Oh..to be a ‘ misfit ‘, may not be in the fitness of things!


This probably might not be for those who miss fitting in. I am sorry if it is not for you. Perhaps I don’t fit in. That said, I am happy to be a misfit !


The famous rapper and singer Drake said, “I was born to make mistakes, not to fake perfection “.


If vulnerability is your strength, you might be a misfit..


If standing naked in your own truth is your go-to attire, you might be a misfit..


If your answers are questions, you might be a misfit..


If you are leading as a follower, you might be a misfit..


If you sit comfortably while standing inside your own failure, you might be a misfit..


If you don’t fall prey to the  ‘ wisdom of the crowds ‘, you might be a misfit..


If you are contrarian in your thinking, you might be a misfit..


If you don’t run the wanting to be an ‘ also ran race ‘, you might be a misfit..


If you are open about your ‘ imposter syndrome ‘, you might be a misfit..


If, as a personality, you don’t want to B Type A, you might be a misfit..


If you see shame in being the same, you might be a misfit..


If ‘ out of place ‘ is the place you seek, you might be a misfit..


If you don’t want to be all things to all people, you might be a misfit..



It must have come as a relief that a lot of us misfits so have so many places to go to, situations to be in and standards to be measured by. Perhaps because, institutionalized rejection of difference is an absolute necessity in a profit economy which needs we outsiders as surplus people.


As Sarah Addison Allen put it out it so beautifully “ Misfits need a place to get away, too. All that trying to fit in is exhausting.



Questioning the questioning !

It is said that knowledge means to know the right answer but intelligence means asking the right question.


The truth is we are born with a natural desire to question everything and be curious, but along the path of growing up many of us lose that desire.


Know how to ask. There is nothing more difficult for some people, nor for others easier“- Baltasar Gracian


Most of us would have experienced this at school or college. Your teacher or professor midway through the class asks ” Does anyone have a question? “. Nine times out of ten, no hand would go up. The professor has reconciled to the fact that she is doing an excellent job of explaining the material and secretly patting herself on the back.


Looking at our performance in the exams, nothing could be further from the truth which is most of us did not understand what was taught.


A better way for the professor to reframe the question would have been ” Given how complex the topic is, I am sure you would have plenty of questions. This is a great time to ask them “.


This nudge would go a long way. More hands would go up and more questions will get asked.


Does anyone have a question? ” was not the smartest of questions in any case. Most of us would pride on our ‘intellectual ability‘ and the last thing we would like to do is come across as dumb in a class full of peers by asking what may potentially be a stupid question.

We have perfected the art of asking stupid questions even outside the classroom. Take your HR Managers’ appraisal session and the first question you get asked is ” Everything going well? “, which leaves most people with no room to segue into what ideally should be an honest feedback. A better version that will elicit an honest response( the very purpose of an appraisal) would be ” What are the challenges you are facing at work ? ” and you open the floodgates for relevant feedback.


When we reframe a question—when we change our method of questioning—we also change the outcome.


Werner Heisenberg, the brains behind the uncertainty principle in quantum mechanics, had it right: “What we observe is not nature itself, but nature exposed to our method of questioning.”


In an always on, expert run, industrialised economy, the pressure | expectation is to be the person who is sure, the one with all the answers. Do you think someone who has all the questions is more valuable? 


I encourage you to take a look at this throwback article from BrandKnew 



A question of questions!

“Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers.”: Voltaire 

Question is defined as a sentence or phrase used to find out information, insight or intelligence.

We may have all experienced this. You are checking out of a hotel room after a few days’ stay. The lady at the checkout counter politely asks you ‘ How was your stay? ‘ And this question seems not to have changed over the years across time zones and continents. And in most cases, a polite yet non committal answer evolves  ‘ It was good ‘ (even though the stay may not have been).
What if (question?) we are asked ‘ What could we have done to improve your stay with us ? ‘ . The energy and the dynamic changes completely. Rather than go on auto pilot mode and offer the default response, you are buoyed by the keenness of the hotel staff to improve the guest experience and you end up offering honest feedback. The answer may not give them exactly what they want to hear. But it will give what’s valuable for them to learn.
As the old proverb goes ‘ Better to ask a question than to remain ignorant ‘.
What if Obvious Questions collide with Contrarian Answers? It’s a discussion worth having. When smart, committed people disagree about the answer to a question, it’s a question worth pursuing.
Progress or outcomes? There is no toss up- its got to be progress. Ditto with questions.
HR reviews could have better progress and responses if employees are asked ‘ What challenges are you facing now ? ‘, as that question presumes that challenges are the norm, not the exception. Rather than ask ‘ Are you facing any challenges?’ , when most will say no. They might fear that their admission will be seen as a weakness.
Good insights, contrary to popular wisdom, don’t come from a smart answer. They come from a smart question.
” We awaken by asking the right questions. We awaken when we see knowledge being spread that goes against our own personal experiences. We awaken by seeking answers in corners that are not popular. We awaken when we see popular opinion being wrong but accepted as being right, and what is right being pushed as wrong “- Suzy Kassem