The Need to Know it All

in life •  9 months ago

Recently I've been attending many more business meetings like never before. Discussing various technology topics and solutions. Being asked for perspective but also being demanded and prompted to give explanation to recent or past issues and problems that occurred in the IT department regarding the customers applications. It is an interesting and versatile environment because at least once a week I get introduced to new technologies or technological terms or concepts or principles I have never before heard of or worked with.


Wanna know it all

I have this innate tendency to want to understand the ins and out of something I work with or encounter. Like with new technologies, let's say I get introduced to a part in our application that is written and operated and controlled via the Python language and some mathematical framework my tendency is immediately to want to understand all of python and all of that mathematics framework or library used. And I will not sit still or feel able to rest until I feel like I know the ins and out of it perfectly and there is no knowledge gap in my understanding and skill and ability to use, read, reverse engineer and develop new things in Python or whatever the tech is.

I have found that this is quite limiting. It's like a pattern of perfectionism where I only see it as valid if and when I am perfectly perfect at every single thing that is part of my life. Not just at work and with technologies and what I do on a daily job-basis, but also in my hobbies and other areas of life, like painting or exercising. Though, I have realised that for one one cannot practically know and master and be perfect at everything. No one can master and know and have skills in every single technology that exist in this world and on the market. It's just way to much. And on top of it it is also constantly changing. New things added. Others deprecated and discontinued. And then others replaced with newer things.

I learned to take a step back from perfection

So, what I have learned is to relax and take it easy inside myself. To not stress and concern myself with perfectly understanding the ins and out every technology that I am using at work. There are different departments for a reason. One's that are specialised in storage. Others in Server hardware and operating systems. Others again in Middleware and so on. I don't need to know it all. What I need is to be able to communicate and work with others - other teams and work together on the required solutions to existing problems or issues.

“DIY All The Way All The Time”-Overload

This ties well with my general pattern of wanting to do everything by myself and alone and don't want and like to delegate responsibilities or work to and with others because I want all the fame and acknowledgement and praise from others. Accepting and living this pattern in my life and day to day living has mostly led to only problems for me by cramping up my schedule and ending up in feeling overwhelmed and like 'there's not enough time' and 'I don't have time for this' type of feelings and desperation. Usually this ends up in eventually giving up in some form and abandoning a project or task or responsibility or postponing it so much and so often. Maybe even never getting to it at all.

Only the Base to Get Started

I am looking at it this way now: I am and we are not meant and supposed to know it all before we can start doing something or before we have competence and ability and skill do do, apply and live something. I only require a base knowledge, understanding and skills to get going and then expand that to whatever the area is I need and require to do and achieve and create what I need and want to but not everything and all.

Something to chew and ponder on. I am monitoring and researching my own experience in this pattern further and will see what other understanding and realisations are going to spring from that process in time.

Bye, Nebi

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Ah man, this sounds exactly how I am feeling all the time too! Good insight :)

I find that this idea of not having enough time to master a certain topic or skill is actually keeping me from starting certain projects at all. Which can be a bit depressing.

What I try to do is break things down into such small pieces that each of them are doable. After a while of doing these smaller chunks got me where I initially wanted to be.


Hey michelmake, thanks for your input. Yes, that's what I found to: That slicing up a skill or project into smaller doable and more overseeable slices helps a lot. Moving slice by slice until the whole is completed. What helped me most and still helps me most so far with this pattern is to over and over again remind me to let go of perfectionism and trying to be perfect in what I am doing or about to do, and instead shift the focus to: I am going to become better as I go and learn in the process, but not strive for perfection itself. Perfection is kind of this airy fairy term and concept anyways inside our minds I find. It doesn't really hold a substance or isn't really a tangible concept to begin with, I find inside myself.