My Credibility

A question I often ask myself is, ‘What makes my words true and valuable to potential readers?’  From where does credibility derive?  How is it earned?

The pillar of greatest credibility for most blogs is social proof.  If enough people follow a blog, it must have value.  But for a fledgling writer, this presents a daunting Catch-22.  I need readers to establish myself.  I need to be established to earn readers.

To keep from crumbling in futility, I have to define a higher form of credibility: expertise.

We trust mechanics, plumbers, and electricians because they know what they’re doing.  They understand and dutifully apply the principles of their trades.  Every engine runs on universal principles of mechanics.  Every pipe clogs for the same reasons.  Every wire conducts electricity with perfect predictability.

What expertise really derives from, though, is objectivity: an unbiased knowledge of how a system functions.  We don’t trust tradesmen for their wisdom.  They are not hailed as gurus.  Just knowledgeable.

So who do we trust for matters of the psyche; for navigating the waters of human experience?  Psychologists for one (popular bloggers for two).  Psychologists have studied the functions of the human mind and can presumably diagnose a problem.

But psychology is so often regarded as a soft-science lacking strict measurable criteria.  It is mired in interpretations based on flimsy experiments.  Psychology applied to an individual may be useful, but it wallows when applied in a general sense.

How can resolute conclusions possibly be extracted given the unfathomably vast nuance of human behavior?  Every human mind is not alike, like every length of copper wire is.  A human mind cannot be disassembled like an engine.  How then can truth be drawn from this tangle?

There does exist a science that straddles the line between objective effect and subjective experience: neuroscience, the study of the structures and functions of the nervous system and the brain.  Since every aspect of all our experiences flows through the nervous system, this is a prime area to focus on when considering improvements on life.

And it holds value in truth.

Truth of the highest quality.  Truth entrusted every time a seat belt is clicked: That the tensile strength of the nylon strap and metal buckle has been tried and tested and works every time.  Truth entrusted every time a plane takes off: That the principles of aerodynamics will keep the plane aloft.  Truth entrusted tacitly, thousands of times a day, by everyone.

Everyday, everywhere we trust buildings not to collapse.  We trust computers to operate, phones to connect, cars to convert chemical energy into motion, farms to produce food.  We trust chairs to support our weight, cups to hold water, sunglasses to filter light.  Important or trivial, the list of objective truths on which we all rely, day in and day out, is endless.

But then we turn to hoary mysticism and fallible intuition to guide our efforts for leading an enriching life?  This is an unacceptable blunder.

Assertions regarding the self and internal experience have long been solely presided over by religion and other intuitive based institutions.  In the past, science has failed to give answers to meaningful questions about the nature of experience.  So it has been relegated as effete, impotent, and useless in making such claims.

But in recent decades science has gleaned new insights into the makeup of the human brain.  It has discovered compositional realities that imply experiential ones.  And by applying those realities to my life, and to my understanding of the world, I have found an abundance of confidence, self-esteem, wisdom, acceptance, understanding and empowerment.

So it is from that objective belief system that I derive my credibility.  I do not invoke mysticism or the supernatural to support my claims.  I do not cite ancient texts, or build logic upon the presumed wisdom of ancient civilizations.  I attempt to adhere all my claims to the rigors of objective truth.

With that objective orientation set, I traveled the world for years applying theory to reality.  The stories I tell and the lessons I’ve learned are simple testaments to the real-world usefulness of adopting a few little-known truths.

If I’d met with conflict and frustration I wouldn’t be writing these words now.  But I’ve soared on this paradigm, and would wish anyone a similar feeling.

Thank you for reading.

-C

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