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The way you react to the world, to the events and people in your life, to the new situations, has a lot to do with how you feel about yourself. It has a lot to do with your inner confidence.
Self-confidence is the first requisite to great undertakings.
– Samuel Johnson
If you really want to succeed in life – and by success, I mean, having a life that will make you feel fulfilled – you need confidence. Not just in your abilities, but in yourself as a person. Self-confidence, like most qualities, is something you can develop. Embracing your expertise is one giant step towards it. Embracing your expertise requires a degree of self-awareness, because you need to know what your expertise actually are. It also requires enough confidence to acknowledge and accept that you are good at something.
Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained.
– Marie Curie
You are gifted for something. Each one of us is. We have strengths and weaknesses, and when we nurture our strengths, we feel cleverer, stronger, better than we ever thought we were.
It takes a degree of arrogance or a whole lot of evidence to say that you are the world’s top-most expert at something. But what about expert enough? In the practical world, expertise is not an absolute measure. It is a relative measure.
When I worked in corporate jobs, I was quite often considered an “expert” for IT related issues. I can assure you that by actual expert standards, I’m no such thing. However, I was an expert because I knew more than the people I was able to help.
Do I believe that I’m the world’s top-most expert in journaling? Absolutely not. However, I am expert enough. I am confident in my experience and abilities to be certain that I have enough, solid knowledge of journaling, its benefits and methods to be able to share it with people in a way that would help them. Perhaps even enrich their lives somewhat.
You see on news channels bringing all these experts to give their views about current issues. Are all of these people always the very best in the world in their field? Hardly. But they are experts, because they know more about their specialised topics than majority of the audience watching that channel.
Therefore, let go of your fear of embracing your expertise. No one’s going to call you out on it, or ask you for your official credentials. The only evidence of your expertise you need is the evidence you can provide through your actions.
Do you have a portfolio of experiences behind you that show off your skill?
Here’s an example of what this portfolio could be:
- Knitting: all the items have knit for yourself or other people over the years, even if you haven’t made a penny from it
- Web Design: websites you’ve built, and managed
- Writing: Blogging, articles, essays, novels, just about anything that you can show off as your work
- Dancing: Videos of your dancing, or you can give on-the-spot audition
These are just a few examples. For absolutely every skill, you can build up a portfolio. If the skill involves working with other people, then it’s the people you are able to help who give you the expert status. If it involves dealing with items, it’s the quality of your items.
Everyone is good at something. It might be a soft-skill, such as listening or really being able to empathise. It might be a hard skill, such as statistical analysis. No matter what it is, find you expertise, and embrace it.
Four Steps to Find Your Expertise
- Think about what your friends, family, co-workers are always asking for your help with? Do they always call you for cleaning tips, relationship advice, ask you to sort out the party planning, or to reformat their PC? Often people don’t notice the things they are naturally good at, because it comes so easily. Pay attention to all the compliments you receive, and you just mind find hidden gifts that you never even considered.
- Make a personal resume. This one should include all your professional jobs and your hobbies. What have you spent your life on so far? Include any projects you’ve completed.
- What do you enjoy doing? When do you have the most fun? What activities do you pursue when you want to relax? By the way, if the only thing on this list is “watching TV” the world’s full of experts on that.
- Keep a detailed diary for a week. Note that I say a diary. Keep a record of what you did, accounting for every minute, for one week. This will tell you exactly how much time you spend, doing what. Don’t change your routine to make it sound better. Capture the rhythm of your natural life, and you will have more opportunities to find your expertise.
Once you know what you are expert at, embrace that expertise. Use it. Use it for personal projects, use it professionally if you can, and use it to help people. Develop your expertise, and you never know where it might lead you.
ACTION YOU CAN TAKE TODAY:
Do you believe you are expert in something? Tell us in the comments below.