Are You Willing to Look Stupid?


We are going to go over why looking stupid can be an important part to becoming successful. If you want to be successful or if you want to start your own business, you will need to accept the fact that you are going to look stupid to the people around you that are stuck in their own paradigm, a different reality. The actions you take to start a business or become an entrepreneur are going to be different from the actions most people take, the safe actions.

If you want to succeed you will have to learn to be humiliated, and roll with the punches. If you give in to everyone else, you become everyone else, and since the average person is unhealthy and just getting by financially, you don’t really want to be average.

So, basically, looking stupid is how you become an entrepreneur. Looking like an idiot is how you become a successful business owner.



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A couple of years ago, I was reading a book by the author of the Dilbert comic strip, Scott Adams, and he said something that I found very interesting. He said that your willingness to be humiliated was one of the biggest indicators of success.

Today we’re going to talk about the transitive property of you looking like an idiot. There’s this thing about in the business world, particularly if you need to be visible, but pretty much everybody who’s in business needs to be visible. They have to get attention for themselves, for their business to attract clients and make sales, and I’ve noticed that the people at the very top can be absolutely shameless.

They just do not care at all what people think about them and they’re willing to do pretty much anything publicly despite the judgment that will come their way. And I’ve noticed that this actually works really well, just stopping caring what people think and worrying about the task at hand.

But most people are completely unwilling to do this and this is what stands in between where they are now and where they want to go in life or their business. In this cause.

There’s this phenomenon where if you aggressively pursue your goals, you will look like an idiot. Hence the transitive property of you looking like an idiot. So we’re going to go over that today. Number one on this list was that people think anyone different from them is an idiot. All you have to do is log onto your computer and go on the internet to find evidence of this. It is pretty much how the internet infrastructure functions. It’s just a bunch of people arguing with people that are different from them. But you could also go to a dinner party with friends of friends and start talking politics. Or you could really just go to your relatives house for most of us.

And you’re gonna realize that anyone who’s different than you, when you start to talk about your values and beliefs, oftentimes those are going to conflict with their values and they’re going to think you’re an idiot. Some of them will tell you, some of them will silently judge you and then talk to their partner in the car on the way home about how stupid you’re being.

Okay, so this is number one. People think anyone different from them is an idiot. Number two, here’s the deal. In the United States at least, these are sobering facts right here. Two thirds of adults are overweight in the United States and the average annual income is $48,000 a year. Nothing’s wrong with this. Nothing’s wrong with making $40,000 a year if you can support yourself on it. The context that I’m speaking about, this is if you want to live a certain lifestyle or shouldn’t life.

If you’re an entrepreneur, I imagine that you are if you’re here right now, and so generally we are interested in making a lot more than $40,000 a year. Those are our personal values, so if we look at the general public in the United States, hundreds of millions of people, two thirds of them are overweight and they’re going to make $48,000 a year.

That’s where the average level of thinking is going to get you if you think and behave the same way that everyone else thinks and behaves statistically on average. These are the results you’re going to get. If you believe the things that everyone else believes these, this is exactly where those beliefs will lead you exactly here. Next on the transit of property of you looking like an idiot. Uh, these people are this way because of their actions. Actions come from our beliefs. If we believe that doing a certain thing in life is the right thing to do based on our values, we will do that thing and we will get set action.

So if we believe that going into $200,000 worth of student debt is the responsible thing to do for our careers, then we will go into student debt and then we will be trapped to pay off that student debt.

So people who are in that situation are that way because they’ve adopted a certain set of beliefs, oftentimes, unconsciously, they just been raised this way. Um, but our, our beliefs really gonna determine the actions that we take in life.

Number four, I have a different results. Require different actions. If you want to get different results than the average results, you have to take different actions than the average actions, okay? Number five on this list, taking different actions means you look like an idiot. I want to circle back up to number one on here. People think anyone different from them is an idiot. In order to get different results.

If we want to be above average in income and lifestyle, whatever else, we’re going to have to take different results. People think that taking different actions makes us crazy.

Number six, in conclusion, success equals you look like an idiot. You acting and behaving and believing things differently than almost everybody else that you are surrounded by, okay? But you must be willing to look like an idiot if you would like to succeed. Because if you want to fit in, you’re going to have to act like everybody else. Psychologists call this in group values. Ian, this is biological.

