Narratives

Anish Malpani
3 min readApr 4, 2021

I don’t have anything significant to say these days. Or maybe, saying “significant” stuff doesn’t cut it anymore.

I could paint a perfectly plush picture on how the tides of entrepreneurship are rough but rewarding. “Exactly what I signed up for.”

Or I could flip it, juxtaposing it with the perils of getting drawn into a fantasy world that makes little sense to the people outside of it, all the while secretly seeking sympathy likes. “Look, I’m humble but I’m trying to be better than you.”

I could repeat the same lessons countless other entrepreneurs have written about, seeking refuge in being akin to a rare sailor, sailing solo across the start-up ocean full of storms and pivots. “Look how brave I am.”

I could talk about our early tech breakthroughs, and how exciting those are, hiding the fact that they mean little until we conquer what comes next. “I’m trying to focus on the positives, okay.”

I could talk about how nothing and no one else matters besides this thing I am dedicating myself to. About how all I think and dream about is this. “Look how hard I am working.”

I could ruse about how what we are doing is different from everyone else — how it’s at the intersection of impact and innovation and something else that you don’t understand, how conventional rules don’t apply to us, even when they generally do. “I’m special, okay.”

I could project my sophistication, drawing from books I’m currently reading, showing vulnerability and humility, about how I feel I am not antifragile enough. About how I recently learnt that making plastics from scratch is technically much harder than recycling it because of this polymer textbook I am currently reading. About how I get nuance and you don’t. “Look how smart I am.”

The truth is that all this strays between being somewhat true and somewhat false. But underneath it all, they are all just narratives, probably influenced by my mood this morning, potentially correlated to how bitter my coffee is.

Stories I’m probably telling myself to make sense of what I’m doing. Rationalizations that ensure my self-worth is intact, and that you know about it.

Never mind that I get to shape them, with my integrity as the only filter, hoping that the best…

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Anish Malpani

Trying to incubate my own social enterprise. Also these consume me: data, spoken-word and friggin’ Arsenal. https://anishmalpani.com