Listening to Malcolm Gladwell talk about Wilt Chamberlain, I was reminded of Wilt’s famous statement regarding his notoriously poor free throw shooting. Wilt said he knew he’d been wrong not to continue shooting underhanded, which he’d done, successfully, for one season. He stopped because he felt he looked “silly.”
A famous sociologist, Mark Granovetter, described this as high threshold behavior. He contrasted this with low threshold behavior, or doing the right thing regardless of what others think.
Guess which allows you to fulfill your potential? Wilt Chamberlain arguably should have been unstoppable. As it was he was amazing; still, his teams routinely TOOK HIM OUT OF THE GAME at the end because the other team simply fouled him, knowing they couldn’t stop him but also knowing he shot free throws like someone who’d never played before.
Be the person who doesn’t care so much about looking silly. Be unstoppable.