Wipe Your Ass With Mediocrity

Bed of TP

All credit for the headline (and lovely mental image) goes to Ryan Hanley. I stole it from a line in his inspiring guest post over at Skool of Life (see below for a link to the actual post). Thanks buddy!


The very word makes me sick. Makes me want to slit my wrists, really. It’s a word that should be banned from discourse. Better yet, just strike it from the fucking dictionary altogether. Never to be uttered again.

Gone forever.

That sounds pretty good to me. Because I’ve spent too much of my life living in mediocrity. Passing the days with nothing to show for them. Getting closer and closer to my deathbed, yet further and further from the dreams I once held.

Sound familiar?

How is it that so many of us are just drifting through life, wasting our days doing meaningless work in jobs we neither enjoy nor value? Trading our most precious and limited resource – time – for a meager paycheck that just barely covers our bills and the minimum credit card payments we make for all that useless shit we “needed.”

In essence, we’re trading our very fucking lives for meaningless things. Most of which will have already been buried under a pile of dust long before we’re even gone from this world. Forgotten and never used.

And we accept it as normal. As though that’s how we’re meant to live. Just get through 5 days of the week . . . 5 fucking days of drudgery . . . so that you might live a little for the other two.

What a waste of life.

Yet that’s exactly how most of us choose to live. Yes, choose. We sell away our entire lives, and ask for nothing in return except a paycheck, a couple days a week, and a pile of shit.

Is that all your life is worth? A paycheck and a pile of shit?


Then why the fuck would you ever accept that kind of living?

What’s happening here is that you’ve become stuck on the path of mediocrity. In this day and age, it’s damn near impossible not to. But you’d best find a way to get the hell off it. ‘Cause the only company you’ll find on that road is Misery and Stagnation.

But how do you do it? How do you go from a mediocre life to a life worth living? A life people will remember long after you’re nothin’ but dust and bones.

Well . . .

You gotta find your power. You gotta stop livin’ by other people’s rules. Make your own fucking rules. It’s your life. Live it how you choose. Stop running from fear. Embrace it. Use it. Chase after your fear and it’ll lead you from the path of mediocrity to the path you were meant to travel.

A life of purpose. A life of passion.

Doing shit that means the world to you and those around you. Giving your true worth to the world, and in return, earning the right to live as you choose.

That’s how it was always meant to be.

But you got lost. Mired in self-doubt. And instead of living the life of your dreams, you’ve been living a life of excuses.

Those fucking excuses.

Every excuse is an opportunity wasted. When you’re old and frail, looking back on the trash heap that was your life, you’ll find it littered with excuses, cop-outs, and rationalizations.

Well fuck that! That’s no kind of legacy. No one should prepare to die burdened with the knowledge that, instead of living a life of purpose, passion, and vigor; they’ve abandoned it to the wasteland of mediocrity.

You don’t want that, and I don’t want that for you. So stop with the excuses.

Just fucking stop.

I know there’s more to you than you’ve been lettin’ on. You know there’s more. More than what you’ve shown to the world. Even more than you’ve shown to your closest loved ones.

Success is already in you. It’s always been there, but you’ve become blind to it. You just have to find a way to set it free.

Maybe all you need is a little inspiration. A kick in the ass to get you off of your ass.

So I’ve compiled for you 5 of the most inspiring posts I’ve ever read. These are the posts that get me fired up, even as I attempt to do the same for you. Do yourself a favor and read every word of every one of them. I’ll even give you a teaser quote from each one.

And I might as well start with the post that inspired the title of this one. Ryan Hanley was contributing to a series about fear. His was the second post in the series, but that was kind of a shame — it should have been saved for last. Because it was the best of the bunch . . .

Day2: The Fear of Mediocrity

“ people who brake free from mediocrity aren’t normal…

…they’re radicals, rebels, and rabble-rousers.

They wipe their ass with typical.” – Ryan Hanley

Next up, check out this fucking amazing post by big Cris McCombs. This guy’s got more fire in him than all the flames in hell. Don’t let the title fool you . . . though he’s teaching you how to be a badass, rest assured . . . there’s never been a mediocre badass in the whole damn history of badasses. It’s just not possible.

