We Are All Experts


expert-yes-you-areYou are already an expert at something.

Or at least you are well on your way to becoming one.

Many of us are experts at something that is just a hobby — sewing, making things, collecting comics — whatever.  Our challenge is to realize that expertise and find a way to constantly use it to make people’s lives better who most need our help.

Finding your passion, then getting paid to pursue it.

Many people have spent a ton of life energy in a quest to discover their passion. And for many of them, once they found it, that was enough. Finding the thing that lights them up inside satisfies the quest.

But some people want more than that—they want to live their passion. Some want to break free of their mind-numbing routine that has become their life and spend each waking hour doing what they love most.  I believe we can all do this if we truly want it.

Easy to say, but how do you make it happen?

Many of us are at a point in our lives where we have valuable information to share.  For instance, over the past 10 years I have acquired a ton of knowledge of how to build music programs in schools from scratch.  I have learned how to do that from being a teacher, an administrator, and Executive Director, and a facilitator at various clinics.  It was a beautiful accident, really, but I’ll take it.

I can continue to do this things for other people for a wage for the rest of my life if I choose…

Or I can branch out on my own and become a consultant.  I can work for myself.  I have the knowledge, I just need to make the commitment to transition.

“Before you can be successful, you must believe you can be successful.”

We have heard this quote a bunch.  However, this isn’t a “just embrace the power of positive thinking and become incredibly successful” inspirational quote.  It’s the type of quote that forces us to evaluate our own intentions, motivations, and thoughts.

I have read about Jason Gracia lately.  He’s been building businesses online for years.  Jason is the author of Shifting the Balance and creator of The Six-Figure Expert, where he specializes in helping people transform their passion or expertise into six-figure brands and businesses. The best part is he began his journey with just $35, eventually becoming a multiple six-figure expert with a worldwide audience.

He states the following:

“You see, before anyone will take the appropriate steps needed to chase success, they must believe two things:

  1. They must believe they have value to offer (e.g. a product, a service, or philosophy).
  2. They must believe they are capable of spreading it and equipped to deliver it.

This line of thinking has forever changed my view of writing and the opportunities for influence I pursue. For most of my life, I did not believe my thoughts were worth spreading. I knew them, but didn’t think they held much value for other people’s lives. As a result, I was slow to share them and rarely looked for opportunities to introduce them to others. Simply put, I didn’t believe “success” was something I could achieve.”

There’s obviously a lot more to this.  You should definitely check out Jason’s work.  It’s not about making six figures.  It’s about opening our minds up to the fact that there is a fine line from being someone who goes to work every day for someone else and someone who pursues their passion as their life work for themselves.

It’s also important that we unlock our self-doubt and our belief that success is something that other people achieve.  If we simply debunk that notion in our minds, what could/would we do differently in our work?

The first step for many of us is to simply realize we hold something of value that needs to be shared with others.  What do you think that is for you?  What are you an expert at?



  1. Wow, Tony. I am so glad I followed you over here from Courtney’s site. I look forward to reading more of your writing.

    My husband and I are both experts in our fields: CJ (classical guitarist) and me (reading and writing teacher). We left public education several years ago to open our own business and now feel like we are truly living. Our combined area of expertise is how to value your work as a team (partners in love) which, for us, includes exercising together, learning together, and having fun together as much as possible. We finally feel we may have something to say!

    • Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Tammy. Your story is so awesome. Keep up the incredible lifestyle change!

  2. I was brought up to believe that success was for others and I believed it well into adulthood. I was a model schlepp. At 35 changes big changes began. Now my wife and I work for ourselves and are enjoying a budding blog together. What a turn around.

    Thanks for a marvy post!

  3. Emerson wrote in his essay on Self-reliance, “A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the lustre of the firmament of bards and sages. Yet he dismisses without notice his thought, because it is his. In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.”

    As you suggest Tony, the key to harnessing the value we all have to offer as individuals is to overcome that nagging self doubt and insecurity that tells us that our contribution would be seen as insignificant. They say that everyone has at least one book in them; likewise I firmly believe that we all have an innate talent that is there for us to exploit. And doing so of course – finding that passion – bestows a sense of purpose, commitment and fulfilment in life that can never be equaled by extrinsic reward.

    Great post! All the best, Gareth
    Gareth recently posted…Finding happiness through gratitudeMy Profile

  4. I still don’t know what I am passionate about, I know it isn’t doing what I currently do for work though.
    Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank recently posted…The First Child: Opportunities for SavingsMy Profile

    • Well Glen, you have a new kid and you are passionate about that! You are also passionate about writing, so…good start!

  5. Jason | frugalhabits says:

    I love the quote on success. This is probably the biggest road block to achievement. Belief in oneself is 80% of the battle.

  6. there are many skills we don’t even know we can market. I like traveling and many people ask me for advice to plan a trip. I am pretty sure I could charge for that but don’t since they are friends. There are a few VA tasks to plan trips though, I may look at that.
    Pauline recently posted…Save money with online shopping and a $500 giveaway!My Profile

  7. I think, as Pauline stated, the hard part really is to find a way to market these talents/passions in a way that we stay true to ourselves. Some really are a bit tricky.

    • I never thought about it that way. What would a passion be that, if you made money on it, you wouldn’t be true to yourself? As I’ve posted before, some hobbies should remain hobbies. Is that what you mean?

      • I know that sometimes it’s difficult to get the right idea about what exactly really is your passion and how to market it in a way that you keep doing your passion.
        Like, if you like hosting dinners, you might enjoy the cooking process itself thus being a cook might be for you, but you might also more enjoy the “preparing of an event” part, so you maybe enjoy managing events or managing a catering service more. It’s important to know which part you are passionate about so you don’t end up managing, if you hate it, or cooking, when you’d rather entertain.
        Also, there are a couple of passions that are just very specific and there seem to be not many people interested in such a specific service or information. (think about wanting to teach Romanian to little kids – you likely won’t find enough customers for that) – so you might be tempted to broaden your offer (teaching more languages or teaching adults as well), but that might mean that you spend 90% of your time doing stuff you’re not really passionate about. I mean, it’s sometimes not that easy to find the right niche that lets you really pursue your passion as well as find enough customers willing to pay for your service.

        • I love where your mind is going with this, Anne! The nice part is that we can dabble with all of that. It is amazing when the lightning actually strikes and we know we have found our calling…

      • Well, writing is my biggest passion, and it’s also what I do for a living. But it’s very hard to only write what you want, to only write about things that you like to write about, and make a living from it. I’d love to make enough to live on just from my personal blog, but that’s not going to happen. It’s business writing that pays the bills, and luckily, I do get enjoyment out of it, but I wouldn’t do it for free.
        eemusings recently posted…Boyfriend in the kitchen: Lamb rack and raw saladMy Profile

  8. It is a blessing for me that my passion is my service to others through the practice of law. I have spent the last 35 years and continue to do so learning the law and practicing the law as a tax, estate and corporate attorney. This is where the “juice” is for me. Helping my clients with their legal, tax and financial issues and planning is what I love to do.
    Now, I also love playing guitar. I walk by many guitar players who are playing in the subway and train concourses and often think what that would be like.
    STEVEN J. FROMM, ATTORNEY, LL.M. (TAXATION) recently posted…Estate Planning 2013: Now What? A Must Read For EveryoneMy Profile

    • Thanks for this, Steven. Great that you are following your passion! As far as guitar is concerned, you would love playing it in public if you didn’t need the money!

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