Our increasingly egotistical culture sanctions competitiveness, achievement-orientation, impatience, assertiveness, and work-fixation. Fine. But do we need to recast selfishness, greed, aggressiveness, and egotism as virtues?
Consider the assertion “I’m type A” you’ll often hear from people who’re harried and quick to anger. That expression has become the ultimate humblebrag—an announcement for the narcissistic self, indeed. It’s often a lead up to some form of a self-absorbed burden to be imposed on others.
Intense people are off-putting, particularly to laid-back types
The designation “Type A” was presented as a negative characterization in the 1970s by cardiologists—not psychologists—about people prone to so-called “hurry sickness.” These people tend to get angry and, consequently, have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease.
Now then, “I’m type A” has become the special consent some people expect to be granted to be a bit infuriating. It’s a polite declaration of the self-conscious entitlement, “I have somewhat better standards. Sorry to be so persistent.” “Sorry to squeeze you dry on this project, but I’m driven to deliver my best.”
Idea for Impact: If you’re a Type A, by all means, be an overachiever, strong-minded, demanding, whatever. But be all these without being obnoxious or instinctively imposing uncalled-for pressure on everything and everybody and every time. Lighten up.