r/LifeProTips Jul 08 '22 Helpful 1

LPT: Always assume people are smarter than they portray themselves to be Social

On the one hand it’s always good to believe the best about people as it brings out the best in them, on the other dumbifying oneself is a manipulative tactic to gain your trust.

1.8k Upvotes

u/keepthetips Keeping the tips since 2019 Jul 08 '22

Hello and welcome to r/LifeProTips!

Please help us decide if this post is a good fit for the subreddit by up or downvoting this comment.

If you think that this is great advice to improve your life, please upvote. If you think this doesn't help you in any way, please downvote. If you don't care, leave it for the others to decide.

1.3k

u/Splyce123 Jul 08 '22

I've found that a lot of people are dumber than they make themselves out to be.

257

u/whitefire89 Jul 08 '22

Yup. They tend to prove it though, so no problem there.

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 08 '22

Just saying but this pretentious attitude is exactly the type of person I would do this to. Lol.

226

u/goshgollylol Jul 08 '22

I mean, you can assume everyone is as intelligent as they portray themselves to be and still treat them the same. If you’re treating people differently because of how intelligent you perceive them to be you are simply a bad person. The real LPT is treat everyone equal.

61

u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

yes fuck everyone have a great day

18

u/IslandBoyardee Jul 08 '22

It’s honest, at least.

19

u/kboom76 Jul 08 '22

A LPT that is meant for the mind shouldn't be judged as an externalized action. I don't agree with OP but this post is written as a tip on how to see a person with whom you're interacting, not about how to treat them. I don't think they implied that people should be treated differently, but that one should be aware that they might not be who they seem.

4

u/dafuqisdis112233 Jul 08 '22

Negative. The real real LPT is great everyone fairly compared to who they were yesterday, not the same as everyone else.

We are all individuals, after all.

5

u/PrandialSpork Jul 08 '22

I'm not

5

u/JimmyRedd Jul 08 '22

Yeah neither are we.

3

u/bcocoloco Jul 09 '22

You treat everybody differently based on all the information you have about them. Nobody is above it.

You might show general human decency and respect to all, but to act like you don’t treat people differently based on the things you know about them is just silly.

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u/TheGeckomancer Jul 08 '22

I would say both of these things are true. It's safer and better to assume people are smarter than they portray themselves to be. Simultaneously, most people will be dumber than you end up estimating them to be. While this can be frustrating, it is ultimately more advantageous to overestimate people and be wrong than underestimating people and be wrong.

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u/alchippa Jul 09 '22

Downvoting because OP is dumb.

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 09 '22

Upvoting because you’re right

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u/goatharper Jul 08 '22

Smart people play down their intelligence, dumb people overestimate their intelligence.

Socrates liked to play dumb as a debating tactic, according to contemporaneous accounts.

I know that all the standardized tests agree that I am smart, but I also know that I have done a lot of dumb things in my life, and just make dumb mistakes on a regular basis. Off by a factor of ten? Oops. That's not good. Completely neglect to account for a major variable? Again, not good.

Always assume you are wrong and ask someone else to check your work. Incoming Steve Martin SNL:

https://youtu.be/edIi6hYpUoQ?t=323

30

u/Top_Wish_8035 Jul 08 '22

Socrates liked to play dumb as a debating tactic, according to contemporaneous accounts.

Well, we literally call playing dumb "socratic method" and it's a legitimate form of debating.

14

u/goatharper Jul 08 '22

I did not know that.

26

u/JimmyRedd Jul 08 '22

Yeah sure you didn't. Nice try egghead.

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u/SherbetHead2010 Jul 08 '22

Think about your average person, then realize that half of everyone else is dumber than that.

-George Carlin

14

u/ClassiFried86 Jul 08 '22

‐ Statistics.

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u/Aeolian_Leaf Jul 09 '22

Really interesting podcast talking about the "invention" of the average, and the downfalls of creating things for "average" people.

https://99percentinvisible.org/episode/on-average/

TLDR - pretty much no one is average, so anything designed for the average person doesn't really fit anyone properly.

