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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone else underachieve? Or is anyone else seen as an underachiever?
For some reason, despite my eternal suckiness, humans still believe that I will be "successful".

My family (well, my sister in particular) sometimes says that I could always "aim higher". NOTE: when she says this, she means stuff like getting more school responsibilities, escaping my "comfort zones", and having a decent attitude towards self improvement and the like.

Now she's the kind that won't take crap from NOBODY, so I'm kind of like the opposite from her: I take crap from pretty much everything because I suck at not taking crap from things.

I've even had a reply on this site to me (but I will not name names as to by whom) that I could be considered a "great person". I've apparently also got an "unprepossessing ambition", whatever that is lol.

I'm the kind of weird guy you know? The one that has good grades, but is essentially stupid and hasn't got any other talents in life other that rote memorization. You know, the guy that people constantly teach social mechanics and things not to say out loud to, or the one that people say that he has a good personality, but they can't imagine him with a girlfriend.
[Strangely enough, I respect these humans for seeing me this way.]

Of course, don't get me wrong, I have every chance to be successful (well, considering how much I suck at stuff, maybe not), I just don't see why underachieving is so bad. I dunno, maybe I'm just weird.
 

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Out there...
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I'm going through the same feeling right now, as we speak. I had a talk with my father and my brother earlier about not signing up for college courses yet. And I really feel the pressure now from being pushed. Both o them spoke beforehand and both said the I need to be "pushed" to do some major things, even though they like that I've done some big things on my own.

Although I heard from my dad that my brother was trying to get a hold of me several times earlier today, when in fact my phone rang only ONCE. As if I'm being made to look MORE like an irresponsible jerk than I really am. My other brother (who I no longer talk to) used to make me look this wasy ALL THE TIME. I HATE being made to look worse, especially when it's based off absolute lies (which is extra frustrating, since my brother and I get along really well with no real resentments toward each other). But that lie I REALLY resent right now. Kinda off topic a little, lol, but I needed to get that out there.

Anyone else underachieve? Or is anyone else seen as an underachiever?
For some reason, despite my eternal suckiness, humans still believe that I will be "successful".
I can't even tell you the self-conscious shame I've felt about how little I've done (especially in other people's eyes) vs. the **** I could pull out of me. I hear you on this.

My family (well, my sister in particular) sometimes says that I could always "aim higher". NOTE: when she says this, she means stuff like getting more school responsibilities, escaping my "comfort zones", and having a decent attitude towards self improvement and the like.

Now she's the kind that won't take crap from NOBODY, so I'm kind of like the opposite from her: I take crap from pretty much everything because I suck at not taking crap from things.

I've even had a reply on this site to me (but I will not name names as to by whom) that I could be considered a "great person". I've apparently also got an "unprepossessing ambition", whatever that is lol.
I go through this with my dad as well. We get on fine but having talks over the phone with him is not very pleasant for me, becasue of the stress he puts on me to do these types of things within a short amount of time (I don't think he realizes just HOW anxious I get, because he doesn't strike me as the anxious type anyway).

Your second paragraph really strikes me because just the other day I was thinking about this. These people that are rightfully assertive and have the strength-in-will-power to not AT ALL let themselves be walked over. I think it's becasue of the way I was brought up, that I was made to fear EVERYTHING (possibly a learned behavior). Aust, can you think back to how YOU were brought up vs. your sister?

I'm the kind of weird guy you know? The one that has good grades, but is essentially stupid and hasn't got any other talents in life other that rote memorization. You know, the guy that people constantly teach social mechanics and things not to say out loud to, or the one that people say that he has a good personality, but they can't imagine him with a girlfriend.
[Strangely enough, I respect these humans for seeing me this way.]
Ha, I may be the opposite. I was the smart kid that eventually took a nosedive and got horrible grades despite having the ability to outshine everyone (if I really applied to it of course). Which just made me feel even more resentful, deflated, and just outright worse.

And I think you respect people this way because not only are they laying it out for you there, but because they're also kinda motivating you in a way. It also motivates you to, more or less, prove them wrong. That you CAN and WILL do what they don't expect of you. Am I hitting the mark on this, or did I miss?

