Tuesday, 8 July, 2008

The Insomniac's Algorithm to tackle Inflated Egos

Disclaimer: None of this content is meant to hurt the sentiment of anyone. It is just my take on how one effectively tackles the egos of his fellows,when a problem seems to be brewing. Even though at places some of the text may sound err inconsiderate on my part, i apologise. I don't intend it to be insensitive,but may be for want of a better expression I may have used something which is not that good a euphemism.

At some point of time,each and every one of us must have been a victim of the bloated egoistic rampages of our fellow Homo sapiens. Most of the time, it is a non-issue which somehow gets blown to larger than life proportions and ends up costing us something(not to mention our very own hurt-pride). Having been on the receiving end of many ego-maniacs (and sometimes, people whom I have known for a while too), i consider myself to have suitable experience on this topic,which I have decided to make the subject of my next post.

First we ll try to look at the different angles from which the problem may arise.
1. It may be a misunderstanding with a friend
2. You may have pissed off someone on the road(allegedly pissed off,that is..)
3. An action of yours may have caused the ballooning up of the ego of someone in a position higher than you(like people in govt officers, the boss dude, teachers, generally people elder than you)
4. People who are frustrated with their current position, feeling they were meant for other bigger things..

Ok. Now lets start off with No.1 on our list. Friends. Now this is a big issue, especially if that person has been close to you for a long while or has been/is a room mate in hostel. But this is the one with the easiest solution. Apologize. The fault may not be yours, but don't let your own ego get in the way of your friendship. Personally speaking, I would rather be the 1st to apologise than spend days without talking to a friend. There may be some fault on your side too, and a lot of it on his/her part, but make it a point to

Moving on to the next case- you are the victim of the ego of a complete stranger, a very common example of which, is in India's chaotic traffic :D. Cursing a driver who has jumped a signal and made you jump outta yer skin, or the poor pedestrian who braves the traffic in trying to cross the door,the kid with the brand new bike who seems to have a paralysis of wrist which ends up locking the accelerator at full throttle and his unawareness about a concept called brake (err i ve been guilty of this when I was a noob) and everyones favorites- the bus drivers who sometimes get a notion that they are riding an F1 car in a highway, and how can I forget the usual suspect- the lorry driver who drivers over anything-from potholes to poor dogs to the unlucky biker. On several occasions, this will make your temperature boil over. It's normal for any human being (I repeatedly request my father to fit our automobile with a wacky races- like contraption which can swat away vehicles which unnerve you :D). But the best way to handle it is,forget about it and drive on. You have better things to do. You know,I am proud of Erode being my hometown. Here, people just give you a sad smile as to say- This time you re lucky next time you may be dead,or worse, put someone else in hospital. But that look says it all. One of the reasons why I miss Erode(but more on that in another post). I would request my fellow residents of Chennai to take a leaf out of their books. Please don't stoop down to the level of exchanging discourtesies with auto drivers (discourtesies lol that s one of the best euphemisms I have come up with :) though I say so meself).

No.3 on the list is where we stand to lose the most. From several experiences in the past, as well as a very recent one where it might have cost quite a bit for me and my friend(I wont get into the details :D), I have learnt that the only way out of the mess (friends who know about the incident will notice the sad pun :| ) is- SATISFY THEIR EGO. If you feel that you need to get some work done out of that person, and some action of yours has jeopardized that notion, say for example, you are accused of some misconduct, try politely refuting the charge in your humblest of tones. I ll try to chart out an algorithm for this...
1. Keep your face dead serious (a look inducing a certain amount of pity wont hurt)
2. Admit the mistake you have been charged with, irrespective of whether you are guilty or not. For all I know, that person himself couldn't care less. It's a question of hurt pride,not logic
3. Don't think twice about saying sorry. And don't stop with just a couple either (you ll mostly have covered lot of ground if you perform steps 1,2 and 3 well)
4. Repeat step 3 (do it until terminated externally) and steps 1 and 2 for every 3rd repetition of step 3. If this doesn't get you out of the mess, go to step 5
5. Say that someone(preferably, someone whom that person has confidence in and respects. Be careful not to call someone who is not held in that high a regard by your antagonizer) can vouch for your conduct. This will mostly soothe him down. But this may backfire if that person transforms into a re-enforcement,sort of like "Namakku oru adima sikkitaan" :D .
6. After he excuses you, be sure to thank him for his mercy like an accused commoner to a king.
7. The most important, put a heavy lid on your own pride and ego,coz if you let that outta the bag, yours is a lost cause to say the least, mate. :|

If this algorithm doesnt get you out of the mess, don't hold me responsible. In many cases, you will find that you losing this battle of egos has in the end, turned out for the good, for that person will involuntarily begin to respect and like you(I know this from experience) .And if you find some other solutions to tackle this problems, i request you to post it in the comments section or mail me at pdeepak88@yahoo.co.in.

