2017 Year of the Asshole.

If we look back a couple of years 2015 was a watershed for mindfulness. In business, it was no longer just a fashion for funky tech and media companies. Some of the world’s most recognised brands adopted mindfulness, as a mainstream health and performance approach. In Britain, a Mindfulness All-Parliamentary Group published a report, taking the mantle as the first government in the western world to focus on how meditation might enhance policy development.  Furthermore a UK Mental Health Foundation survey found a 59% of people had heard of mindfulness.

This is not solely a European trend. In 2015 an Australian survey conducted by Safe Work Australia looked into mindfulness in the workplace across a range of different industries. The Research Brief – Mindfulness of work health and safety in the workplace provides a summary of key findings from the study.

So all this looked to set 2016 up to be the year we all took stock of what was going on around us and became a little more mindful of our actions and words and how they affect others and how we act and react to the actions and words of others too. Not just at work or in developing government policies but in everyday day life.  Whilst meditation and yoga circles were the early adopters of all this, they flourished as mindfulness became the new buzz-word.

But, what does 2017 look to derive from this groundswell of mindfulness? Should we all hold hands and sing Kum Ba Yah as we all act more responsibly and show more tolerance to others?

Nope. My prediction is that 2017 is the year of the asshole! Simply because mindfulness seems to have been a total failure. It was and is a fading trend.

Most if not all of us probably don’t need to look to far to find an asshole. In all walks of life they are there and growing in numbers daily. You may know them as a ‘yob’ or yobbo’ or a ‘redneck’ or a ‘bogun’, it just depends on where you come from, but one things for certain the term asshole unites these self-centred uncaring ignorant people.

My apartment building has many. From that person that leaves the apartment at 6.30am every morning and lets the exit door slam so loud that 3 storeys up I can not only hear it but also feel the building shudder. You’re an asshole.

The woman in the apartment below me to whom I have been saying good morning to for four years when we meet in the hallway and who now has only just moved herself to raising an eyebrow in response but still cant bring herself to utter ‘hi’ or any other reply for that matter. To her neighbour who smokes constantly on his balcony and then flicks the cigarettes into the courtyard below. You really are an asshole. You are the only smoker in the entire building and you think nothing of rubbishing everyone’s home.

Looking a little wider. To all those drivers that feel it is fine to double park on a main road and cause all sort traffic chaos because whatever they are doing is sooo much more important than the whatever the occupants of the 20 cars now backed up behind them are doing (including me). You’re an asshole and one day you’ll cause an accident.

To all those that think we all deserve to hear your phone conversation whilst on public transport or in the airport lounge. Hey asshole, your phone is not an old fruit can with string tied to another can, you don’t have to shout nowadays.

When running for public office, let’s say President for example. We’ve learned that you don’t have to have any regard for the truth, women’s rights, or the rights of anyone (except your own) for that matter. You can make up any stories and pass them off as facts, insult anyone and basically own the term asshole.

Looking at countries and if a true asshole quality is caring only about oneself then perhaps Brexit was a collective asshole event?

So whether you are my neighbour, someone I’ve encountered on public transport, seen on TV, a President or a country, 2017 is shaping up to be your year so you’d better get it right.

Here’s my tips to make you the best asshole you can be

1. Act confident, pushy and assertive, don’t smile or say hello and definitely don’t hold the door open for others.  However, if someone holds a door open for you then act like that’s what they should be doing – don’t say thanks or even acknowledge them.

2. Become an asshole role model by making sure that your deplorable behaviour doesn’t go unnoticed. Be loud and obnoxious at every opportunity. Warning: If you don’t want to be elected President then don’t boast about grabbing women by the pu***

3. Do whatever you want, whenever you want, wherever you want.

4. Be dominant and exhibit intimidating behaviour at every opportunity. Swear in public places and when children are around. Throw your rubbish on the ground; trashcans are for whimps. Besides it give someone that is less important than you something to clean up.

5. Drink too much of these in no particular order, alcohol, caffeine and energy drinks.

 6. Absolutely do not ever show any interest in others.  You and you alone are the centre of this universe. Interrupt others when they speak. Their thoughts, opinions and ideas are never as good or important as yours.

7. Undermine others, particularly if it takes the heat off you. Play mind games to manipulate others and keep them guessing and confused. Criticise in public and praise in private; don’t let anyone overhear you saying anything that could be construed as positive.

8. Remain focused. Remember, this is all about you, nothing else matters. Don’t waste time with people if they can’t help you.

9. Never, ever admit mistakes.  

10.  Parking spaces, traffic lights, speed restrictions and lane markings are only suggestions. They don’t apply to you. Park where you want, don’t use your indicator when turning and the car’s horn is the only function you really need to know how to use.