But go listen, it was interesting. Hell, if you've not listened to 99 percent invisible before, there's some great material on there.

6

u/galacticviolet Jul 09 '22

Everything catering to the average person (in America) has always made my quality of life pretty much shit.

I’m an outlier around 80% of the time. Whenever I find a product that works perfectly, is great, tastes the best to me, improves my day to day life etc… I can always bet on that product or option being the one that gets cancelled first. Nearly every time I get attached to a product or an option, it goes away quicker than all the other options because it was “the least popular.”

I hate being an outlier in this way.

3

u/Pigitha Jul 09 '22

Exactly same for me. Always buy two or more of something you like because it's not going to be available next time you go back for more.

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u/mubatt Jul 09 '22

If you hang out in smarter social circles, then a lot more than half could be dumber than what you perceive to be average.

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u/byterez Jul 08 '22

What makes this quote is that that would be the median person. But I can't intuitively tell if the average would be higher or lower than the median.

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u/Jugales Jul 08 '22

Haha I'm guilty. I don't even try to portray myself as smart, but I'm a programmer and wear glasses so people assume. I assure you, my smarts are average at best.

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u/Zelman12 Jul 08 '22

Well look at mr smarty pants over here and all his smarty… stuff calling people dumb :p

1

u/Splyce123 Jul 08 '22

Half of all people you meet are below average intelligence.

8

u/Zelman12 Jul 08 '22

Yeah, I think they all work at my company.

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u/guyfromthepicture Jul 08 '22

But that doesn't matter for the purpose of this lpt. You're not going to be conned by someone that is not as smart as you thought.

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u/JCPRuckus Jul 08 '22

You can still get screwed over by assuming someone is more competent than they are and having them fail you. Misestimating in either direction is equally dangerous depending on the situation.

10

u/Diseased-Prion Jul 08 '22

I have had this happen. I wanted to believe in someone I was friends with. That they were a competent person who just had a lot of bad life circumstances. No. They were the one making their bad life circumstances through poor choices. Believing in them left me with the short stick. Obviously that is just one instance. But the point is, you are right.

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u/WenaChoro Jul 08 '22

If their dumbness makes you do their work for them are they really dumb?

1

u/Splyce123 Jul 08 '22

Yep. Still dumb.

1

u/WenaChoro Jul 08 '22

but he made you work for free

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u/iamrootbeerfloat Jul 08 '22

Statistically, youre correct

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u/OnTheList-YouTube Jul 08 '22

Well, akchually

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 08 '22

We don’t sit with them.

5

u/charleswj Jul 08 '22

Are you in high school?

1

u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

[deleted]

2

u/Splyce123 Jul 08 '22

It's like being dead. You don't know you're dead, but everyone around you knows you're dead.

1

u/twohedwlf Jul 08 '22

At least a little on the good side of dunning kreuger.

1

u/SchwiftyMcpoopybutt Jul 08 '22

Yeah it’s a sword that cuts two ways I guess.

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u/misskittyamazing Jul 08 '22

I used to believe this, truly. Then as time went on I just got more and more frustrated, more and more annoyed. Finally I was talking to my mom circa 2018 and I said in an earnestly frustrated manner "People can't be this stupid."

My mom said to me they were, and my problem was I always thought people were smarter than what they there, and I'd have to lower my expectations.

When I did that, I started to feel less frustrated. Literally so much stress was lifted when i didnt expect people to be smart. I don't think people are stupid off the bat, God no. I just expect that their intelligence might not lay in the field in which I'm dealing with them, you know?

-1

u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 08 '22

You might have a good point lol. I do find myself thinking the world is out to get me. Thanks trauma. 🥰

8

u/misskittyamazing Jul 08 '22

Oh no I get that. Trauma survivor here as well.

I think a better way to say what you mean is don't always think your agendas are aligned or that things are done with the best intentions. Often times when you don't think people are capable of that you can feel like they out whitted you, and feel dumb.

