something called the Dunning-Kruger effect, and it's how dumb people
live with themselves. In short, how people assess themselves at tasks is
influenced by their skill or lack thereof. Oh, and the ego hits hard. People,
nearly all people, rate themselves as above average. If
you want some fun examples, feel free to skip ahead to the bottom of the
doesn't have any time for that.
literally millions of Hearthstone players who tell themselves that they could
hit legend if only they had the time. There are dropouts all over the country
who know they could have gotten their bachelor's degree if only they wanted to.
Millions toil in bronze of League of Legends and Defense of the Ancients
assured that they would be diamond/platinum if only the rest of their teammates
weren't bringing them down.
defense. Another is to attack the institution. That game is broken! Degrees
don't matter! Intelligence Quotient tests only test one kind of intelligence.
I'm ranked so low because of match making ranking hell!
saying that's not true. It likely is. (Except for match making ranking
hell–that's a complete myth). My question for those people, why not accomplish
the goal anyway?
legend climb in Hearthstone I had a 58% win rate. From rank 5 to legend, my win
rate was 67%. Does that mean I'm a fantastic Hearthstone player? No. I had a
pretty compelling win streak from rank 3 to rank 1. The best players in the
world have win rates approaching 65% in a season. When I'm playing
competitively, my average is around 55% which is good. Does this mean I
think I'm a good Hearthstone player? Not really. I make mistakes nearly every
turn I play. I play too fast. And honestly, at the end of any given season,
there are between 500,000 to 1,000,000 people who end up ranked higher than me.
about what that legend climb means concretely for a second. Each game takes
about 10 minutes to play. With a 55% win rate, It takes around 225 games to
reach rank 5 (due to win streaks) and about 225 games to reach legend from rank
5. What that means is that you're going to have to lose over 100 games after
you reach rank 5 with a good win rate.
can't take it. People who have fragile esteem can't take it. Who's got time for
20 hours of losing?
want to achieve.
This is true
for all difficult things. Getting a bachelor's degree (which only took me six
years) wasn't about learning. Nobody learned me anything. I spent a lot of
time learning on my own initiative, but frequently that had little to do with
class work. Now this is only my personal experience, I attended college from
95-97 and from 99-02. Perhaps things are different in university today. But mostly
success in college was making a good impression, learning how to network and
present yourself, and jumping through bullshit hoops.
I know that
most of my audience is successful–offhand most readers I can call to mind are
professionals with many accolades, doctors, intelligent, and artsy folk. I'm
writing this blog post because I believe it's people like that, like me, that
are most at risk for these psychological traps. After all, we are likely
accurate about our intelligence, aren't we accurate about the rest of stuff
really believe anything. Even that isn't true. The idea of "belief"
is to think a thing without proof. I strive to be a fair witness in the Heinlein sense of the word,
skeptical of nearly everything. But still, I fail at this constantly.
of competitive play forces you to confront this. There's no team member to
blame. There's nothing but your skill and the opponent. Diving in even after your 100th loss during the season is what puts my statements above to the test. Every time I experience these
thoughts that conflict with reality, they drive powerful emotional states. It
pits me against the cognitive distortions in a way that allows my ego no
reprieve. And in the end, I come out better. Not because I'm superior, but
because even though I'm in the upper echelon of a thing, I just get to realize
how flawed my thinking really is.
for everything in life. I can speak confidently on a few things. Dungeons &
Dragons. Writing. Game Design and Theory. Because they are my areas of focus
and specialty. Even within those areas I strive to understand my flaws. In my
interactions with others online, I often discover that they speak just as
confidently about areas that are not their specialty. I do not think that is to
for clarity is real. It's not something that can be achieved and checked off.
It's a constant process of reevaluation and growth. And it's hard and painful
to break down the false physical constructs of your mind.
But what am I
talking about, you already know all this already, right?
the above, every month there are other things about my climb that are worth
noting. Most interactions I have from rank 5 to legend are quite pleasant.
However, down in the gutter ranks, between rank 12 and 6, you find a lot of
people who are not well.
Team 5 have a horrible, horrible, system for communicating with your peers. One
of the things I like about Hearthstone is that you can't chat with your
opponent. However, that's no excuse for not being able to deal appropriately
with situations. Not infrequently during my climb, I'll receive friend
requests. Most of these are players impressed with play or seeking to become
better or looking for friends on their climb up. Sometimes though. . .
Sometimes you regret the fact that you can't contact someone to perform a
safety check. Well, see for yourself below.
ADULT LANGUAGE AHEAD
Ah, yes. My
mother's seashell. Or possibly the most serious insult someone from South
America can muster. Who can tell?
interactions like this that are so worrisome. This person needs a safety
check. Not only can I not report him in any way to the parent company,
blizzard has no method of reporting these interactions, but this person
seriously needs someone to make sure he isn't going to hurt himself.
I mean, this
is what I'm talking about. What mental state must someone be into say something
like "hope your wife or girlfriend gets raped and murdered while you
watch." Or "I'll murder your entire family given the
opportunity." It can't be a good one.