What is wrong with not knowing?

December 19th, 2010

During the years you get asked question after question after question.  And you are expected to provide the answers. That is ok when you are 10 and get asked what you want for lunch. No biggie mom just serve something with meat. You get asked what you want to be in life! And read that sentence again, not what you want to do but what you want to be. Astronaut you say? Sure son, if you apply yourself and study really hard you can do anything! Then you go to school and the questions just pile on. Football or Basketball, science or social, geek or jock. The additional issue is that you are in puberty and not much makes sense. With all the raging hormones they want you to make wise clear-cut decisions!? How is this society structured at all?

Lets take “The early years!” as easy, ’cause in fact they are. Whatever you do, you get yelled a bit, get into some smack-down and it passes. You are generally safe until you have to go to college. Now lets see the repercussions of not knowing which college you want to get into! You finished high school with decent grades, you have several options and you really do have some interests. But one day you wake up thinking you want to do a Math degree and the other you are thinking Psychology. And enrollment is coming up, so you apply to both, it can’t hurt. If you are lucky you get into only one (choosing is hard since you don’t know). Modern day education is pretty expensive in the west, half-decent undergrad schools cost in tens of thousand plus if you are not local you need accommodation and living expenses covered. Oh yeah bring the pressure on.  And what if you choose one and then decide half way it is not really what you wanted?

The paradox is that you can change your mind. Yes you can, but hell hath no fury like the public opinion. Even worse if you have power hungry parents who are pushing you to be the next (insert famous doctor/lawyer/politician). Even in the highly acclaimed academia you are not expected to think, just repeat. Hey if I wanted to play a cacadu I would have gone to the zoo. And what about those mid-class questions? “So Sir what do you think Plato meant when he wrote this?” And you answer what you think and get a weird look from the Professor. “Sorry where did you read that, that is pure insanity!?”, hell he asks you what you think not what you read. If I wanted to recite books I would just read books not pay you big lumps of cash to question my reading comprehension. Logical thinking is missing in today’s world, and if you by pure accident think different than popular opinion, so sorry you have no place here.

OK so lets say you somehow got through college. On to the workplace! And there the fun starts. Your first interview:

- So your 3 strongest skills are? I am smart?

- Do you see yourself as a good leader? I always talk the most when we go out!

- How would you solve an employee conflict? Is this the interview for an office assistant?

Give me a break, they pressure kids fresh out of college so bloody hard that they crack in an instant. How is someone supposed to have a CV filled with buzzwords and good experience if he is applying for an entry position? Plain old bull if you ask me! I don’t know shit, I am smart and I will kick ass to learn the job as fast as possible so I can be productive, that Sir is all you need to know! And how about those development goals for every year? So what do you want to achieve by this time next year? Hell, a six figure salary and a BMW would be nice! Sorry goals have to be SMART! What? Corporate world has some many abbreviations and if you don’t know something you get “The look!”.

Anyways! What am I going on for here? The world has become a cold ocean, somewhere for someone it is warm, but mostly its a cold monotonous place. The fact that testing the water first is not a default option is pretty strange for me. I want to dip my toes to see how strong the current is and which way it is going.  If you ask the bottom three questions to people I am not sure you will find many people with clear answers. They just don’t know. Does anybody really really know?

Are you happy? I don’t know!

Whats your next move? I don’t know!

What is your problem? You are asking to many question so I can’t concentrate and get things done!

Questions will get asked, but are you strong enough to say that you don’t know?

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