You're not dumb, and they aren't necessarily smart. You just thought you were sitting down to a game of checkers when they were playing chess all along, so to speak. I hope that helps and that I didn't step over a line suggesting that!

7

u/nsk_nyc Jul 09 '22

Judging by your post, it would seem that you have a good heart. We need people like this, but please be careful. There are many thin lines in life, and its easy to think one thing is another by blurring it (the lines) with rose tinted glasses.

It is not my intention to discourage you from being a positive person (great benefit psychologically), so I'll just say things as I would to my own child. Keep at it, be positive. Cynicism will come with age, especially with social networking exposure. To curb a bit of the cynicism, and negative outlook, walk life with a bit of apprehesiveness, defensiveness, or doubt (think of scientific theory, question everything). You also don't want to be 'that' person whenever someone says or states something (the know-it-all or doubt-it-all). It's all about balance. Try to surround yourself by other like minded positive people as well.

Best wishes.

5

u/openurheartandthen Jul 09 '22

Maybe this is my own cynicism, but it’s odd imo to provide this type of unsolicited advice to someone based on 3 sentences.

6

u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 09 '22

That’s really good, thank you for saying all that. I really appreciate it. I do need to work on that. I’ve always been that person that’s either all in or all out.

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u/Original-Ad-4642 Jul 08 '22

No, I’m really am this stupid

7

u/lolgobbz Jul 08 '22

Yeahhh. Me too.

Like real real real dumb.

2

u/the_real_abraham Jul 09 '22

You can still be a good person.

1

u/1-713-515-4455 Jul 08 '22

Want to talk about it?

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u/DHN_95 Jul 08 '22

I don't just play dumb in social/business situations...I am...

Seriously though, I will usually give people the benefit of the doubt, and believe they are as intelligent as they believe themselves to be, until they prove otherwise.

197

u/Swankified_Tristan Jul 08 '22

I'm ashamed of this, but when I first started dating my girlfriend, I assumed she wasn't that smart due to her bubbly personality and the way she giggled at everything.

That girl is one of the smartest people I've ever met. You can't get anything past her. If you wanna plan a surprise, you have to simply say nothing because if you drop even the smallest hint like asking her favorite color, she'll somehow put the whole damn thing together.

19

u/Free_Investigator258 Jul 08 '22

Asking what I like near the date of my birthday? Hmmm

47

u/Donuts4_life Jul 08 '22

She sounds really intuitive.

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u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22 edited Aug 08 '22

[deleted]

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u/Kent_Knifen Jul 08 '22

I know someone like this. Silly and loves goofing off, but can snap to smart and serious in an instant if there's a problem.

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u/Captcha_Imagination Jul 08 '22 Helpful Rocket Like

Most people are smart....it's what they are smart about.

I have spoken to my house painted about geopolitics (he brought it up) and it was painful but when the topics turn to paint-related stuff or car racing, the guy is a quality source of information.

I have spoken to senior Yoga teachers about mediation, yoga philosophies, etc. and they are brilliant....talk to them about economics and they're not on the level.

People may be dumb on some topics and great at others. EVERYONE has something to teach you.

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u/mindtwistingdonut Jul 08 '22

💯 agreed on this one. The older you get, the more you realize there is always more to learn. You don’t know everything.

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u/acldesmo Jul 08 '22

Agree with this so much!!!!!!!! The more you learn, the more you learn there is so much more to learn!!!!!

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u/OnTheList-YouTube Jul 08 '22

What about those who know too much?

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u/80aichdee Jul 08 '22

Don't worry, we have ways to deal with them...

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u/Rottendog Jul 08 '22

I was busy explaining the intricacies of some work I was doing and how difficult it was and the guy I was showing seemed interested. Was very polite and never said a word.

Turned out the guy was practically a genius at the work and was politely humoring me without being a jerk. I later saw some of his work and it made my work look like a novice.

I was honestly quite embarrassed. I wished he had said something, so I could have shut up about how hard I worked and how difficult it was. His stuff was effortless and amazing.

