You’re always choosing. Every second, every minute, every day. You’re choosing what to do with your time. However, what most people don’t realise is that when they make one choice they are essentially turning all other options down. It’s a simple observation but an important one.
It’s quite obvious, really. You take one, you lose all others. People talk about experiencing things and they often suggest what to do and how to go about it but they never stop to think how essential the recommended experience would be to someone.
Everything that you do should add some value to your life, else it’s pointless. It’s a fool’s errand. If I were given a choice to either go jet skiing or to a concert by any of my favourite artists, I’d choose the latter in a blink. That’s because music creates value in my life. If you’d ask the same question to any one of my friends, they’d probably choose the former. Mainly because most of them are adrenaline junkies.
The important thing is that since I choose to go to a concert, I miss everything that happens in the background of me attending that particular concert.
The Conference v The Training Camp
Last year, my department organised a conference on changing trends in technology. At the same time, a few of my friends opted for the university’s military training camp. Our group of eight was split into two groups of three and five. I was in the smaller group, obviously.
Through the course of that week, we listened to great talks and presentations, had amazing interactions with some very successful people and got to see a live-demonstration of Robotics and AI by Mr Diwakar Vaish and A-SET Technologies. While the other group had all sorts of fun activities like trekking and staying in tents.
They missed the conference and all the perspective which we received while we missed all the fun, laughter and the chance to meet some new people. All of us grew in that week but in different dimensions. That was perhaps the only week all eight of us were true to ourselves. Most of us, at least.
Had any of us chosen otherwise, we’d not have had as much fun as we had. What’s important here is that I could have survived the training camp too and they would’ve attended the conference and since they were both great activities, we’d have learned something anyway. However, the training camp experience is irrelevant to the person that I am and vice versa.
How To Choose What To Experience?
We live in a world where the only things that don’t end are the chances to experience new things. It’s an obvious dilemma then when you get confused between two or more things to experience. To be honest, though, it’s not about what you gain or what you don’t. It’s like when we were children we’d just go out and do it. Mark Manson used this analogy in his article titled, Screw Finding Your Passion. Mark opened with the following paragraph.
Remember back when you were a kid? You would just do things. You never thought to yourself, “What are the relative merits of learning baseball versus football?” You just ran around the playground and played baseball and football. You built sand castles and played tag and asked silly questions and looked for bugs and dug up grass and pretended you were a sewer monster.
He then goes on to make the point that it is all in the doing and what you feel like doing and want to do and, trying and doing as much as you can. I recommend reading the article but that’s the gist of it. In a way, that’s what I mean. All you need to do is experience what you want to. It’s right there in front of you.
But Peer Pressure?
As I mentioned in a recent post, I decided to not sit for on-campus placements. That was my decision. When I talked to a lot of people though, one particular statement was common through all the discussions.
Just try to experience sitting in a Group Discussion and the Hiring Process. It will count in the future.
While this is a good-intentioned argument, I don’t see its validity. If I do not want a job at this point, which I clearly don’t, then going through the process just to reject it won’t be a very smart thing to do. The experience of sitting in a Group Discussion (GD) is not something I want to experience now. That’s what I already know. So, going through a series of GDs and interviews only to not take a job made no sense to me. I’m twenty years old. I’m experiencing things. I will obviously sit in a GD one day and while a memory from the GD I had during my Bachelors could give me an edge, it’s no guarantee. The only guaranteed thing here is that I don’t want a job now and sticking by it, why shouldn’t I open myself up to everything I’ll miss otherwise.
All of my friends are sitting in for them. Most of them don’t need jobs either but they see the relevance in experiencing the process once and that is fine. It’s fine to not do what your friends are doing. It’s fine to do your own thing. I don’t even need to do anything legendary to prove that because it’s obvious.
Peer pressure is only pressurizing if your resolve is weak.
One Last Thing
There’s a simple rule I’ve started using when I have to say No to anything. It makes it easier to get the idea of rejecting to feel something. In other words, it helps me cope up with the fear of missing out or FOMO as kids call it these days.
Imagine a sitcom. How weird would it be if everyone was present in every scene, right? It’s simple really.
Not everyone has to be part of every scene in every episode. You can miss what you don’t want to do. That’s the beauty of life.