June 28, 2016 by Angus
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What secrets Moore’s Law reveals about optimal thinking and self doubt

Let’s be honest. Many of us feel strong self doubt about our own abilities. This self doubt seriously handicaps potential and prevents us from leveraging the benefits of optimal thinking.

Surrendering this way lets self doubt overtake us. It makes it very hard for us to live optimally.

Let’s work through that idea and turn things around.

How we often limit ourselves

I’ve noticed many times that people tend to limit themselves. They sell themselves short when thinking about what is possible in their lives.

Often this self-doubt is fertilized by thoughts like this:
“If I can’t conceive how I’m going to do it right now, then it will never really be possible.”

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that our current situation is a fixed known quantity.

In that self doubting place, we often believe that what isn’t part of our current capabilities is, simply, not possible. This frame of mind feels “sensible” or “realistic”.

One thing is certain. This type of self doubt prevents us from leveraging the benefits of optimal thinking.

Moore’s Law and the future unbound

You’ve heard it before. It pays to “look outside the box”. So let’s jump outside of a purely “psychological” range of thinking on self doubt and optimal mind. Let’s fertilize our thinking with a bit of knowledge drawn from the world of computer developers.

There is a law in computing called Moore’s Law. Now this is a fascinating law. It goes something like this.

Moore’s Law holds that the processing power of computers will double every two years. It’s a computing law that, for a very long time, has been proven in practice for decades.

Let’s look at Moore’s Law a little closer. It gets really interesting.

Roughly speaking, Moore’s Law says that at any point in time we can confidently predict that within two years, computer processing power will double. It doesn’t say, however, that computer developers today know how it will double in two years. In fact, they don’t or if they do they don’t know how to make that happen yet.

If computer developers did know how processing power would double in two years, they’d know how to do it. That knowledge, if they had it, would then be incorporated into the two year cycle already. Potentially, this would mean that computer processing power would actually go further than doubling capacity to, let’s say, quadruple or more.

But that’s not how it works.

When self doubt is tamed and functional stubborness takes us further

What are computer developers actually doing here when working on the future of computer processing? They are actually applying what we call in the world of psychology, “functional stubbornness”. You can read about functional stubbornness in our previous blog post titled, “Is it time to embrace your stubborness?”

Functional stubbornness helps us overcome self doubt. It’s actually a tool of optimal thinking.

When examining our own psychology and the goals we set, we need to consider whether we’re limiting ourselves.

Ask yourself this:

Are you holding yourself back because of a limiting conception of what is possible in the future and basing that judgment on what you think you can actually do now?

Take off the brake and go further with optimal thinking

Consider this.

Maybe the fact you can’t envisage how you’ll grow or achieve your goal may not be the important factor here. Maybe that self doubt is stopping you from trying to get there. That non optimal thinking leads you to a self-fulfilling prophecy of sorts. In the end, it proves the idea that you couldn’t have done it in the first place.

But what if we work it differently. Let’s engage some optimal thinking to overcome our self doubt and go further.

What if we take a version of Moore’s Law and apply it to our own actions. Let’s make it possible for things to move in ways we can’t envisage now.

Think of a skill you have now. You have it, today. But did you conceive it possible that you’d have that skill way back in the early days of learning? Scan your life for examples of this.

Open up to a psychological equivalent of Moore’s Law in your life. You might just leave fewer unused opportunities on the table.

With a Moore’s Law approach to life, you can open up more fulfilling, grander adventures.

It is true, too, that people often overestimate what they can achieve in a limited time frame, like 24 hours or one week. But consider this. Maybe we more often massively underestimate what we can achieve over a longer period, like two years.

Would you like to go further in discovering how to think differently with optimal thinking to overcome self doubt?

Sign up to receive an advanced copy of our upcoming Optimal Mind book.
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Learn more about optimal thinking and overcoming self doubt

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