Be nice to nerds. Chances are, you’ll end up working for one.” – This is a famous quote from Bill Gates, who is now worth over $100 billion dollars. Now, while it’s not all about money, being a geek or a nerd is not a bad thing for many reasons. Being smart, studying, and working hard will help you to get good grades, which will hopefully translate to a good job, great success, and plenty of money to buy a load of cool things. It isn’t even as simple as that though, being a geek or a nerd, or whatever you want to call it is the key to being a successful adult, and you only need to look at people like Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg to see that. And being a successful adult is pretty cool.
According to research by Imgur, being geeky is actually cool in today’s world—especially among Millennials. In fact, 60% of the 83 million Millennials consider themselves geeks compared to just 38% of GenXers and Boomers. The study also shows that geeks are the trendsetters and influencers (84% of geeks say people look to them for advice while only 60% of non-geeks say they get asked for advice).
Alexandra Robbins, author of The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth, says that the traits which made the nerd alienated in school (unique personalities, passions, and ideas) can end up being admired or valued traits in adulthood because while conforming to the majority and ‘fitting in’ was a desirable trait in adolescence, being exceptional makes you distinguishable among a sea of employees or candidates. Standing out from the crowd is something that many people are struggling to do today, and many who think they are doing it, still end up looking and acting just like everyone else who’s trying to stand out from the crowd. Being a geek can do you a lot of favors.
It’s also interesting to note that people who are social outcasts when younger often develop coping strategies and independence, both traits which prove to be useful later on in life in the work environment and other situations. They are also able to deal far better and more positively with stressful social situations while at the same time learning to build emotional and psychological foundations outside of the herd mentality.
The world has now evolved, though, to admire geeks and nerds because, in the digital age, we need them more than ever, and being a nerd is now the “in” thing.
There are endless opportunities for an IT geek or a nerd because they are not restricted to one industry. Everyone needs IT, it expands to all industries, and then jobs and possibilities are high. Maths nerds aren’t just cool from playing blackjack at the Borgata anymore, and while they have always been needed, they’ve not always been seen as awesome. But think about it, science saves lives. Technology connects people; engineering improves the quality of life, and maths underlies it all. More and more people are interested in how things work these days, and geeks know this and understand it. It’s cool. Plus, the information on how things work needs to be out there, filling up the internet for when people Google just about everything. And there also needs to be a load of smart people at Google making sure you get the answers you want.
However, as mentioned before, it’s not just those academic skills that work well for you as a nerd. When you are a ‘nerd,’ you know what you like, what you dislike, and you’ll stand by it till the bitter end. You’re not someone who is trying to fit in, so pretending they like certain music, TV, or clothes, so never actually knowing yourself and knowing what you like. As a geek or nerd, you’ll be the kind of person who has an attitude that says ‘you either like it or lump it’ with no bending or shaping who you are to please others. Being a nerd means that you understand what goes on in the world and where your place is among it all. You’ll be true to yourself, even through difficult times, and because of that, you’ll encourage others to be the same. It can make you an extremely independent
Being a geek is something to be proud of, something to aspire to be, and something remarkable. Perhaps the name or meaning of the names ‘geek’ and ‘nerd’s need to be changed because they are actually really cool. Also, what’s great is that you can really be a geek about anything. How cool are those people who know everything? The ones who are really good at quizzes, who don’t need to check a book to find out some facts, they just know it, they can reel off facts and figures from the top of their head.
The truth is, though, all of us are geeks on some level, about something. However, many of us don’t focus our inner geek on utilizing some of the most obvious and powerful paths to turn ideas into game-changing success. This is something that you should change if you’re not doing it already. Whether it’s being geeky about Game Of Thrones or the periodic table and the elements, there’ll be something, some skill, or some knowledge in whatever it is you’re geeky about that you can use and make the most of.
Being a geek used to draw up images of social misfits, awkward conversations, and less than attractive personalities. But, that’s not the case anymore, as geeks have become the global trendsetters and influencers. It’s a welcome message, long-awaited, for many of us. …and it’s a club we’re not ashamed to belong to—because if you focus your inner-geek and bring out the best of what you know and what you are passionate about then, success isn’t too far behind.