Anything Worth Doing Is Worth Doing Badly | Jordan Peterson | Best Life Advice

The article is a theoretical piece.

The article discusses the idea of circumambulation in union psychology, where a person's potential future self manifests in their present life through their interests, which guide them towards maximal development. Jordan Peterson explains that it is better to take tentative steps towards one's destiny, even if it means doing it badly. He also emphasizes that setbacks and failures are part of the learning process and necessary for growth.

Main topics: circumambulation, interests, maximal development, call to adventure, fool, mastery, learning, setbacks, failures.

Secondary topics: the Old Testament stories, will to stupidity, learning a skill, Exodus, intermittent catastrophes, unlearning something.

  1. Introduction
  2. Description of the idea of circumambulation in union psychology
  3. Explanation of the relationship between potential future self and present interests
  4. The biological foundation of the idea
  5. The call to adventure and the importance of pursuing interests
  6. The difficulty of pursuing interests and the role of making mistakes
  7. The importance of taking tentative steps on the pathway to destiny
  8. The decline of the degree of overshooting as progress is made
  9. The structure of Exodus and its relevance to personal growth
  10. The intermittent catastrophes and deserts in the pursuit of enlightenment
  11. Importance of acknowledging faults and the ability to learn from them
  12. Conclusion

The Circumambulation: Pursuing Your Best Self

Jordan Peterson introduces the idea of circumambulation in union psychology, where one has a potential future self that manifests itself moment to moment in the present, guiding individuals towards maximal development. This biological concept suggests that people are naturally interested in things that expand their adaptation as well-adjusted beings. Pursuing these interests is a call to adventure that leads individuals down a path of development. However, as the journey unfolds, there may be new parts of oneself that manifest poorly, leading to stumbling around and failure. Peterson identifies the Fool archetype as the precursor to the Savior, where individuals must be willing to make mistakes and learn from them in order to eventually become the master of their destiny.

The Will To Stupidity: Embracing Mistakes

Peterson acknowledges that pursuing one's best self is an error-ridden process, where most ideas are likely to be stupid. Waiting for the perfect opportunity is not an option, and it is essential to take tentative steps towards one's destination rather than rotting away at home. As individuals progress towards their goals and learn new skills, the degree of overshooting starts to decline as they zero in on the proper way to achieve mastery. However, Peterson warns that progress is punctuated by intermittent deserts of catastrophe, where individuals may collapse and feel lost. It is important to recognize that failure is par for the course and that learning something new often means unlearning something else. The fact that individuals are full of faults does not mean that they cannot learn, and that the pursuit of an ideal, even imperfectly, is worthwhile.

Exiting Slavery: Accepting the Desert

Finally, Peterson draws on the story of Exodus, where the Hebrews escaping from tyranny find themselves wandering around the desert worshipping the wrong things until they organize themselves morally again and head in the proper direction. Similarly, individuals may find themselves lost and nihilistic after escaping from old habits and beliefs, but this is not necessarily an improvement. Accepting the desert and understanding that progress is not linear, but rather marked by intermittent catastrophes, is essential to pursuing one's best self.

The ideas presented in this article by Jordan Peterson can have an impact on various areas of knowledge and areas of life. The concept of the circumambulation and the idea of following your interests to achieve maximal development can influence psychology, personal development, and even education. It highlights the importance of allowing oneself to make mistakes and acknowledging that it's better to do something poorly than not do it at all.

One area of knowledge that could complement this information is neuroscience. It could help us understand the biological processes behind our interests and how they guide us towards our potential. Additionally, cultural studies could also provide insight into the societal expectations and pressures that influence our interests and decisions.

The author of the article misses the potential limitations of blindly following one's interests without taking into account external circumstances or ethical considerations. Additionally, there is a contradiction in Peterson's emphasis on the importance of making mistakes and learning from them, while also stating that the probability of getting it right initially is zero. This suggests that there may be a need for a balance between taking risks and making informed decisions.

Question 1: What is circumambulation in union psychology?

According to the article, circumambulation in union psychology is the continual circling of who you could be, where themes in your life repeat themselves, getting closer to yourself as you move across time.

"it's like you're circling yourself and getting closer to yourself as you move across time that's the circumambulation"

Question 2: Why is it important to pursue things that capture your interest?

It is important to pursue things that capture your interest because those things would guide you along the path that would lead you to maximal development.

"the things that you're interested in are the things that would guide you along the path that would lead you to maximal development"

Question 3: What is the significance of being a fool in the call to adventure?

