No More Mr. Nice Guy?

photo credit: unknown

There's an old adage that says "Nice Guys Finish Last," and we've held on to it for generations. For a lot of reasons, it couldn't be more true. You don't see many people who got to the head of their corporations by being voted "most considerate" by their colleagues. And how many times have we seen that sweetheart of a guy get stuck in the friend zone by some girl who is, instead, dating a guy who hardly gives her the time of day? Nice guys get screwed. Over and over again. Except the guy who is in the friend zone, ifyouknowwhatImean.
It's a dog eat dog world, and with the billions of people on this planet you've got to fight for what you want. Sometimes you've got to fight real dirty-like. I have a (beautiful, wonderful, bright, amazing...) friend who resides in New York. She gets up every morning at the crack of dawn and stays at work until sometimes as late as 10 o'clock at night. When I asked her what kind of crazy pills she was taking, her response was this: This is New York City. This is where the best of the best of the best live. If I don't do my job to the maximum capacity, there are 15 other people lined up behind me to take it from me. And here I am, complaining about not having a full-hour lunch break. Speaking of which, did you know that you legally only supposed to have a thirty-minute break for lunch? I looked it up.
Back to the subject at hand- nice guys get the raw end of the deal. We do other people's work. We give you a ride when your car is broken down- only to have you talk about us behind our back a month later. We give our boyfriends back massages even if rarely reciprocated. We let you over on the freeway when we've been waiting in a ten-minute line of cars, because you probably didn't realize this was your exit.
But I want to trump the horn of nice people everywhere and encourage them to continue. Don't cave to being the jerk hole who cuts people off in traffic and has some bizarre superiority complex about who knows what. Think, for a moment, about what you gain by being a jerk... I mean seriously. I'm a firm believer in a certain level of peace at the end of my life. I really, really look forward to at least that portion of being old (wrinkles, memory loss, etc.- notsomuch). When I am old as dirt, sitting in my rocking chair and whittling or whatever randomness I will get myself into- I anticipate and desire a feeling of calm about who I've been and the life I've lived. Now I'm no scientist, but I think that the most important thing you can achieve in this life is a series of positive relationships with the people around you. Even if you are in that whole zone of "I want to provide for my family," you're hoping to enforce a positive relationship with those people. You can't take your yacht with you, so to speak. So when you notice the things that you can take with you to the end of your story (and beyond, if you're a believer of such things)... it's not the job. It's not the relationship you sabotaged and wherein treated someone like crap. It's not the people you used or put down and the ego boost that maybe happened as a result. No one looks back euphorically on that. "Yeah! I was an asshole! Winning!!!"
It's the time you spent scratching someones back, so to speak. It's the smile on the face of someone you gave free babysitting to because they hadn't been on a legitimate date with their spouse in 3 months. You may be thrilled with your new promotion at work, but you can't take it with you. The only thing- the only thing- that you take with you throughout your life, is yourself. So in my humble opinion you should add value to that... add value to who you are. And I think that if you can accomplish that, it's impossible to finish last. Nice guys may finish last in laps 2-3 and 4; but they finish first in the big race. And that's all that really matters.

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