By January 28, 2021

Why the SMARTEST Programmers FAIL at Life

I feel like software developers are very analytical and very skeptical in nature. And I want to talk about why a healthy sense of skepticism is good.

And because you are a software developer you may actually be limiting yourself by being too analytical which is preventing you from actually achieving the success that you want in life, ironically.

Transcript Of The Video

John Sonmez:  I feel like software developers are very analytical and very skeptical in nature. And I want to talk about why a healthy sense of skepticism is good, but why, because you are a software developer, because you're a programmer, you may actually be limiting yourself by being too analytical, to having too much of an engineering-focused mind, and being too skeptical, which is preventing you from actually achieving the success that you want in life, ironically.

If you guys are just joining me for the first time, I'm John from Yes, I am not your typical programmer. But this is not your typical programming channel because I teach you soft skills for software developers here, as I talk about in my book here, Soft Skills, Software Developer's Life Manual. You should check it out. It's available on Kindle now. I just republished this on my own here.

Anyway, go ahead and click the subscribe button if you haven't already, you will enjoy the content on this channel I believe, and the bell to get notifications of course. And yeah, let's get started here. Smash the like if you don't mind. I would appreciate that. That will really help me out with the YouTube algorithm because we got to do some things to feed the YouTube algorithm.

All right, here's what I want to talk about, and why I'm making this video. I hate to, Coffeezilla. But Coffeezilla, the dude drives me nuts. He really drives me nuts. And I tell you why he drives me nuts. Not because a lot of what he says isn't true. Some of the stuff that he exposes on that channel, I don't know if you've seen Coffeezilla, you can check it out.

I want to like him, but I also dislike very much the approach and the mindset that he has. But anyway, he's gotten very popular by basically exposing people, and showing how all these things are scams, and really promoting this sense of skepticism. It's gotten a lot of traction, especially among software developers. If you're a software developer, if you're watching this show, you probably know who Coffeezilla is because you're probably subscribed to his channel. Because, ooh, bad, the marketing gurus, and all these guys that are promising the secret, and the law of attraction, all this stuff.

Okay, now the reason I know this, and I say this is because look at me. I was a software developer for so many years, and I thought the same way. Coffeezilla just did a video on Think and Grow Rich. When I first picked up the book Think and Grow Rich, I literally read like the first three chapters of the book and then chucked it in the trash can. I was like, yeah, this is some drivel.

I had this sort of, oh gosh, how could you call it, a skeptical viewpoint. But not just skepticism, it borders on the line of one of the worst kind of human emotions I think, which is this cringe type of… I'm not thinking of what the word is. It's like I think I'm better than you. And it's sort of a feeling of superiority, of intellectual superiority.

Now this is very unhealthy. And I was part of this, as a software developer, it is rampant in this community. And it affects a lot of smart people, and it hurts smart people in a lot of ways. I'm in Mensa. And when I got into Mensa, at first I got the membership and whatever. I don't have the membership anymore, and I'll you why. I don't go to any meetings.

Because I went to a couple Mensa meetings, and it was some really genius-level people, who knew they were geniuses, and they spent their time playing Scrabble and chess, and talking about how dumb other people are, and showing how smart they are amongst each other, doing trivial logic puzzles and stuff that didn't actually make them money or make them successful in life.

So it's really interesting to watch the most smartest people. In fact, I do a lot of coaching. I coach a lot of guys. I coach a lot of guys that are really smart, that are software developers. And almost all of them have trouble with women, horrible trouble. Most of them really have horrible sex lives. They're just not able to be attractive to women or to handle these social situations.

And it's because they're smart. It's because they're analytical. And I don't want to go in the wrong direction with this video, but what I'm saying is this. This is the key thing that I'm trying to convey to you guys here. This is really, really important. What I learned about life is that it's more important to have effective beliefs than true beliefs.

If you're a cynic, if you're skeptical all the time, if you think that all this woo-woo BS is bullcrap, and people who believe this are… You are going to be like those Mensa people, who are so concerned with the truth, and how smart they are, and how much smarter they are than everyone else that they're not actually practically applying things to life. Because life is not all logic.

