The Harvard Business Review published an interesting study recently. In it, they actually isolated a ‘drama’ gene, proving that certain people are more prone to drama than others. These individuals tended to blow minor slights out of proportion, view any criticism as a personal attack, and stay bitter about minor incidents for years afterwards. But the thing that struck me the most about these drama lovers was their most common trait.
The locus of control. The locus of control is simply a fancy psychosocial way of describing how you view your impact on the world. I have an internal locus of control, in that I believe that my actions change the world. On the flip, a person with an external locus of control would believe that the world changes their actions.
Just to give examples;
Internal locus of control: “Wow, my choice to tweet Holocaust jokes on Hitler’s birthday sure pissed a lot of people off.”
External locus of control: “Why is everyone attacking my political opinion about how the Holocaust never happened? Twitter is just filled with crazy liberals.”
Now me, I always thought that my own internal locus of control was the worse one to have because it seems narcissistic to think that the entire world changes because of you. But now that I think about it, coming at the world from an ‘everyone is against me’ standpoint is far more narcissistic.
I mean, how important do you think you are that people would actually seek you out to discredit you? Isn’t it possible that someone just thinks you’re an asshole? And Harvard backed me up because it turns out people with an external locus of control report higher levels of conflict in their personal lives.
Let me try to explain with an anecdote. I have this friend Gina. Gina is a lightening bolt when it comes to relationships. What I mean is that Gina goes on a date with a dude and ZAP; his relationship status on Facebook is updated and she’s moved half her shit into his place, while waiting to see if the pregnancy test was just a false alarm. She barely knows these dudes, moves in with them, and suddenly gets all shocked when it falls apart after three months.
Then, she calls them the psychos. She never recognizes her own culpability, nor her ENTIRE responsibility, for the situation. It’s always the world doing shit to her. I mean, she decides to let a jobless loser live with her after the third date, and three months after she’s surprised when he’s still a jobless loser? The girl who hates drama is causing her own drama.
I’ve found that to be the truth about a lot of people who claim to hate drama. They’ll talk all day about being above it all, but then, after a while you notice, that’s all they talk about. They are never responsible in their own heads, but entirely responsible in real life. They’re just incapable of connecting the two.
So what that Harvard study taught me is if you spend a fuckton of time talking about all the drama that other people cause in your life, its not just statistically likely, it’s a scientific fact that YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.
Let’s look at it from a scientific point of view.
- About 87% of computer viruses start as a form of human error. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.
- 78% of adult-onset diabetes cases are a direct result of the nutritional choices of the individual with diabetes. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.
- Only 1% of identity theft claims are valid cases of criminal hacking. The other 99% are a result of individuals giving out their credit card information irresponsibly. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.
- Warnings about internet scams have existed for twenty years, but despite that, about 300,000 people fall victim to internet scams annually because they elect not to seek out advice. YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.
- If everyone in your life treats you badly, your friends don’t like you and everyone seems to talk shit about you all the time…YOU ARE THE PROBLEM!!! Consider the fact that you might, just might, be a complete asshole who no one wants to be around
Look people, dickish behavior doesn’t happen in a vacuum. I know a lot of people who have a lot of drama in their lives and they all have one thing in common. They’re the kind of people who consider “you call me a bitch like it’s a bad thing” their catch phrase. Here’s the deal. It is bad to be a bitch. Bitches are mean. They’re rude, thoughtless and unpleasant to be around. They think niceness is a sign of weakness, when real strong people know that niceness is an asset.
It costs nothing yet gains you everything.
Dramatic individuals don’t get that. If you don’t, there is a very good chance that you have a lot of drama in your life. You think you’re not causing it, but you are. The world is not controlling you. You’re trying to passively aggressively control the world. But the world doesn’t react to passive aggression. So either embrace aggression, or reject it entirely, but don’t claim to be a victim of it. Because deep down, we all know one thing, and it’s been scientifically proven.
You are the problem.