We’ve discovered that being an expert is far easier than we initially thought. It’s really interesting!
Definitions of “expert” boil down to: a person with extensive knowledge or ability in a given subject, having or showing knowledge and skill and aptitude. I think people mostly view experts, though, as gods of a sort. Experts are put on pedestals and reveared, and we tell ourselves, “I can’t be an expert.” I know I felt that way.
My attitude shift was sparked by Tim Ferriss, in The Four Hour Work Week. Tim talks about the difference between being an expert and being perceived as an expert.
This blew my mind! What? Fake being an expert?! That’s insane.
But… is it insane?
After weeks of talking and thinking, I realized it isn’t actually about faking it. It’s about knowing enough to feel like an expert, and proclaiming yourself as one. (I recommend, however, leaving off the “self-proclaimed” part.) The trick is to know more than most people about anything. If you know more than most people about any one thing, you are an expert in that thing.
It’s really that easy!
Well, I say easy, but it’s not easy. It involves research, study, and desire to be an expert. But it’s not about your education level, your financial level, or your intelligence level. It’s about your desire to learn.
I am a weight-loss expert. I am overweight, and this year, I took it into my own hands to lose weight. After a couple of months of winging it, I found the desire to learn about losing weight, and started studying. I read for days, sorting through the “take this pill” diet crap and finding the real information. I researched weight loss equipment. I bought some weight loss equipment after becoming a heart monitor expert. I could write post after post about weight loss – because I became an expert.
I’m a knee expert. I hurt my knee a few months ago, and while it isn’t severe, it’s not great and not getting better. Last night, I decided to research it and see what I could find, so I spent hours reading about knees, injuries, and treatments. I now have a really solid idea of what’s wrong with my knee and how to help it.
All it took, both times, was a strong desire to learn and perseverance. I needed information, I weeded out the crap, I studied until I not only had what I was looking for, but a good, strong, solid knowledge base so I wouldn’t have to research it over and over, and bang! I’m an expert.
I’m an expert on lots of things, now.
It’s fun and empowering to be an expert! What are you passionate about enough to become an expert on?