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Be a Guide, Not a Guru
For the past year (or more) I’ve been watching Ali Abdaal on YouTube. He is a medical student from Cambridge and also a “YouTube Personality” who you probably think I wouldn’t have any interest in watching. But I find so much inspiration from the people who are the most different from myself and my journey because I feel like their advice isn’t condescending in any way. This is what leads me to why I wanted to write this blog post.
I recently watched his video on 9 Lessons From 4 Years on YouTube and in it, he shares many points I already knew but one, in particular, stuck with me and struck me because it clearly defines what I’m trying to do and why I’m doing it: Be a guide, not a guru
This comes from his seventh point of the nine and the moment he said it I wanted to brand it on a t-shirt. What holds me back the most (and I know it holds others back as well) is this idea that if I’m not an expert in “a thing” then I have no right or place to speak on it. I’m not a bestselling author so should I be telling people how to format a book or give tips on self-editing? The answer to that should always be HELL YES but I always hear that tiny voice inside my head that says HELL NO! And I listen to that tiny voice.
The truth is, wherever I happen to be on my personal journey towards being a self-published author there will invariably be someone else on their own journey towards the same goal but just one step behind me. Having my thoughts will provide them with confidence that a guru who may come off a bit pretentious just won’t. I know when I latch on to certain YouTube personalities it’s less about them as a person and more about where they are in their journey and it’s their fumbling as they go, daring to share the ups and downs, that motivates me to keep going. Knowing I’m not the only one struggling to figure it out is a great tool for learning, growth, and motivation.
Which begs the question: If I know I’m a “guide” and not a “guru” why the heck haven’t I recorded any YouTube videos yet and dropped some knowledge on that person out there who just might be looking for my kind of insight? Well, when I figure that out I’ll let you know.
For now, I’m sticking with putting all my zany thoughts down into blog posts. I know they don’t translate the same way and I’m less likely to hold the attention of someone who stumbles across my blog but at least I’ll have it written down and who knows, this might be the start of a YouTube script for me when I finally get the courage to record and upload my first video...