Ask Andrew W.K.: My Friends Resent My Success

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Photo by Ashley Eberbach
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions, and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

I'm having a really hard time after losing what I thought was my life. I'm in a place now where I've lost my marriage, my business, and my day-to-day existence. I'm unemployed and struggling with two children on my own. I'm having a midlife crisis and don't know which way to go. I'm primarily a floral designer and a landscape gardener, and I love music. Do I focus on what I love to do? Or do I try to bust into a new career?

-- Laura

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Can I Turn a Dog Into a Gentleman?

Dear Laura,

This is a moment of reckoning. When radical events unhinge your life, do you abandon everything and give up, or do you double down and press on with a deeper appreciation for what makes your life truly worth living?

Now's the time to treasure what you love more than ever. Now is not the time to doubt what you love or abandon it. Stay true to your passion and to yourself. Besides, you'll never be able to muster the energy and enthusiasm necessary for success in doing something you don't absolutely love to do. Why put all the time and effort into learning some "new career" when you already have one that you enjoy and have invested so much of yourself into?

Just because a particular business didn't work out doesn't mean your passion for it was wrong. Just because I went to a party that was shut down by the cops doesn't mean I'm going to give up on partying completely. You do what you love because you love, not because it's easy or it always goes smoothly. This is a judgement day for you. It's a day for you to take inventory of your soul and find out what really matters.

Recommit yourself more than ever to your passions and see them through with determination and joy. Celebrate the ups and downs in your life. When the going gets tough, the tough get a party going.


Your friend,
Andrew W.K.

Hey, Andrew!

No matter how hard I try to have an upbeat attitude and enjoy life to it's fullest, I can't seem to make that feeling last for more than a few days. Maybe it's just me being young and not understanding life yet. Any advice?

-- Party Hard

Dear Party Hard,

It has nothing to do with you being young. No one really understands life. And often, the older someone gets, the less they understand and more they realize how little anyone understands.

We're all basically awash in a sea of confusion, grasping at beliefs, concepts, and grids of meaning, hoping something will "once and for all" put an end to the confusion of being alive and give us an endless upbeat feeling. But the best we can hope to do is understand that we don't understand and that we don't need to feel "good" all the time.

In that way, you're right on track! In addition, having brief moments of revelation and extreme inspiration are wonderful, but explosions are designed to be brief. You can't really have a prolonged explosion--it's meant to be a dramatic burst of energy. It's part of the process of blowing your mind--you have a mental or spiritual explosion, and then it dies down so you can study it, appreciate it, and absorb it into your soul.

If you always felt on top of the world, then you would lose appreciation for the climb. Once it feels like we're at the top, we realize there are a whole bunch more tops to get to. At first, it can be discouraging and even exhausting, but try and appreciate the moments of revelation and the moments of contemplation. Look forward to the next break through and just keep on going.

Life is full of contrast, and those dynamics make it more thrilling. Appreciate all the moments as much as you appreciate the upbeat ones, and realize they're all part of your individual path. Besides, what's a great life--or a great movie--without some ups and downs, challenges and victories, friends and foes? We don't want an easy life, we want an incredible life, one worth living and re-living, watching and re-watching.

Your friend,
Andrew W.K.


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28 comments
dustindadams
dustindadams

I am very lucky in that I found a very lucrative career that I love to do and have obtained a lot of success at a young age. But like Andrew says "you'll never be able to muster the energy and enthusiasm necessary for success in doing something you don't absolutely love to do." I've found the key is finding something that constantly challenges me and encourages me to grow and adapt. I wish you luck in whatever avenue you choose and remember to always Party hard!

bigzstarswat
bigzstarswat

"Put all the energy you would usually spend telling other people about your dreams into making them happen. A dream is precious and fragile. Keep it safe. Keep it secret. Keep it alive."

The last 3 lines of the advice about dreams, somehow makes me feel confident about all what im doing and wanna do, secure with myself...
Is strange how we sometimes doesn't realise about how to overcome somethings until somebody else tell us an answer that makes us feel that we are on some right way to do it.
Really not a waste of time read this advice collumn, some inspiration may come to you

willwolf89
willwolf89

always strive for your dreams and if there comes a change jump on it and ride it out until you can and if you fall and it fails at least you have done all you can to get your dreams and will never regret it. but the main thing to remember what ever your decision is once you look back what ever out come the choice you maid was right for you at that time.

legendario13
legendario13

Eloquent and possitive thoughts that I just don't know why don't read more often.


You go on partying man. You go.

MarkFeiritear
MarkFeiritear

@AndrewWK i didnt read ur reply to her, but after telling a gay person about how u dont have 2 deal with sexuality,i think shel kill herself

TimelessSilence
TimelessSilence

@AndrewWK Great stuff in your answers this week. Life does need good/bad contrast to be appreciated. Bad times = charging up for good days

bluebuttoneyes
bluebuttoneyes

@AndrewWK I think you really made yourself believe that I am jealous of you and your disgusting life...but Im not.

ChrisPurchase
ChrisPurchase

@AndrewWK doing an hour long show about that. I need to look at my kids and tell them "you can be whatever you want to be" and it be true

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