Few would out and out admit to being a know-it-all; the trap most fall for is far more subtle. We are justifiable proud of our learning, our education, our life experience, confident of our opinions and blissfully unaware of how susceptible we are to group think, confirmation bias, and the “not invented here” syndrome.
When we humbly pay attention to our listen-talk ratio we may be forced to re-evaluate our self-concepts re how deep and real our thirst to learn is versus lust for ego-gratifying displays of our schooling. And then even when you are theoretically listening, how often are you “listening with intent to reply” rather than to understand?
Know-it-all’s are closed to new or different points-of-view, they are not interested in your talents or experience, but they will gladly share theirs. By contrast, eager learn-it-all’s are terrific listeners, they are curious seekers of knowledge and different perspectives. Learn-it-all’s know that continuous learning and staying open to solutions from all points of the compass are vital to their ability to be their best and achieve the greatest outcomes.
“I never learned from a man who agreed with me.” –Robert A. Heinlein
“I never learn anything talking. I only learn things when I ask questions.” – Lou Holtz
“If you’ve reached the point in life where you feel you’ve got all the answers, you better start asking some different questions.” – Daniel Cerescu
“In a world of change, the learners shall inherit the earth, while the learned shall find themselves perfectly suited for a world that no longer exists.” – Eric Hoffer
As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier