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Posted by Tim Bryce on March 11, 2012


I was recently talking to a friend who was commenting on some of my pet peeves, many of which he could relate to. Inevitably, he asked me why the world was so screwed up today. I thought about this for quite some time afterwards and believe I finally have an answer; it has always been screwed up, we simply weren’t paying attention. Let me explain…

As we enter the work force, usually in our 20’s, we’re full of vim and vigor. We tend to tackle assignments brashly, some would say recklessly or impetuously. Because we want to make a name for ourselves, we tend to knock down obstacles in order to reach our goals and be rewarded. What we lack in knowledge and experience, we make up for in sheer energy.

In our 30’s we’re still energetic but we become smarter as we gain experience in what we do. As we enter our 40’s, we tend to slow down a bit but think of ourselves at the top of our game.

In our 50’s, we’ve become fully experienced in our profession and life, and from this we become acutely aware of our limitations. It is then when we begin to realize time has passed too quickly and we finally start to recognize the changes in the world. In other words, in our youth we were preoccupied with starting our lives; so much so, we were distracted and did not realize the world was changing around us. As we get older, we slow down and suddenly become cognizant of the changes and ask why things aren’t the same as they used to be in our youth.

Our world is a big and complicated place. So big, it is impossible to stay on top of all of the changes going on around us, even in spite of the 24/7 news media. Changes come at us from many directions: politics, science and technology, the arts, competition, fashion, customs, public opinion, social issues, international affairs, and a wide range of changing laws, rules and regulations. However, change is so slow, it is almost transparent to us and if we become distracted, as most of us do, we don’t recognize it. Only after a few decades do the changes become vividly clear to us and by then, it is usually too late to do anything about them as we should have been paying attention earlier on. Suddenly we realize people are acting and looking different, particularly the next generation, that social and moral norms are different, and the world has changed.

So why do we get “peeved”? I think it is simply because we have suddenly realized the world is different and the status quo is unlike what we remembered from our youth. And we don’t like it.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M. Bryce & Associates (MBA) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at

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Copyright © 2012 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

3 Responses to “WHY WE GET PEEVED”

  1. SandractyleR said

    Hate to kinda disagree, and not sure what leg I have to stand onas I edge toward that milestone 50 when I should be paying more attention than when I was 20 but…I would say the world is more screwed up than usual. Topsy turvy perhaps. My mother at 93 even says things are even stranger than both world wars and during the great depression. Just another opinion. Maybe it will change by the time I’m 93, god bless myself, if I live that long….:)) anyway, thanks for the provocative read.


  2. Jenn said

    I think how we see the world is called perspective. Some of us are very negative in our views of what we see…some of us are overly positive…some of us are realists. I try to see the world and the events that transpire for what they are. I try to understand them–and I’m the first to say if I just can not comprehend something. Is the world screwed up– or are we just screwed up? Maybe a bit of both? Hopefully what we can do is pull in all these experiences and learn from them–and make our journey a little better having learned the lessons.

    Cheers, Jenn


  3. Tim Bryce said

    An M.F. of Houston, Texas wrote…

    “Then again, some of us are more easily peeved than others. I , too, have gained perspective with age. Yes, the world is seriously more convoluted (screwed up, if you will) than I realized in my idealistic youth. But I also see now that it always will be. The outrage du jour? No thanks. I’m not carrying a sign today.”

    A J.S. of Skidway Lake, Michigan wrote…

    “Bingo! This is absolutely spot on: ‘we have suddenly realized the world is different and the status quo is unlike what we remembered from our youth. And we don’t like it.'”

    “Pearls of wisdom, Tim. I agree. My dad has a favorite saying ‘We get too soon old; too late smart.'”

    A K.S. of Oklahoma wrote…

    “Well said Tim. I would add that it is a lot like trying to ‘feel’ the Earth’s rotation. It is impossible as we are moving along with it. If the rotation were to change drastically, we would fall over one direction or another. It is a lot like change. We move through life, we also change along with the world around us. However, our change is slightly off from the change involving someone else or some place else. It is when our lives slow down to the point that we are changing at a different rate than all around us, we can then see the differences.”

    A C.M. of San Diego wrote…

    “Paramahansa Yogananda stated that planet earth is the insane asylum of the cosmos.” lol


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