‘Pronoia’ p.271 #1: Have you ever had permission to indulge in a marathon of braggadocio? Have you ever gotten an invitation to bluster on endlessly about your own charms without feeling even a touch of guilt or inhibition? I hereby grant you such a license right now.
When you’re ready, carry out the exercise called Brag Therapy. Grab a good listener or a recording device and boast extravagantly about yourself for at least 20 minutes. Expound in exhaustive detail why you’re so wonderful and why the world would be a better place if everyone would just act more like you.
Don’t be humble or cautious. Go too far. Heap extreme glory on yourself. Brazenly proclaim the spectacular qualities about you that no one has every fully articulated or appreciated. Don’t forget to extol the prodigious flaws and vices that make you so special.
What does this have to do with pronoia? When you audaciously identify your existing gifts, you set yourself up to become a magnet for even greater abundance. In fact, we recommend that you treat yourself to a Brag Therapy session regularly.
To whet you imagination, read an excert from the boast of Eric Baer, a participant in a Brag Therapy session hosted in Milwaukee. “I have opposable thumbs, ” Eric exulted. “I can read. I breathe all the way through the night even though I’m asleep. I have access to emporiums where I can choose from 25 different brands of toilet paper. I know how to turn food into energy. I live where knuckleheads run everything and yet nothing ever blows up.”
NOTE: I’ll be honest, it honestly took me a couple days to muster the gumption to do this exercise. But what the hell? You only live once. Here we go:
I sing rock songs done originally by men so well that I don’t have to pay a bar tab at most karaoke bars, and not just because I don’t drink alcohol. I put brown sugar in my tea which makes it more awesome than usual. I have the prettiest, healthiest, thickest hair of anyone I know – and the color is divine. I was curvy before it was trendy. I can say the alphabet backwards. I have hitchhiker’s thumbs. I have a soul and believe in helping people who can’t help themselves, which means that I may have to sacrifice some of my luxury to do so. Sometimes when I get on a roll I’m funny as shit. I can win debates with about 85% of people and I can level those people with calm, stealthy rhetoric. I’ve sampled more types of chocolate than most people my age. I have unbelievably dark and long lashes. I’ve rung up a $50 tab on sashimi all by myself. I can alternate reading the same 5 books and still remember where I was and what was happening in each of them. I believe in changing energies and the Law of Attraction and perform rituals to do so. I can do the best Ethel Merman impression you’ve ever heard. I can dance like a fiend. I only get about 4 zits every year. I can eat a whole gallon of chocolate ice cream in one sitting. I wrote my first piece of erotica at 12 years old. I can sing every song on Styx’s “Paradise Theatre” and “The Grand Illusion” albums by heart. I’m not allergic to ANYTHING. My child literally uses manners in her sleep because I rock at setting an example. I spoil my friends with presents, even when I can’t afford them. Actually, I love giving people things in general and have been known to make myself broke by making donations to charities, people, bums on the street, etc. I waited until I was totally ready to lose my virginity and, no, I don’t think I was too young and, no, I won’t be upset if my daughter loses hers at the same age. I’m more introspective and proactive about changing my dysfunctions than at least 70% of the rest of the people in the society in which I was raised. My nose piercing has looked the same since the minute it was done – no swelling, no infection, no redness, just adorableness. I’m the biggest ‘Sesame Street’ nerd I know. I have a fantastic alias/nom de plume. I totally pick up on social cues even though I choose to ignore a lot of them. I have five short stories I’ve been working on for a year now. My body magically knew to provide me with too much seratonin and dopamine during my pregnancy as a defense mechanism against my chronic depression. My eyes change color every day. I know how to spell. Every time that I’ve done something that someone else has perceived as psychotic, I’ve been fully aware that that was what was going to happen and I went ahead and did it anyway – sometimes just to freak people out. I’ve never ever cried to get myself out of a ticket. I look adorable in earmuffs, a furry hat, pincurls, dreadlocks, kitty-cat ears and 1950′s style A-line housedresses. I’ve had over 20 diaries and journals since I was 5 and I’ve kept all of them. I know exactly how to be annoying and I can cite the minute it happens with anyone I’m targeting. Oh yeah, and I annoy people I don’t like but have to be around because it’s totally fun and I’m thoroughly amused by it… and because I have to let my inner brat out from time to time. I pwned the 12 Steps and tools of therapy. I’m so irresistable I’ve had to put out not one but two restraining orders on people. I won a multiplication bee when I was in the 3rd grade and, because the teacher preemptively knew I’d win it, she bought me some Sherlock Holmes books ’cause she knew I loved reading them. I’m fully aware when I say things that make me look dysfunctional. I was the only one giggling when I saw both “Titanic” and “The Notebook” (I was dragged) in the theatre. Despite what my high school drama teacher (“facilitator”) said, I got my own paragraph-of-glowing-praise in the public reviews from the only two community theatre productions I’ve ever been in… and in one of those productions I didn’t even speak. I make ideal pancakes. I have over 40 mix tapes and CDs that were made by friends in the last ten years. Oh, and I make arguably better mix CD’s than most people. I saved at least $1,000 by buying all my textbooks from Amazon.com and teaching my family how to do the same. I work every day on self-betterment, even if I don’t have time for it. I didn’t marry an idiot. I have my own desk, my own computer, my own filing cabinet, my own Etsy store, my own three domains and my own two blogs. I get gifts from across the planet every year. I make the most artistically badass scrapbooks I’ve ever seen. I’ve played a 200 year old piano located at Juliette Gordon Low’s house after the tour guide said, “We only let one girl do this every year.” I’m so irresistable I’ve had not one, but three “stalkers” (crazy people who won’t leave me alone and keep calling/harassing me because they’re in love) and have had handfuls of people I’ve heard can’t/won’t/don’t stop talking about me even years after I’ve forgotten them. I live in North Carolina. I know a real enigma. I survived both jr. high and high school. I’m not a bigot. I’m a neo-feminist which means that I can enjoy baking, sewing, knitting, etc without feeling some sort of guilt that I’m backsliding or being a slave to societal patriarchy. I look awesome in red. I also look awesome with purple highlights in my hair. My guitar was given to me by a Grammy winner and Top 40 recording artist. My top half is two sizes smaller than my lower half. I can recite every line in “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” The Movie. I’m no longer envious of, threatened by or hateful to beautiful women (and not just because I’ve embraced the fact that they turn me on.) I have a Pick of Destiny. I get more excited about autumn than most [Christian] kids do about Christmas. I’ve never seen an episode of “The Hills”, “Laguna Beach” or “Jersey Shore”. I won/earned a Girl Scout Silver Award before anyone else in my troop did and I earned every Try-It that Brownie Girl Scouts could in the early 90′s. I’ve traveled abroad and have been to all but 15 of the United States. I’ve learned how to cut needy idiots out of my life once they’ve screwed up too many times instead of staying emotionally invested and draining myself for no reason. I stopped biting my fingernails. I have the cutest child on the planet who also happens to be polite, selfless, sociable and giggly. After years of apologizing and making amends for all those years I was a terrible, awful person, I’m finally in the clear and don’t owe anyone anything [for the moment]!!! I had the best wedding I’ve ever heard of in my entire life.