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4 Signs You Are an Intellectual Individual, According to Jordan Peterson

Derick David

Image: Times Higher Education

Think like the top 1% with these simple rules

Jordan Peterson is a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, a widely cited personality scholar, and author of what is currently the best-selling non-fiction book on Amazon in the United States. David Brooks of the New York Times, echoing economist Tyler Cowen of George Mason University, calls him,

“The most influential public intellectual in the Western world right now.”

Jordan Peterson is also a right-wing Internet celebrity who claimed that feminists have “an unconscious desire for brutal male domination,” described developing countries as a “disaster pit” in a speech to a Dutch group of far-right, and a Times reporter recently said he advocated “forced monogamy”.

So, what we can learn from him? A lot. But what I’m going to highlight in this story are the most notable and important ones that helped millions of people do better in their lives. Just like them, you can dominate in your career, earn a lot of money, and develop a public persona. Enough about the talk, here are Jordan Peterson’s top 4 ways you can apply to be a winner in the current modern world we live in.

1. You stand up, be strong, and accept your reality.

“To stand up straight with your shoulders back is to accept the terrible responsibility of life, with eyes wide open. It means deciding to voluntarily transform the chaos of potential into the realities of habitable order. It means adopting the burden of self-conscious vulnerability, and accepting the end of the unconscious paradise of childhood, where finitude and mortality are only dimly comprehended.
It means willingly undertaking the sacrifices necessary to generate a productive and meaningful reality (it means acting to please God, in the ancient language).”

Suffering is a meaningful and important part of the growth and maturity process. Its how boys grow into men. Choosing which poison to take and realizing that whatever you do, it will always have consequences. The challenges of various types are like obstacles that provide the necessary stepping stone for success, leadership, and relationships.

So, stand up straight and embrace your destiny. By owning your own life, you become an owner of the new opportunities coming on your way. If you fail, acknowledge the defeat and the failure. When you win, you take all the credit, because you deserve it.

Our purpose in life is in maturity, growth, and leadership, not running from danger or coddling ourselves. When life hits hard, hit harder.

2. You don’t fear the unknown, embrace it. Opportunities lie on the other side of it.

“You can’t appreciate what you don’t see.” — Ray Dalio

Peterson also suggested that I see how far the so-called “intellectual dark web” has fallen. I admired Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins, but although they were always better than Peterson, I felt like I was lost in the role of Anti Social Justice Warrior. So Peterson led me to broaden my understanding of extremely insightful ideas, but only by finding out just how wrong he was.

As for its book, “The 12 rules of life”, they are dangerous, but not entirely useless. It takes a basic understanding and it goes so far as to make them dangerous. To turn each individual into a cog in the machine and each individual into an island. It captures modern conservatism. Even though he clearly cannot commit to being a Christian, that means he is. Modernity has exposed the flaws of old traditions, but it is so afraid of life without these meanings giving rise to beliefs that it is clearly willing to live a life beaten to keep them.

Not all things in life aren't meant to be understood.
Sometimes being aware of it is enough.

3. You make out of your life is the meaning you give the universe. So, write your own destiny.

“It is not the universe that gives us meaning, it is we who give meaning to the universe.” — Max Tegmark

One of the best lessons that I learned from Dr. Peterson is that it’s our job to find meaning in life. You have to see it to appreciate it and this can be applied to virtually every experience and relationship in your life.

As the saying goes, if you don’t write your own future, someone else will write to you. Would you like that?

Like many others, I was immediately interested in what Jordan Peterson had to say. He has an interesting, idealistic, and inspiring perspective. After listening to his train wreck podcast with Sam Harris and a few other videos and articles, I was hooked. He would often lose me, especially with the elaborate mental gymnastics in which he tried to make biblical and mythological stories. I couldn’t help but think he had a strong emotional attachment to these stories and was using his genius to change their meaning for deeper and more lasting value. I wondered if he was bowing to certain demographics he had a penchant to bring them to a more rational view of the world. A tactic that I thought was not completely honest with himself or his listeners. Then, I read his book 12 Rules for Life and I was glad I did because after reading it, Jordan Peterson started becoming a hero to me.

I began to believe that he genuinely finds deep meaning in almost everything. The more I thought about this I became convinced that the ability to find and as a result appreciate meaning is a good way to live. I strive to apply this lesson in my daily life and in my long-term goals.

Create your own meaning in life and in return, the universe gives meaning to you.

4. You face the challenges, accept limitations, and win in life.

Change is powerful. When you accept and start working on it, it can transform your life for the better. However, not a lot spend their time analyzing and changing their aspects of life. This is due to a human tendency to stick in the super comfort zone.

“It may then be recognized that the unobserved event was absolutely identical to an event which did not occur at all.”- unknown

What Jordan Peterson’s book taught me is to accept myself a little more. I tend to be actually looking to get the approval of others. Their approval used to mean a lot to me and whenever I don’t get it, I feel weak. Now, everything is better in life. I don't answer to anyone, my happiness comes from me and myself, and to achieve it, I needed to look deep inside of me. The more you study yourself, the more you get clear when it comes to your goals in life.

So, treat yourself as someone for whom you are unconditionally responsible. Realize that if something in your life doesn’t work, then you need to change your attitude towards it.

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