How To Become an Expert In Any Field

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by Jayaram V

This is the age of knowledge and information. This is the age of expertise and specialization. What would you prefer, a million dollars with no intelligence or a brilliant mind with a million hopes, ideas and aspirations? The Facebook founder received an offer for a billion dollars few years ago to part with his company.

A billion dollars was a lot of money for a young man who did not have even a thousand dollars to start his company. Yet, he rejected the offer because he believed in himself, his goals and his vision which laid his path clearly before him.

If you have the vision and the willingness to make it real, you will eventually reach your goals and realize your dreams. You can be part of that little group of exceptional people who make a difference in the world with their knowledge and ideas. It does not matter in what area you specialize. If you have specialized knowledge or expertise in some professional field, you will increase your value and your chances of success.

Life upon earth is a great opportunity to expand your knowledge and enrich your experience. Many people do not make use of it. They spend valuable time in cheap entertainment or frivolous matters. Few hours ago, over two billion people watched the marriage of prince Williams and Kate Middleton.

Collectively one fourth of the humanity spent billions of man hours in watching the wedding of two people whom they never met in person and would never meet in future. Perhaps they will waste another 100 billion hours in the next few weeks and months trying to know how the newly married the royal couple are doing, what clothes they are wearing or how many kisses they have exchanged in public view.

This is just an example of how people waste precious moments, opportunities and resources, without even knowing it. You do not have to graduate from Harvard or Oxford to become an expert in any field.

Let us not forget that the world's most renowned and knowledgeable people originally came from poor and middle class families and relatively unknown schools and colleges. Frankly, you do not even require education to be successful in this world. Some of the world's greatest people were illiterate or semi literate. Akbar, the Mughal Emperor, for example, was an illiterate person; but he excelled as a king and administrator.

Have you ever noticed who are the most sought after people in society, in a work place or a profession? Apart from good looking people and celebrities, with whom society is always infatuated, it is usually the ones who are known for their knowledge and expertise in a particular field and who have ability to solve any problem or deal with any crisis.

People go to them because they are reliable and dependable in difficult times. They do not mind spending precious money or time to meet them or seek their advice. Organizations are willing to spend huge amounts of money to hire them or retain them because in a competitive environment they can make a huge difference. Here is how you can join this group of rare individuals and earn a distinction for yourself in your chosen field.

1. Identify the area in which you want to develop the expertise. In each field there are specific areas of expertise and each requires a specific set of skills and knowledge. Choose the one that appeals to you most or for which you think you have the passion. Think of the motivation or why you want to develop expertise in that particular area and make sure that your decision is not based on whim or the need to seek the approval of others. If you want to become an expert in some area, it must be to actualize your dreams and aspirations, not to win the approval of others.

2. Do some research to find out what you have to do to become an expert and develop the necessary skills. Spend some time gathering information to know how you may reach your goals. Find a few people who are known to be experts in that area. If possible meet them personally; or gather information about them by reading books and magazines or meeting people who know them personally. Find out what makes them unique. Create a mental picture of the person you want to be. Write it down. This is your dream picture of the person you want to carve out of your life through hard work and determination.

3. Draw an action plan in writing, with goals and sub goals of acquiring the knowledge and skills to become an expert. Specify clearly in what timeframe you want to accomplish them and what specific actions you might need to reach them. Perhaps you have to join a college, study books or train for sometime under the guidance of an expert in the field. Think of all the possibilities and opportunities, how you can make use of your strengths and how you can resolve the problems arising from your weaknesses.

4. Implement your action plan with resolve. This is the most important part of the whole project. Here the motivation has to come entirely from within and you have to rely upon none but yourself during moments of self-doubt and negativity. In such moments, keep returning to the picture you developed in step 2 to refocus and energize yourself. Remember that depending upon how you deal with yourself and your thoughts you can be your best friend or your worst enemy. Do not rest till you feel comfortable with your knowledge and expertise. Seek other people's opinion about the progress you are making. Join a professional club or association to see how others in the field are doing. Keep reading and improving your knowledge.

5. Identify the peers in the field whom you want to emulate in the beginning or from whom you want to draw inspiration. If possible contact them and explore the possibility of seeking their guidance and mentoring. Join organizations and association associated with the field to develop a network of professionals with whom you can exchange ideas and communication.

6. Keep learning, improving. and practicing, with an open mind. Learn from every possible source, without missing an opportunity, and keep your mind open and receptive to new ideas and thoughts. Learning is a lifelong commitment. The more you learn and practice, the more skillful you become. There is no end to what you can learn or know. There is no limit to the knowledge you can acquire or the expertise you can gain. Push your limits to the extent possible by competing against yourself.

7. Practice humility and virtue and keep your mind in balance. Knowledge and the authority that comes with it can have a corrupting influence upon you. Your knowledge and expertise should not make you an arrogant and conceited. Virtues such as Integrity, honesty are as important skills and expertise in any field. Use them for right purposes and ends. Become a source of inspiration to others rather than a cause of frustration. The more you know, the more humble you should be. Do not feel discouraged if you are not recognized or rewarded immediately. If you keep hope and faith, you will be recognized soon, just as no one can stop the fragrance of a flower from spreading in the garden. When your time comes, they reveal themselves, despite the people who may not be happy to see you successful.

Self-reliance, self-confidence, determination, positive mental attitude, courage, integrity, clarity of thought and purpose, specific goals, self-discipline are valuable resources which you can use in your life to acquire knowledge and skills and pursue your cherished goals.

If you are intent upon a particular goal and work for it vigorously, you are bound to achieve it, no matter the obstacles and the difficulties. To reach your goals, you must be willing to change yourself and invest enough time and energy to be where you want to be.

If you are determined to achieve excellence in a chosen area and willing to give your best, you are bound to achieve it. Find your passion and strengths, and integrate them into your life's essential purpose to achieve you goals. By it you will not only realize your life's dreams but also serve as a role model to others to accomplish their dreams the right way. Therefore, decide to be the best and become one.

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