“I’m Not An Expert…”

The phrase “I’m not an expert” seems to get used a lot as a disclaimer, a statement of “I may not be qualified, but I’m giving it a shot anyways”. I’ve probably used it before myself. The thing is, it doesn’t mean anything. What people say and what people do are completely different a lot of the time and this is no exception.

If it’s a website for self improvement advice, for example, you don’t look at the like caveat to decide whether you’re going to take it’s owner seriously. You look at the content and how it’s presented. You look at how well they put their money where their mouth is. You use your best judgement and weight their advice against your own experiences.

“I’m not qualified” doesn’t even really enter into it, except maybe as an afterhtought.

After you’re real first impression, reading that qualifier in a description or an about page is only going to tell you maybe one of two things. If their website sucks and it’s just an excuse for sucking it just comes off as them being full of shit, and knowing it. If it seems to be more or less awesome, then generally it just shows how insecure they are.

That’s pretty much all you get out of it though. They’re either hacks and they know it or are good at what they’re trying to do and feel a little insecure. The rest? Well, the proof is in the pudding. What they think of it, however they want to reassure themselves (or others) doesn’t matter. The quality (or lack therof) is in the results of their efforts. The end product.

I rarely attach the expert caveat onto anything I do because it’s not something to worry about. I’ll either fall short or I won’t, and people can think what they want based on that. I’m not an expert, but I think there’s a better way to deal with a lack of qualifications, degrees, or other credentials 😛 .

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6 thoughts on ““I’m Not An Expert…”

    • You could say I do that haha, being a personal blog and all. I think even with people who just talk though, you’re either saying something well or you’re not. I aim for clarity, eloquence, and I don’t always achieve it. But I try to not to make excuses if I don’t accomplish that and I also don’t want to give the impression that I’m unsure of myself. If you were to say you’re not qualified for writing about the things you do at your site (whether out of insecurity, humility, or some other reason), I’d shrug and keep reading because quality of what you have to say and how you present it overshadows that. Plus it works both ways. Experts can communicate poorly to, and can also skate by enough to get their qualifications without really knowing their field. If you were to say you were an expert in awareness/awakening, I’d just nod my head, shrug, and keep reading, because it wouldn’t necessarily make me like you blog any more than I already do.

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  1. Depends on how it is being used really. For example if you are putting your opinion over about some political decision that is being made then saying “I am not an expert but” is I think acceptable. But you don’t want to go visit your doctor about an illness and hear the same thing yanno.

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    • That’s true. That’s kind of why I think it’s an arbitrary thing to say at all… after all, you only voice an opinion if you think it’s right or (at the least) worth considering. Expertise doesn’t phase me one way or the other. Truth stands on its own feet, I’d say. And with doctors, you can always end up with one of those guys that has his wall lined with framed degrees and certifications, with none of them saving people from his incompetence. I just think… when someone says “I’m not an expert” I could just as soon do without hearing it most of the time.

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      • I think it acts as a disclaimer, it is basically saying “I may not be right but this is how I think it is”, if you was having a conversation with someone and they offered up a piece of information, without having that disclaimer there you may take something as gospel and so if proven wrong someone may say oh but you said X

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