She's Right Behind You

Trapped On Demon Planet?

What the thinker thinks the prover proves.

This is a fairly ubiquitous “law of attraction” saying.

Meaning that if you believe something, you’ll see it.

One on hand, it makes perfect sense.

If you believe people are friendly, you’ll act as if you live in a world of friendly people.

You’ll walk with confident body language and facial expressions.

Thinking you live in a world of friendly people, you’ll be happier more often, and more likely to smile at strangers.

And BECAUSE of your positive body language (which is because of your thinking) people smile at you.

In a “cause-effect” chain of events, it goes like this:

Positive Belief -> Positive Body Language – > Positive Behavior -> Positive Response

Your belief CAUSED what you believe to happen.

You believed it was true FIRST, and then it became true SECOND.

Similarly, if you believed you lived in a world filled with demons, that is what you would find.

Your beliefs would cause a certain behavior, which would radiate a certain “energy” which would elicit a certain response.

Where it gets kind of squirrely is when you cross the threshold from beliefs causing things that are easy to identify (smiling people) to beliefs causing things that are pretty vague.

If you believe in a friendly world, this will create smiling people.

And smiling people is pretty easy to interpret as “friendly world.”

But if you believe you’re living on “demon planet,” you won’t actually see demons.

You’ll people looking at you with guarded looks and closed off body language.

Guarded looks and closed off body language could mean a lot of things.

But few people would make the connection that “closed off body language and guarded looks” is equal to “demon planet.”

This is when your brain can shift from “beliefs that cause events” to “after the fact reframing.”

“After The Fact Reframing” is when something unexpected happens, and then you LATER redefine it to make sure your beliefs are still intact.

Problem is that few people walk around wondering, “Hmm, which state of mind am I in… Beliefs that create responses or after the fact reframing?”

It’s as if no matter WHAT you believe, we’ve got plenty of built in biases to make sure we find PROOF, regardless of how silly those beliefs seem.

How can we be sure?

Always take data.

Be able to measure to make sure.

If you are on a diet, for example, it’s kind of hard to see numbers on your bathroom scale getting higher each week, yet still believe you are LOSING weight.

If they ARE getting higher, you hopefully have other measurements to VERIFY that those higher numbers (your gross weight) is healthy.

Smaller waist, more pushups every morning, etc.

Whatever you think is true, imagine that you have to take real DATA, and then present that DATA to a disinterested third party.

So long as you keep your beliefs tethered to DATA based reality, you’ll know if you’re making REAL PROGRESS instead of PRETEND PROGRESS.

Learn More:

Seven Disciplines