“Narratives and numbers are the instruments of deceitful people.” — Nishant Choudhary
- I’m not denying that these instruments can be used for good purposes.
- And I’m also not implying that all deceitful people have bad intentions.
Some do actually use narratives and numbers to stop FOOLS from doing things that fools excel at. Being a fool.
Unfortunately, such people with good intentions who know how to use narratives and numbers for good purposes are in short supply. That’s true.
Mostly, you’ll come across people who use narratives and numbers for their own interests. Basically, in Hindi we say, “apna ullu seedha karna“. That is “being selfish” even if that means misleading you or subtly pushing you into danger.
Narrative & numbers-led Manipulations happen at your workplace, and also in your friends, family, and societal circles.
To expose such vicious plots, all you need is to ask the right questions.
And with the right questions, you will fathom if the numbers or the narratives being fed to you are substantial at all.
For instance, the first question you need to ask is whether the context in which it is being presented is even applicable to your scenario.
Let’s understand with an example. Someone might say, “Reading makes you intelligent. So what if you’re a sports person. You must read about current affairs 3 hours every day. When I was your age, I used to read 8 hours a day”.
The advice is a gem. And its a universal truth. If you read, you become more informed and probably more intelligent too if you utilize what you read.
But if you’re an early-stage sportsperson, maybe more than reading current affairs, your physique, proper sleep hours, refreshments, exercise, diet, etcetera would matter more for your career. So, the gem of advice for someone else could be career-sabotaging advice for you.
See, this is just an example (with loopholes which you might have already identified by now) to demonstrate that advice without context can be poisonous. The same advice about ‘reading’ could be great for a Sports coach, or a senior player for multiple reasons which I don’t want to write here (to avoid drifting into the details that don’t matter much). But you got the point, I guess.
Ask questions. Not necessarily aloud. Esp when questioning is not allowed (with work bosses and family heads) 😅.
- But always question what’s being fed to you in your own head.
- Also, ensure that you’re not clouded/biased in your own head.
Nobody said, “It’s gonna be easy”.
I’m sharing this because charming and deceitful personalities, who sometimes instantly win your trust, make you believe that they are advising you on what’s best for you, and they convincingly pull you into the things that were never meant for you.
They do this just to satiate their vested interests (sheer selfishness).
Examples of narratives & numbers-led manipulation:
1. Ponzi financial schemes
Investment gurus making predictions that ICICI ka shares 1400 jayega ek month me, and you buy at 1000, and then it is at 769 in a month, and the same guru will blame it on RBI for keeping the repo rates high, or global inflation… 😡 😪
2. Healthcare products
Hello ‘fair & handsome’ lagane walo 🤣. Okay, I tried it too 😔
3. Political & financial bias
Acche din toh aaye hain, dhobi kacche dhone ke, naye kacche se zyada charge kar raha hai 😤. Ainve hi thode hi na palat ke pehante hain ladke.
4. Workplace manipulation
Credit-hungry employees will try to drag you down by misrepresenting data in ways that diminish your performance and inflate theirs, or your manager will make you believe in “next time” just to delay your promotion year after year until you quit 😐
5. Family peeps and friends
These guys will rely on emotional narratives to make you feel guilty and obligated.
Again, narratives & numbers are mere instruments.
No tool is evil.
The utility depends on who is using the toll, and for what.
It’s always about the person using it.