The significance of being a fool in the call to adventure is the idea that you have to be a fool before you can be a master, and if you're not willing to be a fool, then you can't be a master.

"if you're not willing to be a fool then you can't be a master so so you're gonna it's an error error ridden process and that's also laid out in the Old Testament stories because the first thing that happens to all these patriarchal figures when God kicks them out of their father's house when they're like 84 is that they they run into all sorts of trouble and some of the socialism of its natural and some of it's a consequence of their own moral inadequacy so they're fools and"

Question 4: What is the result of learning something in the pathway to enlightenment?

The result of learning something in the pathway to enlightenment is the understanding that when you learn something, you also unlearn something, and the thing you unlearned is probably useful and unlearning it actually is painful.

"when you learn something you also unlearn something and the thing you unlearned is probably useful and unlearning it actually is painful"

Understanding the Circumambulation

    Question 1: What is the concept of circumambulation in union psychology?

  • a. It is the study of human development
  • b. It is a metaphysical and mystical idea
  • c. It is the idea that a potential future self manifests itself in present life
  • d. It is a process of moving in circles around oneself
  • Correct answer: c

    Question 2: What guides an individual along the path of maximal development?

  • a. Inner strengths and abilities
  • b. External influences
  • c. The pursuit of happiness
  • d. Interests and passions
  • Correct answer: d

    Question 3: What is the purpose of pursuing one's interests?

  • a. To gain material possessions
  • b. To satisfy short-term goals
  • c. To lead one towards maximal development
  • d. To please others
  • Correct answer: c

The Call to Adventure

    Question 1: Why do many individuals wait around until they have the "perfect" idea before pursuing their aspirations?

  • a. Because they are too afraid to take risks
  • b. Because waiting will increase the likelihood of success
  • c. Because they believe the idea they have is not good enough
  • d. Because they are lazy
  • Correct answer: c

    Question 2: Why is it better to pursue one's aspirations even if one does it badly?

  • a. To avoid humiliation
  • b. To learn from errors
  • c. To impress others
  • d. To avoid failure
  • Correct answer: b

    Question 3: What is the significance of "overshooting"?

  • a. It is an indication of failure
  • b. It leads to even more mistakes
  • c. It is a natural part of the learning process
  • d. It is a sign of incompetence
  • Correct answer: c

The Path to Enlightenment

    Question 1: What should individuals expect on the path to enlightenment?

  • a. A linear pathway uphill
  • b. Intermittent catastrophes
  • c. Continuous success
  • d. Easy sailing
  • Correct answer: b

    Question 2: Why do people tend to stay in bad situations?

  • a. They don't know any better
  • b. They are masochistic
  • c. They are afraid of change
  • d. They are comfortable
  • Correct answer: a

    Question 3: What is the importance of pursuing an imperfect ideal?

  • a. To achieve perfection
  • b. To satisfy others' expectations
  • c. To move towards a better future
  • d. To avoid making mistakes
  • Correct answer: c
  1. Don't wait for the perfect opportunity or idea. Start taking tentative steps towards your desired future, even if you're not sure you're doing it right. This can be applied in everyday life by taking small steps towards your goals, even if you're unsure of the outcome.
  2. Recognize that you will make mistakes and overshoot, but that it's better to do it badly than not do it at all. This can be applied in everyday life by embracing failures and learning from them instead of being afraid to try new things.
  3. Understand that the call to adventure may lead you down a path you didn't expect, but that doesn't mean it's a failure. This can be applied in everyday life by being open to new experiences and not being afraid to deviate from your original plan.
  4. Recognize that learning often involves unlearning, and that this can be a painful process. This can be applied in everyday life by being open to changing your opinions and beliefs as you learn more.
  5. Realize that the journey towards your goals may involve intermittent catastrophes and deserts, but don't give up. This can be applied in everyday life by persevering through tough times and understanding that setbacks are a natural part of the process.
  6. Posit an ideal and work towards it, even if your concept of it is flawed. This can be applied in everyday life by setting goals and working towards them, even if you're not sure you fully understand what they entail.
  7. Embrace your faults and understand that they don't have to dictate your future. This can be applied in everyday life by being kind to yourself and understanding that everyone has flaws and makes mistakes.

The best tip to include in daily life would be to embrace your faults and understand that they don't have to dictate your future. By being kind to yourself and accepting that mistakes will happen, you can prevent being held back by fear or self-doubt and instead focus on moving forward towards your goals. This can lead to increased confidence, resilience, and ultimately, success.

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