So I wasn’t familiar with the term ‘geek snobbery’ until quite recently.
Until then I was wracked with guilt when I dealt with it, I always assumed it was something I did. At the same time I lamented the mechanics of it, and vowed to get revenge against being snubbed. The other call was for the end to ‘high school drama’ and petty politics. (Sounds familiar doesn’t it?)
Quite recently at my last conference, I was faced on countless occasions of being snubbed. As it seems, I’m not part of the ‘cool clique’ anymore.
Then again, I’m getting older and wiser. Being part of the ‘cool clique’ is not on my list of things to do this afternoon. Tomorrow isn’t looking too good either.
My point is this. Although we are tribal and have a tendency to create communities of like-minded individuals (i.e. sub-cultures), we have to fight the urge and tendency to be exclusive. Not that we cannot be selective of who we include in our tribe, but the ‘snobbery’ limits our success and fruition of said tribe in pretty dramatic ways.
I was exposed recently to experts at SOBCon a few weeks ago, and I was finally exposed to the fact that we can all be geeks and share our knowledge with the world. That technology expertise is not limited to the chosen few, but it’s for everybody (and you can make money doing it). Adopting an all inclusive attitude and abundance mentality has brought me considerable wealth and resources as of late.
When I returned to an old geek social circle, I was reminded very quickly of the difference between inclusive and exclusive. I realized that it wasn’t me causing all of the drama, but it was the environment itself. The tribe wants to be exclusive and protect itself from all outside influence that doesn’t agree with their reality. Even worse, it’s at a subconscious level (read: it’s not about you) and very reactionary. It’s sad to me because those who choose to snub others and be judgmental are really missing out on the fun and resources in life.
Check your Snobbery at the door.
Here are some things I keep in mind
- There are plenty enough resources for everyone. Adopt an abundance mentality.
The best example I can give is when my geek friends attempt to court members of the opposite sex. Most of the time, when things don’t as expected in said relations, there is a backlash of anger and resentment. When the truth is, it just didn’t work out. It’s not a permanent reflection of yourself or your personality. And there are plenty of other guys and gals out there. Same with friends and groups that set themselves up to be the authority. If you adopt this mentality, then the snubbers will get exactly what they want, which is to be alone and miserable.
- Check your motivations and intentions, and take responsibility for them
I used to be horridly guilty of this one. Most of my actions revolved around one-upping or besting someone else. It was even more annoying when someone else was trying to one-up me. It’s a destructive cycle that damages everyone and everything in its path. When I took responsibility of my intentions and I connected with the things I enjoy doing, then one upping becomes less attractive. Even better, when being one-upped, it reflects poorly on said person rather than yourself.
- Be open to better and different experiences
I remember the “Everybody’s Free” song in which ‘do one thing every day that scares you’. In addition, having the courage to ‘be bold’. The only way you can accomplish either is to be open to things outside of your ‘comfort-zone’. Remember, you’re only limiting your own success by keeping things that you’re not familiar with out of it. You didn’t learn how to walk without falling and bumping your head.
Lastly, If you find yourself in an environment that is stagnant, drama filled, and very negative, do a gut check. Ask someone outside of your circle for an objective opinion. You may be surprised what you find out. Another way is to combat this is to socialize with other groups of people. I try to meet someone new every day. I like going out to networking events for this exact purpose. I meet people that I would have never run across keeping my door shut.
To your success in 2009!