Visa says that people try so hard to avoid being seen as narcissistic, which ends up in this bad situation where only narcissists advocate for themselves at all, which is not a great system for selecting who has power and influence in society. If you are a good person and want to influence the world for good, you will need to be willing to promote yourself enough to risk being seen as narcissistic.
I liked this point too. He says that most people try to avoid saying things like “I love my writing” because it’s potentially so embarrassing if you’re terrible at it, which is of course one of the struggles of becoming an adult
A guy called Patrick McKenzie says he regular sees job applicants who have left major relevant achievements off their CV because they didn’t want to seem like they were bragging.
Can one potentially overdo it? Yes. But people who are worried about being self-promotional are, in my experience, not within astronomical units of the line, and people who are over the line have not worried for a single second in their lives about whether a line exists.
I really like this suggested framing for getting over the fear of seeming arrogant:
(by ‘self-modify’ he just means change your own beliefs/worldview so you’re no longer afraid).
Visa is an interesting twitter user. His feed is all connected loops of threads that refer back to each other like a mindmap that’s constantly spiralling inward. It seems like how people in the early 2000s imagined we’d be using media, all hypertext and meta-fiction. He’s probably the person maximally using the space twitter has made.
This piece was originally published in The Whippet #134 – subscribe to get the next issue in your inbox!
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