(It’s not common sense, but something equally important)
We live in a world full of bullshit.
I’m talking about the amount of deception that people face every day without them knowing about it.
You may even live through your life without ever knowing that you’ve been bullshitted all along, though that requires some.. Special conditioning and bad luck (or should I say good luck?).
Newspapers, advertisers, politicians and even people you spend time with – they all do it.
It works as long as they manage to broadcast their message so wide that it will reach both the gullible and the people who know better.
The trick is that we all are gullible to certain extent, depending on our weak-spots.
But this article is not about me ranting. The world is as it is and it has a great lesson for you:
How will an honest person look in a world like this?
When people recognize the massive amount of bullshit in their lives, the honest ones will stand out.
If you look at any person on the internet who has made themselves a brand with their blogs you can see that they are honest about what they do.
For example, James admits that he steals from other people relentlessly.
That’s how producing works after all: you steal (“research”) from many sources, add some of your own thoughts and boom – you’ve produced your own stuff.
For me it’s very obvious where he gets some of his stuff, but it doesn’t matter. I like him anyway.
John Chow is a slightly different story. I don’t like him or his methods, but I respect his honesty. He’s completely open about the fact that his blog is basically just a huge sales page and according to him he’s doing pretty well with it.
If people weren’t fine with it, he’d be out of business already.
Why it’s so hard
There are two reasons:
a. You don’t have integrity. For example, if you really think your product is crap, you shouldn’t be honest about it. You should change your product.
b. You have a little internal sensor that hopelessly tries to predict what people are not going to like.
You are focusing on not upsetting people instead of just being true to yourself.
You are “roleplaying” this character that tries to act the best possible way with unknown people. You are bullshitting them!
This is the exact role that you want to ditch. Life is all about being personal with people.
Because people have enough bullshit in their lives already.
People are going to judge anyway.
If you look at any honest persons blog, you may see that the comments are filled with like-minded people.
What you don’t see is all the hate in the background.
Many people just close the tab, but some go through the trouble to write a very negative email to them just because their blog post made them feel bad.
Classic case of not taking responsibility. I don’t judge though – it’s just their conditioning playing itself out. I’ve probably done it myself more than few times in the past.
Remember the rule of 1/3:
1/3 of people won’t like what you say.
1/3 of people won’t care about what you say.
1/3 of people will like you for what you say.
If you try to play your role that tries to please everyone, you are bullshitting 100% of people – including yourself.
It works to an extent, but it feels so much worse than just being true to yourself and attracting an audience that you care about.
The long-term strategy
It all comes down to integrity. If you are not in line with what you say and do, you won’t feel comfortable.
Having integrity is a long-term strategy.
I just yesterday wrote about long-term / short-term gratification and amusingly, this too is closely related to it.
When you are in the role of people-pleaser, you get short-term gratification of not upsetting people, but you also won’t feel whole because of the lack of integrity.
In long-term you will be dissatisfied and you will feel like your social interactions with people don’t have any depth.
Integrity means taking responsibility
While being true to yourself, you are going to piss some people off. When you do so, it will feel bad for a while, but it’s an amazing opportunity for you to grow.
Take responsibility for your actions and if you clearly see that you didn’t read the situation right – you learn to do something differently.
If you are certain that it wasn’t you, but the other person, you can clearly see the pattern of them handing their responsibility to you. They get angry because “you said something that didn’t please them”.
Once again you’ve learned something: not to spend another moment with that person any more.
- Stop bullshitting people and be honest with integrity