Public admission of failure or premature proclamation of victory

Many of us have been through this so I thought I would address it.  Much of the time, we humans love wishful thinking. We live on it. After all, that’s what drives the placebo effect. We want to believe we’ve made progress and we fool ourselves sometimes. The happy ending looks nice and gets “likes,” after all.

Back in late 2011 I wrote in here that I was over my eating disorder. I would have been if I hadn’t stuck with that abusive therapist, Maria. I wasn’t deliberately jerking anyone around. I really believed I was all better and I didn’t expect Maria to put me into the pits of despair. But she did. Manipulators like her need customers, after all.

I wasn’t lying. I actually believed I would stay on the right path. Unfortunately, such premature proclamations usually get twisted around as either “lying” or being “manipulative” when really, it’s our human wishful thinking at play.

Proclamation of failure has worse results. I don’t recommend it except after the fact. The worst thing I could have done for book sales was to publicly admit I hadn’t sold any. I didn’t know any better! I thought being honest was the right thing! It isn’t! What happened? People assumed it was a bad book. They didn’t even look at it. People who hadn’t read it condemned it, and condemned my character even though they had never met me.

This little oddity will happen even with your best buddies. They’ll blame you for your own failures, even gang up and call you a shit. I don’t think anyone can be trusted to such admission. Like I should keep to myself that I tried for two years to get a job and couldn’t, because it makes me look bad, even if I use this little fact as  a joke. As far as I know, if you haven’t sold any, if business isn’t booming, just keep that to yourself and keep plodding along.

Admission of failure leaves you vulnerable and open to name-calling. While I love being honest I am realizing I shouldn’t have publicly admitted my book hadn’t sold. People do not like failure and they’re quick to blame you. I’ve heard it all. Attitude problem. Not positive enough. And of course all kinds of criticisms about the book by people who never read it.

The best thing to do is probably laugh over the idiotic things people say . People are ignorant and they’ll say anything that looks good to others without even realizing what they’re saying.

Someone even had the nerve, a while back to tell me to post six out of seven bogus posts on Facebook. Post silly pics, she said, because that way people will like you more. She claimed she had done a study on Facebook and six out of seven, she said, had to be cutesie pics and worthless “memes.” That, she said, works.

While she very well may have been right, I resented every bit of what she said. Let’s look at the flip side. “Julie, no one likes your genuine posts, so how about faking it six out of seven times because people really can’t stand you.”

In her effort to be helpful, that’s essentially what was behind what she said. And why I didn’t follow those instructions at all, but instead, found people who appreciate who I am and actually like me.

Feedback and comments welcome!