Crab Mentality might not be a Filipino-only problem

May 20 · 5 mins read

A few days ago, browsing through my LinkedIn feeds brought me to this article: “That Crab Mentality”

“It was a year or so when I first moved here that I heard people talk about Crab Mentality. I assumed it was a food dish, but as it happens it is something that is in the Philippines genes, and it is not that pleasant.

“I suppose it comes down to JEALOUSY!” - John Grant

It reminded me, again, about this important thing I learned from “How to Win Friends and Influence People” about ten years ago:

“The purest joy is the malicious joy we take in the misfortunes of those we have envied”

“The purest joy is the joy we take on other people’s troubles”

That is a very bad attitude!

I felt uneasy when I first read those words. I’m not sure why.

Maybe because I was able to see myself becoming like that? I’m not sure. Maybe not. I was not raised by my parents to become like that.

Maybe because I saw others that are being like that? And reading those words made me understand the “why”; which means I have some somewhat painful decisions to make? Maybe!

Tsk! Tsk!

Can’t we just be happy when others succeed? We can make these successful people our friends and ask them how they became successful. We might be able to copy their methods towards success and become successful ourselves someday!

We should do something to remove that bad attitude from our genes. :smile:

And, by the way, that book was not written for Filipinos. It was written for everybody. So maybe this bad “Crab Mentality” attitude is not a “Filipino-only” problem. Maybe it is everybody’s problem!?

I took photos of the pages of “How to Win Friends and Influence People” from where I took the quotes I mentioned above, just in case you want to know the context of those words:

Purest joy part 1 - from "How to Win Friends and Influence People"

Purest joy part 2 - from "How to Win Friends and Influence People"

Also, this book is recommended by many software developers to their fellow software developers – like John Sonmez here and by another one here

I even heard a preacher, about ten years ago, recommend it for all Christians to read!

So, go, buy it for yourself; for your own good and for the good of the world! :smile:

There is another example related to this “crab mentality” thing which I found last month in my old emails. It is from John Sonmez. The title is “Was I too mean?”

This is an excerpt of that email (I’m still asking for permission to post the whole email :blush:)


Mark my words:

When you, like Matt, wake up and realize there's nothing between you and your dreams but a few years of sweat and determination...

You'll start to rise above the mediocrity that enslaves most people.

And when that happens, to Danger King and his ilk, you become a THREAT.

He's chosen to live his life inside the four walls of a prison of his own making.

And when YOU succeed, you shred that cozy little cocoon of comforting lies he's spun around himself.

Because of this, Danger King will do everything in his power to cut you back down to size.

He'll sabotage you with his "helpful" advice.

He'll tell you that you that wherever you find yourself in life is not your fault. That you're trapped, a victim of circumstances.

And Danger King and his minions are everywhere. 

They're "friends," coworkers—often even your own family.

When you try to make a break for your freedom, they swarm you and drag you right back down into the mud with them.

How do you fight back?

The first step is just getting wise to their game.

Realizing that most people do NOT want you to succeed—they'd rather see you fail.

You know the expression, "You're the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with?"

It's totally true—and if you're dedicated to pushing yourself and growing professionally and personally, you have to surround yourself with others who are on the same path.