A few weeks ago, I wrote down this phrase: “Be an expert without the need to be the expert.”
When I was a kid in the fifties, I watched a lot of cowboy movies and TV shows. It seems that in most of them, someone had to be not only fast with a gun, but the fastest. The best draw. Some would practice without rest. But, most of them just looked tired or irritated because there were always those headstrong (ego strong) young up and comers who wanted to challenge the understood leader to the test. Many died trying. But, what about just being a fast gun without the need to be the fastest gun? Seems like one would live longer to perhaps enjoy a good life well lived.
Whomever is called the expert, will have a rash of critics. We all know why, and it is primarily ego-driven. There are two ways to have the tallest building. One, concentrate on building your building, or two, tear everyone else’s down to below the level of your own. It seems that much of the world really likes number two. I guess it seems easier, but I think it is a fantasy.
Maybe it’s the sports mentality where there can only be one winner, one team, or one person, measured in thousandths of a second even. What about if everyone that finishes the race wins? What about those who just show up and go for it? I recently watched the movie, Eddie the Eagle, and was inspired by someone who showed up and went for it. He wasn’t even close to the leaders, but he showed the world some serious spunk and panache. I high five that all day long.
In another movie I watched the other day, Where To Invade Next? by Michael Moore. I think it was while in Portugal that he was told that one could not state publicly that one was the best at anything. You couldn’t have the best product, or the best service, or be the best. It was against the law to state such. Not in the U.S. Here anyone can call their product, service, or themselves the best without any proof whatsoever. As if proof could be possible in a time-oriented world.
Many years ago, I learned a very valuable lesson as a manager in business. When one manager is replaced with another, the previous manager cannot do anything right or well. Everything they did was wrong, or misguided. It’s all part of being building method number two, or better known as the destroyer. I’ve seen many of those so-called expert gunslingers land on their head in the process. Some are much more skilled at getting the job than holding the job, or even doing the job.
So, bottom line, feel free to be an expert and to consult experts. I’ve certainly consulted a list of them with great benefits. It is good to consult experts. They may teach us something valuable if we allow them to do what they do best. Take what works, and leave the rest alone. As Ken Poirot said so well, “only fools are confident they [the experts] know everything.” But, what they do know could change the course of human events. At the same time, be an expert. You know your field and you know it well. Accept yourself as an expert at it, while all the while rejecting the idea that you are the expert. You’ll live longer and happier, I’m sure.
“The Top Experts In The World Are Ardent Students.” — Brendon Burchard
Spread Some Joy Today–by allowing your natural joy to flow.