Three Steps to Establishing Your Brilliance

It’s guest post Monday!!! Today’s post is by Rob Sorbo who blogs about Christian life and missions at  Make sure to check out his blog and follow him on Facebook and Twitter.  If you would like to be featured on the guest post Monday please click here.

I am an avid reader and learner; constantly filling my head with as much information as I can soak in. As I process through all of the new information floating through my head, I form opinions, make connections, and (hopefully!) get a little bit smarter. However, whenever I want to share or apply my new knowledge on my blog or at my job, I struggle with an insecurity I call the Artificial Intelligence Fallacy (AIF).

You’re dealing with AIF when you say or think things like: Why should people listen to me? Why should people trust that this insight is worth anything? Do I really know what I’m talking/blogging about? I don’t have a degree in this subject, I bet I don’t know what I’m talking about! I don’t have any clout, on one will listen to me!

The first thing to know about AIF is that it is a fallacy. You don’t have artificial intelligence. The knowledge that’s sitting up in your head is real; there’s absolutely nothing artificial about it!

Another thing worth addressing is your source of information. I want to empower you to use what you are learning; however, I don’t want you to empower you to use misinformation! Check your sources and get second opinions, but when you know you have learned good stuff, then you need to make sure that AIF doesn’t slow you down.

Does AIF hold you back? Are you scared that you are lacking clout in some subject so no one should listen to you? Here are three tips to help you overcome your AI fears.

Overcoming The Artificial Intelligence Fallacy

 1. Establish a Precedent. If you are consistently a valuable coworker, then I’ll be more likely to listen to you regardless of the topic. If you consistently slack off on the job, dump work on your others, or arrive late and leave early, I probably wouldn’t respect your ideas even if you have a Ph.D. from Harvard.

Let’s look at Apple as an example. When the iPhone and iPad were first released, people stood in long lines to buy them. Apple had set such a high precedent with its other products that people knew the iPhone and iPad would be good before they ever laid hands on them.

2. Invest In Others. Take the time to encourage those around you, help them with projects, and be available to their questions. When you do this your clout will grow, which will cause them to respect your insight. Loyalty works both ways–if you value others, they’ll value you.

3. Become A Solutions Person. You have a head full of ideas, and now it’s time to put that knowledge to work. As a respected member of your tribe, others will stand behind your ideas and be willing to give them a try. Being an solutions person is tough if you’re dealing with AIF; however, one of the best remedies for AIF is seeing your ideas succeed.

Talk To Me

What does establishing a precedent look like in your line of work? Have you had any relationships where someone really took time to invest in you? Did that help make you more successful?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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38 thoughts on “Three Steps to Establishing Your Brilliance

  1. Excellent post Rob.

    As a pastor – establishing a precedent – means I must walk what I talk and live out the faith that I encourage others to live out.

    When I was young in ministry I had an older pastor pour his life into me and it has honestly help to mold me into the man I today.

    Thanks again for the good thoughts and encouragement.

    • Thank God for mentors! It’s such a blessing to have those who have gone before us to help us out.

      I think precedent is more valuable than ever for ministers! The current young (and less reached) generation doesn’t put up with “Do what I say, not what I do” very well.

  2. Great post, Dan. I wanted to add ‘having knowledge and being wise’. Then I realise that would fall under ‘Become A Solution Person’ whereby people are confidence in us enough to confide for our opinions/viewpoints. We have to be a solutionist in order to set ourselves higher.

  3. Great points. Knowing something is one thing, showing others in action the character of your heart is what sets a precedence. A line my pastor use to quote often, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Interesting how we are all willing to listen to a person that is selfless.

  4. After reading this I am thinking of “Applied Knowledge”. We must take what we know and apply it to our lives, otherwise it is useless information. Useless to us and to others.

    Great post for getting people to realize their potential and to do something with it!

    • Yes–that’s exactly it.

