In most cases, it's probably better to seek out an expert if you want to do something well.

But what happens when you compare someone who is naturally gifted at something versus someone who had to learn it?

I remember being wowed by a friend of mine who just seemed naturally good at making conversation and meeting people. I wanted to be good at that too and I would always ask her about it. Yet I found her answers underwhelming. They seemed to be overly focused on the result of having that skill than anything practical about how to get there. Then again, why would that be surprising? She never needed such a process because she had the gift embedded in her personality to begin with. The challenges I would need to overcome never existed for her.

As an analogy, I was born in the United States and currently still live here. But if you wanted to talk to an expert on how to immigrate to the United States, you shouldn't consider me an expert because of where I am. You'll be better suited by someone born outside of the United States who had to go through whatever is needed (see? I'm clueless) by way of documentation, qualification, and practical advice to get here.

I employ this strategy sometimes when I travel by asking other travelers who have gotten to know the area well how to get to a particular location. Sometimes the locals gave me directions that were overly simplified. They saw a straight line to get to where I needed to go because they didn't see the points of potential confusion along the way. Their clarity made their instructions puzzling to execute on. While the locals would begin their answer with "It's easy! You just…" the travelers would say something more like, "Okay, the train system is weird here, make sure you…".

Similarly, I enjoy writing about human connection because I grew up with lower than average social skills. I didn't put a lot of energy into friendships or team sports. There were crucial skills I missed out on my development that I had to catch up on later in life when I wanted to make friends and succeed in business. This not-nativeness about the topic thrust me into a methodical journey into what makes us feel connected to others. How do "normal" people join cults? What makes us walk away from a conversation feeling like we gave away our power? These are not background processes to me but active thinking strategies I've built through reading, observing, and a ton of trial and error. I compiled this into /adam/cothinking if you're interested. I continously add to it as well.