What causes MANY people to adopt an anti-achievement and anti-success mentality,

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  1. gmwilliams profile image84
    gmwilliamsposted 10 years ago

    What causes MANY people to adopt an anti-achievement and anti-success mentality,not ever wanting to

    improve themselves educationally nor socioeconomically, just being content at their station in life?


  2. profile image0
    Ben Blackwellposted 10 years ago

    I believe that at least some of these people lack a growth mindset.  I did some research into this topic and wrote a hub about it about a month ago or so.  Basically, a fixed mindset is when someone believes that what you see is what you get; that is, you are born a singer, scientist, or mathematician, and if you're not, you'll be mediocre at best.  He does not see intelligence as something that can be improved upon.  A growth mindset is when someone understands the plasticity of the brain and knows that as a result, anything can be worked on and improved.  Without realizing it, many people adopt fixed mindsets.  This may be one of the answers you're looking for.

  3. Jlbowden profile image84
    Jlbowdenposted 10 years ago

    A lot of this, in those particular groups of people that you mention.  Most likely, they have no inbred desire, or motivation to succeed in life and to better themselves academically speaking, or from a socioeconomic standpoint.

    Possibly another couple of factors that come into play. Could also be that these people never had additional emotional and moral support, that a caring family usually, or should have provided to their Siblings, if they cared themselves.

    Or they suffer from some form of chronic depression.  Which is very common today across the face of the globe.

  4. Laura Schneider profile image85
    Laura Schneiderposted 10 years ago

    I agree with the previous comments. Perhaps, also/instead, they lack a good example to follow--a role model. Look at all the famous athletes who have been caught doping--they cheated to "earn" their success, therefore it wasn't earned. A good role model can go a long way in changing a person's perspective on what they should be doing in life--and not doing (nothing).

    Depression, I agree with Jlbowden, is also a huge factor.

  5. onegreenparachute profile image60
    onegreenparachuteposted 10 years ago

    Fear.  Many people are content to maintain their status quo because they feel safe in that role.  Venturing out takes a certain amount of courage.  What if I should succeed?  What would my life look like?  Would I fit in?  Worse yet - what if I should fail?  It's far easier to stay where I am.  Stuck but safe. 
    This is the unfortunate truth for many.

    1. profile image0
      Ben Blackwellposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      That is indeed true.  That is one of the main components of the fixed mindset.

  6. Dr. Haddox profile image60
    Dr. Haddoxposted 10 years ago

    We live in a world where, sometimes, it appears that we "be dammed if we do, and we be dammed if we don't."
    In other words, "we can't win," it appears, no matter how hard we try.
    Old people used to say this, sometimes. "Why try to do anything, you can win, no matter what you do, especially if you are a woman, or a Black person, or an Indian or something.
    This is not just a matter of playing "The Race Card" or making other excuses.
    For example,
    look at President Obama.
    People see him as a Black President, not just as a President of the United States of America.
    He can do no "Right," everything that he does is always wrong.
    More than half of the country of the U.S.A. hate him.
    Not a day goes by that someone does not threaten to kill him.
    He has had more threats on his life than any other leader that has ever lived in the history of the world.
    He won a Nobel Peace Prize and people have tried to discredit him for it. They say, many congress people say, he did not earn the prize. It was given to him.
    They hate him, for no good reasons.
    They say he is the worse president that the country has ever had.
    if people hate the president of the United States, for trying to achieve something, why should the rest of us even try to achieve anything.
    Why! If we are a great success, people will hate us. Especially if we are women, Black, Mexican or Native Americans.
    I am a world class historian and a highly successful retired physician who have healed so many people during the twenty years that I practiced medicine that I cannot remember them all. I never lost a patient. Never! I quit while I was ahead. I do not think that I could bear the pain of losing a patient, especially if it was my fault, because of a lack of knowledge or something. So, after twenty years of success, I quit where I was ahead.
    One mistake and I would have been a bad guy. The tens of thousands of time that I had done things right and saved people's lives would have been for nothing.
    Now, can you see from the examples that I have given, that some people may choose to adopt an anti-achievement, anti-success mentality, not ever wanting to improve themselves educationally or socioeconomically, and just, being content with their station in life?
    Why, they figure, what's the use? Nobody can really ever win in this "God forsaken world!
    There you have it, from the way I see it.
    Right or wrong, there you have it.
    Dr. Haddox

    1. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Agreed 100%. (I feel sorry for President Obama because he CAN'T win--what presidents did, if any?--with such a polarized congress.) Maybe we're too perfectionist as a society--too stubborn, zero tolerance for failure like with the space program...

