Staring at the ceiling

Posted: 2017-08-13 , Modified: 2017-08-13

Tags: anecdote, social

Parent: Personal bible


(I found this on some Q/A site, like Quora or Math Stackexchange/Overflow. I can’t find it again.)

A professor was asked a question at a conference, and he looked up at the ceiling for ten seconds, causing significant discomfort in the audience. Then he looked back and delivered a perfect paragraph response.

This is important to me for many reasons that are quite personal. I often have trouble figuring out what to say around other people. I believe in taking time to figure things out. When I’m around other people I feel like I have to conform. But this story says: even when you’re around other people, you can in a sense block them out, think as you would think (which means taking 10 seconds if you need it), and the result would be better than if you tried to conform (try to give an answer right away, as everyone expects).