When I was younger, I knew things.
I knew what people were feeling. I knew when something bad was about to happen. Not specifics; more like the energy of something.
I just didn’t know how I knew them.
Sometimes I shared these things with other people.
I quickly learned not to do this.
When you share something you know, people want proof. They want to know how you know.
Did you research it?
Did you read it in a book?
Show your work.
How do you know?
If it’s something that hasn’t happened yet, or something that you feel that someone else feels, it’s hard to prove.
People lie about how they feel. They tell you that you’re wrong.
If you’re a high achiever with a traditional formal education, chances are that you were trained in the importance of showing your work and backing up your answers with reasons and logic and information.
In the academic and corporate worlds, we get rewarded for regurgitating information and synthesizing data.
Nobody gives you good grades for what you know. What you know doesn’t get you the corner office.
Imagine if you got up in a meeting and advised a client based on what you know, absent proof and reasons?
This is how we lose trust in what we know. It’s how we lose trust in our intuition. In ourselves.
Somewhere along the way, we learn to rely on information over knowledge.
These are not the same.
Here’s the problem (one of many):
Data is often wrong. Information is often irrelevant. Every reason is a story.
We live in a time where information is abundant. The answers to almost any question are only a Google search away.
Except for the things that are actually important and relevant.
Google doesn’t have the answers to those.
Those answers are accessible only within you. That’s knowledge.
It cannot be proven. It requires no data. No reasons or stories.
This is great news. It means you always know the answer. You know the way. You know what to do.
And that leaves only one question:
What will it take for you to trust what you know?