A Special Kind of Self-Destructive
Following the decision to leave my job this morning, I thought I'd ramble about the impact of some of my self-destructive behaviours and how they have been some of the most important for my development over the years.
Not in the balls-to-the-wall, ‘fuck you guys I’m outta here’ ways of my past, but after about 8 months of bland consistency and none-stop whinging.
It’s well documented that a guaranteed way to get on my black-list is to be a negative person who does nothing but complain about their circumstance yet does nothing to change it. By black-list, ‘it doesn’t mean I don’t wanna see you eat, it means just not at my table’ – Tupac.
Yet, I have found that over the past year working for this company, I spent months 1 to 8 spiralling into the very thing I feared most. A lazy, unfit, negative, complaining, consistent person.
If there’s one thing to take away from Burnt, one of the two Bradley Cooper films I used to watch almost daily (the other being ‘Limitless’), is the fundamental line “consistency is death.” This is preceded by his perfect ramble in a burger king that states when it comes to being a world-leading chef “you want to be consistent in experience not consistent in taste… It’s like sex: you’re always headed to the same place but you’ve got to find new and dangerous ways of getting there”.
When I watched Burnt in the bath last week it reminded me of this unquenchable spirit that I had for constant change – the only consistency I have ever pursued is that of consistent change.
I have spent a year having the same conversation every god damn day, doing the same work at the same computer in the same place. I’m not saying that it’s not good, honest work; I have full respect for those who chose a simple life of doing something they’re good at in a way that leaves their mental capacity free for their spare time, but I am simply not built this way.
As mentioned, I used to watch Burnt and Limitless almost daily. This is good evidence should I ever need to retake an Autism exam, but more importantly it highlights the spirit which I wish to live my life by.
I can easily be defined by my high-stress and erratic tendencies. A regular challenge is finding a succinct answer to the question ‘so what’s new?’ When I was finding this question easy to answer it was sending me into a miserable spiral of… well, nothing really. That was the whole problem.
It’s just ‘nothing’.
The same clothes in a different rotation with different lunches in varying degrees of repetition depending on how much I had bulk cooked that week. Chef Adam Jones was right, ‘consistency is death’.
I wasn’t expecting to quit my job today, but with most of the staff being made redundant, effective as of next week, I had to jump on the opportunity to avoid my notice period by jumping into someone else’s career grave and giving them my position. After all, it’s in my personal mission statement that ‘I am the master of my fate and the captain of my soul’.
I have made many self-destructive decisions over the years, at least enough to put the people who care about me on the edge of their seat wondering if this will be the last disaster, but I can’t honestly say that I regret a single one.
Such high-risk, low-reward decisions have been the definition of my character, and are the defining assets of my personal history that I enjoy discussing. I’m known for being a gob-shite anyway, so no doubt I love the chance to tell people about the time I stayed up for 3 days straight writing my own legal documents which were essentially illegible, only to discover that I could download a template and modify the ‘INSERT COMPANY NAME HERE’ tags. Or the time I pulled another all-nighter taking t-shirts out of plastic packaging, only to fold them differently, put them back in their packaging, and put them on a shelf, all while blasting Ol’ Dirty Bastard as I came off the caffeine high from another late shift at the restaurant.
I titled this article ‘A Special Kind of Self Destruction’ because I wanted to highlight that some self-destructive behaviour has been some of the most progressive over my limited years.
I could count on my fingers the amount of times I have gone out to nightclubs because I could never see any positive result from it. My response when at university, after I’d ran past the line of people dressed identically with the same haircuts to get into Prizm after my boxing sessions, was ‘I’m at uni for self-development, not self-destruction’ (thanks for that one, Gary V).
Maybe abruptly leaving a job with a cool title to instead help people get healthy during a pandemic, where 1-to-1 interaction is pretty important, may be yet another case of self-destructive behaviour, but at least it’s a break from consistency and I’m not being a someone who whinges about my circumstance without demonstrating an effort to change it.
Let’s hope this makes some good rubble to rebuild with. Make sure to stick around with me to see how it goes.