Say or be?

Recently I haven't been online too much, busy doing bits and pieces for my new company. It's been fun so far. The full lift-off will be in the first week of April probably. Can't wait.

Me and Margus (my new boss) were chatting the other day about cultural differences, what is characteristic to this or that culture. When it comes to estonians then big bunch of us are humble, not too outgoing, shy when meeting new people and at times not too outspoken. When it comes to discussions and stuff, then quite often estonians don't say out loud things that are obvious for them whereas in many other cultures people are saying out everything that comes to their mind. I've seen this in many international conferences and noticed it among my friends. This leads me to my question: do you have to all the time prove how much you know by saying out everything you know? Sure, when you don't say this or that, other people don't know that you know. You know? I know people that whenever they can are trying to show off their knowledge or say something just for the sake of seeming smart. Seeking recognition? Ego gratification? Or built-in and the person is not even aware of this? I'm not saying it's a bad thing. Nobody likes a smartass, but still. Perhaps it's even better like this. You can raise other people's opionion on you better this way. Or lower it, if you're dumb. As the joke is, its better to be silent and let people think you're stupid than opening your mouth and proving they're right.

I personally often don't say things out. My self-worth is not derived from what other people think of me. I don't feel the need to prove myself to anyone but me. Actions always speak louder than words. Should we care how other people feel about us? Should we constantly show everybody how smart we are? There is a heavy competition in the world, so sure, this way you'll have an edge. In a workplace situation I totally agree, that's the way to go often. But afterhours? People show off with numerous things, from cars to clothes to dance moves. A couple of weeks ago Ali was telling me about this event he attended (organized by his father or smth), where one of the people present was dressed down compared to other people, looked more than a random guy from the street than a hotshot businessdude. Later Ali asked his father who was this dude and he found out it was the guy who had achieved the most in business in that event. He didn't feel he has to prove everybody how rich or whatever he is. He knows he rocks and that's enough. Amen, brother!

I think people worry too much about what other people think. Live your life for yourself, not for other people. And if you feel you have to tell everybody what are great person you are (and better than others), then get a life. There's nothing cool about being superior to other people. True nobility lies in being superior to your former self. Run your own race.


hannes Unt said...


Anonymous said...

I tottaly argee. [estonian]

Luba said...

To be. [Latvian :)]

Triinu said...

true true. I completely agree that we - estonians - tend to be of nature of not saying out things that are obvious. I myself often also: why speak out something that is evident anyhow. YET i've come across with number of cases - in multicultural setting in particular - where what one might think is obvious provokes huge debates & where fundamentals just are perceived and understood differently by different people (from different cultures). Therefore it's in some cases crucial to spot the obvious & not to make a mistake of assumption!

On the other side - I agree, some people just talk too much :D:D:D. Thus my respect to those whose talk is sound and solid!!

one more thought - I assume that people that talk too much nonsense or what you called the obvious stuff or things to prove how smart they are, I think these people partially don't realize that they do so, cos if they did have a correct perception of what they were doing, then they would deffinitely take up some corrective measures :))

Eppppp said...

Cool, you are blogging in English now - i will mention it to my English speaking estophiles ;)

marko said...

phukin philo.
Hotshot Big Thinker!
Nobody gives a fuck what you think! Just joking.
I agree with you absolutely.
Look around - ppl are racing whos car eats more gaso and whos bitch has more silicone ir her tits. They lease,take loans and work their asses off just to look better by haveing more things. Nice society. Fuckin slavery. I know all that, but am still no different.

Anonymous said...