Rohit Malekar

April 2, 2021

Your "Reality" Has Zero Value for Anyone Else

Some labels we are born with, some we pick up. I have learnt they all have limited utility. Whenever oversubscribed, it has contracted my world-view. A common pattern increasingly repeating in my feed is "looking down the perch, my label is better than yours" finely crafted subtly condescending viewpoints.

Code over No-code, Design/Engineering Degree over No-degree, Product over Project, Dropouts over Graduation, FAANG over others, VC-funded over Bootstrap, Strategy over Execution, Start-Ups over Consulting jobs, Consulting over Corporate jobs...the list goes on.

I have been guilty of this myself too.

This often leads to the Ponzi scheme of labels - labels of certain schools give access to certain jobs or certain VCs that lead to the next career opportunities. I have been a naive victim, a reluctant product, and an indirect consumer of this "gatekeeping culture".

However, the labels and their utility are a figment of imagination we create to give ourselves a perch to sit on and pass comments on the rest of the world. The truth is my "reality" has zero value for anyone else.

Instead, learn what you are curious about, build what gives you joy. Live and let live.

Friedman wrote "The World is Flat" in 2005, but within India, it never was flat. However, I am bullish this is the decade of decentralization where the labels will lose significance, the ones with value will survive, and individual merit and mettle will fetch a much fairer price than ever. 

There is much more to learn from people whose identities go beyond the titles they hold and places they work at. Those are the people worth following. This is going to be their decade.