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One of my friends was grumbling about his office. He told me that their company is bringing a new dress-code policy. According to the policy everyone has to wear formal outfit in office at least from Monday to Thursday irrespective of the role a person is in. He told me – “I dont feel comfortable in formal pants, for past so many years I wear jeans and sports shoe. In fact, when I wear leather shoe I have trouble in walking.”

After this conversation I started noticing, many older people – kind of retired – wear formal cloths but prefer wearing sports shoe. They dont go to offices. They general going for a walk or say in the market in formal cloths & sports shoe.

I am from the old school, I prefer wearing sports shoe on casual wear, but if I am in formal outfit I need leather shoe. When I saw older people wear formal outfit and sports shoe, I wondered, really? Com’on! I thought my friend who was grumbling about his office’s dress-code policy is done – he is an old man now 😉 I told him so.

I realized that sports shoe are more comfortable for walking over leather shoe. I noticed the difference when I started jogging in the morning and then going to office – of course I wear formal shoe for office. Sports shoes are better. Perhaps thats the reason these old folks wear sports shoe on their formal attire. So, I asked myself, why do I wear leather shoe when I am far comfortable in sports shoe? Reason is for more than 15 years I have been wearing typical formal attire and now if I wear formal cloths but sports shoe, I feel completely out of place and extremely uncomfortable (in my mind and not in activity of walking).

The problem is with our established, Traditionsassumption based belief that formal cloths goes well with formal shoe (leather shoe). This is the case with many of our beliefs, social practices and rituals. We are forced to do somethings which we do not feel comfortable doing. Some beliefs or practices are considered “normal” even if people are uncomfortable doing them. If someone is not comfortable doing those things and does not follow the established practices, that person – unfortunately – is considered as “abnormal”. As is the problem with my friend in his office.

Let us take the same example of wearing formal shoe on formal cloths, in particular the office setup. Disruptor are those who question these practices. They tend to something new. How far people should accept inconvenient established practices in the name of following the norm? This going out of established Norms is a trouble for the society. Society by and large tries to create an order. But, since the Big Bang entropy of the world is only increasing. More on entropy some time in the future.

My friend – poor guy – getting hassled for wearing formals because that is being “normal”, better and more “office type”! Wonder if his work will count in his appraisal 😉

Image source – http://tuanmalam.blogspot.in/2009_05_01_archive.html

This is a scheduled and thus auto published blog, author is currently having limited access to the internet.