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On Being Young

February 26, 2019

Author: Bianca Yang
Email: ipacifics@gmail.com

Today is one of those days when I feel like I’m about to get chewed out by someone older for the uninspiring, banal, really quite stupid things I put on this blog. If that is what is going to happen, so be it. Come at me with all you’ve got. This blog exists because it’s a way I pursue happiness, but happiness doesn’t achieve full flavor except when paired with its opposite.

So far, I’m not ashamed of my previous posts. This probably supports the idea that people don’t change much over time. I am still largely in alignment with my previous ideas and worldview, and I’m still happy with the way I attempted to share those beliefs with my readers. If this feeling of consistency has truly been sustained over the past 1.5 years, does that imply that I have plateaued? There’s no denying that my brain plasticity has vastly decreased over the past 20 years of my life. There’s no denying that it will continue to decrease. But I also don’t think there’s any denying that my personality was probably visible by the time I entered elementary school. If it wasn’t visible then, it would have been strongly visible by the time I left elementary school. There have been some surprises among my elementary school classmates, most of whom ended up going to the same middle and high school as me, but nothing that was vastly out of line with our understanding of who they were when they were 6 year olds.

The possibility that I have plateaued is frightening and frustrating, more so because I believe in fighting for constant, never-ending improvement. It’s fatalistic to say that my current level is a close enough approximation to my level 5, 10, 15, 20 years down the line. But is it foolish to think that I still have the potential to become as amazing as an Elon Musk before I die? Is the fact that I can state that desire just a fault of being young? Or is the inclination to crush those dreams a fault of something else, like an optimization for productivity and love for deadlines over optimization for happiness. But is it foolish to think that I still have the potential to become as amazing as an Elon Musk before I die? Is the fact that I can state that desire just a fault of being young? Or is the inclination to crush those dreams a fault of something else, like an optimization for productivity and love for deadlines over optimization for happiness?

I don’t think I’ll ever regret being young, being impressionable, being stupid enough to put stupid things onto the public Internet. I’ll only regret the days when I lose the unrestrained, reckless nature of my youth. So come at me with all the criticism you’ve got, because we’ll be more disappointed by the things we didn’t do.