Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Cynicism sucks ! Introducing Cynicism 2.0.

One of the things I observed after all these years is that cynicism sucks !

Cynical people achieve less in life, or perhaps go on to achieve less in life. Cynical people spend a ridiculous amount of effort to destroy a good idea when less effort can be spent to make the idea work.

I'm surrounded by cynics. Over the years, I changed the way I deal with them. Cynical people can be a great source of motivation as there is nothing more satisfying that showing a cynic that something can be done and that success is possible.

One of things I set out to do when I started studying Psychology intensely is to break down Cynicism into it's residual components using the Big 5 personality model and one of the things I discovered is that Cynicism is really a blend of the Neurotic and Disagreeable personality traits. With this discovery, I believe that the idea that cynics are also losers gain considerable traction.

Neurotic people are scientifically proven to make horrible spouses. Too much of it also causes a person to self-handicap and only set out to do something only if it is guaranteed to succeed. If a neurotic person is also disagreeable, you have this perfect storm of a pure vortex of an evil person, putting down others, not being able to accept criticism and destroying the self-esteem of their loved ones.

Definitely not a combination that inspires success or achievement.

Instead I offer an alternative to Cynicism.

Cynicism 2.0 is an active life philosophy where you become cynical about cynicism. If cynics are emotional vampires, you become Van Helsing. You seek out cynics, get to know them and then break them with your willpower.

Here are some ideas on the foundations of Cynicism 2.0.

a) Collect Cynics as a source of motivation.

We lack nurturing souls in our lives. For most people, only mum can be nurturing towards you. Cynics however, are a dime a dozen. Urban survival dictates that cynics become a fuel for one's personal success.

To use the cynics in your life, you must adopt the maxim that if it can't be done by a cynic, it CAN BE DONE ! In fact, it must be done.

The look on a cynics face will be priceless !

b) Be ruthlessly empirical.

A neurotic and disagreeable person will pour cold water against any idea even before an actual field test. One tactic is to react with ruthless empiricism. Force the cynic to produce evidence, if the cynics mirrors your move, proceed to make the idea work. If anything, the cynic would have given you some advice on what to avoid to make your idea work so don't waste it.

Next time you meet a cynic and he gives you grief. Ask them this : Show me your KPI. What are your numbers ? Have you done it yourself ?

c) Say and deliver

This is the hardest part about dealing with a cynic and consistent use can break him. When you encounter someone who attacks an idea, say how it can be done and what resources you will employ to do it. Then go ahead and do it.

This requires a lot of discipline on your part. For one thing, you can only defend a strong idea with actual execution.

Cynicism 2.0 allows ordinary people to create a self-help system that harnesses the cynical people in their lives, you will find yourself setting disciplined goals and visualizing the path to success when faced with disagreement.

The joy of breaking a cynic is also personally satisfying as you build your self-esteem on top of their broken dreams.

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