What is Apathy? Have you ever had someone say to you that Apathy Reigns Supreme? It is a very “Dad” thing to say. I have used the term more than a few times to describe certain people around me. Read on and we will define apathy and see just how big an impact it has on people’s psyches.
There were several inspirations that instigated this post so let me share a few with you and paint some context here.
On the occasions when I do get to see my kids they come over and just wanted to sit down and have everything handed to them.
The Expectations of Royalty
According to them when it comes to entertainment they must be taken out to a certified play center (preferably endorsed by a reputable chain of official merchandise providers) with professional supervision so that they can be guided into the types of play scenarios that becomes them. How different is that?
I will spare you the speech about when I was a boy. Let me know what your dad used to tell you (let me guess! snow, bare feet, 10 miles to school, bread and dripping for lunch, grizzly bear chase on the way home)
Next Scenario: I am at work and we work in a team of dozens of people all trying to get the one project finished. The team has been set up so we all have our own little fields of expertise. I often question just how “expert” anyone is these days. Quite often you need to collaborate with someone. The amount of excuses and reasons people come up with not to do something is deplorable. In the last several years I have seen a distinct shift in peoples attitudes at work. The default stance for almost everyone is now; No – can’t be done, I don’t do that, Not my job, I don’t get paid enough, ask someone else, dunno, I haven’t been trained, not in my job description, too risky. You get my point and I hope you can share my pain. It is a culture of not much more than just passing the ball to someone else.
One more situation I am sure that you have all experienced. Try to ring up a phone company or a bank and get some customer service. The bulk of the message you will hear is that I need to transfer you to someone else, No we don’t do that, fill in this form and SOMEONE will get back to yo or I can’t answer that. Talk about an entire culture of disinterest, lack of responsibility/caring and just plain old-fashioned laziness.
Whilst these three scenarios are common they are examples of individual’s people being lazy. The bigger concern I want you to ponder is just how most people deal with these types of situations. Today we have come to accept these situations as normal but going back 10 years the acceptable behavior today would have been met with damnation from an entire community. Probably even uproar in the street.
Even worse than that you will see collectives of like-minded apathetic people banding together to achieve nothing but self gratification. Don’t believe me? Go check out Instagram or Pinterest, that’s all the evidence I wish to submit your honor, case closed.
This is when the story gets really disturbing in my opinion. It is well understood that for teenagers to separate from their parents a phase or risk taking is required to progress them out of adolescence and transition them into adulthood. When I think back to my teenage years I can remember a lot of dangerous and stupid feats of human dare-devilry which still brings a smile to my face. 🙂 Is that even a word?
I can’t image my kids are going to experience such a defined transition to adulthood if they aren’t prepared to take any risks. Let me know your thoughts below.
Too Many Followers Without Direction
Image how far a school fish would get if they were all swimming together but only vaguely following the fish in from of them on occasions. When the school has no lead and no ambition to unite all you will find is a bunch of fish smacking heads with each other. Then recovering and repeating.
This fish scenario is pretty much what I see around me most days.
Of course, you can argue the totally opposite but you still get to the same situation. Image a thousand fish all swimming independently of each other with no care about the other fish (no followers whatsoever). You may have a thousand strong lead fish all swimming near each other but you will still get fish smacking heads with each other.
The Three Extremes – Nihilism, Condemnation & Human Leeches
There is three upper echelons you can gravitate to if you want to devote yourself to the apathetic arts.
Nihilism is the belief that EVERYTHING is useless, life has no intrinsic value, the entire human race has no purpose. Obviously this is top shelf apathy directed not only to the self but also pointed externally.
Condemnation is the constant and very strong disapproval of EVERYTHING. We have all worked with these people (or been married to them) they generally have nothing to contribute to any situation apart from their disapproval and criticism of everything that you stand for. Again this is an outwardly facing situation.
Saving the worst for last we have the Leeches. These people will turn EVERYTHING around to something that you need to do or give to them. There is nothing you can do or say to the Leech that will make them take any type of responsibility for themselves. Their problems are never ending and always based on their need for more. That more also needs to come from someone else.
Now I have stopped to think about these Leeches it is actually a skilled feat of emotional manipulation and self obsession to take every situation and redirect it back to one self.
How do you deal with these types of people?
If you have worked it let the rest of us know. You deserve a drink.
It used to be that you could just work around these people because they were few and the bulk of us actually wanted to get something done. Those times are long gone unfortunately.
The Apathy Army now does reign supreme sadly. Take the time to have a good look around you and you will quickly see a lot of the concepts I have spoken about here in play.
Some conspiracy theorists will propose to you that there is an orchestrated effort to make more people dum. For the purposes of control. The evidence strongly suggests it but I struggle to believe our leaders are actually that smart themselves.
The best solution I have found is to distance yourself. This may mean working for smaller and smaller companies until you are working at home for yourself, it may mean parting company with certain relatives or friends, it may mean splitting up with your partner. I see that proximity breeds acceptance and if you get used to the status quo of apathy you will soon get comfortable, fat, lazy and then your life has passed you by. No second chances.
Lastly, if you have read this far don’t waste your last few minutes, leave a comment below. Take action and show us all you are not one of those blind followers marching as part of the Apathy Army.