I remember when I was 13, the school guidance counselor called my mom to come in for a meeting because I was failing nearly every class… He sat down in front of us with this thick-ass folder, opened it, and started pulling out progress reports that showed my poor grades, he showed us copies of my daily scores in various classes that showed F’s and “incomplete’s” on nearly all of my assignments, and then proceeded to point out the grades that corresponded with a test, nearly all of which were A’s. He then pulled out all of the state tests we’d done that year to show us how I had scored “above average” in even my worst subject, and how in my best subjects I was sometimes off the chart.

Then…he berated me. There was no excuse for me to be failing classes. I knew the subject matter as displayed by my test scores, and according to the state test scores I had received, he could’ve handed me a high-school equivalency test right then and there and I would’ve had no problems with it. I had potential, and I was wasting it.

A few years later, when I was in high school, another guidance counselor called a meeting with my mom, only this time including all of my teachers. Again, I was failing nearly all of my classes. This time, all the teachers took turns talking to my mother about me as if I weren’t even there, telling her that I was obviously intelligent, that I had loads of potential, and that by not caring about my classes I was wasting it.

When I reached my senior year, I only applied to one college. I had done poorly in school and didn’t have much hope to get accepted, and sure enough, I got a letter saying that I hadn’t been, but there were several steps I could take to convince them to reconsider, so I went and met with the admissions people. After talking to me and exclaiming over my ACT score, they told me I obviously had a lot of potential. Two weeks later I got a packet in the mail. I had talked my way into college. (of course, I dropped out two weeks after it started, but that’s another story)

I’m so tired. Things are going well on the surface, but I’m having some deeper issues. I remember what it was like, how easy it was to turn my back on everything and forget about all of my “potential”, when I just didn’t give a shit about anything. Right now it would be so nice to throw my hands in the air. Run home. Be a failure. Only problem is that there’s this…something…that seems to live somewhere in my stomach, that doesn’t like that idea very much, and gives a nasty flip-flop whenever I think about it.

Isn’t it strange though, how success can be just as scary and intimidating, if not moreso, than failure?

Perhaps you’re a victim of Self-Sabotage. You should google search that, see if it applies to you, and find out how to stop.

LoL Humpty, everything has a name, doesn’t it? It all fits into a little box. “If you display these behaviors, this is what you are, and this is how you fix it.”

Life doesn’t really work that way. Besides, I don’t need to fix myself, I’m not broken. I’m just Nicole, aware of my own behavior patterns and fully equipped to deal with them. It’s just that sometimes, I get tired.

so you don’t want to stop sabotaging yourself? alright, well carry on then.

Don’t be dense, Humpty.

Just thinking about having to break this down for you is making me already tired brain more tired. FFS!!!

Okay, did you notice how all the situations I wrote about were in my past? DId you NOTICE THAT?!

Then, did you notice when I said, “I remember what it was like…”

You need to read more carefully, and put more thought into what you’ve read, before you comment. Then, if you still want to be a dick to me, feel free.

So, you go on a forum and start talking about your problems, and when someone suggests a solution, you get offended. Interesting.

There’s really no reason for you to react the way you did to my suggestion. You could have looked up self-sabotage and determined that it doesn’t fit your situation, and you could have said that. Instead, you didn’t even consider the possibility that there might be something of value to be found in what I said. You just rejected it right away, merely because my suggestion had a name. This is really strange behavior, Ms Savant. No wonder you’re tired: it must be exhausting PMSing all the time.

=D> =D> =D>

Well done, sir. You managed to throw the ever-ready “PMS” insult at me, and negate the validity of anything else you may have said.

Actually, even if it was silly of me to do that, it doesn’t negate anything else I’ve said. If Einstein said that to a women, would all his theories then be rejected as well? Is that how it works?

Alright, first of all, I did not start this thread to get into a bitch fit with some random dude. Secondly, if Einstein were trying to talk to a woman about herself and then said something about her PMS-ing, yes that’s how it would work. It’s a cheap, immature attempt to make a woman look crazy or hormonal, and it’s so completely overplayed.

