The PJ Tatler

[Video] How to Be Miserable in the Land of Opportunity | Scott Ott's 7 Secrets

Here’s the script for the “Scott Ott Thought” video above.

SCOTT OTT: I’m Scott Ott, and here’s a thought.

People often ask me, “Scott Ott how can anyone be miserable during the greatest era of health and opportunity that America has ever seen?”

Well, it really isn’t very difficult. In fact, I can teach you how in fewer than 5 minutes. Here are Scott Ott’s seven secrets for getting, and staying miserable in the midst of joy and plenty.

First, read the New York Times.

You know, many of the secrets of success — like diligence, hard work, and honesty — are necessary, but not sufficient, to produce prosperity.

However, to achieve misery, The New York Times, is, in fact, sufficient.

It’ll have you fondling a revolver within just a few paragraphs.

This kind of misery-inducing work doesn’t just flow from the facts and the news. It takes the efforts of hundreds of reporters and editors in order to look at the numbers in a way that makes you wonder whether that ceiling fan can support your full weight.

Number two, replace the word “description” with the word “destiny.”

You see The New York Times describes what’s happening in the economy — for example, the middle class is shrinking. But you’ll fail miserably at being miserable if you don’t manage to translate that news into a personal belief that you are destined to fall from the middle class into poverty.

If you’re already in poverty, the key to getting and remaining miserable in the midst of it is to believe that the middle class is now squeezed so tight that you can’t get in. Misery is your destiny.

Third, you must control your mental focus.

You know, it’s so easy to slip out of that misery-thinking and into the belief that the plenty that you see around you could be yours. Don’t do it, my friend. You’ll never achieve sustainable misery if you start believing that you could change your current circumstances.

If you find your mind wandering toward opportunity, or goal-setting, or even enjoying the situation that you’re currently in, you must take immediate action. First, read The New York Times.

Fourth, it’s important to believe that the way you perceive things to be now, is the way they really are, the way they’ve always been and always will be.

If you even start to think that there’s a sunny side of the street, it’s a slippery slope, my friend.

Next thing you know, you’ll start to fantasize that life could be better than it is now, and then you’ll start to plan for that better future life, and you know what that will lead to?

I guarantee you, it won’t smell like misery.

You run the very real risk of rushing headlong into opportunity. Then you just might find out that all your preparation has primed you for a time such as this. And then, how are you going to remain miserable?

Fifth, if you have a job, hate your job.

O, you don’t have to go out and get a terrible job. You can start right here, right now, by simply hating the job you already have.

It doesn’t matter how much money you make at that job — I know folks making minimum wage who hate their jobs, and I know people earning six figures who don’t like what they do. The content of the work is irrelevant.

I’ll admit that hating your job is difficult, because it’s an intentional decision, but you have to make it seem like a natural consequence of your birth.

Number six: Worry. [SING] “Don’t happy. Be worry.”

Worry is easy because there are only two things to worry about:

1) things you can change, and

2) things you can’t change.

You see, there are problems and there are facts of life. Problems can be fixed. Facts of life can’t be fixed but they can be worked around. But the secret to a worriful life is to see problems as facts of life, and facts of life as problems.

This will help you worry about the problems you might otherwise solve, and it will worry the quinoa out of you as you try to fix human nature.

Hey, did you notice: We’re not even done this course yet, and I bet already you’re beginning to feel a little miserable. Good for you.

Finally, number seven: Demand that government make you happy.

Whether it’s money, or health insurance, child care or child disposal, or the need to make something legal that was illegal when you did it — put your hopes in government and politicians.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a Republican who wants smaller government, lower taxes and fewer Democrats, or a Democrat, who wants larger government, higher taxes on Republicans, and larger government.

Hoping that politicians and government will change the world in ways that make you happy is, perhaps, the most foolproof way to getting and staying miserable in the midst of joy and plenty.

I’m Scott Ott, and there’s a thought.