Failure sucks. It can throw you through a loop and can happen just as you are within reach of a long sought after goal. Without a doubt, the hardest part of failure is trying to get up after being knocked down a peg or two.
Sometimes even the mere thought of failure can dishearten someone so bad that they don’t even try. With every blow, it gets harder and harder to continue to fight on. Folk tap out and make them selfs comfortable on rock bottom. The longer they stay there, the less likely they are to ever try again.
You know, the whole ‘misery is comfortable’ thing.
Without a doubt, the best show, in my opinion, that illustrates this mindset is Welcome to the NHK.
I first watched this anime years ago so I rewatched it in preparation of writing this and it hits so close to home, even more now then back in the day.
This show is hardly a laugh a minute as it features depression, isolation and desperation. It even shows just how predatory pyramid schemes are. In fact, I first learned about them through Welcome to the NHK and it is shocking how these parasitic companies still operate today under the term MLMs.
Tatsuhiro Sato dropped out of University four years ago and things are not going well. Let’s just say the hikikomori lifestyle isn’t doing him any good. Over the course of the show, he starts to pull himself out of the hole he’s lived in for four years but it is not an easy process and he slips and falls along the way.
He isn’t the only one who’s suffering either, each member of the main cast has serious issues that I won’t spoil as I highly recommend you watch the anime for yourself so I won’t give anything away.
I think the reason Welcome to the NHK resonates with me is because, well, I nearly fell down that rabbit hole myself.
I have faced a lot of rough patches and while I have gotten through them, each time was a struggle and some I barely escaped from.
What I haven’t entirely escaped from is that toxic mindset of ‘fat chance you’ll pull that off, so don’t bother trying’. Even now I struggle bringing myself to apply for other jobs even though I am rather unhappy in my current position. I gave up dating years ago following that logic.
When you give it your all, only for it to fail hurts. It also hurts knowing that you are the only one who isn’t progressing in life as well as those around you. Knockback after knockback, roadblocks seem impossible to overcome and you just want to give up, throwing your hands up surrendering.
I think the main reason I haven’t reached that low level yet is thanks to my folks doling out tough love when necessary and my friends giving me pep talks, reality checks and talk me off the ledge. If I was alone, I would have succumbed years ago.
Welcome to the NHK proves that while it is ultimately up to us to help ourselves, the support of others helps immensely. Sato only starts to get his life together after meeting Misaki and reconnecting with old friends. It’s not a smooth journey, but nothing in life is and this time his friends are along for the ride.
Of course, things won’t change immediately, but by learning from your mistakes and with someone standing in your corner it makes those first steps forward seem less daunting.
After all, it’s much easier to get up from the floor if someone helps by pulling you up.
Thank you so much for reading, not going to lie I found this one pretty hard to write properly. I hope I made my point well.
Be sure to read Blerdy Otome‘s post tomorrow about Tsurune. Also if you haven’t already check out Jack’s post about card game anime.
What a great post. Makes me want to watch NHK right now!
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Great post makes me a bit nervous now for my post for the tour. You have set the bar higher now.
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