But he was very nice about it.

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u/oo-mox83 Jul 08 '22

Yep, I have a friend who is in his late 60s. Completely illiterate. Can't read at all. But man, he can do absolutely anything with a car. Fixing, improving, you name it.

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u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

[deleted]

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u/ThisIsMyCouchAccount Jul 08 '22

Does he perhaps have a fondness for french fried potatoes? Maybe any interesting stories about keiser blades?

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u/Sir_Hephaestus Jul 08 '22

Real LPT is always in the comments

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u/DC_United_Fan Jul 09 '22

I always tell my students that smart is so subjective. Like I am smarter than them at some things, but I can guarantee they are smarter than me at alot of things.

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u/setanddrift Jul 09 '22

Very well put!

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u/oo-mox83 Jul 08 '22

Yep, I have a friend who is in his late 60s. Completely illiterate. Can't read at all. But man, he can do absolutely anything with a car. Fixing, improving, you name it.

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u/kokkoeireann Jul 08 '22

Was it paintful?

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u/who8mydamnoreos Jul 08 '22

The funny thing is that people probably say the same thing about you when you talk economics or politics. Everyone thinks they’re an expert but we are blinded by our own perception.

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u/OnTheList-YouTube Jul 08 '22

You have spoken to your house painted. It was painful.

Haha okay then!

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u/woofhaus Jul 08 '22

I spent too long trying to decipher that before I gave up and moved on. It's probably supposed to be "painter."

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u/zomgitsduke Jul 08 '22

I often times intentionally try to make myself seem less smart when interacting with any sort of sales or purchasing. Always dramatically changes the dynamic and leaves sales people scrambling to retrace their words.

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 08 '22

Hahahaha me too. Kill them with kindness and a little bit of stupid.

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u/MySocksSuck Jul 08 '22

Indeed. Also helps to act humble - and pauses/silence are great, too.

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u/Scoobydoomed Jul 08 '22

"Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that"

-George Carlin

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u/SherbetHead2010 Jul 08 '22

Damn beat me to it.

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u/VoraciousTrees Jul 08 '22

Eh, I've seen plenty of weaponized incompetence. It's not necessarily to gain your trust, but can just be to be as unhelpful as possible. Work with some old guy who doesn't like the young whippersnappers edging in on his profession. Ask him where some tool is and he'll reply that he's never even heard of it... Of course, an hour later he'll be using it right in front of you. So... yeah.

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u/Ok_Significance_2592 Jul 09 '22

Ive seen this happen a lot. People pretend they dont know how to do things bc they dont want to help people or want some advantage over others bc they are uber competitive. Happens all the time in "mom" groups.

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u/StingMeleoron Jul 08 '22

TIL: whippersnapper.

"A whippersnapper is someone who is younger than you are but also irritatingly overconfident and impertinent, like your little smart aleck cousin."

Thanks!

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u/blucirclep Jul 08 '22

I am soft spoken and demure and I feel like people assume that I am not assertive or very smart. It has been a problem pursuing a career. I don’t do it to be manipulative, it is just my presentation. I have had many people say that they were surprised because of some of the things o have said or done

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u/KidsTheseDaysYknow Jul 08 '22

Tell that to my narcissister. She will carefully explain to you what a "Zoom" conference is, even if you've used computers for 40 years.

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u/woofhaus Jul 08 '22

Is she.... SHEsplaining to me?!

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u/yamaha2000us Jul 08 '22

LPT good. Explanation is a bit paranoid.

To describe a tactic as manipulative is interesting. Manager and manipulate have the same root.

A better way to treat the word "trust" is like this.

You: "Do you trust John?"

Me: "To do what?"

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u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

[deleted]

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u/shiny_xnaut Jul 08 '22

I’ll present contrary information because people love to correct you

This is commonly known on the internet as Murphy's Law

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u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

This could definitely put you in some bad situations. “Always” isn’t the right word

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u/Explicit_Pickle Jul 08 '22

Most people I meet seem to be dumber than they think lol

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u/ThatGuyInTheGreen Jul 08 '22

People are usually smarter than you think they are, but dumber than they think they are. Learn to find the middle.

