It’s all about whether we believe you.
In my macroeconomics lecture this morning we spoke about austerity. It’s broadly accepted by top economists (Paul Krugman, Joseph Stiglitz etc) that in a time of recession it’s not smart to pull the plug on government spending. So why is it so prevalent? What’s the upside?
Turns out if people believe that it’s going to help in the medium run (to reduce the deficit, rebalance the economy etc.) then it can have a positive impact. The effect of people and businesses taking into account the expectation of how things could be outweighs the immediate negative implications… But it only works if there is faith in the institutions talking about enacting this kind of strategy.
It got me thinking that it’s the same for people. If you’re proven to be untrustworthy nobody will believe your bullshit. How many people do you know that wax lyrical about their new workout and exercise routine, how they’re going to ‘get huge this time, man’ or ‘train 7 times a week’? How many who say ‘Now I need to get serious and study every day’, then don’t? The next time they tell you they’ll do something, do you believe them – even if you’d like to?
You can build the faith of others around you by doing the right things every single day. You don’t need to do anything earth shattering right this second – it’s about incremental proof of your competence, your commitment to do as you say you will. This is important. Your actions have impact, and the effects of these will ripple out into the network of your friends, family, communities and countries. So let’s create a culture of competence, of strictly no bullshit, of doing what we say we will and delivering on our promises.