So for instance, again, going back to the dating thing. One of the reasons why you're not having success with dating is because you're trying to apply a logical analytical approach instead of just letting loose, and having fun, and being free. And you're judging people, and you're judging statements.

You have to let go of a lot of that and start to embrace some of the stuff that is outside of your comfort zone, that doesn't fit neatly into logic and [inaudible 00:05:07]. And believe me, as a programmer, I structure a lot of my life. I was just talking to one of my coaching [inaudible 00:05:13], a couple of them, about systems. System, system, systems.

I make rules. I use systems. I use the algorithms to define my day, and how I work on things, and all kinds of stuff like that. But I'm also this crazy guy who believes all this ridiculous nonsense. I believe a ton of ridiculous nonsense. I love Tony Robbins, a lot of what he says, not everything, but a lot of it. I read Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now. I teach all kinds of spiritual guru, nonsense BS.

But it's not. From a logical standpoint it is. But from actually transforming and practically living your life, it's not. And I'll tell you that again, going back to that book, Think and Grow Rich. When I chucked it in the trashcan… The reason why I picked up the book in the first place was because a bunch of successful people that were way more successful than me, multimillionaires, had recommended that book as one of the top books.

And I read it, or I started to try and read it. And I was just like, no. These guys must be idiots. And then I talked to more and more people as I started to become successful. And I realized that more and more of them will tell me about this book. So finally, I just said, you know what, maybe I'm the ignorant one.

And the thing about ignorance is that, when you're ignorant, you can't detect your own ignorance by virtue of it. When you're ignorant, wisdom seems like foolishness. When you're ignorant, there's no way of knowing that you're ignorant. There's no way you can detect it. Because it seems like other people are foolish when you're the one who's ignorant.

So I sort of developed this assumption in life where I said, if people are more successful than me, I'm going to assume that I'm the one who's ignorant, and they're not. It's a good place to start as opposed to assuming that they're ignorant. Because if you're ignorant, you can't detect it.

So by doing that, it opened me up to a bunch of different things. I went to a Tony Robbins' seminar, and I laughed. Oh gosh, when I got there, oh man, people dancing, and singing, and hugging each other. And like all of this. And I almost left. But one of the persons there that was on the staff, one of the coaches there, was like, “Just stick it out, just play full in, all in,” is what they call it. Play full out, or whatever they call it.

And he said, “You paid the money already. You can get a refund if you want. This money doesn't mean much. You're a successful guy. Just see. Just see what happens if you play full out.” And I did. And you know what? It changed my life. It dramatically changed my life. The personality, the guy that you see now, is in many ways a result of that. And a lot of the success that I've had in life and a lot of the happiness and fulfillment that I've enjoyed in life is because I did that.

What I'm saying is this. And I've got to run because I got to jump on another coaching call here. But look. I know that you're a software developer, I know you're analytical, and that's good. And having that engineering mind is great. You're maybe smarter than 90% of the people on earth. That's great.

But sometimes that can get in your way. Because when you think about things too analytically, when you're too skeptical, when you're so focused on what's true versus what's effective… I have a thing, I say have effective beliefs, not true beliefs. I know that sounds a little crazy. But you have to really think about what serves you in life. And when you start to make that shift, you're going to see a lot more success.

What I'm just trying to say to you is don't barricade, don't block yourself in, by making everything fit into your little analytical logical mind. Because I did that for a long time, and it didn't work out for me. It wouldn't allow me to get to the level that I've been able to get to now.

Now I've made millions of dollars, successful businesses, great relationships, a great life. I have been able to achieve a lot of things in life because I let go of that. I stopped requiring everything to fit into the logic that I developed in, and I stopped being so skeptical.

That's all I got to say about that. If you haven't already, check out, like I said, my book, Soft Skills, Software Developer's Life Manual. You can get it on Amazon, and I'll talk to you guys next time.

About the author

John Sonmez

John Sonmez is the founder of Simple Programmer and a life coach for software developers. He is the best selling author of the book "Soft Skills: The Software Developer's Life Manual."