Opportunity Cost

Being sad or living a miserable life is a choice. The reason for it could be anything from a job to a relationship.

I find it weird when people crib about their toxic work environment and how they are barely keeping up with their health. In the same conversation they mention, pay is great so they are continuing at it for their better future.

I also find it weird seeing friends continue to live in failed relationships because they are used to each other. Both sides have given up in finding a truce or moving on.

We are letting Sunk Cost fallacy dictate in most scenario. As a rational human, the Opportunity cost is what we should be caring for.

People are frugal in guarding their personal property; but as soon as it comes to squandering time they are most wasteful of the one thing in which it is right to be stingy.
― Seneca

Fear

While reading “Age of Propaganda”, I came across the subject of fear. It talks about how to generate fear on a group or individuals.

These are some well-known trick marketers, politicians and preachers have been using.

A fear appeal is most effective when:

  1. It scares the hell out of people
  2. It offers a specific recommendation for overcoming the fear-arousing threat
  3. The recommended action is perceived as effective for reducing the threat.
  4. The message recipient believes that he or she can perform the recommended actions.

This reminds of anti-tobacco and use condom for safe sex campaign.

Dreams

We are living in an odd world. Dreams and working on making it true is limited for a few. Every now and then media glorifies success and we fall for survivor bias.

  • Ask a farmer about his dream who has got cheated by a banker in taking a loan.
  • Ask wife of an alcoholic about dreams and taking care of families end meets.
  • Ask a daughter who gave away her youth to feed her family and paying decades on medical bills for ailing mom.

This utopia we call society empowers a few lucky ones. Rest of us have forgotten about our dreams.

Reason

I have been rejected a few times during job interviews. Most of the times reasons for rejection were not provided. It made me angry and sad at the same time.

One of the principles I am trying to adhere to is to give genuine feedback and reasons for not hiring someone.

Enterprise

My previous job got me hooked to watching Star Trek Enterprise, AB gets the credit.

Some takeaways:

  1. As a captain of the ship, the first responsibility is the safety of its crew.
  2. It is easy to get blindsided with decision making. Our ego and bias can burst the entire ship.
  3. Handling crisis requires rationality and logic. There is no room for emotions.
  4. A capable Lieutenant will be an asset for the enterprise.
  5. Things will break, problems will arise. We are exploring in the uncharted territory, positivity helps.

Power problem

There comes a professional stage in most of our lives where we become a manager or a leader. Most of us earn it with hard work and grind. It makes us humble and empathetic.
There is another bunch of these folks who land into these positions without toiling hard. These are the power-hungry people, insecure and control freak. They are not empathetic and high on ego. They can screw up organizations principle and philosophy.

Legacy

Humans like to leave their legacy. In princely states, kings would build castles, water fountains, and gardens. Tyrants, dictators and mass murders left us with many scars.

Our legacy should be our contribution to society and people around for good. How we have changed millions of lives in a positive way.

Most of those statues and castles are pigeonholes.

On Thomas Edison

I read “the wizard of Menlo Park, a life of Thomas Edison” recently. All this while I saw Edison as the guy who killed Tesla. I am not sure if that is true, but reading this book made me know a few other things about Edison.

  1. His entrepreneurial journey begun in early age, printing newspaper in running train.
  2. An outlier without any formal degree gifting so many innovations/patents to the world.
  3. His fake till making it attitude, belief in self, arrogance, and pride.
  4. His generous offerings to journalists in the form of company equities.
  5. His obsession with brand “Edison”
  6. His notable other contributions besides light bulb.
  7. His friendship with Ford and urge to ship electric cars.
  8. His don’t give up and win at any cost attitude.

I am happy that I read about Edison, at least in the next coffee conversation I am not going to say: Edison killed Tesla. Lastly, our man Edison was deaf.

Sail

There comes part in everyone’s life where he/she feels completely broken. The lucky ones end up finding a sail, a person/book/hook which takes us out of our screwed up present.

I have had many friends, sail in my life and it helped me in shaping who I am now. Help others, pay it forward. Look around, there would be many of your peers who want someone to listen to them.

Be a sail.

On Jamsetji Tata

I spent a few days reading, For the love of India: The life and times Of Jamsetji Tata. Not much has been written, taught about him.

It made me realize the influence of the Parsi community in industrializing India.

Some learnings:

  1. Importance of Education: As a result, Jamsetji IIM, JJ School of Arts and many institutes got opened.
  2. Industrialization: The vision of Jamsetji resulted in opening the cotton industry, Steel Plant, Hydroelectric power plants to name a few.
  3. Keeping a company of great people: Apart from Dadabhai Noroji and friends from his Parsi community were behind him.
  4. Venturing to the unknown: When shipping companies were charging extra for cotton export, Jamsetji opened his own shipping company. It resulted in cutting the monopoly.
  5. Negotiations: I was not aware that Jamsetji was close to both: the Congress party(for building India) and the ruling British government (gaining scientific, technology).

These are too little to write about Jamsetji Tata. I would strongly recommend everyone reading this book. (Thanks to Santosh Panda for recommending).