I’ve discovered yet another reminder that I’m going about everything all wrong.

I’m the kind of guy who takes seriously the U.S. Army commercials about being the best you can be. I suffer with a chronically stiff neck from setting my sights too high. I get up early, go to bed late, burn the candle at both ends, wake up with the chickens, play both ends against the middle, burn the midnight oil, and sweat the small stuff.

I’m a perfectionist and an idealist. I’m all-or-nothing and winner-take-all. I try my hardest and give it my all. I’m an over-achiever. I bar no holds. I give no quarter. I expect none to be given. And in a perpetual attempt to make myself even better, happier, and more fulfilled, I’ve dumped untold millions into the multi-billion-dollar self-help and vanity markets. For what? Apparently, nothing.

No more.

Having seen the error of my ways, I hereby take the Vow of Mediocrity:

I, Mark O’Brien, being of sound mind and body (well, the best I’ve been able to achieve up till now), do solemnly swear to take it easy; to do no more than I have to; to slack off, chill out, and rest up; to be as ordinary as possible; to distinguish myself not at all; to accomplish nothing of note, merit, or value; to catch up on my sleep and cut down on my work; to set the bar low and take the low road; to be as irresponsible as possible in all things; and, as Grandpa O’Brien used to say, to hold the lantern while my mother chops the wood. Most of all, I solemnly swear to be proud of everything I don’t do, from this day forward, or at least until it’s time for my next nap.

Whew! I feel so much better already, I’d like to share a few tips:

  • Whatever you’re doing, stop.
  • Whatever you aspire to, don’t.
  • Whatever your ambitions are, ditch ’em.
  • Whatever you think is your calling, get rid of it.

And don’t forget to buy my book — The Professional Nebbish: A Complete Guide to a Comatose Life.

Image by Nono_Bobo, courtesy of pixabay.com.