Self Esteem

Why The Forbes’ 30 Under 30 List Makes Me Feel Bad About Myself

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Dear Forbes,

The New Year is a time of reflection and resolution for most people. As another year passes we make lists and resolutions about what we hope to achieve and improve upon in the coming year. So you can imagine my total delight when you published your annual 30 Under 30 list right at the tippy top of 2014, a list of dozens and dozens of amazing people my age or younger who are succeeding at life so much more than I am. Thank you for that!

I bet the mothers of all the people on the list really appreciated it too. In fact my own mother was excited about this list! I know this because she sent me a link with the message, “Some people your age doing great things! :)” Cool! Sometimes I worry that I get so caught up in panicking that I’m destined to a life of poverty because I decided to pursue a career in comedy that I forget to stop and celebrate people like Olivia Wilde who really just don’t get enough credit in our culture. Good on you, Forbes, for not being afraid to stand up for people like her!

1230_forbes-cover-012014-snapchat-30-under-30_768x1000I definitely felt more motivated after reading about a 21 year-old engineering prodigy who is a millionaire now for his video game thingy whatever. Hopefully my own prodigious skills will kick in any day now! And thank you for celebrating the founders of Snap Chat, just a couple of baby boys who could have sold their company for $3 billion but didn’t probably because they just weren’t feeling confident enough. So it’s great that you featured them on your list, I hope it gives them the ego boost they really need!

Oh and extra big thanks for last year’s 30 Under 30. You featured a guy I went to high school with! But not just any guy – the most popular guy in our grade who was a dick to a ton of people, didn’t get nearly as good grades as I did, and would have literally rather died than make out with me, no matter how badly I wanted him to make out with me. I know that in movies the popular jocks typically peak in high school and go on to be fat, balding, and miserable while the smart, awkward nerds blossom into hot and successful adults. But not in this case! So thank you for pointing out that he is a flourishing food entrepreneur with a rapidly expanding business by the age of 27 while I am not. It’s so refreshing to see stereotypes flipped on their heads, isn’t it?

But I guess the most inspiring people on your list are all the teenagers! Seriously, so many teenagers on your list who have achieved careers I could only fantasize about having before they’re even old enough to have figured out which liquors they can’t really handle (mine’s whiskey, but I didn’t figure that out until I mixed whiskey with Jell-o shots as an old geezer in college.) When I see the magnitude of impressive work that someone like Lorde is able to produce at the young age of 17 it’s so fun to compare her to my own 17-year-old self. I was busy applying to college, sitting on the bench in field hockey, buying hair straighteners, and crying when my crushes didn’t respond to me on AIM so I guess that’s why I never really did anything like become CEO of my own foundation or anything like that. To each his own! I know I certainly have no regrets at all whatsoever, nope I don’t.

Anyway, thanks for inspiring us with this list. There are times I may think I am working hard, performing as often as I can, writing for little pay, working tons of side jobs to make ends meet, and generally pursuing my dream the only way I know how. But it’s nice to see a list of people who remind me constantly that I’m not working hard enough, I am nowhere near my goals, and that in two years when I am 30 I might as well be dead.

Love you! Mean it,
Laura

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