      I recently read (I’m thinking it was either here on Dan’s blog or on Joe Lalonde’s blog) that if you learn a lot but don’t apply it, then that’s basically just inspirational entertainment.

  5. GREAT POST!!!! And oh, so accurate. The doubts that we struggle with can be so obstructive to our own success – in whatever we do. Looking to God for His purpose and guidance is the number one thing to do, and then we must trust in Him. Don’t doubt God, and the doubts about your own abilities will subside. The blogging community has been so encouraging and supportive to me. It is a God “thing”, because the people in my life haven’t been so supportive. I have learned to let go of what other people think of me and focus on what God has in mind for me.

    • Yes, it’s a big hurdle that I had to jump as I began to develop my blog. Sometimes it isn’t even the support of others that I need–even the support of myself is a challenge! There are times when I trash a draft because I don’t feel confident enough in my knowledge of the subject to post it.

      • Don’t ever trash a draft – set it aside for a couple of days and work on other things. Then when you go back to it, you see it with fresh eyes. You will then decide what to do with it. You may still decide to get rid of it, or you may see a way to fix it. Either way, after a break from it, and a few prayers about it, you will know. I contend that we writers should pray about our work; search Scripture for guidance; pray again then write it – the Holy Spirit will take it where it needs to go.

  6. Nice acronym dude, the challenge that comes to my mind when you say….value others so they will value you. Sounds like karma, and I guess if you are saying that…all good, but should that be my motivation for valuing others aka simply so that they will reciprocate the sentiment or is there something more to it than that?

    Let me know your thoughts :)

    • Good point–I hadn’t thought of it that way. I guess it is a little karma-like.

      When I wrote it was thinking of the person who has clout insecurity when they share things at work or on the blog–or AIF as I called it. With that in mind, I was trying to identify steps that would help someone feel more comfortable sharing–when you develop clout with your coworkers (or blog readers), they’ll be more inclined to listen to you because they have been exposed to your wisdom/experience/knowledge.

      If you read any tips for improving blog traffic, one of the first things mentioned is that you should read other blogs and actively engage in the comments. When people see that you have good stuff to say, then they’ll be inclined to hear/read more of it–This is the same concept as what I was trying to say in #2.

  7. Oh man Rob… I feel you. This happens to me quite often. I go to write and think “Why am I doing this? Who really wants to listen to me?” And then I have to go and take a look at the data.

    The data tells a story that more and more people are listening. They’re taking what I’m saying and applying it. And more and more people are sharing.

    That’s how I overcome my AIF…

      • It’ll get there Rob. My data is only six months worth but it tells a story of growth. I’m sure yours will do the same. And if you need more encouragement, take a look at Michael Hyatt’s blog today. It’s amazing to know that he had less than 300 visitors a month for his first couple of years!

        • Yes, that was encouraging. I nearly have 300 for April, so I’m doing great considering I’ve only been seriously blogging for about 3 months.

          I’d like to get to the place that I can start selling ads. My wife gets a little annoyed with my blogging because of how time consuming it is, but that would be different if I could pay some bills with it.

  8. Excellent post Rob, you’ve laid out establishing a platform without really saying it… I think lots of people get discouraged before they see the fruit of their efforts… it often takes a long time.

  9. Rob the good thing about my industry is that I absolutely have to sow into others. When I can help someone else because someone sowed into me it’s a great feeling. People enter our industry feeling weak, battered and not believed. If they happen to join the right team they feel empowered and want to help foster that environment. This is absolutely awesome. Great post!

    • Lincoln Parks,

      It’s great you sow into others, I’m sure in every area of your life and not just within your work/industry. Sowing into others is such an important key to success and adding value. Zig Ziglar says that if we will “help others get what they want, we will in turn get what we want.” That’s the law of sowing. Thanks for reading and sharing.

    • 100% true Loren!!! I found this to be true with blogging. Once I started to consistently post, I saw an increase of growth and continue to see growth each month.

      Thank you for sharing that point.