Would you describe yourself as growth-minded? Perhaps you regularly invest in your personal and professional development by attending seminars, conference or classes. Or maybe your bookshelves, virtual and otherwise, are filled with great inspirational titles from the likes of Brene Brown, Tony Robbins or Elizabeth Gilbert.
I’m not helping with the links, am I? I know how it feels – I am a Learner to my core.
If you are a podcast/blog/vlog junkie or if you are forever jotting down notes about the things that you need to read, watch, listen to, learn or follow “one of these days when you eventually get around to it” I have one simple question for you: When was the last time that you used what you know?
If you find that your good intentions to leverage what you’ve learned rarely come to pass, reflect a bit about the reasons why.
What prevents you from parlaying your love of learning into a path that leads to world domination (or minimally, a burst of dazzling impact)?
What is so compelling about consuming information to an overwhelming degree without enacting change in some form?
Here are a few myths that I encourage you to examine if you find yourself concentrating on acquisition without execution:
Myth 1: I need to become an expert before I can make a difference. You don’t need to know everything about a given topic in order to apply what you know. Furthermore, you can actually test our your knowledge and learn more as you move forward. Application is the best way to cultivate mastery, so go with what you know, identify your gaps and deliver incremental value as you practice (and yes, as you’ve heard, it is all practice).
Myth 2: I must find the right opportunities to use my knowledge. You never truly know when you might be able to use what you know. Instead of searching for the perfect scenarios or occasions, make a commitment to be creative and seek innovative ways to put your knowledge into play. Likewise think about how you can help others with what your know. By focusing beyond your own interests, you can ironically position yourself as a trusted, go-to resource for the people around you.
Myth 3: What I know is sufficient to move me towards my goals. Knowledge is simply one part of the success equation. Think about why you are drawn to the information that you want or believe that you need to know. What do you hope to achieve, do or become as a result of your learning experience? Successful people know some, but do more. If you struggle with taking action, think carefully about the ‘why’ that motivates your interest and partner with someone to increase your accountability when it comes to using your knowledge to gain momentum.
Information is a wonderful thing, but knowledge is ultimately most effective when applied.
Remember that merely collecting data is not at all the same as actually doing something.
The directive is clear: in the face of information overload — act.
You can and will reap rewards (think influence, impact, innovation and inspiration) when you put yourself in motion and leverage what you know to get results.
Engineer Your Bliss Challenge: How can you apply knowledge that you already possess to make a positive change? Let me know your thoughts on Facebook.