Ep. 181 You don’t need more knowledge

You don’t need more knowledge

In this week’s podcast, Anna argues that you don’t need more knowledge before you get started.

It may be true that you don’t have a lot of experience yet – and, of course, there is always room to improve, to learn more, to get better. But you mustn’t let this become an excuse for not taking action in the meantime.


*Resources mentioned during the episode*

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You don’t need more knowledge


Now last week, we talked about the fact that we shouldn’t do more, stop doing more. I said, and I hope you took that message on board. If you haven’t listened to last week’s episode, then please do go back again. It’s one that I need to hear myself. It’s certainly one that my clients need to hear. And I’m sure you need to hear as well. Again, again, you’re ambitious, you’re capable. You are, you have a lot of integrity. You want to do more. You also want to do it better. You want to help more people and so on, but it just becomes impossible. Especially given the fact that most of us, all of us, I would say are designing this life outside the nine to five, because of certain things are having more freedom, being more relaxed, happy, having more joy, living the lives you want to lead, not having that work life, imbalance, stress, burnout, all those things.

So if we’re just creating that burnout in our business, then something is going wrong today. It’s another episode on not needing more in this time before it was not doing more. Now I’m talking about not needing more. And I originally called this episode. You don’t need more knowledge, but it’s more than that. But let’s start with knowledge since that was my in initial thought. When you come from, and I think most of you share this background with me, a corporate academic good girl, good boy background. It’s very normal, natural ingrained in us to need more information, more knowledge, another qualification. We just need to do one more course. We just need one more book. We just need to wait until this thing. And, and I have more. I’ve coached 10 people. Now. I need you to know, wait until I’ve got this strategy completely perfect.

You know, I need that for my confidence. I need it for my credibility. I need the clarity and those are all very important things.

The example I give and fondly enough, it came up with a client the other week is the coach training. I did coaching. Isn’t a regulated industry. You don’t have to have a qualification to say that you’re a coach, which of course is a problem in itself. As we see that with the proliferation of so-called coaches, but it’s a reality that you can put up a website, print a business card and say, Hey, I’m a coach. And there’s no issue with that. There’s no legal problem as there would be, uh, with a psychotherapist or something like that. Right? So in theory, you can literally put up your website today and start coaching people, which is exciting and empowering. Now, most of us choose to do a coach training because it gives us clarity on whether this is what we want to do.

And what’s entailed in coaching. It gives us the confidence to feel like we’re equipped with the tools, the frameworks, we understand the professionalism of it, the integrity we have to work through the ethics of it. Ethics did I say Essex ethics who knows you’ll hear more better than I will have to listen back ethics of it. And it builds credibility. Let’s say, if I want to work with corporate clients, some of them might require me to have a certain certification from the ICF accreditation and so on, right? So there is value in that, but it’s not necessary. Most of all, I’m going to argue here. This is likely to be a source of procrastination and excuse. So look, you may well need more fill in the blank, more knowledge, another qualification, a bit more skill, a bit more experience. In fact, you always will because we all want to raise the bar.

We can all get better. There’s the mindset. Of course, we want to continue getting better and doing better work and delivering better services. And so on. However, most likely you don’t need as much as you think, and you don’t need to wait most important. You won’t take as long as you think you don’t have to wait until you’re ready because you never will be. There’ll be no moment. You suddenly wake up one day. I’m perfectly capable and competent. I can today launch my business. I can now charge this amount. I can now tell people I’m a coach. I can now quit my job. And so now of course there are, there’s an accumulation of factors that can ultimately lead to a trigger that we take the leap and we are for the raise, or we raise our prices or we put the website up, we change our bio.

But let me tell you, if you haven’t experienced this yet, there is no guarantee that you will that day have. In fact, I think of the wizard of Oz when the, uh, the wizard gives you that certificate to say, you have a brain, suddenly the scarecrow is like, oh, I can do a difficult mass. Or when he gives a 10 man a heart, there is no such moment that we get that certification and suddenly click. We are the most incredible professional coach it’s happened. Gradually over that training, it will continue to happen as we gain more experience with more clients. And there is a mindset shift that happens as something that happens in us and perhaps in our audience as well. When they hear that you have a particular qualification, for example, but it isn’t as magical as it seems in the wizard of us.

So again, I have a client who I just spoke to before this recording, in fact, who was saying, he wanted to, first of all, possibly not do the coach train yet, but he had decided to go ahead now. And secondly, he was going to wait with everything, wait to create content, to think about the business, to start talking about it, posting about it, possibly even doing it until the end of the 18 month training. And luckily he realised he caught himself and I recognised it as well as up a bit of an excuse, a bit of fear. And he said, oh, that’s the big insight that actually I don’t have to wait until I’m finished. I’m fully qualified. So it’s easy to buy into that story. And I can buy into my client stories and I can buy into my own story that I need to have done.

X, Y, Z, one more programming. You do one more course, you know, during lockdown I did. And it took me much longer than I’d intended a positive psychology course. It was five modules, took me a lot of time with little kids and all my business and everything else that life entails. Nothing happened when I suddenly got those, I felt incredible. It was very rewarding to finish it, but of course I’m like, oh, but that wasn’t a formal certification. Maybe I should do an, you know, I dunno if an MBA exists, but a master’s in it, or maybe I should do this other thing to really add to my credibility. And we could just kind of collect these accolades, these things that look great on our CV, but don’t really make a meaningful difference necessarily to what we’re delivering now. Important caveat here. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t up skill.

