Today's wisdom

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KL7AJ

Joined Nov 4, 2008
2,226
"If you don't carry a badge, you don't gotta read 'em their rights." -----Nichols' apothegm.
 

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
7,172
Here are two of my favorite quotes:

“Many people lose the small joys in the hope for the big happiness.”
- Pearl S. Buck

"Curious that we spend more time congratulating people who have succeeded than encouraging people who have not."
— Neil deGrasse Tyson
 

WBahn

Joined Mar 31, 2012
26,278
"Curious that we spend more time congratulating people who have succeeded than encouraging people who have not."
— Neil deGrasse Tyson
Can't help but wonder what's curious about that. It might strike some as unfortunate, but I don't understand why very many people would spend a bunch of time trying to figure out why it's the case.

I also can't help but wonder to what degree it even IS the case. I know that I spend far more time encouraging people (not just students) that have not succeeded and are still struggling with whatever then I spend patting people on the back that have.

I think it's a false impression because the news and entertainment media spend a highly disproportionate time covering people that have succeeded in a narrow range of pet areas -- sports and entertainment being tops on the list -- than the far more common case instances of people being encouraged along their ongoing endeavors. Again, not suprising -- but we also have to realize that "the common case" seldom gets any kind of coverage for the very reason that it IS the common case.
 

justtrying

Joined Mar 9, 2011
429
Can't help but wonder what's curious about that. It might strike some as unfortunate, but I don't understand why very many people would spend a bunch of time trying to figure out why it's the case.

I also can't help but wonder to what degree it even IS the case. I know that I spend far more time encouraging people (not just students) that have not succeeded and are still struggling with whatever then I spend patting people on the back that have.

I think it's a false impression because the news and entertainment media spend a highly disproportionate time covering people that have succeeded in a narrow range of pet areas -- sports and entertainment being tops on the list -- than the far more common case instances of people being encouraged along their ongoing endeavors. Again, not suprising -- but we also have to realize that "the common case" seldom gets any kind of coverage for the very reason that it IS the common case.
Actually, at my work environment, i see people being patted on the back constantly for having done very little and for taking credit for someone elses work because they are good at promoting themselves. 6 years in I am afraid it is starting to get to me.
 

WBahn

Joined Mar 31, 2012
26,278
Actually, at my work environment, i see people being patted on the back constantly for having done very little and for taking credit for someone elses work because they are good at promoting themselves. 6 years in I am afraid it is starting to get to me.
I'd say that's a different problem -- but I'll certainly agree it is a problem in many places. Two problems really.

The "participation trophy" mentality that every little thing -- even nothing -- deserves effusive praise. What's always amazed me about that is that while many people do feed on it, I see a LOT of people that are very turned off when they are the recipients of it. I especially see this in kids. In my general experience, most kids seem to be more than willing to accept the risk of coming in last and would rather just deal with coming in last. There are certainly exceptions and we have certainly trained a large group of kids (many of whom are far from kids anymore) that expect to be celebrated no matter how poorly they did.

The other problem is the stealing of credit for work that isn't yours. That's something that should not be tolerated. When a supervisor sees it (and recognized it, since it can be difficult to spot), they should speak to the person. They can be tactful, because usually just making the person aware that it's been noticed goes a long way to stopping it.

I've definitely been fortunate in my work environments. I've dealt with a bit of both issues, though quite limited. The bigger problem I've had to put up with (and really only three or four people my entire career) are the ones that are always going out of their way to compliment you. It's not that they give you compliments about nothing, they just give you compliments well beyond what the thing merits. In one case I concluded that it was straight up brown nosing, but in all the others I eventually concluded that they were being sincere and had just been brought up to be highly complimentary of others -- and somewhat surprisingly, none of them seemed to feel slighted that they weren't treated the same way in return. I still found it annoying, but I was able to just shunt it aside.
 
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