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A phrase I remember writing in a lot of sad little sprial-bound notebook entries back in high school. The idea is, life sucks, and past failures in life will continue to repeat themselves over and over, because nothing ever changes, and I will always be too stupid/ugly/timid/lame/boring/insecure/whatever to accomplish anything. This theorem is often accompanied by the corollary that the world is against me, and I am fated to make the same mistakes and be stuck in the same place my entire life.

Stating and believing this phrase magically turns it into a vicious self-fulfilling prophecy. If you don't believe you can do anything about your problems, you'll stop wasting your time and energy trying to do so, and they'll just become even greater, which will depress you even more, and you'll grow more apathetic. And if you believe that you're fated to be miserable, you'll simply inflict that fate upon yourself.

The John Cusack's character in High Fidelity suffers from succumation to this idea, and watching that movie was probably the greatest factor in convincing me that fatalism is complete and utter bullshit. The moral of the movie seemed to be that self-absorption and self-pity are the quickest routes to being isolated from the world, and preventing yourself from accomplishing anything in it... and opening yourself to others and hearing their point of view is the quickest way to realize that you suffer from the symptoms of self-aborption, and need to do something to stop it. That being said, go rent the movie and watch it.

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