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10 Steps to Being an Average Person (Or How to Be Normal)

Updated on October 21, 2010

Most people--normal people--don't need much help when it comes to this, but in case something in your life propelled you in the direction of extraordinariness, rather than the usual, ideal ordinariness, then feel free to take this advice to get your life back on track, back onto the well-beaten path.

First and foremost...

1 - Don't examine much.

First rule is that you shouldn't examine much or look too deeply into things. It doesn't matter if we're speaking of pure, low-level nature (like the meaning of life, the birth of the universe, etc) or of constructed human concerns (like why society is the way it is, etc). Just don't analyze it.

If it stretches your mind at all, don't bother. Just listen for what other people are saying--especially people who sound smart--and parrot what they say. Don't have your own opinions.


2 - Quit a lot.

Start things and then get discouraged and lose momentum. Never have a moment of passion in your life that propelled you beyond this. If unexpected challenges arise, just get really negative and lose all optimism. Say that things are impossible a lot to excuse why you haven't or felt like you couldn't achieve them. (And when you see people who have achieved these things, find some way to explain it away, some excuse that amounts to saying that they cheated or had some sort of advantage that you didn't have.)

Never be persistent with things that matter, and just let your attention float all over the place uncontrolled.

3 - Don't quit enough.

Conversely, don't quit enough when it comes to the things that don't matter and don't deserve your attention.

Work at a job you hate. Read books that are boring to you because a professor told you they were required. Do anything and everything that someone tells you to do, regardless of the amount of drudgery, because you trust that somehow it must be "good for you."


4 - Watch lots of TV; take lots of advice.

Similar to what was touched upon above, do everything you possibly can to avoid making your own judgments about anything. If you make your own judgments in situations and don't just trust others to do it for you, you might actually have to take responsibility for your choices. If you just suspend your judgment and take other people's advice blindly, at least you'll have someone to blame other than yourself if things go wrong.

5 - Learn to suppress what you really want and, further, to fear it.

Since you can't trust your own judgement, you can't trust your own desires, either. How do you know you're not wrong in wanting what you want? If anything you feel like you want is in conflict with some societal standard, with social customs, religious doctorine, or with the desires of those around you, just assume that it's wrong for you to feel this way.

Be afraid of these feelings you have of want--whether it's wanting specific things, or people, or situations--and just generalize desires as these evil things that can get in the way of the "right path" in life. Be afraid of these desires that remind you constantly with pangs that you are going against them. Numb yourself to avoid feeling them.

6 - Be driven by fear, not by desire.

Since you don't have desire to drive you now, since you can't trust it (and besides, it tortures and tantalizes and frustrates you), you have little choice but to be driven by fear.

Don't feel passion for doing what you do; be afraid of what will happen if you don't do it. Be afraid of being fired, and let that be the reason you go to work in the morning. Be afraid of being alone, and let that be the reason you remain with your significant other. Be afraid of being seen as low-class, and let that be the reason you buy yourself nice things.

Don't enjoy anything you have; just be afraid of losing it. Let that fear suck away any enjoyment you might have gotten out of it.

7 - Follow everyone else's rules, regardless of whether they fit you, and never make your own.

Again, because you don't have any real opinions that originated from your own judgment (you should just pretend like they did, but borrow them from others), or any of your own desires, there's no reason to question the societal rules set in front of you or to examine whether they fit you personal or not.

Follow the rules of your religion because that's your dogma, period. Follow the law unquestioningly because "it's the law," not because you necessarily agree with it (How can you? You have no real opinions.).

Have a respect for authority that came seemingly out of nowhere and that vaguely acknowledges that you should listen to them because they have guns and you don't. That's what being normal is all about--not having any power, guns or no.

8 - Take absolutely everything for granted.

Don't sit back and reflect, or try to think of how you could change things. Things are just the way they are and that's it.

No matter how many feel-good greeting cards or chain e-mails you send and read, never actually appreciate anything you have. (How can you? You didn't desire any of it; you have no desires. You didn't make any of it happen; things just sort of happen to you.)

9 - Marry because you're getting too old not to.

You'll be lonely if you don't. You won't be this good-looking forever. You'll die alone. Your biological clock is ticking (and the meaning of life has something to do with producing offspring, or something like that).

Right? Right?

10 - Die not knowing who you were.

Grow throughout your life just enough to have survived and that was it. Seek no more enlightenment than that which is required to function as an average, regular person.

Don't seek to learn more about the world or about yourself (especially yourself) than you have to. Don't face these things; they're depressing. Above all, knowledge of the self is what will drive you crazy if you have too much of it. If you know yourself too well, you might have to be responsible for understanding why you do what you do and how you ended up where you are.

Think to yourself: "I was a good person." and then die. Don't examine what it means to be "a good person" too much. Don't ask yourself "Good by what standard?" No, that's horrific. Just be satisfied believing this, even if you don't know what it means. Assume it is possible to believe something without knowing what it really is. That's what normal people do.

Then die peacefully. Be buried. Allow your offspring to follow. (And, eventually, be re-discovered by archaeologists as a typical specimen of human beings during your time period.)

There you have it. That's how to be normal. Better than being weird, right? Anything but that.


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    • Tony L Smith profile image

      Tony L Smith 

      5 years ago from Macon

      Those shoes got stuck on to many of my feet. At least I can run away in shoes now and hide from having to deal with this. HaHa

      great hub! The only thing man has power over is his mind, so Meta-Neo is the command to experience fuller life.

      thanks for coming at this slavery of conformity (which is fear of man) from a different angle


    • profile image

      JJ Ta 

      6 years ago

      I read your article about confidence, which I liked. Surely, this one is satirical, right? I'm quite serious with this question, so please serious answers :)

    • thehands profile imageAUTHOR

      Jorge Vamos 

      6 years ago

      @Khadija Ejaz Thank you, thank you.

    • profile image

      Khadija Ejaz 

      6 years ago

      Best piece of writing I've seen in a long, long time.

    • profile image

      Khadija Ejaz 

      6 years ago

      OMG it's a real writer.

    • attemptedhumour profile image


      7 years ago from Australia

      I'm the most ordinary person in the universe. Because all the extraordinary ones are far too busy excelling to post a comment on this well written hub. They will be watching the dot on the TV wondering if it's a religion worth pursuing. I only watch two hours of soccer per week and the American idol series each year on TV. So am i ordinary, in an extraordinary way, the opposite, or an idiot with narrow tastes. Bit of a poser isn't it? I've had a complete set of the Encyclopedia Britannica since 1963 but i haven't started the first page yet. No i haven't i made that up. I had twenty jobs between fourteen and sixteen (really) and i learnt to quit in style and also learnt that i held the aces hence forth. I don't believe there are Pixies at the bottom of the garden!

      I'm lower, upper-middle class. I'm also off to bed. Great hub, shall follow the hands. Cheers. Sir Keith.


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