Wednesday, November 16, 2005


I know I have ruined my reputation of regularity in the blogosphere, but couldnt help because of the priority issues. Research and other stuff held the spectrum of my thoughts strictly within the limits of Chemical Engineering and surroundings. Here I am using the few moments I have to try and rebuild my reputation!

The 48 laws of Power byRobert Greene is a book thats hard to digest as well as forget. I guess I was in my 3rd year Engineering when I stumbled upon this. All the 48 laws definetlyworth a read, but I am going to stick on to the one which was occupying my mind for a while now.

Law 5

So Much Depends on Reputation Guard it with your Life

Reputation is the cornerstone of power. Through reputation alone you can intimidate and win; once you slip, however, you are vulnerable, and will be attacked on all sides. Make your reputation unassailable. Always be alert to potential attacks and thwart them before they happen. Meanwhile, learn to destroy your enemies by opening holes in their own reputations. Then stand aside and let public opinion hang them

My agreement with this is just partial. When it comes to power, may be the above law holds true, but for the day-to-day existence and character development its not entirely true. Reputation is something thats developed on a slower basis, especially a good one, while it takes just an instance to spoil it.

Bad reputation:The strength of the reputation is an important factor. For example, the amount of time that would take a common man/woman to believe a new made-up infidelity issue onGeorge Bush and Bill Clinton going to be phenomenally different. The person would believe the Clinton issue much faster than the Bush issue. This is truly because of the reputation the latter possess.

Good reputation: From the sports perspective, take the final seconds of a 90s Bulls basket ball game for instance.The amount of concentration that Michael Jordan would attract just because of his reputation of winning those kinds of games is way beyond the rules of normality.

Well, least said. Reputation is important and guarding it is even more.

Now whats the effect?

Does reputation control the thought process? Yes it does and its important in its own way.

Let me talk from my standpoint, in a room if there is a hot discussion on some topic of common interest, a familiar crowd would feel disturbed if there is no noise from my side. Be it sense or not, an opinion is what people expect from yours truly.Most of the time someway or the other I get to talk less non-sense before the gibberish, but sometimes I have to fight the thought process that urges me to talk something, instead of the best sensible thing that I would come up with a little more time. Fortunately, I was able to win most of my own fights, thought it might not appear so.

Again, from the sports perspective, how many times have we seen high-caliber players succumb to their own reputation-pressure? Sometimes, I am a match-winner thought and I need to win this thing, comes to the mind more than strategizing the victory pattern. Finally, ending up in losing it due to the own pressure. MJ for instance have lost more games than he has won with his last minute antics. But the amount of effort and time that someone with a good reputation spends on safe guarding cannot be quantified. Anyways, let me not attract the ESPN crowd here.

Does the possibility of the rejecting reputation and being ourselves exist?

I guess it does.

If you think a little bit, you would understand that reputation is a derived quantity. Its not necessarily true. Most of the times we dont even know what our reputation is with the concerned people. After all, each one of us is not Michael or Bill. So, whats the point in controlling your thought process, in instances where you dont even know about your reputation? Dont you think that its more of a burden? Try to throw it and act like yourself. I am sure you will definitely appreciate the freedom you get in the thought process. If we can do this with expendable acquaintances, we can do it with everyone else? How tough is this? Trust meon this, its not easy. But once you figure out a pattern to do this and realize that

Your reputation is in the hands of others. That's what a reputation is. You can't control that. The only thing you can control is your character. --Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

Its an amazing ride from then on. People tend to take slow or fast steps in attempting to understand you based on your reputation, but its your character that makes them stay with you longer or shorter. May be we should try and remember that when we walk through our decisions.