Charles Bukowski: How to Stand out in a Noisy World
Zat Rana

Nice article. Research seems to show that our personalities can be changed dramatically. If this is true, focusing on “being authentic” may limit one’s personal growth. It worked for Bukowski because he’s an artist, and artists are to some degree “expected” by the mainstream to be “authentic” and “different”.

A friend of mine was socially awkward in high school, but if he clings on to “being authentic”, he would laugh at his own social awkwardness, embrace it, feeling like he’s born this way, that’s he’s a “loser”. But no, he realised it’s a problem to be addressed, he’s shameful of it, and he actively took actions to fix it. It worked, and he’s living a life with much more possibilities.

The point is sometimes you have to “fake it to make it”. If a man insist on being authentic with the racist, chauvinist part of himself, and thinking it’s integral and hardly changeable, it’s “being himself”, he’s missing out on personal growth. And too many of them not challenging their default racist and chauvinist attitudes? A racist and chauvinist society is formed.

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