Moving on to No.4, this is the case where the person whose ego you are facing, deserves more sympathy than you would like to think. More often than not, this kind of problem arises out of frustration. It may be anyone,right from your watchman,to someone who has more knowledge than is obvious by his current position in the economic and professional ladder, an under-achieving friend, grandparents who feel they are not important any more, and so on. When faced with such a situation, take a minute to put yourself in their position and you will see the frustration which blinds them. I am not saying one should pity them. But the least we can do is,show them some respect. We can involve them in some small tasks which they feel is befitting. We can talk to them and make them feel more wanted. A kind word or two, asking their suggestion on something, this may end up making their day.

Having been on the wrong side of the ego fence on many occasions, I have seen time and again that accepting your mistake without picking up a fight, you may even end up making a good friend, or it may even be a start of a good relationship with your superiors. We may have lost our pride, but when we look back, we ll end up feeling that we did the right thing. What good will it do to you had you won the argument? Nothing, if not getting you into some trouble. As our old friend Dale Carnegie put it beautifully -

You can't win an argument, because if you lose, you lose it; and if you win it, you lose it. Why? You will feel fine. But what about him? You have made him feel inferior, you hurt his pride, insult his intelligence, his judgment, and his self-respect, and he'll resent your triumph. That will make him strike back, but it will never make him want to change his mind.


Ruby Abraham said...

Hi Dear Deepak
Greetings and a very Good Morning
Read you at your blog, nice indepth introspection, but see that is life . Tackling untoward events , which is beyond our expectaions is where one tend to grow.
I know still you are confused who is this writing to you. My name is Abraham Ruby from Bangalore. A distant mirage surfaces now I hope.

Socrates once said. If you get a good wife your life will be happy and if you get a bad one you become a philosopher. and I think it applies in all our lives. Such thoughts come in our lives when we feel we miss some thing dear to us. The sepeartaion from that we like the most brings out the true sense of human nature bye passing out egos. Its then we know we still have some human element in us.
Its true but not absolute when things unfold in lives of many struck by hard realities of life . It is then you know that man has still not evolved. In case of mind less killings of the innocents in Mumbai by the so called warriors of God will put every human into shame.Animals that way are safe as they know we are incomparable to them. Say for instance that lovely Sheffi. Have you seen her innocence glittering through her eyes. I suppose you would have. It is here that a sens e of ambiguity that surfaces creating a sense of illusion about all that we see or percieve with our senses. And when the angusihed tries to educate it is termed as senseless or more categorical non sense. A deep contradiction in our belief itself. So life is always bi polar a balance . Good and bad, night and day. God and Satan. We have a choice despite all ambiguties where to go what to chose how to act.

Hey bye the way, I have a good wife.. I am not a phillosopher yet, but I some time like you ponder over many things.
Convey my regards to Chetan and Chechi see if you can send this to your dad also and pls take note of my ID

All the best in your life Kanna

Abraham Ruby

6th Sense Resources
#5, Krupa Complex, Gangamma Circle
Jalahalli Post, Bangalore-560013
Phone: 080 28384358, Fax: 28385274
Email: sixth_sense@bsnl.in
“Success and failures are outcomes of action, and action is the outcome of mindset, therefore success is the outcome of mindset”
Dr. Abraham P Ruby®

PRINCE said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PRINCE said...

Hi Ruby,
You have replied to jcpprince@yahoo.com
Incidentally this happens to be my id and Deepak's is pdeepak88@yahoo.co.in.
I was verymuch impressed by his blog and thought I could forward the link to my friends and did so.
Your speedy response really surprised me!

Dr.Selvi, UK said...

I read the whole lot. Hard to believe it is written by a teenager - very well said about many things. Give him a big hug from me. I am unable to post on his site as it asks to be a member of some thing else. I don't have time to fill in my details. may be when I am in India.

Sathyaraj said...

Hi Cyril:
i gone thru briefly deepak's blog;good work.what made him to do this?
i wish i spent more time talking to him during my visit
there.definitely you & chithra should be proud of him;i tried to sign
in for his blog;some problems signing in;but i will try later when i
have little bit more time.

life is hectic here;my office manager quit;i was in the process of
recruiting new one;got one;thanks giving -last night we had a good