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  • Writer's pictureBryan Jun

living loose

If I had to separate people into two categories (I love doing this and while I believe in the "beauty of individualism," I also think people are very categorical), my favorite distinction factor would be loose vs. not loose. The concept of "loose" can be taken a millions different ways, but here I'm talking about the most general sense of the word. I'm sure those of you who have both types of people around you (and you recognize yourself to be one of them) have instantly thought about which category you belong to and who around you are in each category. My assumption is that if these names instantly came to your head, you started reflecting on which category you're in and whether or not you're happy with your classification, etc., you're probably not loose. If you have no idea what I'm talking about or don't really care - you're probably loose. I will say given that you're a reader of this blog, which means you're either coming from my Youtube or know me in real life, there's a very high chance you're not loose. I will openly (and somewhat proudly) admit that I'm definitely not loose and most people that know me well would agree. Note that being easily pleased or being happy often does not constitute being loose. My most general and easy to understand definition of "not being loose" would be people that care too much about things that most people wouldn't care about or people incapable of letting go of things that ultimately don't matter (which is most things in life).

It's been quite some time since I've recognized that I'm one of the farthest beings from loose - while investment banking and other forms of social conditioning has certainly made me more uptight (I actually don't like this as an antonym for loose), I think I was born this way or at least bred to be so during my childhood. I've gotten a lot "better" at this probably because of two reasons - (1) I recognized that there's not much to be gained by being uptight and not letting things go as most people are reluctant to change their ways or admit their wrongs (2) I'm getting old and realizing there's bigger priorities than being right or getting people to admit they're wrong. I do think, to take a positive spin to this, I'm someone that cares too much about people I actually care about (I tend to designate the title of "my people" to these folks) and it sincerely bothers me when my people are doing things the wrong way (at least in my opinion) or believing in things that I find are dumb. Of course the irony here is that this is all in my viewpoints and standards, which very well could be wrong, but like most of humanity that is something that's very hard to put into practice or recognize especially as a 24 year old male in the United States. A part of me also recognizes that this tendency to be not loose is probably not the most Christ-like behavior, as the Man told us to be humble and not point fingers before taking the log out of our own eyes, so on and so forth. Bottom line, while I love a good argument, enjoy telling people they are wrong, and get some form of a perverted thrill out of not letting things go, I have fully admitted to myself that in most cases there's more to lose by being uptight.

I'm a big proponent of surrounding yourself with people unlike you, in order to learn how to be different in case the traits you're missing are crucial to becoming a better or more valuable person or for you to recognize what you're missing is actually not that great of a trait and it allows you to further strengthen what you have. While this is hard with most things (especially when it comes to world views), I think it's extremely difficult in the case of loose vs not loose, as both parties suffer strongly in any social setting. I'd make the case that the uptight individual probably has a bit more to lose (under the assumption that they never become diluted as a result of the relationship), as they'll constantly face "rejection" for the terms that they care deeply about. Speaking from my personal experience, dealing with "loose" people is often met with a lack of consideration for promptness, a lack of apology for being wrong or late (which is almost always the case), and a tendency to avoid confrontation or conflict because it's "not that big of a deal." While I'm in full recognition of my extremity in how I deal with most things, I'm also amazed by how or why people even choose to exist if everything is not that big of a deal. Truly valuable conversation stem from an inherent passion and interest in what is being talked about, and if your approach to life is "loose" or "why does that matter," you could theoretically apply that to everything and anything and opt to not talk or make decisions ever. Of course I'm taking an extreme stance for the purposes of argument (in a very meta way), but to reiterate my main point - I think when pairing a loose and non-loose friendship, the non-loose has "more to lose." I'm sure this is some form of victim mentality on my part as a non-loose person and all my loose friends are suffering from the way that I am (I've gotten feedback for this before) - but my assumption is people who are loose can just choose to simply let go of what is being thrown at them by the non-loose person whereas the reverse is impossible. Regardless, I'm really trying to surround myself with more loose people and learning patience (for the lack of better words) to the best of my ability.

Let me conclude, for those that still can't understand what I mean by loose vs. non-loose, by rapid firing a list of things that make me recognize why I belong in the uptight category:

  • When there's an argument over something factual and the real fact comes out and you're wrong and you don't apologize for being wrong

  • When people are late and don't state why they're late

  • When people don't respond to text messages and/or don't explain why they didn't reply (when it's something urgent / affects other people's time)

  • When people say they're down even though they're actually not down and they'll bail last name

  • When people spell your name wrong when it's literally right there on your contact list or social media app

  • I should probably stop here because this is going to make me look like an insane person.

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