Of course, don't get me wrong, I have every chance to be successful (well, considering how much I suck at stuff, maybe not), I just don't see why underachieving is so bad. I dunno, maybe I'm just weird.
It could be casue of the fear that parents have for you to be successful. Parents (my dad in this case, maybe both in yours) tend to exaggerate because of the fear that you might fall back in life and live below the quality of life that they want for you (and that you would like for yourself). Ultimately, they're only there to help (and of course, we take this for granted), but sometimes this can seem a little too much. Especially at your age (17, right?). I'm still kinda feeling this at 26 (soon to be 27), so naturally I'm a bit more insecure in this respect.

I hope this helped somewhat.
 

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Maybe to a degree, but there's more to life than the kind of success that comes from having money and social status. I sometimes wonder if I should have gone into the honors college at my university and I always think I'm not studying enough. I never studied in high school but it's a whole different story in college. GPA is all you can think about.
 

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I think he's talking about success in various aspects of life.

And yeah, I feel that way too.

Underachievement is kind of a dodgy concept, though. It follows that where one is at any given time points to their overall potential in the short term.

Eh...nevermind. That just comes off as negative.
 

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No. You have to believe in yourself and your abilities, because no one else is guaranteed to. I think that even people who are depressed and think they're horrible at everything know in their gut that they have some talents. It's just about believing it in your head too, and starting to live up to your potential.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I can't even tell you the self-conscious shame I've felt about how little I've done (especially in other people's eyes) vs. the **** I could pull out of me. I hear you on this.
Whilst I don't feel a lot of shame (well, not anymore anyways), I relate.

Aust, can you think back to how YOU were brought up vs. your sister?
Well, parent-wise, we were raised by the same parent, so that would be the same I suppose. Although in the home, I am the youngest in my family (my sister is 2 years older than me), which pretty much makes me the "go-fer" guy, like, I had to do all the little things in the house.

From culture, I kinda had to obey, so I just always did the tasks.
My sister just shouted when she didn't want to do anything, when then in turn led it to me. So I did it, because if I didn't, it wouldn't get done.

I suppose the difference begun at school and stuff.

In primary school, my sister had plenty of friends, was in the pupil council, and was really respected.
In primary school, my brother (who is 5 years older than me) was also in the pupil council, and was really respected, and had loads of friends.
In primary school, I had only 1 friend, and was bullied for being a geek, no responsibilities, and was only known pretty much for being my brother's brother.

In high school, my sister was part of the basketball team. She got to the Semi-finals.
In high school, my brother was part of the basketball team. He got to the championships.
In high school, I was part of the basketball team. We lost every single game.

Even NOW, people only know me for being my sister's or brother's relative. I suppose it helps: I don't have much to offer on my own anyways.
I suppose my family have always pushed me to get some kind of sport in high school: my brother said it would help me get girls and not get fat, and my sister said it would help with socializing, and not getting fat.

My family have all been in relationships aswell. My brother had loads of girlfriends, my sister has had a boyfriend, and I'm sure she's had more than she's letting on. To this day I have never went on a date.

I suppose that's enough for now.

And I think you respect people this way because not only are they laying it out for you there, but because they're also kinda motivating you in a way. It also motivates you to, more or less, prove them wrong. That you CAN and WILL do what they don't expect of you. Am I hitting the mark on this, or did I miss?
Half and half really. I don't really think those people would care if I proved them wrong anyways, so I'm not trying to do that. I respect them because they see me for what I am.

It could be casue of the fear that parents have for you to be successful. Parents (my dad in this case, maybe both in yours) tend to exaggerate because of the fear that you might fall back in life and live below the quality of life that they want for you (and that you would like for yourself). Ultimately, they're only there to help (and of course, we take this for granted), but sometimes this can seem a little too much. Especially at your age (17, right?). I'm still kinda feeling this at 26 (soon to be 27), so naturally I'm a bit more insecure in this respect.
Yeah. Ohwell, parents will be parents.

I hope this helped somewhat.
Yes, it did!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think he's talking about success in various aspects of life.

And yeah, I feel that way too.

Underachievement is kind of a dodgy concept, though. It follows that where one is at any given time points to their overall potential in the short term.

