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Today’s Tip: Never be afraid to say ‘I don’t know’!

Yesterday I was overwhelmed with new informtion that I did not know before. I still have much more to learn in the area of Italian cultural practices and how they impact genealogy, but I am happy to be learning.

I learned early on that in this business it is a great thing to be able to say “I don’t know’.
A friend of mine from school used to be the opposite. He saw such an admission as a sign of weakness. So he would take silent note of his lack of knowledge and then go off and do some learning on his own.

Me? I was the opposite. At first it was being lazy I guess. I saw that if I piped up, especially in class, and said to a Professor ‘I don’t know that’, more often than not they would be off to the races, telling you everything they knew about the subject to impress this poor student. Then after awhile, I came to realize that this was quite a gift and not laziness. If I admitted to a lack of knowledge, I was the lucky one who then got to learn, and often learn a huge amount!

So I came to be quick to admit my shortcomings in the knowledge department and just as quick to learn more and more and more.

It is holding true in my genealogy work now too! So many are so ready to teach and share their knowledge …. but they don’t want to bore or seem pompous, so often don’t offer up their knowledge right away …. but once you ask … the spigot opens!

So ….. remember, if you want to learn, just say ‘I don’t know’!

Onward To Our Past,
Scott

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