Are you serious?

  • Most people you meet are not serious
  • You can find a lot of serious people in history. Not all serious people go down in history, but few unserious will.
  • Main question is: How to be serious?
  • Telling if somebody is serious:

You can mainly only tell from watching how someone conducts themselves over an extended period of time. Over decades. Particularly, how they deal with shocks, rough times, downcycles. Everyone is optimistic when times are good. The thing to look out for is who keeps going when the going gets tough.

  • cannot take yourself too serious or you will burn out over time. must take the work serious
  • so: need to have fun:

It’s quite poetic how, [Richard Feynman] only broke through his malaise when he decided to give up on the whole enterprise of “doing important work”, and simply started fooling around for the sake of it – and even more poetically, it was his fooling around with wobbly plates that led to the equations that he won the Nobel prize for!

  • on being yourself:

So now I’m finding that it’s easier to say, look, this is what I care about, this is the game I’m playing, you don’t have to play it, you don’t have to like me, cheers, have a nice day.

  • inspire seriousness in other people

You can’t bully people into becoming truly serious, [...]. So the best way to encourage it is to demonstrate seriousness yourself, in your own words and actions.

17th Jan, 2024
© 2024 Chris Jarling