Ignorant people never become aware of their own incompetence.They boast, they think they are experts and overestimate their abilities with a sparkling pride. So they think they know everything. Smart people, on the other hand, doubt more. They are unsure of themselves and look more humble. A look capable of understanding that in this world nothing can be taken for granted.
Bertrand Russell said thatthe problem with this life is that stupid people are always sure of themselves and intelligent people are full of doubts. This would in a way explain why those who succeed are not always the best prepared or the most intelligent. Many responsible and important positions in our society are filled with the most inept. Low profile but highly directive skills.
"Ignorance generates more trust than knowledge."
A striking fact has been demonstrated in a documentary produced by the BBC entitled The problem of intelligent people. Mediocrity enables us to succeed in our society because it relies entirely on its limited knowledge and knows how to "sell" it.The ignorant is therefore a guru when it comes to getting noticed. We are all more or less obliged today to be promoters of ourselves in the business world. You just have to look at LinkedIn's CVs to see how many profiles the "I am an expert in … "
Smart people, on the other hand, are uncomfortable when it comes to talking about themselves.They do not see themselves as experts. They do not possess the firm determination of the ignorant. These people also focus more on what they do not yet know than what they already dominate with great skill.
The ignorant and the Dunning-Kruger effect
McArthur Wheeler had, in 2012, planned the stroke of his life. He was going to steal the Pittsburgh bank. He had for it the magic formula: lemon juice. But something did not go according to plan when he arrived at the bank to take the money out of the safe. The police were behind him. Young Wheeler did not understand why. He was angry, almost indignant.But I am invisible! he repeated again and again.
The story of this American did not take long to go around the world. McArthur Wheelerhad the firm belief that it would be invisible if he poured lemon juice on it and could achieve his feat. Errol Morris, the reporter who covered this news and interviewed him, could not help but admire the man's iron conviction. Beyond the presence of some psychological disorder, what characterized this unfortunate thief was his personal assurance, his firmness.
His stupidity, the journalist said, protected him from the consciousness of his own stupidity.This curious story also illustrates what we call the Dunning-Kruger effect. This is a cognitive bias whereby some people with limited cognitive ability show an illusory feeling of superiority, even considering themselves more intelligent than others. In addition to leading them to erroneous conclusions and making unfortunate choices, their incompetence deprives them of the metacognitive ability to become aware.
If smart people are more suspicious, what can they do?
Intelligent people have more doubts, doubts about everything, what's around them, what has happened, what others are saying and even what they think. What, at the beginning, can lead to more solid knowledge is a major disadvantage. They will have more difficulty making a concrete decision. But we all know thatwe live in a reality where the capacity of reaction prevails, where the time for reflection is not allowed, where you have to go from analysis to action in less than a second.
Charles Darwin was talking about this in his book titled Descent of Man.He complained that his contemporaries required quick answers to all the questions he had raised with his theories. Knowledge requires time and rigor. She defends herself.The truth does not come out in a day or two. This process can take a lifetime.
Today, however, we know that we can not wait for a lifetime to position ourselves to improve our professional career. Because, in a way,we all know brilliant people who have not yet achieved their goals.Even dramatic cases, where exceptional profiles are relegated to the favor of obviously inept individuals.Here are some of the strategies or approaches that smart people should apply to move forward.
Development rules for smart people
We know that smart people have more doubts. So, what is the solution? Stop doubting, maybe? No. It's just about refocusing one's own perception.
- We must not underestimate ourselves.The intelligent person must become aware of his abilities and trust them. She often looks at others and sees in them skills she lacks (determination, extroversion, charisma, social openness …). It is not necessary to do this. They must learn to calibrate themselves, to value their excellent skills.
- Determination. Doubting more, smart intelligent peoplemust learn to direct this complex, and sometimes even chaotic, tree thinking towards a specific goal. It is therefore necessary to combine reflection and determination.
- Talents will circulate and find their place at the right time. Intelligent people are sometimes characterized by their pessimism. They feel it is almost impossible to find a place to grow, to show their full potential. It frustrates them, diminishes their self-esteem and sometimes leads them to conformism. Far from falling into surrender, she must be vigilant. To be receptive to opportunities and to be able to act when the opportunity deserves it.
To conclude, persistence and determination are the best allies of intelligent people who have not yet found their expansion space.Let's add a little sagacity and we will have the perfect combination to overcome mediocrity. To rise up against this opportunism devoid of genuine talent.