On being the dumbest person in the room

August 25, 2020

Every now so often, I feel like I am in a room where I feel like the people I am interacting with are on a much higher level than me. The natural and the wrong reaction that I tend to exhibit is feign intelligence. This is dumb and helps nobody in the long term. The reason behind why I feign probably has ties with my System 1 (see Thinking Fast and Slow by Kahneman) kicking in. However, I have to remind myself that the best action forward is to be completely honest about what I know and what I don’t know as it provides the best chance for me to fill in gaps of knowledge.

Another point on this topic is that when I am found in a situation like this, it probably means that I am in the right room and growing and learning and being challenged. Otherwise, what’s the point?