• I hate titles and despise people who wear their degrees on their sleeve (sometimes literally) like some badge of honor for which they expect others to bow down to them or extend them some special courtesy or doting respect, which far exceed the expectations of everyone else. Well, get over yourself! Don’t hide behind your degrees or justify treating people poorly because you feel that that they are beneath you simply because they don’t have the same level of formal education. Many people out there are very smart and self-educated, though they may not have the degrees or diplomas to show for it. The fact that you had the time, desire and discipline to study a certain subject, does warrant some level of respect. However, you were fortunate to have the opportunity, while others may have not. Therefore, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re smart. It just indicates that you were privileged.

    That’s why I love to read and learn from people from all backgrounds because education and degrees alone don’t mean that you know what you’re talking about. Life experience and perspective account for a large portion of the individual’s effectiveness and ability to communicate and influence others. We can learn from everyone, whether they are a famous writer, clergyman or just a convict sitting in jail. It doesn’t matter as long as you can use what they are teaching and it has meaning for you. You can learn from their journeys, accomplishments and even their mistakes. A degree or title could even be a hindrance or serve as a barrier, if they do not know how to convey the information properly to their audience or it intimidates others from approaching or asking questions.

    You can learn from their journeys, accomplishments and even their mistakes.

    My concern is that people sometimes put blind faith and trust into those who have a title. Yes, there are circumstances where you’d want someone who is educated and credentialed in a specific field if they are teaching or working on you, such as a doctor or professor. However, there has to be a level of trust that they have your best interest in mind, which has to be earned. Unfortunately, not all people genuinely care or can be trusted.  In my eyes, it’s more important that they have an internal drive and motivation to do the right thing and share information because they want you to improve and prevent you from making preventable mistakes. The higher level is when they realize that teaching and learning is a life-long process. Partly because whenever you impart information, you have an opportunity to learn as well. And secondly, if you stop learning and growing then you will lose touch with your audience, which is constantly evolving. They shouldn’t have to tell you that they’re smart. You’ll figure it out yourself and show them with a constant desire to emulate and learn from them!