5 ways to be the dog and not the hydrant
A wise man once told me: there are two kinds of people in any life relationship: the dogs and the hydrants. Which one do you want to be?
I mean, the answer is obvious. Nobody likes to get peed on.
But the how. The how isn’t so straightforward. The how is what takes the effort.
It all boils down to faking your confidence and your balls in situations when you feel like an insecure John Bobbitt.
1—Know your tells
Do you talk like an idiot when you’re nervous? Do you change your speed? Do you pick your hands? Next time you’re unsure of yourself, observe how awkwardly you’re behaving. Then, stop that. It’s harder than it soundssss.
2—You’re never actually wrong
You have to outconfidence the person you think is more confident than you. When you’re convincing, it’s contagious and believable. Sometimes, you say something outrageous and it works, right? Sometimes you say something outrageous and then someone’s like: “actually, no, you’re wrong, birds don’t have tongues.” Are you caught? Maybe, maybe not. You don’t actually know if birds have tongues offhand. So you start the confident bullshit: “Are you sure on that? I guess it depends what you’d classify as a “bird” because I mean, penguins definitely have tongues but I’m fairly certain that bats don’t.” Now, the other person is like “wait…am I the fucking idiot?” And it doesn’t matter that you really just implied that a penguin wasn’t a bird…if they Google it and come back to you like “not all birds have tongues,” at that point you’re like “dude, are you seriously still caught up on this issue?”
You’re actually the one that made the dumbest point ever, but you’re owning your stance so confidently that the other person is just steamrolled. Trust: it will mess with their heads. Make them second-guess themselves.
I think this one is most applicable in the business world. You know, with negotiating and such. If you are personable, articulate, and inflate each pissy little achievement that you’ve ever half done, you build up your worth to the employer [it would also be nice if you were substantively awesome in general, too]. If you appear to be overly considerate and appreciative, you push yourself one step ahead of other candidates. Hints at this last point include being warm and enthusiastic in your thank-you emails, etc.
So, when it comes to time spans and salaries, you should push and then push some more. People want what other people want: talk about how you’re “exploring some other opportunities” even if you’ve spent the last six months beating off while watching early seasons of The Office in your bed. Come back with a firm “no, that’s much too low” when it comes to salary. Fuck it if they call you out. I hate seeing the ridiculous salaries that people are getting offered these days, just getting absolutely insulted. There’s this wide-spread bullshit idea that there are no jobs out right now “in this fackin economy.” There are. There are fucking plenty, people just don’t know how to hustle. But you can use this to your advantage. If people think you are contemplating over more than one, they are going to think you’re actually special [regardless of you, in actuality].
4—Know the power of a contemplative silence
When people don’t talk, it makes me nervous. I hate it. I know other people do, too. If you’re in a situation and you’re uncomfortable, trying not to show emotion, trying to drive someone motherfucking nuts, etc. just don’t talk very much. Small smiles, tilting of the head, and staring go a long way. You’ll seem mysterious, reflective, introspective, deep-thinking, sketchy, and dangerous all at once. You’ll caress people’s own insecurities out of them. When you leave them room to assume, they’ll project their worries and fears. And you’ll just look like a smug smiling snapperhead.
I’ve learned that, in this life, people are going to test you, push you. Within each of us lies an emotional crybaby, a pathetic ex, a clingy partner, a debby downer, an oppressed worker, a general pity, a sap. Being able to stifle these little weaknesses, as we all know, is the hardest thing in the world. Scientists say it’s the same part of you that crawls into your fingers and makes you buy king size Hershey’s [see what I did there?]. I’m talking about that text you don’t send, the question you don’t ask, the inner doubt you don’t admit, the “go ahead, I don’t give a shit” that you maintain as believable. It’s good for you.
Now this all sounds incredibly manipulative and kind of anti-love-thy-neighbor. But it comes down to a simple question of components: which one do you want to be?