The Laundry Cycle Theory, Illusory Truth Effect, & More
Today at a Glance
- Question: The Illusory Truth Effect.
- Quote: Create wonder.
- Framework: The Laundry Cycle Theory.
- Tweet: Exceptional interview advice.
- Article: Jerry Seinfeld interview.
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Question we all need to ask ourselves:
What lie have I repeated to myself so many times that it feels like the truth?
There is a concept in cognitive science called the Illusory Truth Effect:
It is the tendency to believe false information after consistent, repeated exposures. In other words, if you are told a lie over and over again, it takes in your mind as a truth.
It's particularly damning when that lie is a lie you tell yourself.
We all have an internal dialogue that runs 24/7 (or close to it). The quality of that internal dialogue has a real, tangible impact on our interaction with the external world.
- If you tell yourself over and over again that you aren't capable of something, you will believe it to be true. You won't try.
- If you tell yourself over and over again that you aren't worthy of something, you will believe it to be true. You won't reach for it.
- If you tell yourself over and over again that you are a static entity, you will believe it to be true. You won't attempt to grow.
Take notice of your internal dialogue: What lie have you been repeating to yourself?
Recognize it. Fight back.
"Watch your thoughts, they become your words; watch your words, they become your actions; watch your actions, they become your habits; watch your habits, they become your character; watch your character, it becomes your destiny." ― Lao Tzu
Quote on creating something wonderful:
"Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn't matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we've done something wonderful, that's what matters to me." - Steve Jobs
You get one life. One chance. One go. Why not create something wonderful?
An idea I can't stop thinking about:
The Laundry Cycle Theory
On a recent episode of The Mel Robbins Podcast, there was a powerful interaction that changed the way I think about many areas of life:
Mel: I'm probably not the only person that looks at a pile of laundry and I see it as evidence there's something wrong with me that I can't get the laundry done.
KC Davis: We're used to going, is the laundry done or is it not done? Your laundry exists in a cycle. You have clothes that are clean in the closet. You have clothes that are on your body. You have clothes that are dirty on the floor. you have clothes that are dirty in the hamper...That's a cycle. It's ok for any of it to be in that cycle.
We all have a tendency to view our lives in black-and-white, binary terms:
- The work is either complete or incomplete.
- The workout is either done or skipped.
- The habit is either hit or missed.
But most of the time, this type of binary thinking places a lot of pressure on us that leads to more harm than good.
What if we viewed more of our life as existing in a cycle? Something that flows constantly.
You will always have some things that are done, some things that are soon to be done, and some things that are waiting to be done. That flow is constant.
Author Oliver Burkeman once offered the advice to treat your "to-read pile" like a river rather than a bucket. In other words, it flows past, rather than building up. The build is what causes stress and anxiety, whereas the river flows with or without our influence.
My advice: Think about the areas of your life where you are placing unnecessary pressure on yourself to have everything in a "completed" state. Perhaps that area is better viewed as a river than as a bucket—as a cycle, not a fixed state.
Tweet thread of interview advice:
This was an excellent thread of actionable, non-obvious interview advice. The point on crafting a clear career narrative is easily overlooked but incredibly important.
Must read for anyone looking to make a career change and hit the interview trail this year.
Short interview with a creative genius:
This is a very short interview with one of my favorite creative geniuses.
Is has two particularly incredible quotes:
- On whether there was a more efficient process for his show: "If you’re efficient, you’re doing it the wrong way. The right way is the hard way. The show was successful because I micromanaged it—every word, every line, every take, every edit, every casting. That’s my way of life."
- On the nature of innovation: "It’s very important to know what you don’t like. A big part of innovation is saying, 'You know what I’m really sick of?'...'What am I really sick of?' is where innovation begins."
Definitely worth your time.