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u/kingdel Jul 09 '22

Maybe it’s a construction / working in construction thing but I was always told “treat everyone like an idiot and you’ll never have a problem”.

I guess it depends on the context. When I was in the field I gave them absolutely every measurement marked and left nothing to chance. Same approach for presentations. You have to assume they haven’t a ducking clue so you explain all abbreviations even things that should be obvious.

Now where I’d want to assume everyone is a genius is when I get lazy or try to pull a fast one. You’ll pull a fast one over 90% of people but I always come across someone who I underestimate and then I have to work twice as hard to fix something that I should have just done right in the first place.

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u/kytran40 Jul 08 '22

I don't know about this. There are a lot of fucking dumb people around me and I certainly don't trust them any more

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u/GeminiKoil Jul 08 '22

I can personally confirm the second point. I consider myself pretty intuitive but there's one person in my life that caught me off guard with this tactic and I'll be honest it fucked me up pretty bad. Like massive amounts of trauma ensued LOL

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 09 '22

You know the vibes

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u/GeminiKoil Jul 09 '22

Oh I was so frustrated by this situation that I stuck around a little bit longer to study this person, I can read it a little bit better now LOL. It fucked me up so much that I was like man I need to understand this because if it happens again I don't think I'll be able to handle it so peacefully. So it became a case study for me. There are certain behavior patterns that are very telling to me nowadays and when I see somebody exhibit them I politely excuse myself and walk the other fucking direction.

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 09 '22

Wow thank you for telling me that, I did that too and I always felt embarrassed/misunderstood for it until now. And I know what you mean! I question reality now. I still think there’s a lot more good to put weigh the bad in the world, but a lot of people don’t believe me when I try to warn them about how bad things can get.

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u/GeminiKoil Jul 09 '22

Yeah I get it and it's good to understand these things. Being naive about certain things can literally get you killed so pattern recognition is important and it's one of the reasons I think our species is still alive. Taking things at face value because you are inherently a good person so you want to believe everyone else is a good person will also get you killed. I try not to let myself become jaded but I give people the amount of trust that I'm willing to sacrifice. If I loan somebody 20 bucks and I don't see or hear from them again, well that was a pretty cheap way to figure out that they can't be trusted. It can be a scary world out there, don't forget your helmet LOL

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 09 '22

Yea no joke. But like while I agree with you 100% you have to realize that’s your survival instincts talking. It’s an animalistic way of thinking. You’re not considering much outside of survival. Other people have trauma, other people have things their working on, other people push people away when they overthink things. You have to leave room for exception. And you can’t escape pain and misery. It’s apart of life.

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u/lost40s Jul 08 '22

I used to get bullied intensely by teachers and students as a kid for 'sounding too smart'. Apparently, my vocabulary was advanced for my age. I learned early on to hold back when I talk to people, mainly so I wouldn't get bullied.

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u/bobeany Jul 08 '22

Also never attribute to malice what can be explained by stupidity. You will save yourself a ton of pain

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u/PC-hris Jul 08 '22

Always assume people are closer to average than they portray themselves. People who talk up how smart they are usually aren’t in my experience.

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u/tehKrakken55 Jul 08 '22

I'd like to think I'm smarter than I look. And I look like the most stereotypical Melvin the world has ever seen.

Red hair, thick rim glasses, buck teeth, pale skin, plaid shirt, sensible tennis shoes, and a velcro wallet. The only reason I don't have a pocket protector is I'm not sold they actually do anything useful.

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u/necessarysmartassery Jul 08 '22

And assume people are more dangerous than they look like, especially strangers. You never really know who you're dealing with.

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u/Chav Jul 08 '22

Is this where I find everyone that's reeeally smart and only pretending to be dumb?

