikt nie rozumie 🙃
Czytam KOMENTARZE HEJTERÓW
SDZ66/1 CEJROWSKI O DORABIANIU SIĘ 2020/7/6 Radio WNET
Music for this writing session: Interstellar Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Hans Zimmer, Frederic Chopin (on Spotify).