How do you prevent yourself from getting swayed by the values of your environment?
I can catch myself starting to think things that I don't actually believe, just because I'm inundated with messages.
This happened to me before, in Seattle. Microsoft people really cared about review ratings. Sure, it's important, but people would really take it to an unnatural degree and obsess over them. For years, I thought this was silly. Then, from years 3 to 5 of being there, I gradually became more obsessed than anyone. Now I look back and find it ridiculous.
Now I can feel Silicon Valley pressures seeping into my value system. I know that it's not my actual priorities!
I'm sure that if I lived amongst a group of stamp collectors, within 4 years I'd become a stamp collector. If I lived in LA, within 4 years, I'd probably start caring about tanning or getting invited to celebrity parties or whatever LA cares about.
I can already catch myself having moments of wanting things that I know I only want because I keep hearing how other people want them. I'm afraid that in another few years, I'm going to start caring about buying a fancy car, or renting time on a jet, or ridiculous things like that. I'll look back on this blog post and think "Ah the naive me who did not realize that owning a fancy car is important!" But I look at this future me and am appalled at the possibility of turning into that!