  7. profile image0
    JustCraftyposted 10 years ago

    I believe people adopt this type of mentality because of companies not promoting for improving oneself and the lack of incentives.
    I have tried to gain success but working for many companies that have the anti-achievement and anti success mentality has kept me stuck were I am so after years I have become accustom to not going any further and guess I will have to be content with this or start over in a new career and start at the bottom and try to achieve success.

    1. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I know what you mean. Nobody ever gets promoted any more, that I'm aware of. You have to change jobs to get ahead, which is a loss for both companies. I hear this again and again, writing resumes for people... Very sad.

  8. EdSaterstad profile image89
    EdSaterstadposted 10 years ago

    I worked in Human Resources for years, and realized that many people adopt this attitude out of fear of failure. They take the attitude that they do not want to be promoted, achieve goals, or appear to try hard. Because when they don't get the job, achieve the goal or do well they can say it was because they didn't want it, not because they were unable to accomplish it.

    We are compounding this issue by giving awards and praise to people for accomplishing next to nothing when they are young. Like a trophy for participating. They get used to getting recognized easily. But when they enter the real world the recognition must be worked for. They get easily discouraged and protect their ego by claiming to not want the recognition.

    1. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      So true, EdSaterstad! Especially the part about the trophy for participating. Corporations now have to give away $millions of JUNK (mugs, keychains, lunch, calculators, etc.)--because people actually  LIKE this instead of pay raises. Duh!

  9. BuffaloGal1960 profile image67
    BuffaloGal1960posted 10 years ago

    I think it's because they were not taught to set goals and when they reach them, set new goals to reach.  Perhaps they were given too much and not taught to save up for something, thus the value of the dollar.

    We want so much for our kids to "have" but "giving" in the wrong way actually hurts them.

    1. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      So right you are, BuffaloGal1960!

  10. taburkett profile image58
    taburkettposted 10 years ago

    The island syndrome creates this adoption pattern in most people.  This affliction causes the individual to believe they are restricted due to the risk of self-imposed hazards that surround their island.  The individual suffering from island syndrome believes they have reached maximum status for themselves.  Therefore, they adopt an anti-achievement and anti-success mentality.

    1. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Great answer! 'Island dwellers' (excellent metaphor) are losers, since they don't live up to their potential and therefore don't contribute their most to society. Too many island dwellers nowdays in the US, not willing to stick up for right/truth.

    2. gmwilliams profile image84
      gmwilliamsposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Totally agree.  There are many people who believe that there is only a certain level of success that they should achieve, no more, no less.

  11. Ceegen profile image67
    Ceegenposted 10 years ago

    I see a lot of good answers, but one thing I haven't seen anyone mention yet, is evil.

    There are some pretty evil people out there. Selfish and cruel people, who will literally do anything to get ahead. These types of people do exist, and it becomes evident the higher up the chain you go.

    I want absolutely no part of it. I'm not willing to step on other people in order to climb to the top. I just will not do it.

    1. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I don't believe in "evil", but otherwise I totally agree with your perspective: there ARE selfish and cruel people out there, and I've been the victim of several and expect most have. Good for you for not taking that path, Ceegen!

    2. Ceegen profile image67
      Ceegenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      If you don't believe in "evil", then do you believe in "good"?

    3. Laura Schneider profile image85
      Laura Schneiderposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Not exactly, not in a religious sense. I believe in right and wrong. Right and wrong are determined by the laws, rules, and mores of our society. Someone can be wrong without being "evil" in other words--they simply did something against the "rules".


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