The Lie: You need to do something worthwhile with your life. You don’t want to grow up to be like your uncle Shawn.
The Truth: Everyone wants to grow up to be like their uncle Shawn. In moments of weakness and self-loathing, I even find myself wanting to be like their slacker uncle Shawn. I shouldn’t, of course; after all, we’re talking about a grown man who works in a juice bar, and who doesn’t seem to mind that his entire professional life consists of nothing more than operating an incredibly basic kitchen appliance. He’s a total philistine, and he’ll leave no lasting mark on the world – but even daily repetitions of these truths fail to distract me from the annoying reality that he gets to spend his days charming the leggings off of the steady stream of women that flows in from the yoga studio next door.
I guess the main reason I don’t want my kids growing up to be like my little brother is that then I’d be surrounded by happy, stress-free people who don’t care how unsuccessful they are. I want my children to be just as miserable about their lack of success as I am.