Tuesday, February 12, 2008


I only felt like a failure because lately it hasn't seemed as though I've been accomplishing much. In fact, I can't think of very many accomplishments I've had since graduating college, with the exception of getting a job and a few job-related accomplishments here and there. The accomplishments in college made me feel good about myself, and they were plenty in number. What's an almost-30 year old college graduate to do? It seems I favor accomplishments that are directly related to my having learned something.

Maybe that's it. Maybe I'm going through this failure thing because I'm going to be 30 in four months. It's a crisis. I made lots of accomplishments when I was a young person, but now that I'm older what is there for me to accomplish?

I don't want to get old. The older I get the more difficult it is for me to come-up with excuses for my childishness. Also, the older I get the more ignorant I feel. When I was younger, I felt so smart. Maybe I was vain, and maybe now I'm not. Or maybe I'm being vain in so proudly announcing that I'm not vain. I used to focus on everything that I knew, like my strong mathematical abilities, my computer knowledge. Now I tend to focus on what I don't know, like my fading mathematical talents, forgetting what I learned in school, and being afraid to be in conversation with someone because I fear I'm not their intellectual equal. What if I get involved in a discussion about something I'm not knowledgeable about? Take politics, for example. I might end-up looking ignorant. Or worse, I might end-up mispronouncing a big word that I try using in order to appear bright.

The bottom line is that the only conversation I'm good at having is general conversation, and people might lose interest in that after a while. People want to talk to people that challenge the way they think, just like I enjoy talking to people that challenge me, or people that stimulate me emotionally, spiritually or intellectually. I can only speak about myself or general observations that I make.

The good news is, all I've done on this blog is talk about myself and my general observations, and most of you have continued to return and show interest, so I must be doing something right. It's not just interest you show, but it's caring, too. Which tells me that I can continue to be honest about who I am, about my dreams, hopes, wishes, strengths, weaknesses, failures and accomplishments, all right here in the safety of my blog. What you see here is more than anyone else in the world gets to see, or has ever seen.

To be continued...


Vincent said...

I think we keep visiting your blog because of your honesty in admitting to things that most would attempt to conceal.

And what is so seductive about accomplishments anyhow? You want to be better than others who don't have them? You want recognition, love, on account of accomplishments? You think they will satisfy you?

Personally, I am thrilled about my accomplishments, but that thrill comes at a price. For example I have been doing a little plumbing lately, and am gradually learning how to make joints that don't weep slow tears from invisible leaks. The cost of the thrill is the panic and fear. What if I flood the house?

My plumbing is consequence of necessity, like having a skill good enough to get a job. Other than that, why try to excel at anything? If I have a talent within me that demands expression, it will out, like a bubble coming to the surface. I don't have to coax it.

It's wonderful that you trust your readers enough to share these things.

Alexander M Zoltai said...

As far as being 30, try this on for size:

As far as why I keep returning here:
You are a compelling writer !

~ Alex

Sophia said...

Hi Vincent,

I'm glad it's my honesty that keeps you and others coming back. I have to be honest and open somewhere, in order to release the pressure of keeping it all inside me, and this was the best place to do so. :)

The benefits of accomplishments are twofold. First, when I accomplish something, I feel good about myself. Secondly, of course I like the love, acceptance, attention and recognition that comes from having accomplished. They satisfy me, the satisfaction eventually wears off, therefore pushing me to try to do something else in order to get the rewards again.

When you're fixing a plumbing fixture for your wife, or someone else, don't you like the feeling you get at having succeeded? Don't you like to see them beaming with delight after you have fixed their problems? You get a good feeling inside, right? A good feeling from making them happy as well as a good feeling from having made an achievement.

I think achievements made from helping others are probably the best kind of achievement to be made. It could be the "people-pleaser" in me saying that, but then, I wouldn't be a people-pleaser if I didn't love people. :)

Outside of that, I just like achievements because it means I'm getting somewhere, and not just going 'round and 'round in circles.

Yes, I trust you and all of my readers. I feel like we're all the best of friends. I'm not making that up.

How are you doing? Didn't you just have a cold not too long ago? Did you send that cold to me? I have one now, too! :(

Sophia said...


That gave me a little bit of relief! Although, this guy said that he doesn't think people should retire until age 70! I disagree; I think people should retire at 30. :)

Thanks for the link. It's hard to believe that that article was written in 1967.

Lucid said...

Morning Sophia!!!

I must say, there are times where I feel inadequant too. There were times where my kids would bring me their homework and ask how to do it. It was at those times that I froze. It had been so long snce I'd been in school that I was left just as puzzled as them. I did not beat myself up over it though, because I know what you don't use you lose :) (that was my excuse to make things right in my head lol) ...

I think your ability to recognize all these aspects of yourself is key in your own personal development. I think for you, you are right on track and where you need to be "today" . . . Your doing alright :) Just keep on trucking and take each day one at a time......


