Knowledge: 31 Days of Abundance, Day Eleven

Pile of BooksI know a lot of stuff. And some of it is even useful. I cannot imagine how you could possibly get to my age (59) without accumulating a lot of facts, figures, stories and life experiences which can sometimes end up as wisdom but definitely ends up as a whole lot of knowledge. I don’t always remember everything I know and I always say I don’t know what I know until a client asks. And that’s true. You couldn’t write down everything you know, could you? Impossible task.

I like learning new things. This was not true when I was a child, my appalling academic record speaks for itself. It wasn’t until I went to live in Oxford when some of my pals were at the University there that I even realised I was bright as I could more than hold my own at the dinner table with my undergraduate contemporaries. At that point in the mid Seventies, I thought I had perhaps blown my educational opportunities but I have never felt that since, not once. In fact, quite the reverse.

It is a matter of some mystery to me how my brother and I got to be so brainy since our parents were neither particularly clever nor in the least academic. I don’t think it ever occurred to them that either of us might go to university, oddly, and we didn’t even want to but it was never in their plan for us. However, we are both rocket scientists by comparison. How does that happen, genetically?

My mother had a lot of common sense and street smarts. I don’t particularly have either of those but my logic is very strong; if this, then that. I can analyse every problem and mostly find a solution. I am better at brain work than practical work and the getting of wisdom is increasingly important to me. And, for a bright woman, I quite often do very stupid things indeed and some of my thicker pals shake their head in wonderment. This doesn’t make me a boffin by a long chalk, but it does make me surprisingly dim alongside my brainyness. I am razor sharp. And quick, sometimes too quick.

But I know lots. I especially know lots of stuff about working for yourself because I’ve done that for nearly forty years. I know quite a lot about business accounting although that knowledge is relatively out of date now, I still know the principles. And I know where to go to get the up to date advice you need. Yesterday someone deliberately sought me out to ask my views about something they already knew I knew nothing about because they suspected I would know how to handle it. And I did also know an expert we could ask, which was helpful. So I know a lot of clever people and experts too.

I think my best learning has come from (a) doing and (b) observing others do. And I can amalgamate that in a way which is helpful to people starting out on their own in business or wanting to do better at working for themselves or get some acceleration or smarts.

I am fascinated by things I don’t know or understand, especially if they are explained well and I love to talk to people who know stuff I don’t. I wonder what you call a collector of useful pieces of information? Googling that the answer would seem to be curator, connector or maven. I do know I am the sort of woman you want on your pub quiz team, in Trivial Pursuit or shouting at the TV during University Challenge. But I have no idea how I recall all that info. And some I very definitely know I know but cannot recall, so more brain training is required there to keep the old noggin tip top.

Google is my best mate because I can look up the answer to anything in a heartbeat. And digital books are where I go next. But just being curious is perhaps my greatest asset. I feel very lucky to have accumulated a lot of useful information and I hope I can continue to learn more and use what I know wisely. I love knowing stuff. How about you?

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