I’m not saying that these things don’t have value. And if you can afford them, if there’s an opportunity for your employer to pay for them, is there a way to get a, you know, a tax, uh, whatever, say a tax holiday? I don’t know, but if there’s a tax efficient way of doing it, if you’ve got the money for it, by all means upskilling, you know, learning, growing lifelong education is, is a core value of mine, as I’m sure it is of yours and you are listening here, right. But it’s, it’s not that you have to wait until you have that thing. And that’s really dangerous thinking to wait until you have the X, Y, Z, cause there there’s always going to be another thing. I always think of, um, plastic surgery, again, as an aside, uh, that if I were to start, you know, for mixing that on the nose and suddenly I’d be like, oh, but my eye brow is drooping.

And then that ear is a bit and all I need to remove my Ribes and whatever else you can do, I think better just to stay imperfect, but natural. Um, the same thing with a business or with, you know, there perfection, if you start waiting for one thing, I’m not sure if that was the best, uh, comparison, but there you go. It came to mind if you start. Um, or if you hold yourself back because, okay, I just need this one more thing. And then once you’ve got that, you’re like, oh, I’m still not the perfect, that’s where I was going. The perfect model of, you know, aesthetic, beauty, whatever, ideal coach, ideal graphic designer, perfect VA, whatever I need to do. One more training. I need to have one free client before I charge money. Um, and that’s, that’s not the case. So again, it’s not just about knowledge.

Now important caveat. Maybe it is true. So please trust yourself. If you really know deep down that your health is suffering, um, you know, you’ve got a family emerges, you’re moving house. That’s happened to a couple of clients recently, if there’s a real reason and you, you say, no, Anna really now is not the right time. I need to wait until X, Y, Z. Then by all means, if you literally had a baby yesterday, you know, that’s fine. Please trust yourself to make the right decision. I’m just nudging you a little bit, kindly warmly, you know, in your own interest, if you recognise yourself in this, if this resonates and you can sense because you are smart that this is an excuse, you know, you don’t need one more course, one more book, one more secret to success before you launch yourself into the world or before you get that course out there.

I mean, another example, again, to hold my hand up here, I’m working on my course, which is meant to be just, and I say just a consolidation of, of things that exist already. Just collecting that together. Boom, put up on the website because I’ve been doing this for 5, 6, 7 years. It’s not that easy because of course, as I look at each model, each framework, each pillar, I, I want to improve and I think, oh, just do this differently. I know what if I can do that. And then the, get the designer to redo that graphic and this, that, and the other. And really that helps nobody. Of course it could be better. It will always be better. And I can continue to make it better once it out, once it’s out there. But whether it’s a course or a book or your business is a whole, it does nobody any good.

If it’s just sitting as a draught on your computer, for example, right? So get it out there. And then by all means up skill, learn instructional design, work with a coach, et cetera, et cetera, as you move forward. But know that again, as ever done is better than perfect and don’t allow it to be an excuse, allow that to become another way to procrastinate. And again, you must know, I, I trust you to know, trust yourself, to know whether it’s a true reason or if it’s an excuse, but this is something that I think we really need to address sooner rather than later, because what are we waiting for? We putting our lives, our careers, our businesses, our happiness on hold for some magical moment in the future when the wizard is going to grant us this thing, and that moment won’t come again. It might happen over time.

You know, really the accumulation, there will be a point when you feel a little bit more confident, but it’s more incremental.

I always thought as a child, when you turn 18, you become an adult. As it turns out again, the wizard doesn’t suddenly give you the certificate of adulthood. It’s really a, a gradual incremental process of becoming a little bit more mature, perhaps a little bit less mature in some cases along the way. And yes, you’ve had more experiences and suddenly you wake up and you’re almost 40 and you are more of an adult. And, and I think nobody would say now that I’m not an adult, but I’m not sure entirely when that happened. I suppose when you’ve got two little ones to take care of, you sort of have to be an adult. Otherwise something’s gone wrong. But, um, you know, it’s, it’s not that magical moment.

Unfortunately, when the wizard handsy the certificate. So again, think about what are your excuses? And I did an episode a few weeks ago on why you’re not taking actions, have a listen to that one because I went through some of the core reasons, most likely that you’re not moving forwards, but really challenge yourself, write down why you’re not taking action or why you’re waiting to do X, Y, Z, waiting to change your bio update, your LinkedIn profile, go live with a website, you know, change your prices, whatever it is really write down those beliefs because they are beliefs as ever. They’re not facts. I need more da, da, da. I’m not enough. And then embrace that growth mindset that we’re always talking about. Start now recognise that you’re not going to be perfect. You never will be. And that’s okay, but you can still make a contribution.

In the meantime, you’ll still be seen as an expert versus people who are way behind you, or in fact, only a few steps behind you. You can still add incredible value by contributing. Now don’t force the world to wait for your greatness, just because you’re sitting there, you know, waiting, if you think of the number of rubbish draughts, I’m sure everyone, and I know nothing about art, but maybe van Gar I’m sure did some bad stuff to begin with. Right. And mane. And I’m sure lots of authors have written a load of rubbish before they’ve actually had that final Magnum Opus. I mean, some, some of them maybe like JK rowing started with Harry Potter, which is incredible. But nonetheless that went through, I’m sure a lot of editing rounds. So, you know, what we see is the final product maybe, but that’s gone through a lot of, you know, they’ve stand up.

Comedians is one that comes to mind. They they’ve done a lot of trial and error putting themselves out there in smaller arenas before they go to the massive one. Right? So put yourself out there in smaller arenas, by all mean, by all means to learn how people respond to things and, and to see what works and so on to build your confidence. But please don’t allow it to become an excuse just to put your life on hold your business, your happiness and so on. So another important message. Again, looking forward to hearing your insights on this one. What are you waiting for? What are you waiting for? Tell me, email me a podcast@onestepoutside.com or message me on your favourite social channel. I’ll see you back here next week. Bye. For now.


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