ICYMI: Un-Acceptable

(This originally appeared on TechTarget.com)

Larry Wall (creator of the Perl programming language) famously said,

“Most of you are familiar with the virtues of a programmer.
There are three, of course: laziness, impatience, and hubris.”

In one brilliantly succinct phrase, Mr. Wall took three traits commonly understood to be character flaws and re-framed them as virtues.

As I sat and thought about how acceptance is generally seen as a positive trait in life, I realized that in I.T. it could be just the opposite.

Accepting the status quo, that the system “is what it is”, that things are (or aren’t) changing (or staying the same) and there is nothing that we can do to affect that… all of these are anti-patterns which do us no good.

As I sat and pondered it in the wee hours of the morning, I heard the voice of Master Yoda whisper in my ear:

  • NOT accepting leads to curiosity
  • Curiosity leads to hacking
  • Hacking leads to discovery
  • Discovery leads to innovation
  • Innovation leads to growth

When we refuse to accept, we grow.

Bringing this back around to personal growth, I think there is a time and place when refusing to accept – our perceived limitations, our place (whether that’s in the org chart, or in society at large), our past failures, etc. When we refuse to permit those external forces to define or limit us – that is when we find the path toward personal growth.

One thought on “ICYMI: Un-Acceptable

  • October 26, 2018 at 8:42 am

    Discovery is seen as being helpful. In a busy workplace being helpful often lands you in trouble. I’ve seen it so often recently, innovation and interest is quashed in favour of sitting with your headphones on being quiet and not showing any kind of interest.

    Sit there, do your job, get on with it.

    What they don’t realise is, that if you spend the time learning and working with a helpful optimistic approach then you can contribute so much more. Showing an interest should be seen as a good thing. Sadly too often we churn out robots who do their job and nothing more.

    I want to grow and I refuse to accept!

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