Wednesday, January 12, 2011

#34 Tall poppies

Tall Poppy Syndrome. I've never really had much experience with it as I have never really achieved that much in the world's view. Doing and finishing a degree is what your average middle class westerner does before they hit 25, and moving away from home is nearly a rite to passage. So what am I talking about? Well I'm not sure, I may be stabbing at clouds here but I feel like I have experienced a bit of it ever since I moved away from home. A cull here and there on Facebook, an ignored message now and then, a change in tone with a new job. I'm not talking about a lot of people, let's say five, or seven. 

I've always been shy about my accomplishments, but now as I'm getting older, I'm beginning to be publicly proud of them. I remember in my last semester of uni, I was doing a master creative writing class specializing in short stories and I was determined to get an A+ for the class. I worked my damn ass off and, I am proud to say, I achieved my goal. But boy was I reluctant to tell anyone - especially people in the class. I think it's a real shame to be honest. Can't we be proud of each other and not get green? I guess it comes back to 'do you really care what people think and say?' I would like to say no, and the more I think about it I am determined to make it 'no'. Why be ashamed of our successes, if 'they' aren't doing anything in their eyes that isn't in their mind 'successful', well that really is their problem. Grow up I say. I have met a lot of people who are 'successful' in their field and I love their candor about it. It's refreshing, but you can also see a toughness in them which has grown because of peoples jealousy and prejudice. Guess that's a good thing? Yes and no. It's hard enough to work to where you want to be without stupid comments and cold shoulders. It all comes down to pride - it really is the root here. 

This year I am going to work hard at my career, hard at my writing, hard at my character and hard at my relationship with the Father - and I will succeed. And I won't be ashamed to say it to their face. 
I encourage you to do the same... because you are great and you should be proud of your accomplishments. 


  1. Hey, don't be shy! We would have celebrated your success. Really. That's what wine is for ;)

  2. Hey, I'm a new follower here- I really like your blog!

    I found this post to be interesting because I am from the US and people here *love* to show their success; being openly proud of your accomplishments and making sure the rest of the world is proud of you too are very different things, and I think a lot of Americans shoot for the latter.

    But I totally agree with you here; sharing all of the wonderful things you are doing is important! And really, the blogging community is a great place to start!

  3. Thanks Sneezeweed - that really means a lot.

    That is an interesting point you make. I think there is huge apathy in New Zealand which is a huge contrast to America's constant reaching for the American dream. But it's the dream and motivation (which I like) that makes one determined to accomplish in their field. I guess it's a buffet, just take the good bits out of 'culture' and ignore the rest :)

    Esther - thank you :) Have a wine for me!