We are programmed to want to fit in with our tribes so that we can survive and generally we will adhere to in group values to stay safe. That means we’ll share the values of the tribe that we are living in. Now, if people exhibit out-group values, that is, they go against the tribe. The tribe will shame that person into behaving the same way as them. Again, these are survival mechanisms. If somebody steps out and they’re acting crazy outside of the tribe, of course the tribe is going to want to bring

them back in to behaving in a normal manner so that they’re predictable so they’re not putting anyone in danger. So you have to understand these beliefs.

These actions we take to maintain the status quo, they’re unconscious in their biological. It’s evolutionarily these have been advantageous in the past and that’s why the math is behave this way. It’s not for obviously like so for good reason. Do you think everybody wants these results? No, but they all want to fit in because they’re prehistoric brain. Their lizard brain is saying, this is what you must do to survive.

So generally most of us are just going to fit in with everyone around. This is why environment is so important, but once we start to behave differently than those people around us, they’re going to their brain, their survival brain, it’s going to go, this is not safe and they’re going to shame us into behaving the same way that they are.

So that means if we step out when we start our own business, you know our families might say do the safe responsible thing and get a job. Even if we show them on paper, like this is a dumb move. The job market is changing rapidly. There is no more security in a job than there is in starting your own business. And I’m becoming antifragile.

I am becoming immune to chaos by building the skills that I will get in entrepreneurship. And when the future rapidly shifts as it is, I will be able to adapt. Whereas everyone else will not be able to, even if you show them evidence of that, they’re just going to point you back to their beliefs even if it doesn’t make any logical sense at all. So this is stuff is not beats on logic. It’s based on the way that we feel in our bodies and then that showing up interactions.

So I have success equals you look like an idiot and it’s true, but we have to continue this further.

Next in the list I have, most people are unwilling to look stupid. Number seven. So we’ve already decided that in order to succeed, we have to do things differently than everyone else. As a result of that, we’re going to look stupid, but most people are unwilling to look stupid. And again, this is because of our survival mechanisms in our body. Our body’s gonna scream at us. It’s going to say, this is unsafe to look stupid, this unsafe to be humiliated, and it’s going to start to rationalize our unwillingness to do what it takes.

We’re going to set our goals, we’re going to tell ourselves the actions we’re going to take this week. We might say, we’re going to reach out to 20 different businesses and then all of a sudden our brain is rationalizing things saying, Oh, you know, you really shouldn’t do that this week because you’re busy with this other thing, or don’t reach out to those businesses.

They’re not going to be interested anyways, and just really just avoidance of this uncomfortable feeling in our body, this desire to not look stupid. Okay? Just like if I filmed this YouTube video and I think I looked dominant, my body’s going to tell me not to publish it, but I know that consistent publishing is the path forward for me despite what my body is telling me. This is the challenge here. So number eight,

if most people are unwilling to look stupid, that means that most people will never succeed beyond what’s average. If we’re unwilling to step outside the in group values to step outside the tribe and stand alone, then we will never succeed because if we want to move beyond average is that requires taking actions that are not average.

And so if we’re not willing to do that, we can never expect any different results than being overweight and making $48,000 a year. There’s just no reasonable, there’s no reasonable outcome where we would get anything different than that. If we take the actions that everybody else takes, we’re going to get the results that everybody else gets in order to get something that we’ve never had before that nobody else has. We have to do things that nobody else will do. So number nine in conclusion.

Yeah,to succeed. Be willing to look stupid.

No. Okay. This is the practice. Like anything else, it’s a practice. It’s not like a decision you make one day. It’s a decision that you have to make every single day and the more that you do it, the easier it will get. So I know some programs and some teachers, they have exercises for this. I think maybe even in the four hour work week, Tim Ferriss recommends that you go to a public place and you just lie down.

You could go to a busy coffee shop downtown and he recommends you just lie down on the floor for 10 seconds and then you get back up the why do you do that? SU practice looking stupid practice being uncomfortable around other people. Now there are more practical applications of this as well. Like if we are learning sales, we might go to a coffee shop and we might ask for 10% off of our coffee order because that builds the habit of asking for things and being uncomfortable asking for things from other people because most people cannot do that.

