At the beginning of last year I had a few videos made, and one of those videos was about what qualifications I had. What inspired me to make this video was an email that I had received around that time.

In this email someone said that they liked my work or that they liked an article, but they wanted to know what qualifications I had. This was something that caused me to experience a fairly strong reaction.

Two Levels

Intellectually, I wanted to know why this person wanted to know this, with me wondering why this mattered. Emotionally, this brought up my own issues around not being good enough and feeling like a fraud.

So, although I had already written hundreds of articles and written a number of books, it hadn’t changed what was going on at a deeper level. All the positive emails and comments that I had received didn’t do much either.

Two Factors

What had played a part was how I was treated as a child and what took place at school. I was often told that I was useless growing up, amongst other things, and I didn’t do very well at school.

Therefore, even though I had come a long way since then and I was longer the same person, the view I had of myself didn’t reflect who I had become. Being asked this question also made me think that this person wanted to know if I had a degree in psychology and as I didn’t, I thought saying this would make me look bad.

Inner Conflict

Part of me wasn’t bothered about having a degree and another part of me felt that I needed one; this was something I battled with for a number of years. I thought that while having a degree would be beneficial, this wasn’t enough for me to go to university.

I came to see that if that was the right path for me to take, I would have taken that path at the beginning. And if I did take that path, I would have just been another person who had a degree in psychology.

The Right Path

Through taking the scenic route, I had the chance to work though my own pain and to share my views at the same time. This was not a path that someone else laid out for me; it was a path that I had to create.

I didn’t know where it would lead; I just had the drive to understand and to heal myself. Being a psychologist did appeal to me at the beginning but it is not something that interests me now.

Personal Responsibility

And let’s face it, even if I did have a degree it wouldn’t mean that everything I come out with would be the truth. Having a degree proves that someone knows certain things, but what it doesn’t mean is that they are omniscient

The only thing that I can do, as is the case for everything on this planet, is present what I know. I will always do my best to provide information that has been well-thought-out, yet what I can’t do is provide a guarantee.

Switched On

At the end of the day, I’m just another person who is trying to make sense of my own life and the world around me. And if someone was to find out that I don’t have a degree and this caused them to engage their brain instead of putting it to one side when they read my work, I would be pleased.

I would much rather have this then have someone accept everything I say just because I have a degree. This person would be giving their power away, and the only person who can truly understand them is the person they see in the mirror.

Another Experience

Saying this makes me think about a comment that was left on one of my articles recently, saying that “you didn't site any sources to further more explain how your information was accurate”. Hearing this didn’t have a negative effect on me; it was like water off a duck's back

I came to see how far I had come with my own growth and then I thought about how it was as though I had just submitted an article for an exam. I mentioned this when I replied and I said that it was not my intention you prove anything, I was simply sharing my own views.

Final Thoughts

I also said that it was up to them to decide whether it was accurate or not, and that it was important for them to trust their own judgement. I have read a lot of books on abuse and neglect, taken courses, had healing and worked through a lot of stuff, but that doesn’t mean that I see myself as someone who knows everything.

I am learning every day, and I would like to think that this will be how I will be for the rest of my life. I believe that we have to be own authority and to come to our own conclusion as to whether something is right or not.

Author's Bio: 

Prolific writer, author, and coach, Oliver JR Cooper, hails from England. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation, including love, partnership, self-love, and inner awareness. With over one thousand six hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

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