37 Ways to be a Total Badass

“Do your part, do everything you fucking can, go after your goals like you have a gun to your head and unless you give it your all, that trigger is gonna get the squeeze…” – Chris McCombs

To give you a taste for what it’s really like when you grab life by the balls and go after your dreams, there’s no one better to tell it like it is than Liz Seda. She’s not afraid to give you the hard truth about chasing success. And she does it with style. Read this post then check out the rest of her blog . . . it’s by far one of the best out there.

Announcement: Your Glamorous Road to Success Doesn’t Exist

“If you want to do anything of worth, you’ll be up to your knees in shit, covered in blisters and painted in bruises.”– Liz Seda

The next post is the one that slapped me in the face and made me question my own habitual patterns. Chad Howse knows all about the escape from mediocrity. Having built himself from scrawny runt to ripped business man, he’s just the guy to give you the inside scoop.

Fuck Mediocrity and Become a Legend

“Take that tenacity into everything you do . . . Into every workout, every article, every day on the job, every fight, battle and war. Take that venomous hatred towards being average to every endeavor. Make it your enemy.” — Chad Howse

I also want to highlight a great comment that was left on Chad’s post. It captured the idea perfectly . . .

“Fuck Mediocrity

We need bumper stickers with that slogan. We need t-shirts emblazoned with it. I want to see that shit spray painted on every wall of every classroom in every school. I await the day when some politician rides that motto all the way to the Whitehouse, with hoards of voters chanting “Fuck Mediocrity! Fuck Mediocrity! FUCK MEDIOCRITY!”

Ok, so yeah . . . I wrote the comment. But it’s damn fitting for this post so I said “Fuck it, I’m puttin’ it here.”

Alright. My final suggestion is to read Alden Tan’s 100th post. I fucking love this one. Life is short, and too many of us miss out on all the amazing things life has to offer. Alden’s done us a favor and listed 100 of those amazing things. Big or small, these are some of the best moments in life. My favorite is number 34, but I ain’t tellin’ — you’ll have to read the post yourself if you want to find out what it is. But I’ll give you a few to whet your appetite . . .

100 Things Life is Too Short For

“14) To not follow your heart!”

“30) To wuss out at the last minute.”

“78) To not finally tell that fucker off.”

— Alden Tan

So there you have it. All the motivation you’ll ever need. Enough fucking motivation to change your life forever.

If you listen to what’s being said.

If you can just man the fuck up and apply it.

But if you need a little bit more then I’ll leave you with this . . . it’s another comment from yours truly. I left it over at Dan Erickson’s blog. I was speaking about success, but success and mediocrity are just opposing ends of the balance. The further you lean towards one end, the more you’ll tip the scale in that direction.

So why not tip the scales in favor of success?

“Success isn’t so much the results you see for your efforts. It’s not even necessarily accomplishing what you set out to do. Success is the process. The journey. The mindset.

Success is getting off your ass and gettin’ shit done. It’s giving your best effort in the pursuit of a dream, no matter how long it takes, or how ‘little’ you have to show for it. And it’s getting back up every single time you get knocked down along the way.

True success is defined not by the riches and the fame, but by the pursuit of something greater. It’s forged in the challenge. And it comes only to those who refuse to succumb to the struggle.”


If you found any value in this post — if it struck a chord or even just made you think for a moment — then I’d appreciate it if you hit some of those share buttons. In fact, it would make my freakin’ day! Thanks!

(Photo by SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget at flickr.)

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  1. Hi Trevor,

    This was a wonderful post and I was inspired reading it! You have such an amazing and empowering writing style. Keep up the great work!

    I made a conscious decision to say no to mediocrity after spending years living life in constant fear and anxiety. Similar to what you wrote about looking back on our lives when we’re old, in my early twenties, I considered living the next 10-15 years of my life the way I already had, and in no way I could accept continuing to live that way.

    I’m going to go and check out the posts you’ve recommended now…

    Thank you, Trevor!

    • Thanks Hiten! I’m glad you enjoyed it. And I appreciate the kind words regarding my writing style.

      If you like the stuff that I write, then I think you’ll really enjoy the writing from the articles I linked to. They’re far better writers than I am, and their posts are absolutely inspiring. They’re so good it can be hard to finish them . . . half-way through and you’re already itchin’ to get up off your ass and do some damage. I’m sure you’re gonna love ’em.

