The “real you” you think you are is just a delusion… A biologist tells us how to live without becoming a “troublesome uncle | FRIDAY DIGITAL

The “real you” you think you are is just a delusion… A biologist tells us how to live without becoming a “troublesome uncle

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Inferiority feeling of “not being recognized by others

Customer harassment has become a social problem in recent years. In the cases reported in the media, the harassers are often “old men.

In his book, “The Disaster of Idiots,” biologist Kiyohiko Ikeda points out that people who engage in such nuisances as harassment and distracted driving are “idiots obsessed with the idea that they are absolutely right. He believes that such “idiots” are massively increasing in number in Japan, and that the Japanese education system is the main cause of this problem.

Click here for Part 1: A biologist explains the reason for the outbreak of “troublesome uncles” in Japan.

What you think you really are is just a delusion,” says Dr. Ikeda.

If Japan’s educational system and Internet society are the cause of “idiots,” why are the plagues of “idiots” so prominent among the generation of “uncles”? The reason, he says, lies in this generation’s unique “sense of inferiority caused by not being recognized as the person they are supposed to be.

They feel that their true selves are not like this, and that they should be more recognized by those around them, but the reality is different, and they are not getting the recognition they deserve. There are a certain number of people in the generation of uncles who are so dissatisfied, and I think they are trying to do themselves justice in order to show that they are ‘the great person who should be recognized.

When you are young, you don’t even think that you are great, so you don’t want to make yourself look big. However, as you pass the age of 40 and are increasingly overtaken by your peers and juniors, your frustration and impatience grows, saying, “This is not how it should be. However, I can’t complain to the company because I don’t want to get fired. So, they have no choice but to show their ‘great selves’ to store clerks, women, and others who are in a weaker position than they are in order to release their resentment. (Dr. Kiyohiko Ikeda, hereafter, same as above)

You should think that the reputation you receive from the world is your “real self.

In order for the younger generation to avoid becoming troublesome “uncles,” he says, “It is important to look at yourself objectively from a young age. However, many people are unable to do so.

For example, have you ever been angry at yourself, saying, “I am not like this,” when you do not get the recognition you deserve from those around you? This is a big mistake, says Ikeda.

The “real you” that you think you are is just a delusion. You should think that the reputation you receive from the world is the “real you. If you don’t get paid as much as you think you should, it means that you are only that good. If you can easily change jobs, you have the ability to do so, but if you can’t, you don’t. That is your true self.

Whenever you are tempted to complain that your true self is not like this, you should face reality and admit your true self, even if you don’t want to. What is most important, he stresses, is to find a place where you can demonstrate your abilities.

In fact, a person’s personality is determined at the age of about eight years old. This is because the connections of synapses between neurons (nerve cells) that make up the brain are completed at that age. It is said that the way synapses are connected is very important for human beings and determines something like a person’s basic personality and intelligence.

In other words, how well the brain is stimulated and the synapses are connected by the age of eight or so will determine the rest of one’s life. The reason why it is said that if you don’t start playing shogi (Japanese chess) by the first grade of elementary school, you cannot become a master, or if you don’t start playing the piano at the age of 3 or 4, you cannot become a first-rate player, is because synapses are greatly related to it.

On the other hand, when you become an adult, the plasticity of synapses becomes poor, so no matter how much information you give them, they do not change well. So what is important for adults is the ability to determine what they can do most efficiently. In other words, it is wrong to say that you can adapt if you work hard; you should quickly do what you can do without effort (laughs). If you keep doing what you can do and what you are suited for, you will improve quickly.”

It is more natural to choose an environment that is …… more convenient for you than to make frantic efforts

What you have become able to do by making desperate efforts means that you are “not cut out” for it. It is a waste of time and energy.

In schools, however, people praise those who have made efforts and become able to do something. This is not good either. If you go out into the world and you find that it took you three hours to finish a job that most people can do in one hour, no one will praise you, no matter how hard you say you worked (laughs).

On the other hand, if you finish a job that takes one hour in 30 minutes, you will receive praise, and you will be motivated and your skills will improve. If you become an asset in this way, you will be valued and you will rise in the ranks. That means the job was right for you.

I heard from someone that a woman who worked as an accountant at a hospital was inundated with complaints from patients. She was a calm person, and because she listened to patients too much, her work was slow, and people were having trouble waiting in line at the counter. So her supervisor changed her assignment to the consultation desk. The patients began to appreciate her kindness and listening, and her reputation changed dramatically.

In biology, there is a concept that organisms have survived climate change and mutation by changing their “living space. I believe it is more natural for humans to choose an environment that is convenient for us rather than to adapt to it, and I call this “active adaptation.

The woman at the hospital was a case in point. I think she found a job that suited her, rather than searching for her true self. So young people, when you find a job that you are good at and think, ‘I can do this,’ you should think that is where you belong.

In recent years, the number of new hires retiring early has been on the rise, and both pros and cons have been reported, but in terms of active adaptation, this may be one way to go.

In the past, when people were employed for life, they never thought about active adaptation, and even if they were not good at their job, it was normal for them to work hard to adapt themselves and work until retirement. I think there were many people who worked in those days who thought, ‘I’m not really like this.

Nowadays, however, there are many young people who work for a while and quit as soon as they feel they are no longer good enough. If they can find a suitable place for themselves as early as possible through early retirement, perhaps the plagues of idiots will gradually decrease in the future.

Kiyohiko Ikeda was born in Tokyo in 1947. Biologist. Graduated from Tokyo University of Education, Faculty of Science, Department of Biology, Zoology, and completed the doctoral program in the Graduate School of Science at Tokyo Metropolitan University. He is the author of many books, including “Lies of Environmental Problems” (Chikuma Shobo), “The Truth About the Environment” (KADOKAWA), “The Disaster of Idiots” (Takarajimasya Shinsho), “From 40 Years Old, Live Free: Examining Life in Biological terms” (Kodansha Gendai Shinsho) and “The Amazing ‘Real Evolution Theory'” (Fusosha Shinsho). He is also the author of a newsletter, “Kiyohiko Ikeda’s Skinny Diary,” and “Kiyohiko Ikeda’s Morura Manzou” on Voicy and YouTube.

  • Interview and text Keiko Tsuji

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