Why we are much smarter than we think we are

albert-6782247Recently I met someone whom I greatly admire for what they do.

They knew everything about restaurants, bars and so forth about a new city (Hong Kong) that I had just moved to. When I asked, why don’t you start sharing it with others more, the answer was “oh, there is others who know way more, what I know is already out there and not useful for anyone.”

Whilst I completely understand why one would say this, I couldn’t agree less. I feel there seems to be a general tendency towards this way of thinking. We feel, we need to know so much about something, before we can finally start sharing/producing/creating our own thing.

The good thing is, we don’t!

We are much smarter than we think we are.

Chris Brogan and Seth Godin – The smartest

Two people that do an amazing job, of picking up the tiniest thought/lesson learnt that enters their minds and turn it into something worth sharing are Chris Brogan and Seth Godin. And that is for a large part why they are so popular I think.

Whenever you read their posts, you go like “hell yes, I so agree, I was thinking the same actually!”. They are masters of common sense as some call them. Simply observing them in the aspect of which types of thoughts they express will already be of huge help.

Of course this is not easy, it takes courage to pick up those thoughts or early lessons learnt and ship them immediately:

Bravery is what I’m working on the most. It’s downright the hardest work we could ever do. ~ Chris Brogan

When you finally think you are smart, you actually aren’t anymore

Doing it the other way round is not an option I found, which is both ironic and a great thing at the same time. Because it only backfires. When we have finally spent our dozens of hours with a topic and think: ”Yep, I am ready now, I can now start sharing with others” I found I’m way past it.

Your thinking will be so specialized and your knowledge will be so much more than anyone would be able to learn from you. You are too smart. The audience that could potentially be interested is a very limited number of people, that you will probably have a hard time reaching.

At the same time, because you have kept it all to yourself, you have received extremely little feedback to alter your direction.

Heck, even Mark Zuckerberg tries to fight this and has a giant sign on his desk, urging him to just ship and get feedback, without overthinking:


An upward spiral: Be smarter and become smarter by being smart

Joel often mentions to me:

“No matter at which point you are in life, there is always people not as far ahead as you. They will find what you know valuable.

Even if you are thinking about starting a startup for 1 hour, you will have 1 hour more knowledge than all the people who haven’t started to think about startups. They will find what you know useful.”

Once you embrace that idea, it becomes extremely powerful.

You understand that every thought that enters your mind is a thought that others are yet to discover and are grateful to learn about.

By being vocal about it and sharing it, you not only help out others. You will also get feedback from people ahead of you. They will share their thoughts with you and push you onto the next level of your journey.

This creates a powerful upward spiral that will push you much closer to achieving your goals, I think.

So here is the thing: you are already very smart.

Start sharing that thought, publish that drawing you have made, push that project you have been working on live. You don’t need more time!

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