      And it’s great to hear your story. It’s amazing how much that simple little decision to say no to mediocrity can change your life. I can see the results you’ve achieved from just your blog alone. Well done, man. Well done.


  2. I’ll take one of those bumper stickers, and thanks for the mention! I agree wholeheartedly.

    I am chasing the dream, but something else caught my attention in your post. You said “we trade our paycheck for a pile of shit.” I think you’ve touched on a second theme throughout this post: Overconsumption, needless self-gratification through material goods. We need to spend more time chasing the dream and less time filling our lives up with shit. My goal is to write and sell millions of books that will change other’s lives, but live in a modest house in a minimalist style.

    Great post, Trevor!

    • You’re welcome Dan. And thank you for the kind words.

      You’re right, I was “hinting” at minimalism (subtlety is not my forte). I’ve touched upon it here and there throughout my blog, though I’ve never dived completely into it. I love the concept. And it always feels so damn good when you get rid of the useless junk that’s just sittin’ there taking up space. We’ve become a nation of consumers, whereas we used to be a nation of creators. It’s a sad turn around.

      I hope to see that change someday.

      I like your goal Dan. Sell millions of helpful books, but live modestly. Sounds pretty good.


      • Trevor, great post man. I love the (not so) subtle hints about living on less. That’s what we breathe, as you know. There is nothing worse than hearing people complain about their financial situation while they consume, consume, consume – only to wind up needing a bigger shed.

        Rant aside, good post. Hopefully I leave mediocrity behind, but it has it’s way of lurking.

        • Thanks Jacob! I don’t think I could do subtle if I tried. It just ain’t in me.

          And it seems to me like you and Vanessa have long since hopped off the consumption bandwagon. My guess is that you’ve little chance of ever being mediocre. And if you ever do happen to see it lurking in some dark corner somewhere, well . . . just smash the fucking thing out of existence.


  3. Awesome article Trevor.

    I think the main problem isn’t because people are too lazy to get off their ass and do something with their lives, but because they feel they aren’t good enough and taught that the best way to live would be to live a life of mediocrity and that getting out of your comfort zone would make you an outsider.

    There are other reasons too, but for me, it was mainly due to failure at holding a job, and it forced me to take action because I didn’t want to go through it again and looked for another way.

    Some food for thought for anyone who happens to read my comment. We have more choice than we think we do 😉

    • Thanks Onder! You bring up some good points. Laziness is only one reason some people won’t amount to anything. But as you say, we have more choice than we think we do. It’s important to remember that.

      Choice and action are two of our greatest powers. Always have been, always will be. When we put them to good use, it’s next to impossible not to succeed.


  4. I save this for a nice before bed read, and then I realize, It’s Trevor! He’s going to get me all pumped up, and then I have to try and sleep? I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your grit and also your humor.

    I did the five days a week and the weekends in a job that was sucking me dry. I just felt used up, and I kept telling myself, What will they do without me? They need me. Guess what? The public schools are still running, and I am finally happy doing work that fills me up. I have time to exercise every day, eat healthy foods, and write. And you know what? It is never “done” – the dreams, goals, or whatever you choose to call them. They keep evolving, and if you are true to yourself, you will have lots of fun along the way because you will love so much of it. Or, at least that’s the way it worked for me. Thanks, Trevor. I was about to email you and say, I need a new Trevor post!

    • Thanks Tammy! Yeah, I know I’ve been slackin’ in the posting department lately. Lots of non-blog issues been keeping me busy. I’m trying to work with that.

      Ain’t it funny how we come to feel obligated to perform in the jobs we hate? We feel that we’re “necessary” and everything will fall apart without us. But that never really happens. Everyone is replaceable. But it is a convenient excuse to stay put. I’m glad you eventually got out of it though. It’s so important to do what you love. And an added benefit is you have time and fun. What could be better?


  5. Mediocrity is relative though, right? For some people, the 9-5 works, for others, it doesn’t. But I get what you’re saying – it’s realising what IS right and making it happen, rather than settling (I hate that word) for something that you think you SHOULD be doing, just because someone else is.