So what if I rejected your suggestion to go and google “self sabotage”? Did you take that as a rejection of YOU? You claim that I was offended by it, but if you actually go and read what I said I think you’ll find there’s not a hint of hurt feelings there. I was merely conversing with you, giving you my opinion and sharing with you that I have a good grasp on my behaviors and what causes them. You took offense because I didn’t what? Thank you so much, the wise being who has a penis and doesn’t PMS, for figuring out what’s “wrong” with me after reading a few paragraphs I wrote?

Gah, get over yourself.

gah. gah. get over yourself. gah.

no, i don’t take it as a rejection of me. i just think it’s silly to reject a suggestion because it has a name. that’s not a real reason.

You know, I think that’s a pretty keen insight, Blurred. And you have a right to be tired, and overwhelmed. You’ve just moved across country, away from your family and friends, and started a brand new life. That’s huge. And scary. It’s only natural you’d have bouts of wanting to give up and go back home.

But no matter how tired and unsure you might be, you also know that you’re not a failure, far from it, and you’ve got the strength to get you through the rough patches, no matter what happens. That strength comes through loud and clear in everything you write.

So, yeah. I have no real words of wisdom. Just know that what you’re feeling is so understandable. Hang in there. :wink:

What often accompanies feelings of tiredness?


i suppose that’s accurate. that would explain a lot.

I was the same, used to drive my teachers nuts. I’d slack throughout the year, then ace the exams, coming top or near top in everything. Except for music. I fucking sucked at music.

This whole ‘potential’ bit is a bastard place to be in. In life, it’s either better to be a total and utter hopeless failure, because then you can sit back, and loaf about, secure in the knowledge that it really doesn’t matter one single bit; or to be a natural work-ethic full steam ahead success, because then you’re too busy blazing your trail to stop and think much. Mentally, both roads are equally comfortable.

‘Having potential’ however, is not comfortable. It obligates you, both in your own eyes, and those of the one deeminng you as ‘having potential’ to do something about it. To convert that potential into, eh, whatever it is you have the potential for. It’s like someone coming along to your house, while you were sitting snoozing happily on the porch, and saying - “Ooh look - deep under your back garden there’s a gold-mine.”

Part of you thinks to itself - “Whoo-hoo, I’m sitting on a gold mine !!! Ka-ching.” The other part thinks to itself “Oh fuck, now I’ve gotta do a whole bunch of digging.”

Whether you dig it up or not, the simple knowledge that it’s there prevents you from being as happy and content with your life, as you were before you knew of its existence.

She could pretend the goldmine doesn’t exist or investigate that the person was lying to her, and knows nothing about prospective mining.

What probably happened, was that the person passing through, found a speck of gold dust on the lawn, and improperly concluded that the ground underneath was rich with gold, when it just so happened that somebody dropped a gold flake on accident one day.

There’s no goldmine; you were being lied to.

People often tell you “oh I see great potential in you”. That usually means they want you to do things for them or fulfill their expectations.

It’s basically just selfishness.

It can be that, or because we are the best judge of our own efforts, we know whether we have “potential” or not. To be, or not to be isn’t a complaint. It is both a question and observation. One shouldn’t get carried away with psychoanalyzing people you know nothing about.

How could you, or anybody, or anybody else ever know of my (or your) “potential” if they’re not us?

They don’t.

By definition, the only person who can know about his/her own potential is him/herself.

“I see great potential in you” is then falsified; it must be a myth or yearning with respect to social expectations. :astonished:

It may be true that people can only know about their own potential, but if it is true, it’s not because of the definition. Well, unless you can show me where in the definition of potential what you’re saying is implied.

Your situation reminds me of Zack Greinke’s. If you don’t know, he is a popular MLB pitcher. He was faced with his potential when he made it to MLB in 2006. Anxiety symptoms started to develop. He was literally fearful of actually succeeding. He had to quit baseball in 2006. After 7 months of treatment he returned to baseball and in 2009 he won the Cy Young Award (best pitcher in the American League).

He was a very extreme case of this form of fear of success but it is not that uncommon.

Every context of ‘potential’ I have ever heard of (like potential energy) implies that it is an ‘internal’ aspect of an object.

I mean, how can anybody “see potential” in another? That doesn’t even make sense. Rather, it should be “I want to see potential in you.”

Translation: “I want to believe in you.”