Eh...nevermind. That just comes off as negative.
No it doesn't, I see where you are coming from. Although, I'm apparently really negative, so I don't know.

No. You have to believe in yourself and your abilities, because no one else is guaranteed to. I think that even people who are depressed and think they're horrible at everything know in their gut that they have some talents. It's just about believing it in your head too, and starting to live up to your potential.
Then why are they depressed? But why should we live up to out potential? Surely aiming lower than that is fine too?
 

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Then why are they depressed? But why should we live up to out potential? Surely aiming lower than that is fine too?
They're depressed because they can't seem to make those changes. They just keep bringing themselves down. Why would you want to aim lower than your potential? I don't really understand that.
 

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I am an underachiever, but only because I'm afraid of failure. If I wasn't so anxious, I'd probably be a lot better off, but an entire life of depression and anxiety will do that to you. I'm behind everyone else as a result, but I'll catch up in time.
 

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I haven't read all your posts but one part did catch my eye...the one about comparisons to siblings...which I can relate to.
I've grown up in a big family...7 boys...and I was close to the midde. It has been a struggle to find my identity, who I am, what I stand for, find my voice, assert myself as an individual instead of a spectator.

Your underachieving may be an unconscious rebellion to family circumstances. Over time I imagine you will sort yourself out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
They're depressed because they can't seem to make those changes. They just keep bringing themselves down. Why would you want to aim lower than your potential? I don't really understand that.
Why not? Do you feel that EVERY single human has to strive to become the best that they can be?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yes, I do actually. Why waste the talents you have? We've got one life to live. Better make it count.
Why should we make it "count?" There's no reason to specifically live life to your "fullest", if your perfectly content with where you are now. Unless that is what you mean by making "it count" then I guess my argument is invalid.
Or what if you have no talents, or no skills that are good enough? And I won't accept some lame manga rebuttal like:
" Everyone has something that they are amazing at!! They only need to get stronger and strive to live!!!" or something to that effect.
 

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Yup. Primary school = on my own in advanced spelling, top group for everything else, mentored as a gifted kid, lead in school play, art exhibitions, class technology club rep...then puberty hit :| Big mediocre fail ever since and have only ever had one real job aged 25.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yup. Primary school = on my own in advanced spelling, top group for everything else, mentored as a gifted kid, lead in school play, art exhibitions, class technology club rep...then puberty hit :| Big mediocre fail ever since and have only ever had one real job aged 25.



Although I suck at empathy, I feel you Silverella
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
"Not living up to your potential" is such a Kafkaesque moral failure. What did you do wrong? Whom do you hurt?
Nothing. And no one. I guess I'm immoral then: I haven't really been living up to my so called "potential" for at least 5 years. To be fair however, I'm only 17. But why is it so "Kafkaesque?" It's not really that complicated, or horrible.
 

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That's what my Dad called me all throughout high school - an underachiever. Even when I got a 29 on my ACT. Made me take it again and I wasn't sure I was going to score one point higher to get scholarships but somehow I did. Now I'm in college, and he respects me twice as much. It doesn't make sense to me, but just keep holding on and life will get better once your in college.
 

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Yeah I'm an underachiever, in a way. In high school I did well and I could have gone to a 4 year school, even an Ivy League as my guidance counselor told me. I even have family members that yelled at me that I'm only going to a 2 year college and "wasting" my potential. But I have zero motivation and no money. I was too anxious to apply for scholarships. I could have a side-job but I've stopped applying. I currently go to a community college and don't think my major suits me very well, but I don't care anymore, I just want to pass. I could be doing lots of stuff differently except I don't see the point in being "succesful" anymore. It's not like I have any fake friends to impress with my "achievements."
 

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It has occured to me that underachieving isn't a moral issue - in fact, I went one step further and decided it was IMMORAL to SUCCEED as i'd be taking a place that someone else could have :lol Thanks, parents overly obsessed with being grateful for privilege.

But seriously, all that 'inspirational character' bull really does p me off. 'Well done, you climbed a mountain. no, you climbed three big mountains. I'm sure that's done the world a load of good :roll'...I think helping is worthwhile and you should to the best of your ability, but I find personal, inspirational success purely for the sake of it difficult to stomach.
 
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