A lot of times when people are new to sales or entrepreneurship, they get to the end of their pitch. They have this prospect on the call who really needs what they have to offer. They know they can help the business and they get to the pitch where they have to ask for money and they are so uncomfortable that they blow it because they unconsciously communicate to their prospect, this isn’t safe. I’m not, I’m doing something wrong.

And then the prospect unconsciously picks up on the energy and then they’re going to bail on the pitch because they say, this person isn’t confident asking for money. I want to give them money. And you have to understand most of this hap, most of this is is subtexts. It’s happening beneath the surface. Okay. Is that what’s literally showing up? It is the tone of voice. It is body language. It is these little things that our unconscious brain is picking up on. He doesn’t really touch. His brain is like a super computer that’s taking all of the data in. Then it’s spitting out a decision that we’re not even really aware of how we came to that decision. Okay, we might have a reason for it. We might say, well I’m not going to do this

cause it’s not in the budget, but what’s really happening is our internal algorithm spit out, do not work with this person because the person didn’t feel comfortable pitching.

So do you stay on like most of what’s happening both with ourselves and in the interaction with the market is subtext. It’s the subconscious forces working together. It’s these hundreds or even thousands of little tiny data points and inflection in that one word you said in your pitch. These tiny little things are facial expression that you saw on a YouTube video. Tiny little things that all work together to inform a decision.

so I just have this fun little formula. I don’t actually remember trans that properties. I think that was maybe eighth grade algebra, but I was thinking about something the other day and this just popped up in my mind.

The trans that a property of you looking like immediate basically like the thought process. This that we just walked through where it’s like if you want to succeed you have to just be okay looking stupid. And if you know people that are okay looking stupid and they go and they get started in business and then make progress so fast.

And a lot of people look at them and they’re like, Whoa, like that person’s just like naturally good at sales or something. And oftentimes that’s not really the case. It’s just that they aren’t afraid to look that. So I’ll go through this again. The nine steps in the transit of property, of looking like an idiot and why you should be okay looking stupid and you should actually practice looking stupid.

A number one people think anyone different from them is an idiot. It’s just a fact. It’s how our bodies work. A number two, two thirds of adults are overweight and they make $48,000 a year. So if you don’t want to look stupid, that’s what you’ll get. Um, they are this way because of their actions and their beliefs. Different results require different actions. So we have to step out and do things differently.

Taking different actions means that you look like an idiot to people who believe the way that causes standard actions. Number six, in conclusion, success equals you look like an idiot. No matter what. Next we have, most people are unwilling to look stupid and as a result, most people will never succeed beyond what’s average. That’s just statistically true. F nine to succeed, be willing to look stupid.

This is a tough one. Um, in the beginning it’s really hard. It gets exponentially easier afterwards because what happens is you go out there and you look stupid a couple times and your your brain like literally thinks that you’re going to die and I was talking with my friend the other day about this and and, and we’re discussing it and I said yes. Sometimes I just say, well die. Then like you just save your unconscious brain.

If you’re like, if you’re going to do a pitch or something and your unconscious brain is saying, I’m going to die if I mess up this picture, I’m going die. If I go talk to that client or whatever it is, then just tell your unconscious brain than die then because you’re not actually going to die.

It’s a, it’s a social phobia. And so what happens is you go do that thing that you’re so afraid of public speaking, for example, you go do that thing you’re so afraid of and then your body sees that you didn’t actually die because this is an irrational unconscious fear and it, it trains itself, it goes, Oh, I thought I was going to die doing that and I didn’t.

So many of you do your first YouTube video, you thought you were going to die and then you didn’t. Or maybe you do your first client pitch. Maybe you work with your first client and your body slowly realizes like, Oh, all these social fears that I have are completely irrational.

They don’t come true and they’re completely made up and I don’t need to worry about them anymore. So the more you do this, like anything, the easier it becomes in one day you might wake up and realize you’re basically unstoppable because you’re not worried about any of this stuff. And also it’s kind of a silly way to do this, but I hope this helps put in the comments. Is there a place where you’re afraid to look stupid in? How’s that holding you back? What do you do to deal with it?

Go out there and try this. If you want to go practice looking stupid, let me know how it goes. And don’t forget to subscribe to the channel like this video. Share with a friend and I’ll see you on the next one.

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