Embrace the Odd

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You are a bit weird aren’t you? We all are rather weird, especially when we start to look closely.

In fact it is exactly because of our differences and diversity that makes life fun and worth living. This I wonderfully odd I am and still getting somehow along.

It’s surprising that a common language and a task can bring so many people together. This is what fascinates me about company cultures. Originally I started doing my thesis about company cultures, then later on I become so absorbed my current company that of course I cannot see the company culture anymore, because I am living it so strongly.

Culture is an unseen, strong force. A collective unwritten agreement on how people will act under pressure. What will the stress response be, that is the test of the culture.

Another interesting test is how does the culture handle the new and odd. Does it manage to embrace the change or resist it?  I work in a change management consultancy, so the people who are attracted there are very open minded and open to change as well. The differences and diversity sparks the creativity in my opinion. And it’s just not my own opinion as well, because most creative cities in the world across the times have been tolerant of the diversity.

It’s not just the diversity in others, it’s in ourselves as well that we have to be learn to embrace.

Oddity in ourselves is the thing we need to be proud of, because it is through that from where we can bring most value to other people.

Discovering The Thing

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We become good at what we do.

Today I was confronted with the fact that I’ve probably mastered some tasks and it would be useful to think what are the next things I want to master professionally. Although in general direction I’ve good idea, on this micro level I am not so clear yet.

In my youth I’ve spent most of my time as far as I can remember with games and anime. That part of my personality I still sometimes find difficult to match with real life, although I am getting better at it.

I’ve grown in Finland, English is the first thing I’ve felt like I succeed in ever since I was a kid. I’ve sought out the Japanese and Asian cultures. It’s a kind of interesting mix.

Yet we all are. Maybe I am a hybrid of global cultures, yet we all are also very mixed up genetically. There was the ad by Momondo, which makes this point very well. Human memory does tricks to us, and we forget our relatives, where we’ve come from. In actuality we are all kind of family.

It is through these interesting mixes that we are able to create. Create something new, remix something old. Express and leave our dents to the universe.

What do you want to do?

 

Everything goes well until everything goes hell – how to get back on the road?

 

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When everything is good, it’s easy to do and be happy. Real measure is when we have to work under pressure to achieve results, this is when culture reveals itself.

Culture is what we do under pressure.

When something shocking happens, it’s very easy to say anything, everything and be right without proper discussion.

There abundance of shocking and sad news; yesterday we were shocked again by the terrorist attacks in Nizza, because we’ve become numb to the numbers and news we hear from middle-east.

Our brains require ever more shock value, in both good and bad to feel anything. This just reminds me too to practice more restraint in everything to avoid becoming totally numb with the news.

Purpose of such a strike is to strike fear, no terror. Needless to say fear based decision making is not so smart, it’s not good for anyone. Fear lives deepest core of our brain structure: the amygdala. Have you heard of flight or fight? Yeah! Fear is one more layer below that, which can cause one more thing to happen, the last survival mechanism: freeze. Literally freezing is the evolutionary survival mechanism that has brought us here.

Although in the wilderness in is useful, I don’t think fear will be the force to unleash the potential of the human culture.

Freezing can happen in just your brain too: it shrinks our cognitive capacity.

So we get shocked by a terrorist attack, then we start to make decisions. Primarily about our own survival and safety. Not good of the long term. We start to look for outside threats, this causes division among ourselves. We are not treating the root problem, we are too busy fearing.

Now what we should do to get back on the road?

I didn’t write this to provide answers, more just to provoke some discussion.

I am really sad about the internal division that the Daeshi is managing cause with these attacks. What I am sure of is that should resist the temptation to scratch the itch.

If you are interested further reading about fear and emotions, I really recommend you to read “Why we fear” by Henkka Hyppönen. He was also interviewed about this book in the Boss level podcast by Sami Honkonen.