    I’m loving “people who brake free from mediocrity aren’t normal” – who the hell wants to be NORMAL?

    • True. Mediocrity is relative. And if you like the 9-5 grind then rock on. But judging by the plethora of sites out there dedicated to helping people escape that kind of life, I’d guess that vast majority don’t.

      So you’re right, the key is not settling. It’s going after what you want and doing everything in your power to make it happen. And if what you want is to be the best damn office clerk in the world then I say go for it. So long as that’s the dream then all’s well.

      Glad you liked that quote from Ryan Hanley. I think he makes a great point.


  6. A life of passion is the way to go. Living a boring life is just waisting it. Find your own inspiration! Well said!

  7. I think everyone should be working on and moving toward their dreams. Even if that means at night or during the weekend. A job we hate should drive us to take action on the things we want. It’s what a lot of people have and will continue to do through the internet, be it a blog, business, or providing a services. Great thoughts!

    • So true Dan. If you’re not heading towards your dreams, then you’re certainly heading in the wrong direction. And if dreams were so easy to achieve, then everyone would and they would mean nothing. So if we have to bust a little ass then so be it. Do what’s necessary and the rest will take care of itself.


  8. Hey Trevor, what a great post. Life’s too short to spend it being mediocre. I’m always looking for ways to get the most out of myself and strive to go above and beyond. We all spend too much time wasting life away in jobs we hate, relationships we can’t stand and other time wasting pursuits. I was just thinking of this the other day when I was at the DMV. Since I’ve moved to Texas, I had to get a new driver’s license. I got my ticket to get to the counter and the wait time was three hours. So I had to waste away three hours of my life just to get a damn license. What a waste. Working at a crappy job would be even worse though. That’s eight hours every day wasted.

    No longer. I don’t waste time on things that don’t matter anymore. I want to look back on my life when I’m eighty and just think, “yeah, that kicked ass.” I’m looking forward to that day. hell, I’ll probably still be kicking ass when I’m eighty.


    • Thanks Steve! I love the idea of not wasting time on things that don’t matter. It’s such a powerful notion. I can only imagine how much we could get accomplished if we were able to apply the idea effectively.

      Of course, many can’t . . . and I’m guilty of this as well.

      And when you’re standing in line at the DMV, it seems the choice has already been made for you.

      But you’ve got a great way of looking at life. You know you lived right when you look back and realized that your life kicked ass. That should be everyone’s goal.


  9. Ah yes!

    I can’t read them all now. But I’ve bookmarked all these posts for the next time when I’m finding it hard to get out of bed, or when I’m procrastinating.

    Time to hustle!

    • Good call on the bookmarking Sam. I guarantee, you’re gonne like ’em. Definitely the best time to read them is when you’re procrastinating (though honestly, I can’t imagine you procrastinating too often). Procrastination doesn’t stand a chance against these posts.


  10. You sir…are money.

    Mediocrity is the norm. When I entered my first nine to five one year ago I realize that for the first time. It fucked my mind for so long. Being mediocre is the scariest thing in the world. We have no more than 100 years to live if we’re lucky. Within that time we can do whatever the fuck we want.

    Most don’t think about it and decide to trade 40 hours a week for a paycheck. Then they soak in their two days of freedom and it’s back to the drudgery. Mediocrity bogs you down and allows people to lament their situation without doing a damn thing about it. But a select few with the gumption to say “Fuck mediocrity” will change the world and live a bad ass life. Our only hope is to spread the “Fuck Mediocrity” message as much as possible and open some eyes.

    This was good shit man.

    • Hell yeah! “Fuck mediocrity” needs to become a rallying cry. Seriously.

      And you bring up such a great point . . .

      “Mediocrity bogs you down and allows people to lament their situation without doing a damn thing about it.”

      I’ve been there and that’s exactly what happens. That’s the price of settling. Bitching seems to be the only way to deal with your own poor choices and lack of ambition.

      I won’t be going there ever again.

      Mediocrity, though it’s becoming increasingly common, is NOT the norm when it comes to human nature. It’s just something that we’ve been trained to expect and accept. We’re so brainwashed we don’t even realize what we’re capable of. It’s so fucking sad.

      Thanks for your kind words Kevin. I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I hope you checked out the links as well — they’re good shit.


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