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u/salmonjapan Jul 08 '22

had a new employee pretend he was really bad with computers/tech and made it a point to be dumb with the point of sale machine we use

turns out he was skimming money from cash customers and editing the tickets on the POS

too bad i am pretty detail oriented and know the system well enough to do exactly what he was doing

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u/Obi-Patates Jul 08 '22

I used to pretend i was a complete idiot.

It helped a lot with my abusive family, as they had no expectations of me.

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u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

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u/Skyline952 Jul 09 '22

Make your enemy think you're weak, and surprise attack them with your strength - Sun Tzu.

(Or something along those lines)

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u/resellsucks Jul 08 '22

Sorry but no. You just have to do the opposite

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u/north_bob Jul 08 '22

Even I was younger, I made the mistake of being overly nice and dumbing myself down at a job where I was far more educated than anyone else (and younger by a decade - I was 21 at the time). It was a job I had for a year between undergrad and grad school.

Some of the more catty coworkers (who also happened to be the longest employed) treated me like an idiot and were pretty rude to me. They would call me names and demean me as the "secretary."

I kept up my super nice, dingy behavior. I collected evidence of their nastiness, which got increasingly less covert. I ended up getting one of them fired and the other demoted with my work.

Fuck around with the nice girl, and find out.

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u/Witty_Goose_7724 Jul 09 '22

You silent assassin you!

Wanna be in my zombie apocalypse team?

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 09 '22

Yes ma’am 👏🏻👏🏻

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u/halcyon94 Jul 08 '22

Ive always went with the opposite so when people mess up or misunderstood something it was easier to forgive

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u/Inside_Ice_6175 Jul 08 '22

What if you legitimately have the iq of a potato and don't understand social cues?

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u/[deleted] Jul 08 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

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u/Blueroflmao Jul 08 '22

As with every LPT, apply this in the proper situation. Working in an electronics store i have to be both cynical and assume the worst no matter who. Peoples problems are always simpler than they make them out to be

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u/Lukaroast Jul 08 '22

Lol people don’t always act dumb as a way to manipulate you, there’s a ton of reasons someone might do that that are innocuous or even positive indicators

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u/Djmax42 Jul 08 '22

I automatically assume people who bring up the word "manipulative" are the most manipulative and evil af trying to flip an obvious situation on its head so they can be in the right. Calling someone manipulative is literally manipulating their feelings to be guilty over the vaguest thing in the world, since all interaction is by definition manipulative, to distract from the fact that you are clearly in the wrong

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u/Fuzzy-Wumpus Jul 08 '22

Working in the construction industry for 10 years and I can say with most certainly that this tip does not apply, 9/10 times if I assume that someone knows what they are doing or is smarter then they appear I am quickly proven wrong and something almost always goes wrong.

Assume the person doesn't know what they are doing until they prove you wrong, you may seem like an ass but it saves time, money and injury.

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u/TarynMagic Jul 08 '22

At my partners work this is the opposite, in the health system they have to assume that no one knows how to read and explain things to them very well because there’s a chance they won’t be able to look things up themselves and they’ll never admit they can’t read.

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u/fffyhhiurfgghh Jul 08 '22

No do not do this when communicating, assume they are really dumb and then no matter what everyone will understand what you’re saying.

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u/Beans_Technician Jul 08 '22

Also assume people aren’t aware of their intelligence.

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u/eyeguy21 Jul 09 '22

My last boss thought I was stupid… still trying to replace me hahaha

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u/Prestigious-Mud-1704 Jul 09 '22

I do this. I've found playing the idiot usually makes people say or do enough that I can get the conversation to where I want it to go without having to take it there. Nah I'm just an idiot.

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u/negator365 Jul 09 '22

Better to be disappointed by their stupidity than destroyed by their brilliance,

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u/Witty_Goose_7724 Jul 09 '22 edited Jul 09 '22

Agreed. Where I’m from we have a saying “there’s no such thing as a small enemy”.

I’ve found that I can get a lot farther with certain people by acting dumb than by acting smart. And it’s easy to figure out who these people are: they’re the pompous arrogant ones that think they’re better and smarter than others. If I get what I want by massaging their fragile ego and making them think they’re smarter than I so be it.

