Ever been around someone who absolutely must be the “smartest” person in the room?
I call this type of person a SPITR – and that’s pretty much what he or she does; spits on everyone in the room.
You know the guy I’m talking about.
Whenever you and your friends are talking, he’ll listen briefly – (and I mean very, very briefly.)
He’ll then proceed to position himself as most knowledgeable amongst all in the room.
He’ll interrupt and begin arguments with openers like, “That’s not true.” Or, “that’s not what really happened.” Or he’ll feel the need to pile on until his information trumps all others.
I know a lady who couldn’t even be introduced without making a comment that denigrated the person introducing her.
“John, I’d like you to meet Jane. She’s the one I told you about who does acupuncture and deep tissue massage to eliminate pain from old injuries.”
Before John can even say hello, Jane “fixes” the introduction.
“Actually, what I do,” she says, “is Tuina massage combined with acupressure and a bit of Reiki, feng shui and tarot card reading.”
Intro killed. Just had to “correct” the introduction before it barely got off the ground. Had to be a SPITR.
I know a guy who can’t stand to not know something about a topic others are discussing or someone is teaching. He’ll keep quiet for a day or two, during which time he’s searching the Internet or the local library to find the one thing about the subject you don’t know yet. And he cannot wait to tell you what he knows that you don’t.
He will NEVER approach you and ask you what you know on the subject. That would downgrade his
SPITR status. He must appear all-knowing, even if the mirage requires staying up for a week to research your area of expertise.
Another SPITR symptom is trying to out-think the master. Even though the SPITR is a complete beginner in a new course of action, he will not allow himself to “listen, believe and apply.”
Instead, he must reinvent the computer. He must prove he can outsmart those whose knowledge he could really use.
Earlier today I had a coaching call with a client. He asked for details about a financial turning point I had many years ago.
I told him that “paying yourself first” regardless of bills and debts was key. I mentioned how you need to take 10 percent of every check and put it away. I repeated the W. Clement Stone maxim, “If you don’t have the saving habit, the seeds of greatness are not within you.”
Then I mentioned that I’ve stated this very truth at seminars for at least the last 12 years. I recounted how this advice is from a man who started with nothing and became a billionaire.
Yet, despite his credentials. how many people who hear the message will follow his sage advice. Very few.
Some refuse to picture themselves saving 10 percent. It’s not part of their self-image. These people are the “I can’t do that’s.”
Then there are the SPITR’s. They immediately try to figure out a ‘better way.” They’ll spends hours, days, even weeks trying to out-think the billionaire.
Years later, guess what? The SPITR is no better off.
This is why I say the SPITR is actually the dumbest person in the room (DPITR).
Now, you may wonder why a person would choose to be a SPITR when it should be obvious to him that he’s getting DPITR results.
Well, just because something “should” be obvious doesn’t make it so.
Once again, it all comes down to self-image. The SPITR feels compelled to argue, fix and overwhelm with his vast knowledge because deep down he feels bad about being a DPITR.
So a SPITR is really a DPITR. A wolf in sheep’s clothing.
And the real fix is so simple: Shut up and listen.
After you’ve done that, learn what to do, picture yourself doing it, then do it.
Once you’ve been doing it for some time and you’ve got a track record, then you can make modifications.
Putting wings in front of the bird’s head doesn’t work. You might try to out-think the Creator on this truth. But you’ll only prove yourself foolish for trying.
Whenever you catch yourself being a SPITR, and virtually all of us do from time to time, remind yourself that you won’t learn much when you’re spitting. You’ll learn much more when you’re listening, asking, listening, asking and ultimately acting on what you discover.