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Old 04-24-2013, 03:18 PM
 
1,765 posts, read 2,317,389 times
Reputation: 1519

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekster View Post
I don't know if this should go in this forum and I'm sorry if this is the wrong forum, but I need to get this off my chest.


This may sound odd, but I'm don't like being called smart. It's nice when people complement you about being smart the first few times, but when everyone says it in your class at the university it sets the bar so high that people expect you to know everything.

Today I got told I should focus on publishable work only and not spend as much time doing non publishable work. Between I'm an undergraduate. I'm just not happy any anymore. At first doing research I considered it as a hobby, but it's gotten to the point where it feels like work or a big weight. It give me headaches just thinking about it. Yes, publishing will look nice on my resume and is prestigious at my level, but it feels empty like I'm only doing this cause I can, but don't know if it's really worth it or care enough. I also didn't ask to do research. I was invited to a group meeting and things sorta just developed naturally. Out of this group I was only one with potential, but it feels empty. I'm also no sure about grad school. Truth is I don't really find the grad life very appealing, but maybe it's different at a top tier university. I guess I just feel like withdrawing socially, but I know that won't accomplish any thing.

It seems like you feel that the people who call you smart are trying to take you in a direction you don't really want to go in and you're trying to do something that gives your life meaning.
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Old 04-24-2013, 06:39 PM
 
41 posts, read 59,647 times
Reputation: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekster View Post
I don't know if this should go in this forum and I'm sorry if this is the wrong forum, but I need to get this off my chest.


This may sound odd, but I'm don't like being called smart. It's nice when people complement you about being smart the first few times, but when everyone says it in your class at the university it sets the bar so high that people expect you to know everything.

Today I got told I should focus on publishable work only and not spend as much time doing non publishable work. Between I'm an undergraduate. I'm just not happy any anymore. At first doing research I considered it as a hobby, but it's gotten to the point where it feels like work or a big weight. It give me headaches just thinking about it. Yes, publishing will look nice on my resume and is prestigious at my level, but it feels empty like I'm only doing this cause I can, but don't know if it's really worth it or care enough. I also didn't ask to do research. I was invited to a group meeting and things sorta just developed naturally. Out of this group I was only one with potential, but it feels empty. I'm also no sure about grad school. Truth is I don't really find the grad life very appealing, but maybe it's different at a top tier university. I guess I just feel like withdrawing socially, but I know that won't accomplish any thing.
Are you really that smart though? You spelled compliment wrong.
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Old 04-24-2013, 06:50 PM
 
1,765 posts, read 2,317,389 times
Reputation: 1519
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crayons00 View Post
Are you really that smart though? You spelled compliment wrong.
Such attention to detail
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Old 04-24-2013, 07:40 PM
 
37 posts, read 88,302 times
Reputation: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crayons00 View Post
Are you really that smart though? You spelled compliment wrong.
I'm not a writer. I mostly deal with simulations, equations, and lab work. I'm actually a horrible speller. I always need to double check what I write since I don't always pay attention to what the auto speller does when it's late night. I have put on a paper before ration instead of ratio and wondering how the word ration got substituted for ratio, but it was a rough draft. That's why I go through many rough drafts, but on the forums I don't check. Especially late night with little sleep it affects your mind and you don't always think clearly. Try spelling when you only have 3-4 hours of sleep for the last three days, then come back and say how well you spell? During the fall quarter I went three days with only 6 hours sleep. Sorry for the rant.
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Old 04-24-2013, 07:59 PM
 
41 posts, read 59,647 times
Reputation: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekster View Post
I'm not a writer. I mostly deal with simulations, equations, and lab work. I'm actually a horrible speller. I always need to double check what I write since I don't always pay attention to what the auto speller does when it's late night. I have put on a paper before ration instead of ratio and wondering how the word ration got substituted for ratio, but it was a rough draft. That's why I go through many rough drafts, but on the forums I don't check. Especially late night with little sleep it affects your mind and you don't always think clearly. Try spelling when you only have 3-4 hours of sleep for the last three days, then come back and say how well you spell? During the fall quarter I went three days with only 6 hours sleep. Sorry for the rant.
Oh ok. I'm kind of dumb, but I know how to spell.
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:17 AM
 
10,339 posts, read 7,594,643 times
Reputation: 4513
Being smart is never a burden, but expectations, your own and that of others can be.

