When I was in college studying film I worked on the first and second seasons of American Idol as a lowly production assistant. (That's the very bottom of the production food chain, if you didn't know.) But since I had casting experience I got to assist with the producers' round of casting. When the "real" judges were there the next day, however, I was demoted to logging tape for Ryan Seacrest's camera (and Brian Dunkleman in Season 1 - 'member him?).
Anyway, during Season 1 I felt really bad for these people that were coming in there thinking that they were totally awesome and then making utter fools of themselves. We were told to pass them on to the next round of judging if they had the "X-factor", meaning they were either extremely good or extremely bad.
The next season, however, we were shooting in Austin, and I felt no mercy at all (well, a little, but not much). These people had seen the first season. Simon Cowell was a household name by this point, and they should have known what to expect. And yet the crazies still showed up! I remember this one kid was saying that he was a wizard, so the producer that I was working with told him to come the next day before the judges with his cape and pointy hat on. When I saw him wandering the halls the next day looking like a cartoon, I couldn't believe it! How could he be so deluded!
ANYWAY! I've been wondering about the areas of my life in which I'm deluded. The frustration, however, lies in the fact that there's no real easy way of finding out. If you ask someone, they're not going to want you to feel bad, so they'll lie to you, furthering your false sense of awesomeness. How many of those crazies from American Idol had moms who told them that they had beautiful voices?
If I ask you guys what you think about how I (fill in the blank), then I'm sure I'd get a handful of people that would be so sweet and encouraging and tell me that I'm so great at said thing. But if I'm really not that great at it, the people who would probably be honest would likely not say anything because they didn't want to be rude, especially when other people were so "nice". Furthering the delusion.
The solution to delusion eludes me. I hope you weren't expecting the golden key to the solution at the end of this post, because I don't have it. :( I guess that's what keeps us humble.
Do you have the golden key? If so, please share!