Vincent said...

Sophia, re the plumbing: yes I do like the good feeling but it comes at the price of the panic, so I wouldn't do it unless I had no other choice. Which was my point. And it ties in with Dr Johnson's often-quoted remark that "No one but a blockhead ever wrote, other than for money." He knew what a pain it was, at least for him. And the pain of his writing is reflected in the oblivion to which his works have been consigned. He is only famous because of the writing of his biographer.

Moral: do what comes naturally whenever you have a choice in the matter.

Siegfried said...

I too am afraid of getting old. I'm afraid I would suddenly look and feel old within a couple of years. And there's nothing I can do about it. I can see the silver hairs multiplying.
I'm really thinking about using make-up and having a nose-job when it happens. Altho I seem to have a better idea of having a nose-lift without the operation (it's a secret).
More and more I'm beginning to behave like a woman, doing my best to look as good as I possibly can. Altho most women I know at the same age look twice as bad. ;>)
To tell you the truth, I'm really obsessed with this one very beautiful young girl. I sometimes feel desperate because of the age difference. She doesn't seem to have any clue, because she keeps giving me the right signals like some other young girls do. She probably thinks I'm just around ten years older, I'm not sure.
I also think that my attractiveness has increased because of my improved confidence and better image; I noticed lots of women paying attention to me everyday. Including the most beautiful of them.
Well, I'm really confused right now. I can't seem to get myself to date other women as long as I am attracted to this girl. I feel obligated to stay faithful to her inspite of the fact that we don't have anything really going on yet. It's just my nature; I tend to become obsessed with one girl everytime and forget the rest.
I hope to change that and try to be friendlier and kinder to the other girls. There is one girl who keeps coming to me trying to get close but I just ignore her.
I must be dreaming. Or bragging. Little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

jim said...

a small gift from me to you.....

To S. W.
Ll IDO Ll V Ee Yy Oo
Oo OOo Uu
Vv Vv Ss
Ee N T II Oo
Yy Aa EE NN Pp
Uu AA 44 Ii
Ss VV Yy Uu Aa
Oo Oo Ll
Pp Oo
Hh Vv
Ii Ee
Aa Oo from jim
I Du

jim said...

hahaha, lol, Sophia, my apologies, that was supposed to come out right as written but blogger saw it another way, I will send you your valentine in email, in color and shaped correctly, Happy Valentine Day!

Anonymous said...

Happy Valentine's Day my dear old friend.

Sophia said...

Hi Lucid,

I sometimes think it would be extra nice to have a computer chip in the brain, a sort of mini-hard-drive on which to store information so that we'd always have it at our disposal. But maybe in place of that chip we've created this Internet which is available to us night and day.

I don't know what I'd do if I had children that needed help with their homework. Though I guess in this day and age we can resort to the Internet. Parents weren't so lucky before the 90s.

Thanks for putting this "failure" thing in a positive light, as it allows me to look at it from a different perspective. I can turn it into a tool instead of using it as a weapon against myself.

Sophia said...


Good point. While I feel I can do my job well, I think I'd be a lot happier if I did what came naturally to me, i.e. sitting around all day solving math problems. I use some math at work, but not enough to have remembered everything I learned. Like Lucid said before you, use it or lose it.

I'd say if you feel panic, you're not really doing something that is natural for you. Do you agree?

Sophia said...


I've known you since 2005 and I still have no idea how old you are, so you're really good at keeping it a secret. If you were to look at my life, you would see that age in a relationship really doesn't matter all that much. You know my husband is 32 years older than me. Surely the difference between you and the love of your life is less than that. When you need inspiration, think of that!

Getting older is frightening, because it seems to me the older I get, the more I have to pretend to act my age. Naturally I am a child at heart and inside I feel like a teenage girl. Yet already there are a few grey hairs appearing on my head. I'm not even 30 yet! It takes a lot of work to pretend to be mature.

It's good that you know how much personality can affect a man's attractiveness. Some of the most average-looking men have become absolute sexy gods just by having the right personality.

I don't know if other women would agree with me or not, because I know I'm slightly bent, but I always found psychologically powerful men to be the most desirable. Now that you know that about me, what is it you look for in a female?

I imagine that if one wanted to find true love, a love in which appearance did not matter, the Internet could prove most useful. One could match-up with someone without ever trading a picture and just fall in love with the personality one sees on the screen.

Sophia said...


When I first saw this here on Blogger, I was thinking, "Now just what is that man up to?" :) But then I saw your colorful valentine in my email and I understood immediately. It gave me a nice little emotional boost on a day when I was feeling physically rotten. I was sad about being sick on that special day, but your valentine helped pick me up! Thank you!

Sophia said...


Thank you! You beat me to the punch! I was a day late and a dollar short. But happy belated Valentine's Day to you!