I’m Drowning in Mumbo-Jumbo Manure

Let’s start with an email I received this week.  Read it and let me know your thoughts:

  • fi yuo cna raed tihs, yuo hvae a sgtrane mnid too. Cna yuo raed tihs? Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can. i cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno’t mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig hu h? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt ! if y ou can raed tihs forwrad it.

It claims Cambridge University researchers say I can understand the above mumbo-jumbo.  Can YOU understand it?  It should be interesting how Odiogo pronounces the words.

An expert revamps Maslow’s Chart

Speaking of mumbo-jumbo, someone recently revamped Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.  They sifted it from two to three dimensions.  They pressed me for weeks on my psychological opinion of it.  Mind you – this person’s not trained in psychology – just a highly charged, motivational speaker.  More mumbo jumbo in my reply:

Here are my thoughts and concerns.  First let’s refer to Maslow’s original theory and explanation from Wiki at http://alturl.com/i9zo:

From top to bottom, he has:

  1. Self-actualization
  2. Esteem
  3. Love/Belonging
  4. Safety
  5. Psychological

Most of his concepts were based upon clinical observations of clients over the years (same as Freud, Jung, etc.).  Other supporting evidence were psychological experiments conducted by followers, and quantified with statistical methodology.

In your model, self-actualization is still at the top.  I can neither agree nor disagree with your other categories, as “I don’t have enough supporting evidence to justify a conclusion.”  You need to explain on this model and convince the readers why it is correct.

  1. You can share data from clinical observation (or have professional friends share it).
  2. You can share scientific experimental data, like that of experimental psychology, and quantify it via statistical methodology.
  3. You can argue for your model, using arguments similar to famous philosophers.

The only “other” way I can by into a multidimensional model, is introducing subcategories within the original 5-stage model of Maslow.

I’m not saying I agree or disagree with it.  I’m expressing concerns, as indicated via this email.

Moving back to last week

Last week I dialogued with a professional marketer, along with a professional blogger, as to what constitutes a social media specialist?  It got me thinking about what makes a writer ‘great’.  I’ll share part of this dialogue:

You hit on a key point in it’s about relationships and worthwhile content. A while back I did a book review for Steve Pavlina at http://www.stevepavlina.com/. Steve writes many articles on personal growth and he claims his website gets about 2 million hits a years (it’s easy to verify via services like Alexa). If he wasn’t providing valuable content and developing relationships, no one would visit him.

Reflecting upon the word “specialist” is like reflecting upon the word “great” for writers. What makes a great writer? This could be argued in a few different ways:

  1. It’s what constitutes the greatest number of sales. So folks like Stephen King or J.K. Rowling might be considered great from the number of books they sell, or money they have accumulated from book and movie sales/royalties.
  2. It could be folks honoring them with a prestigious award, like the Nobel Prize for literature or a Pulitzer Prize.
  3. It could be that they stood the test of time. Folks like William Shakespeare and Charles Dickens are widely in print today. Even folks who are recent contenders, like Ayn Rand or Carlos Castaneda – writers from this century – never won awards, but their books are very popular.

But I really felt like I was drowning

All this talk of  ‘great’, ‘specialist’, ‘expert’, and mumbo-jumbo gives me a headache.  Reminds of being trained in the Caribbean by  “a scuba diving expert.”  The instruction was for an hour, before jumping into the ocean, from a stationary boat – I felt like I was drowning.  Water kept getting into my mask.  It would have been better to take a course at the local YMCA first.

Randy Kemp



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