This is an incredible entry in the School of Life’s Book of Life:
The sickness of the good child is that they have no experience of other people being able to tolerate their badness. They have missed out a vital privilege accorded to the healthy child; that of being able to display envious, greedy, egomaniacal sides and yet be tolerated and loved nevertheless.
I know, and have know, plenty of people who are amazing exam-takers and are fantastic at doing what society expects of them. Unfortunately, that’s not a great preparation for when life throws you curveballs.
At work, the good adult has problems too. As a child, they follow the rules; never make trouble and take care not to annoy anyone. But following the rules won’t get you very far in adult life. Almost everything that’s interesting, worth doing or important will meet with a degree of opposition. A brilliant idea will always disappoint certain people – and yet very much be worth holding on to. The good child is condemned to career mediocrity and sterile people-pleasing.
As a parent of two strong-willed and feisty children, there’s plenty to ponder here.
Source: The Book of Life