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Be Brilliant But Better Be Smart

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by jayasala42, Feb 19, 2023.

  1. jayasala42

    jayasala42 IL Hall of Fame

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    A copy of my article published in OPEN Page of The Hindu today

    The 19 th Feb 2023

    Be Brilliant,but better be smart


    Many parents lament that their children are not very brilliant.

    But does brilliance always pay?

    Many people love to see neighbour’s brilliant children fail.

    You feel like nobody understands you.

    Every one does have high expectations from you.

    You are in the habit of over thinking,over analyzing

    and over estimating that stall all your happiness.

    Everybody is brighter than somebody else in some

    way or other.

    For all the hype that goes into top rankers,we realise that

    there are certain distinct disadvantages also which hit

    you on your way.
    You are informative. You are logical.You know what you

    are talking about.You can easily spot fallacies in debates

    and counter them so easily and effectively.That is great.

    But the other participants don’t like their stand to be

    questioned,their reasoning to be invalidated and their

    choices to be proven wrong.You can prove yourself as

    ‘Know-it-all’ guy but can be embarrassing to the other guy,

    On many occasions the brilliant one creates an impression that

    he can do everything himself without any assistance.
    Brilliance is not I. Q. but only rote knowledge.But

    real smartness is a combination of intelligence,wisdom,

    good soft skills, and a pleasing personality.

    Reminded of Albert Einstein’s powerful statement that

    everybody is a genius and that one should not judge a fish

    by its ability to climb a tree.

    It is a misconception that being intelligent and brilliant

    is a super power in itself to conquer the world.It is myth

    largely promoted by rank holders themselves.There is a lot

    more like emotional intelligence,social attitude,EMPATHY,

    compassion- all these things should not be underestimated

    in the presence of centums and ranks.

    But is being that much brilliant always to your benefit?

    There are instances where mediocre brilliance works better.

    What do sociologists opine?Critical reflection and shrewdness

    are sure positives.But when there are too many opinions

    from too many brilliant individuals, or alternative courses of

    action,work slows down.

    Many employers these days prefer only second class graduates

    to have unifying effect.People content in an atmosphere come

    to a consensus easily and that creates greater enthusiasm,
    visible concentration leading to greater success. Super brilliant brains don’t accept ,become depressed when a job does not

    meet their level of intelligence.

    But there is a hitch.Being accommodative can keep you stuck

    in your current job longer.Being exceptionally good at a lower

    level job may prove to be a deterrent.The boss will ever keep

    you as assistant and earn agood name and fame out of your


    After all there is a major difference between actually being slow

    in the uptake and acting as if you are a few cards short of a
    deck.This trick is not to play a dumb exactly but to learn when

    to assert your intelligence and when to hide the same.

    You may not feel the urge to be acknowledged at every single

    point of time but prove to be a great success in due course.

    Don’t worry about being perceived a bit slow.Better future lies

    ahead.Being slow and asking dumb questions ,especially during
    negotiations ,the opposition party may reveal details that they

    should not.

    This is not to desist students from attaining greater heights,

    but to advise them the reality of the situation and assess their

    real worth.

    Real smartness lies in knowing when to look smart and act

    smart.Silence works well if you are smart enough to know

    when not to look and act smart.

    Vathsala Jayaraman

    Vathsalaj @yahoo.com

    joylokhi likes this.

  2. Thyagarajan

    Thyagarajan IL Hall of Fame

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    Kudos. I agree in toto. Timely and need of the hour advice.
    God Bless.
  3. HariLakhera

    HariLakhera Finest Post Winner

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    "Being accommodative can keep you stuck in your current job longer.Being exceptionally good at a lower level job may prove to be a deterrent. The boss will ever keep you as assistant and earn a good name and fame out of your sweat."

    It reminds me of a traffic policeman way back in the 1960s who used to direct traffic at a crossing Rajpath leading to the North and South Blocks and President House, New Delhi, the national Capital. . Those were the days of no computerized electric signals. He used to dance with his hands directing the traffic literally, that was a sort of entertainment for the viewers. He stayed at that post for a few years probably missing promotion.
    Thyagarajan likes this.
  4. Balajee

    Balajee IL Hall of Fame

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    True. Smartness is very essential. Just brilliance is useless if you are not a smart enough to utilize it. Smart guys who are not necssarily brilliant often come up with flying colours.
    indubalram and Thyagarajan like this.
  5. Thyagarajan

    Thyagarajan IL Hall of Fame

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    That reminds me my response elsewhere in IL . Quote:In 1975 - It was UPSC New Delhi interview to recruit for their embassy of India office at London an Automobile Engineer with three years
    manufacturing and or servicing experience. I was found after
    technical interview fitting the bill.
    Yet, one of the four interviewers - a baldy senior psychologist
    lifted his head from my-hand-filled-prescribed-application and staring at me through his
    spectacles upper edge said, “ha- here you claimed you possess working knowledge of Hindi language. Instruct
    in Hindi the orderly standing behind the swinging semi-door to come inside this
    chamber”. I stood up from my armless chair
    turned around and tad loudly called in the direction of the entrance, “hāray peon hither aavó”. The peon heard me and darted in. Seemingly somewhat satisfied, the
    psychologist now desired to subject me to test further, told me that i instruct now the orderly to go out from the chamber.
    I perplexed for a while, quickly and briskly darted out to the entrance and from behind the swinging door, shouted in a tone of confidence, “hāray peon hither aavó”.
    A fortnight night later, I had received appointment letter.
    I wonder whether it was smart or brilliance?!

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