The One Thing Experts Don’t Tell You
One aspect of myself is this:
I don’t call myself an expert.
I don’t even like the title nor care for it.
Perhaps because I feel that the title has been tarnished by those who are all glamour and showy.
A real expert, wouldn’t go around showing off and telling people that they are an expert.
But I think the biggest reason I don’t like the title is that a lot of experts go out of their way to hide things.
This isn’t to say that every expert omits information, but for those who pose as experts in order to sell something often lack the bigger picture.
This creates a massive disconnection between who is an expert and what people believe is an expert.
It’s in the same sense of a game of telephone: the message can get screwed up along the way.
The only difference is that we know what the message actually was at the very end of the game.
That isn’t the case so much in life.
The True Meaning Of An Expert
What does it take to be considered an expert? For so many people the first thing that they turn to is a definition that has stood for a long time. You can find it on Wikipedia and goes as follows:
An expert is someone who has a prolonged or intense experience through practice and education in a particular field.
So what does that mean?
Because while it suggests that we need to spend a lot of time, what actually constitutes a lot of time?
For many people, they consider 10,000 hours to be the benchmark.
The difference between an expert and a nobody.
But even that is a little vague. You still run into the mixed messages of what an expert actually is. And any experts stating just that lack the bigger picture.
You can understand this better when you analyze a quote from Bruce Lee.
I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.
You get what I mean?
Practicing 10,000 hours on something means squat if all that time you spent was doing it wrong.
Instead, I turn to what actually is needed to become an expert.
While it’s true you will need to devote a lot of time, energy, resources, and money to become an expert, it’s important to look at the finer details.
This means looking at the qualities of an expert.
After all, you can claim to be an expert but that doesn’t mean you’re a decent person or a legit expert.
You need to be looking inwards — at yourself — in order to truly become an expert. This means having a good head on your shoulders.
- This means that you need to have ample amount of knowledge in the field.
- This also needs to be paired with experiences. There’s more to learn outside of a book or articles.
- This also means being able to adapt to various situations.
- But also using your knowledge, experience and adaptability to make good judgement calls when the time is needed for them.
These aren’t easy things to achieve and of course, self-proclaimed experts won’t tell you this. Instead, they’ll tell you this in their own way.
But there’s also one other aspect to experts.
The biggest quality is understanding why they want to be experts in the first place.
Because a lot of people who claim to be an expert often aren’t people that deserve that title. It’s a branding scheme much like the man walking the streets in a snappy suit and driving an expensive car.
Sure it’s flashy and they look like the upper class, but that isn’t always true.
The suit could be worn down and only looks sharp at a distance.
The expensive vehicle may be well above their pay grade and they are swimming in debt.
In this respect, I understand why the term expert is used so much. It’s a status after all and people want people to see them in that sort of light to some degree.
But that isn’t how you get people to see you differently.
The real experts aren’t like that.
Instead, an expert could have that elite vibe, but they understood what it took to get there.
They understood why they wanted to pursue that elite lifestyle.
They didn’t buy into the idea they’d get paid with wads of cash from day 1. In fact, the experts in my book are people that were literal nobodies before they became who we know them today.
- Steve Jobs was working out of his parent's garage and dropped out of school.
- Oprah Winfrey lived in poverty for all of her young life before she was given her own talk show.
- Tony Robbins moved out on his own when he was 14 years old, living in an apartment and living in poverty.
- J.K Rowling was a single mom living on welfare and got her book rejected multiple times before she got her big break.
- Colonel Sanders didn’t start KFC until his 60s, before then he was a nobody salesman.
- Ray Kroc was also a nobody salesman before he helped found McDonald's.
These experts accepted the fact that in order to become first, they had to accept that they were in last for so long.
From there they started practicing, growing themselves, and improving in any way they could.
It’s for this reason why I don’t see myself as an expert. I don’t see it because I feel the title expert creates a divide on top of what I’ve mentioned above.
Those people I listed are what I call decent people or people I can learn and grow from myself. And while a lot of people have different emotions pertaining to those people, we can’t deny that they changed the world and you can learn from them.
That I believe is what an expert truly is:
Someone who understands their purpose for pursuing this title and are able to guide people along the way, not solely for personal gain, but for others to make an impact just as they have done.
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