How to be a Chad - Some advice for Indian Engineering Undergrads from a 2021 grad

Written: July-3rd-2021

I am not going to do disclaimers about my advice, take it or leave it, your life your choice. I’m putting this out there for you and for me.

I promised a thread earlier in a tweet. Think of this as a tweetstorm where I talk about some ideas I’ve accumulated over the years.

This is job-focused. I’ve done research, GRE/TOEFL, startups and MS applications too, but there are people who can tell you about that better.

1/ Grades don’t matter. I’m not an edgy startup guru, I’m speaking plainly from anecdotal evidence. You should still try to do your best, but I had 15+ backlogs and I am doing well in life, although I prefer to keep that part private.

1.1/ Don’t let college affect you mentally or physically. Everyone seems stressed about projects and exams, but there are glaring loopholes in the system. Beware of them, exploit them if needed.

1.2/ Consult a mental health professional as and when needed. I didn’t, I had undiagonosed depression during my second semester that I don’t like talking about, now or then. -

1.2/ -I didn’t do anything, just over time got over it. You don’t need to do that, there are professionals who are ready to help you.

2/ Build leverage. “Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.” - Archimedes. Your leverage will not be your degree, everyone has that.

2.1/ Your leverage is your portfolio. Field in which you want to succeed: point of leverage. Example - Coder: Projects, Marketer: Demo campaigns, Investor: Investment Portfolio, Project Manager: KPI metrics.

2.2/ You’re under 30, don’t think too much about the future. Think about what you want, especially if your family can afford it and isn’t too toxic. Give that comedy gig a go, no one will remember if you bombed (which you will).

2.3/ Have a steady source of income to free yourself, however. Wordpress, Salesforce, Webflow, Design, SEO etc - all pay very well if done right.

3/ Move out. In the summers, don’t go home. Try to go to different, hopefully big city. Don’t stay in your uncle’s home in that city or a pg, think about living independently.

3.1/ Own your own kitchen for a bit, make your own food in that house for a bit. Everything will smell, everything will be dirty. Clean up your room. I do this every other morning, but it’s still not enough.

3.2/ (optional) Drink and smoke at least once. Don’t be cringe, try it out. If you don’t like it, stop. Don’t make it a habit. once is good enough. Humans did it for ages, experience what’s in there.

3.3/ Get your license, hardly takes 2 month

3.4/ Invest in something, anything. Also, don’t pirate stuff. Either open source or pay for it.

4/ Fix immediate problems in life

4.1/ Health? Cut out a carb-heavy food right now. Do 10 squats, 10 pushups and 10 jumping jacks rn. Do it after every 2-3 hours.

4.2/ Studies? Figure out your pain points, text people to hop on a call and explain it to you, or use YouTube. Wish I did this to save myself some headache.

4.3/ Can’t find a job? Start a project today. Might seem overwhelming rn, but it’s not like it won’t be overwhelming tomorrow. You’ll just wish you did it today.

4.4/ Habits are harder to break. I have no clue about this since I struggle with my own bad habits.

4.5/ Stop complaining all the time. Go get some water, go get some sun, you’re just a plant too bubba. 🌿

5/ General principles.

5.1/ Show up to work everyday. I code everyday, it’s a habit, even if it’s a line, even if its just reading. Compounding effect.

5.2/ Deep work. I use Forest to set a timer for deep work sessions. Do your own reading.

5.3/ take yourself lightly and the world seriously

5.4/ have a set of morals. I have mine in investing and working, I never stray. I don’t in exercising and studying, pays off poorly.