A shit-test is when you get thrust into a situation where you have to perform under greater pressure than you’re accustomed to.
Normal day-to-day life has become more challenging because of unforeseen circumstances like a break-up, illness, or a pandemic. You are now being tested.
And, who’s grading the test?
Yes, you’ve been competent while things have been going smoothly in the last while – perhaps you’ve even grown comfortable and complacent? Well, let’s find out.
Are you going to lose sleep and mess up at work and let your boss down? Are you going to snap at your girlfriend? Are you going to forget to pick up your mom for her dentist appointment?
Inevitably, all your relationships will be strained by these shit-test that universe so generously dishes out to you. Your poor grading will push people away. Complaining. Whining. Anger. Unable to keep a handle on things, you will lose your shit. The people in your life will suffer for it.
Your attitude becomes exposed during these shit-tests.
For in these moments you become hyper-aware that you risk losing all of these relationships if you don’t get your shit together – if you continue to let life push you around, you will continue to be impulsive and unreliable.
You wake up to the fact that your value is predominately determined by how well you serve others. This might be a painful truth. You’re responsible for how people treat you. You’re responsible for how the world treats you. You may find that it’s easier just to be angry and frustrated than to accept this truth.
If life has been unfairly difficult, you may hide behind a victim narrative.
But, nonetheless, it’s to your peril to ignore the fact that you still need to have people drawn to you – biased towards you – even in the worst times. Even when you feel like you have the worst luck in the world. People still need to feel like they can count on you.
People rarely do anything out of logic. It’s just not a powerful enough force to give you momentum in building relationships with them. Although they may be sympathetic to how you’ve failed them in tough times, they will inevitably feel negatively towards you.
It’s your responsibility to do the right things and be the right person, even while under pressure, despite pain, despite heartache – so that you harness the power of human bias to your own advantage, and at you will.
Only when you’ve successfully come to terms with this will you make it through tough times as a more resilient person, with stronger relationships forged through your challenge and leadership.
What Happens When We Fail Shit Tests?
One of the things that happens If you remain weak, irresponsible, and if you keep blaming the world for your circumstances, is that people around you will subconsciously feel the need to test you with their own actions. They will flake on you, they will ask you to do unreasonable things for them, and they will even insult you.
Subconsciously, they will be drawn by the need to see how you respond to certain difficult situations. Your presence leaves them uncentered and chaotic. It gets reflected back upon yourself. It’s your vibe that’s a problem.
And by an affront on your dignity – or just disrespecting the value of your time, they will add to these situations… and test you. If you fail – they will leave.
Therefore, it’s important that you learn to remain centered through these “tough times”, when people prod at your weak spots, when the world around you seems to be going to hell.
From there, slowly, but surely you will lean to prove yourself in shitter and shittier times, and people will actually admire you instead of test you. You’ve been studying, and it’s now obvious to others that you’d pass. It’s your new vibe.
Leadership is when others say: “Why waste the effort? Into his frame, I go. This guy has his shit together.”
In time, they will feel, rather than think, “this guy can handle things, I should be around him. I want to be around him.”
How To Pass Shit Tests
Like how you would approach any test – studying and practicing.
You can begin every journey with these 2 steps.
As it turns out, this getting pass shit tests has been a topic that humans have been discussing for all of history. Entire religious texts, philosophy, and schools of thought have been devoted to this issue. Indeed, humans have been through some very tough times, and we’ve learned a thing or two about it.
Now, it’s simply your job to put in the effort, with discipline and devotion, to learn from those who came before you. From studying the great teachers of the past, you will see your own situations in life from their perspective.
A great place to start is the school of Stoicism, full of logic and reason. The perfect weapons against the chaos of life.
Just keep in mind: the more we value things outside our control, the less control we have.
The tranquility that comes when you stop caring what they say. Or think, or do. Only what you do.
He has the most who is content with the least.
As you become more educated in the philosophies that helped your fore bearers keep their shit together through tough times, you will come to a lot of realizations about how you mishandled a lot of tough situations in the past. Ignorant of the truth, you have simply taken some wrong paths in life.
Perhaps you’ve already dismissed responsibility for some unfortunate outcomes in your life by blaming other people. Perhaps you blame uncontrollable circumstances for your poor actions that led to these outcomes. Perhaps you did some stupid shit because your ego was hurt.
In the application of what you’ve learned, you will reflect on how you reacted to the things that happen to you and compare that to the new values you’ve learned through education. Although this might give you a pang of regret, it will also give you practice in theorizing how you will handle the situation in the future.
Because, upon reflection, you might notice that there could’ve been other choices made – maybe better, although more difficult, choices.
You will steel your will-power for the next opportunity to act rightly.
In applying what you’ve learned – taking better perspectives – you can begin to reclaim responsibility, and as a result, power, over the things that happen to you.
No longer blurred by the negative energy of blame and victim hood, you can start to unravel your future glory.
Only positive and productive actions can come out of one who has educated himself on the best perspective to take on life. Instead of fear and chaos, your reaction to things that happen to you will be effective – rooted in timeless wisdom.
An education in this topic will breed confidence in you. You will simply know more about how to confront the shit that life dishes out. And life dishes out a lot of shit. To everyone, no exception.
And so, you will be able to lead others to pass their shit tests – one’s which they may fail otherwise. Go pass those shit-tests.