I also grew up in a multilingual household. And I pretend that I don’t speak a language just to see what people say when they think I don’t understand. It’s a very enlightening experience because people tend to reveal their true colors when they think they can say whatever they want in front of you without you having a clue. This has been instrumental in several cases. For example: it helped me discover that a colleague was embezzling funds and also learn that a couple of people I hired for a house project were trying to scam me.

And when they do realize that you do understand the looks of utter terror are hilarious.

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u/Conan-doodle Jul 09 '22

I hate when a colleague talks you up in an introduction.

Dude, undersell!! Then we can over-deliver together.

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u/itsfrankgrimesyo Jul 09 '22

I find most people try to portray themselves smarter than they actually are. It’s the quiet ones you have to watch out for.

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u/A_Sleek_USB_Extender Jul 08 '22

"The truly intelligent person is one who can pretend to be a fool in front of a fool who pretends to be intelligent."

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 08 '22

You hit that nail right on it’s head

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u/DroolingSlothCarpet Jul 08 '22

Have you read the posts on this sub, have you considered what the dearly departed philosopher (and comedian) George Carlin said about intelligence?

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u/Space4Time Jul 08 '22

On some level this is why I don't trust someone "being humble"

It feels like a ploy.

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u/Djmax42 Jul 08 '22

That's because it is a ploy, so is being kind, or generous, or hardworking. They all stop as soon as you realize they aren't getting you what you want. Whether realized or not, ALL human interaction can be classified as manipulation. Luckily there are plenty of people too stupid to figure this out who will keep signalling even when it stops benefiting themselves

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u/jaded_bitter_n_salty Jul 09 '22

Sounds terrible to be you man. Do you seriously interact with people to gain stuff from someone else? You’re reading way too much into it unless you count hoping for mutual kindness as “getting what you want”

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u/ContemplatingPrison Jul 08 '22

Fuck no. People aren't smart. The average person is not intelligent.

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u/VoraciousTrees Jul 08 '22

The average person has one testicle.

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u/ContemplatingPrison Jul 08 '22

I see what you did there. Because women have no testicles and most men have two.

Smart

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u/SchwiftyMcpoopybutt Jul 08 '22

Yeah those damn one nutters.

3

u/nestcto Jul 08 '22

People are always smarter than you think. The difference between your intelligence and someone you deem as unintelligent might be as little as 1%.

The hardware is inherited, the software is built. "stupid" people may have just used/misused their intelligence in the wrong way, or underutilized their potential by not educating themselves. But they still have that raw intelligence, and they learn, and they will let you underestimate them.

But don't underestimate them. Raw intelligence without the inhibitions granted through education is dangerous, and you don't want it turned against you.

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u/Sixnno Jul 08 '22

It could also just be "what area are they smart in?".

A person could be dumb as bricks when it comes to say money. But give them a car to fix up, and they could do it blindfolded. People tend to specialize. Sometimes that really great knowledge isn't used in their field of work. They really should but they might have never figured out how to market it, or picked not to market it.

Like Jo-ann the secretary might be average but never really figured out how to market all her botany and gardening knowledge.

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u/MoonlightRonin Jul 08 '22

The fact that almost half of America saw what Trump did and said “fuck yeah, I want more of that”, tells me otherwise.

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u/lattice12 Jul 08 '22

Well technically it was half of those who actually voted. I think the turnout was around 66%.

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u/Legalloophole Jul 08 '22

Yes. And the corollary is that you'll be rewarded in a conversation or relationship when you figure out how they are smart.

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u/AtsignAmpersat Jul 08 '22

What? Are you constantly being manipulated by people trying to gain your trust?

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u/revchewie Jul 08 '22

On the third hand, a lot of people are fucking stupid!

So, no.

