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The 5 Steps to Mastery

Does he Understand, or is he Just Pretending?

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His words made no sense as I looked at his reply, I was puzzled. I had tried to help him by suggesting he correlate the results he was getting from RapidWeaver with those he had expected to get. He hadn't done so.

As yet, I hadn't worked out the problem - he was assuming he'd interpreted the instructions correctly, even though he wasn't getting the right answers! He hadn't bothered to find out why since he didn't yet know one of the first steps to mastery - to investigate and ensure you understand!

Mike was a new user of the RapidWeaver web-page software I've been using for years. But his browser titles were appearing as folder names and he didn't understand why. So he'd posted his difficulties to the User Forum.

As an unpaid volunteer, I'd patiently explained what was happening, given an example with a picture, agreed that the manual explanation was not readily comprehensible and even told him he was not alone, I'd also not understood it initially. Then I told him how I'd made sense of it all, and
gave him my secret of success - to make his own notes to compare the results he was seeing with what he expected to see.

But he'd ignored my recommendations and complained some more about his continuing difficulties. Amazed that he hadn't bothered to try my suggestions, I replied with more detail on what was happening and gave another example for him to look at.

His Next Reply

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In his next reply he insisted that he did understand, although he'd still ignored my suggestions. But his continuing difficulties gave the lie to his pretense. He was being right - insisting he was right while ignoring all evidence to the contrary - because he still believed his misunderstanding of the original instructions.
Man spending time examining the evidence
Yet despite wanting me to spend yet more time poring over his evidence for the problem, he didn't include the picture which would have made this possible. Although I tried to follow his confused instructions to reach his problem page, they unfortunately didn't make sense, and he hadn't even done the obvious - post its location, its url.

My Terse Response

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So my terse third reply asked how could he expect anyone to help him when he didn't give the necessary information? His response? He complained that my tone had become increasingly exasperated, which was true. But he'd continued to ignore the secret of success, and didn't even have the manners to spell my name correctly. Yet he was upset!

A great example of someone stuck at the
second of the five steps to mastery. Although he insisted he knew, he only knew about it because he'd been informed about it. He'd self sabotaged by believing he'd got it once he had the information, not seeing any need to put any effort into deeper understanding.

He'd automatically believed his own thoughts,
which demonstrated he was gullible, yet his thoughts had been hijacked by his self sabotage mechanism. A salutary lesson demonstrating the problems that can arise when you automatically believe your thoughts.

Food for Thought

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"The trouble with most folks ain't so much their ignorance
as knowing so many things that ain't so."

- Josh Billings (1818–1885), pen name of brilliant 19th century American humorist Henry Wheeler Shaw

© Copyright worldwide Cris Baker, All rights reserved. Republishing welcomed under Creative Commons noncommercial no derivatives license preserving all links intact, so share this widely!
> There are more to enjoy in this series:
The articles explaining the 5 Steps to Mastery are:

  1. Ignorance. Are they even listening?

  2. Informed about. They only know about it

  3. Understand. Do you really understand?

  4. Experience gives you authentic knowing

  5. Teach. A master knows it from all angles

  6. Summary. Have you mastered it yet?

  7. Caution - pretenders. They may pretend to be a master, but are they?
> Enjoy the wisdom of different perspectives in other series of articles:
All our products are fully guaranteed, these time-tested secrets of success are delivered electronically - no waiting for delivery. Discover the truth about overcoming your self sabotage, stop reacting, find out why resistance doesn't work, and change your life.

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