Zoom, slack, and uncertainty

Zoom was for a long time part of my remote ETF, I sold it too soon because of the security issues (up 200%). Big mistake, for us as a remote company, it is still one of our most important apps.

OM wrote a great article on why he is thankful for zoom, great read:

So, on my list of things to be thankful for this year, I’m putting Zoom right at the top. Forget the company and its double-speak and weak security. Forget the obvious problems. Forget the stock. For many, Zoom has been the piece of the proverbial driftwood we needed to hold on to in this year’s choppy seas.

This week Slack went parabolic (+30%), still part of my remote ETF based on rumors that Salesforce will buy the company. On Friday the stock ended steady, what will happen next week? Only time will tell.

The future is uncertain, we can only cross a bridge when we come to it.

To quote Robert Green: The need for certainty is the greatest disease the mind faces. We humans always try to control every situation, but certainty is an illusion. A Yiddish joke explains this in a very assuming way; Do you know how to make god laugh? Tell him about your plans.

We don’t only ask certainty from ourselves, but also expect this from others. But life will be boring when everything is certain; the first kiss, a new job offer, visiting a new place would be as exciting as a weather report. A certain life would be mumbling dull.

In times of stress (being uncertain) parts of the brain stop working, you need to move (survival brain: escape from an animal) not think. We are chemically, biologically being held hostage from the rational brain. Back in April fighting over toilet paper, start to makes sense.

Where this is somewhat of an extreme example, in a certain way we do behave like this. Uncertain times want us to take control, we want to create a clear path for the future. Certainty is what creates comfort, even when it is just an illusion.

What should we do instead? Embracing the unknown, unlearning everything we learned.


Then we start seeing what is, instead of the illusion.