I am fond of simple questions that reveal hidden behavioral patterns. Examples of such questions are
- Do age and wisdom go together?
- Do wealth and health go together?
- Do confidence and external validation proceed together?
On the surface, these questions look simple, but pondering on them reveals that they are like ducks swimming quietly on the surface but paddling violently underneath.
Let us begin with the first question on age and wisdom.
Many studies such as this one suggest that most people’s wisdom grows steadily between the ages of 13 to 25 to level off and then decline afterwards.
Google defines wisdom as ‘the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment.’ Why then wisdom drops with age? Is it due to not varying experiences, losing good judgment, or limiting knowledge to a narrow field, or the three combined?
There are studies that offer different views on wisdom increasing fast with age but that intelligence is what levels off and then drops. This is a reversal relationship between wisdom and intelligence.
If this is the case, do we become like a single-winged bird that cannot fly? Do we humans become one-winged thinkers if the left brain and the right one have a reversal relationship?
Let us take another question and that is if confidence and external validation proceed together.
Let us take this scenario. You are confident that you mastered your topic and prepared your presentation for the directors of the company in which you work. Just before starting your presentation, you start to tremble with fear. You feel your self-confidence evaporated. You are not sure if the directors would welcome your presentation.
This situation biljana savic described brilliantly “Being confident in your own skin brings many external temptations, so it requires additional inner work and introspection”.
It is important to seek external input to reconsider your thoughts, but it is also important to keep your confidence to redirect your fears to positive energy.
Confidence is not devoid of fear but it is the confidence that uses fear to do better.