Let’s chat shall we? A serious discussion that involves me talking to myself and you maybe reading it when you get a chance. A nice hard look at myself with a bit of a reprimand. That kind of talk. One I need personally so I’m guessing you might need it too.
I came across this little gem of a meme the other day and it really hit home. Especially as a furniture painter, a shop owner and a farmer and a mother and well, just being a person in general.
One of the worst things we do to ourselves is compare ourselves which breeds fear that we are not living up to another persons standards because their standards are different then ours. Not higher, not better – just different.
I have recently found myself in a situation where i felt the need to do something and it wasn’t something I enjoyed. So I’m in the process of not doing it anymore. I had to talk this through with a friend, with my husband and myself. I also had to figure out why the heck I felt such a need to do this thing anyway.
It was because I was comparing myself to others. Why do we do that? Why do we compare or feel we have to do something, even if we had a plan? Not a blasted clue, but we do it and we need to not do it.
And this leads me to…
The words in the title. “I’m not an expert…..but’ and then we offer advice. With a disclaimer that we are second guessing ourselves because WE ARE COMPARING OURSELVES to others (caps – yelling and all that jazz). Here’s the thing though, we are all ‘experts’ in something even IF that something is done differently then someone else. That doesn’t necessarily make it wrong and them right. It just happens to be another option that someone can use, if they want to. I mean, sure…sometimes we give out wrong information and that’s ok too because then another person will fix it, we’ll learn and we’ll move on.
The ‘not an expert’ words are something we all need to stop using. Especially if we are comfortable giving advice and helping others. If the advice we give isn’t for the receiver, they will move on to the next piece that does fit their needs. No harm, no foul and it’s not personal. Very hard thing when we COMPARE OURSELVES to others.
Comparing and ‘not an expert’ is pretty huge in the furniture world – Because there are so many people all of us look up to. There are people who have been doing it longer or have more knowledge (or at the least, appear to have more knowledge) then ourselves.) We don’t want to step on toes, we don’t want to accidentally give out wrong information and so the list goes on. We might want to do a technique that they are masters at and we are not. Or eighty billion other reasons that we find ourselves comparing to.
But yet, we are absolutely positive ‘x’ worked for us and we are comfortable enough to share that information with someone else so why are we discrediting and disclaiming ourselves with ‘I am not an expert…..but’ right before we share our knowledge?
Whatever the reason you use those words, it’s personal based on yourself but if you are confident in your information and your abilities and it’s obvious you are…because you are sharing it with others…..then you are an ‘expert’ in the particular category you are helping with.
This goes for showing off your pieces too. If you love your piece, your home, your art, your item that you took time to create and take a picture of and you want to show it to the world….DO IT. Just do it. Someone may not like it but if you like it, that is all that matters.
You are an expert in creating things you like and someone – somewhere is going to get inspired by you. You are an expert in the knowledge you have and someone – somewhere may need that knowledge to finish a project or even just the boost that they are heading in the right direction.
Be confident, be an expert and be a sharer (is that a word?)!
Thank you for coming to my own talk with myself – of which I am an expert of me and I am confident that someone – somewhere will need to hear this today.