My son taught me something this last weekend at the beach. I watched him become an expert and I was struck by how simple it really is and the lesson was taught by a 12 year old.
First let’s define expert.
Expert: A person with a high degree of skill in or knowledge of a certain subject. (The Free Dictionary)
So, how did a 12 year old teach me on becoming an expert? It started with the beach. We like to spend time at the beach as a family, and fishing is something my husband and son have recently started doing together. Salt water surf fishing is quite different from fresh water fishing on a lake. You never know what you’ll catch. (sharks!)
My son was introduced to surf fishing a few months ago and he has taken to it with a single-minded passion I wish he’d use with his schoolwork. He became a sponge for fishing.
He’s learned his rod and reel, about bait and tackle, stringers, what works for bait, where the fish are in relation to the sandbars, about the lovely green water that happens in the Gulf with a North wind, slicks, schools of fish and more. When we arrived at the beach last week, his first move was to grab his gear, bait and hit the water.
Here’s the kicker: not only did he acquire this knowledge, he went out and applied it, seeking to learn more by testing and trying things. Then he passed on his new knowledge by teaching us what he learned.
How does this make him an expert? If you think about it, that’s what an expert is – someone who knows more about a topic than the general population. How do experts grow? They are passionate about what they do, loving the subject, loving learning more about it and wanting to share their information with others.
Chances are, you’re an expert at something, too.