The Dunning-Krueger effect: understand it and deal with it
During the course of life we have surely interacted with people who questioned our intelligence and intellectual ability. Even worse, these people manifest to be intellectually superior to all others. Logically these people have surprised us unpleasantly, but they also left us with several doubts:
- What happens to them?
- Why do they think that way?
- Why do they think they are superior to others?
Fortunately there is an explanation: they may suffering from something called THE DUNNING-KRUGER EFFECT. This effect is a distortion of their own capacity for understanding. These persons, really believe they are smarter than others, including highly skilled people in a certain area.
They cannot perceive their own ignorance or cognitive limitations, simply because they think they are better than everyone else.
Every day, we interact with people who suffer The Dunning-Kruger Effect. They are those who think of all the topics without knowing what they are talking about. They believe they know more than even true specialists and tend to disqualify others.
They think very rigidly and will never come to their senses. For example, it’s very common to hear them say, “I’m my own psychologist.” They believe that, just because they don’t know anything about Psychology and have no idea the complexity of that area of study.
Ways to deal with it
First of all, we must prevent ourselves from suffering from The Dunning-Kruger Effect ourselves. That is why we must practice self-criticism, because this attitude will prevent us from talking without knowing about a certain topic. We must maintain a certain humility, and listen to those who know. We must express our opinions calmly, without wanting to generally impose any.
When you think you should be open to other points of view and understand that they are all equally valid. Finally, keep in mind that you can’t be an expert at everything, so it is really much better to always be willing to learn.
Surely every day we have to deal with people suffering from The Dunning-Kruger Effect, some of them may be competitive women who want to excel all the time. This effect, affects both genders.
If possible, stay as far away from them. If we can’t, we should never get angry because we hear them talking nonsense, because we now know that they suffer a distortion in the perception of their own intelligence. They don’t realize their own incompetence.
Sometimes or even many times, the best thing we can do, is to ignore them completely. It may not be worth interacting with these persons but to politely find an exit route – because they don’t are unable accept other points of view. This may even be a good time to look internally and consider of have someone share with us in a non-threatening way of course as well, to see if we are showingn any of these traits. It isn’t too late to get some assistance.