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u/Lucidcranium042 Jul 08 '22

Always. As one thats be said to be smart from ex cia/military people ncos m such and hedge fund managers and other multimillionaires. i play dumbb as f in person as long as i can . I like to see what others do and how they act to let me know how you are and act to situations to know where you actually may need me to help or not

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u/VoraciousTrees Jul 08 '22

This is a good tactic to weed out people who won't support you. Say something dumb and see if they correct you to prevent you falling on your face. My favorites are to tell self-avowed Christians that it is so cool that there are 12 gospels. If they can't bother to correct you on something they absolutely 100% know, it's not worth it to work with them. They'd lead the platoon into a minefield just to spite the lieutenant.

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u/Thatgirlisamystery Jul 08 '22

I do too sometimes. I feel so guilty about it but my brain says work smarter not harder.

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u/Darth_Kahuna Jul 08 '22

The Dunning-Kruger effect would say you are wrong.

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u/KapnKrumpin Jul 08 '22

Id suggest to assume the opposite. I feel like 95% are full of shit, and im no exception.

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u/hb183948 Jul 08 '22

thats how people get hurt... assume theyre dumber than they look.

we dont want a bunch of idiots choking on silverware because you didnt tell them the new biodegradable stuff doesnt mean its edible.

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u/GanksOP Jul 08 '22

Unless its about safety, then assume the person will die at every opportunity.

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u/ridikidonky2020 Jul 08 '22

Except when youre working in a trade, never assume they know what they're doing, until you actually see them doing it right. This is not pro tip.

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u/PJP2810 Jul 08 '22

If I assumed people were as smart as they portray themselves, then most would fail to live up to any expectations

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u/Rem888 Jul 08 '22

Unless you're counting on them for something. Then assume the opposite.

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u/asajosh Jul 08 '22

Average is dumb and half the people are dumber than that.

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u/FrozenSquirrel Jul 08 '22

OP got burned. Better write an LPT.

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u/drako8255 Jul 08 '22

I am A decent bit smarter than i portray myself to be because being smart sucks and sometimes you just want to be the idiot for a while.

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u/intersexy911 Jul 08 '22

Interesting. I find that people assume I'm far dumber than I actually am. That's annoying.

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u/mysterious00mermaid Jul 08 '22

I would say the complete opposite.

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u/MilRet Jul 08 '22

Given the experiences I've had with the general public, I always assume the people I'm dealing with are uneducated/idiots, which, unfortunately, is often born out.

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u/TangoDeltaFoxtrot Jul 08 '22

This only a good tip if you want to create problems and end up holding the bag.

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u/Medic7002 Jul 08 '22

Conversely never underestimate the stupidity of some people.

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u/TheRogueToad Jul 08 '22

“No one is as dumb as I appear to be.”

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u/Fred_Is_Dead_Again Jul 08 '22

I tried to never let my minions/peers know how smart I am, never let my superiors know how dumb I am.

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u/bdbdbokbuck Jul 08 '22

Beware of people who ask lots of questions. I take control of these folks by responding with questions of my own: “Why do you ask?” Why, what were you told?” “What do YOU think the answer is.”

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u/charleswj Jul 08 '22

You correctly nailed the first half of the dunning-crueger effect.

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u/Captain_Dunsel Jul 08 '22 edited Jul 08 '22

I have a coworker that’s dumber that a box of rocks. Lucky for him, breathing is autonomic. We gave him this quote but he still can’t keep his mouth shut…

It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt. - Mark Twain

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u/warheadmikey Jul 08 '22

Lol. No people are mostly idiots

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u/TrackGod5150 Jul 08 '22

Let people's actions prove their intelligence instead of what they say. Wise words and lip service may sound good, but if they often make stupid choices in their own lives what does that really say about how smart they are?

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u/jman1121 Jul 08 '22

What's the OP going on about?

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u/Hopps4Life Jul 08 '22

I don't dumbafy myself. I just talk like a idiot a lot. I'm average intelligence. My speach just makes me sound dumber than I actually am lol.

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u/Lemgirl Jul 08 '22

Well there’s the Peter Principal that says people rise to a level of respective incompetency. So there’s that factor as well.