To Merge, Rebel or Stand Out ?
‘Blending in’ as opposed to ‘Standing Out’ has been a topic of long-standing debate. We PREFER to blend in, but LOVE to stand out. The Personal Branding Industry thrives on the concept of ‘standing out’. A sales pitch succeeds or fails at the altar of “Unique Selling Proposition”? Being Unique is fine, but do you also fill in a slot that the market needs? The pointers move towards striking a balance between the two, rather than choosing one option over another.
How much do you blend in, and how much do you stand out ? To what extent does your identity depend on the framework of society, and to what extent are you an indestructible unit called the Individual ? Can a rebel be described as a destabilizing ‘free radical’, or a carrier of change ?
- Submerging identity
2. Maintaining a slight edge
3. Creating a slot to stand out
4. Thought Leadership
Crossroads are dividers, whereas intersections are connectors. The final shape depends on the integration of the various elements.
CROSSROADS ARE DIVIDERS
These are indicative personality types, which do not always move in a linear pattern. Various stages could overlap, or a different ‘cause and effect’ pattern could have a disruptive impact. It could result in a positive revolution or a borderline personality disorder. This is an opinion based on observation and analysis, not a result of research.
These are the lethargic sections of the population, who do not exert, or exhort themselves to think. They choose the easiest option of ‘following the beaten path’.
They prefer the security of belonging to the majority. These are people of reasonable to high intelligence, who believe that all progress happens within the confines of acceptable social norms, and rebellion is the path to destruction.
3. Discretionary Thinkers
They observe, analyse, conclude and then, choose a path of action. The chosen path could be based on expediency, convenience, perceived advantages, values or beliefs. But a thought process precedes all action.
Thought leaders are born at this stage, as they move from perception to conception, and then, find productive applications for their ideas.
A negative experience at Stage 3 or 4 can alter the thought process or the personality structure. Capability and positive traits which are not rewarded, lead to discontent and unrest. Attempts by the power structure to suppress the voice of sanity, sow the seed of rebellion. This could be an individual, or group of people across an organization or geography. People with a similar thought process, common voice or shared interests bond to create a common platform. This could go on to create a revolution, or fizzle out. The right time, socio-economic and political forces all create the soil for the rise or fall of a rebellion. Hence, ideas and concepts are often described as premature, rather than irrelevant or impossible.
Vested interests could also invoke mob reactions to stage a pseudo-rebellion, but that is beyond the purview of this piece.
INTERSECTIONS ARE CONNECTORS
Intersections are meeting points or shared spaces. They assume meaning depending on the degree of divergence or convergence generated between varying viewpoints.
This is the point in the thought process, that shapes a personality. One should be able to entertain and examine other views, without accepting them. Leadership of any style stems from this point.
—– By Albert Camus
A beautiful quote from an unknown source :
We shape our buildings. Thereafter they shape us.
And the resultant structure is called Personality.