It sounds like that might be the issue. You don't have to publish and you don't need to go to graduate school even if you're smart. There are other ways to take advantage of your brainpower, and it's up to you to find them.
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:31 AM
 
Location: Texas
42,204 posts, read 49,740,662 times
Reputation: 66975
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekster View Post
I'm an engineer major. Most of us don't write very well. I can write good papers, but I need to go through several drafts. One of the professors said that we engineer majors don't write enough, which I agree. In engineering, physics, or any of the hard science majors you can do well without having to write well, which is why most grads are foreigners since writing well isn't as important.
[First of all, this is a cop-out. I know plenty of people in highly technical fields who can write grammatically gorgeous sentences.
But that's not the point of this thread and we are pretty informal here.]

Op, you should do the work that makes you happy. If people are pushing you towards publishable work, it may be because they know it's better for you in the long run and you (unlike others) are capable of accomplishing it.

I think it is great people think you're smart. People seem to think I'm smart and universally capable. Both of these are blessings, but it is hard when you don't feel strong, because people get all bent out of shape if you 'disappoint them' or shatter their image of you. It makes it hard to ask for help or support, because you're supposed to be all-knowing and all-capable. And it is irritating because it downplays the hard work you did to get where you are.

As far as your education, soak up the adulation and let it help push you to strive harder.
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Old 04-25-2013, 07:15 AM
 
219 posts, read 249,884 times
Reputation: 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekster View Post
I don't know if this should go in this forum and I'm sorry if this is the wrong forum, but I need to get this off my chest.


This may sound odd, but I'm don't like being called smart. It's nice when people complement you about being smart the first few times, but when everyone says it in your class at the university it sets the bar so high that people expect you to know everything.

Today I got told I should focus on publishable work only and not spend as much time doing non publishable work. Between I'm an undergraduate. I'm just not happy any anymore. At first doing research I considered it as a hobby, but it's gotten to the point where it feels like work or a big weight. It give me headaches just thinking about it. Yes, publishing will look nice on my resume and is prestigious at my level, but it feels empty like I'm only doing this cause I can, but don't know if it's really worth it or care enough. I also didn't ask to do research. I was invited to a group meeting and things sorta just developed naturally. Out of this group I was only one with potential, but it feels empty. I'm also no sure about grad school. Truth is I don't really find the grad life very appealing, but maybe it's different at a top tier university. I guess I just feel like withdrawing socially, but I know that won't accomplish any thing.

It's hard to gauge you over a post on an internet forum but you sound tired and maybe a little burnt out. If you are already knee-deep into your project, maybe you should finish it up and take a break. One sign of burnout is irritability. Not saying you're irritable but maybe you're a little on edge because compliments are starting to bother you.

People calling you smart can be nice, but it does kind of set you up for a self-fulfilling prophecy. Also, if you do anything that is "not" smart, people will be quick to point it out. In fact, people are already doing it to you in this thread . In a way, being labeled "smart" also allows you to be stereotyped as such.
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Old 04-25-2013, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Virginia
142 posts, read 392,992 times
Reputation: 336
I can sympathize with OP. My coworkers call me "Sherlock." (My name is Cheryl.) It's annoying.
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Old 04-25-2013, 04:04 PM
 
824 posts, read 1,353,116 times
Reputation: 907
The burden of perfection...only a few of us can handle it.


OP, the next time somebody call you smart, you should answer "I know I am smart, but what about my looks? How would you rate my looks from 1 to 10? "

They will freak out and leave you alone for a while.
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