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I am not paid or compensated in any way to write product reviews posted to this blog. There are affiliate links posted throughout this blog. So, when you click through on links and buy something, I may receive a commission. I pay for the products with my own funds. Product reviews always reflect my own experience with and honest opinion of the product as a consumer.

Friday, November 8, 2013

With a Little Knowledge, You can do a lot of Damage

Many years ago, I was enrolled in a personal finance related course.  I was one of those borderline annoying students who liked to shout out answers to questions in class.  I am sure that some of the other students couldn't stand me because of it, but whatever.  

So, the course instructor asked the class a question and I was the only person in the class to know the answer.  It wasn't even information that was esoteric, but for some reason the instructor was impressed that I knew the answer to his question.  During the class break, the instructor asked me where I learned the answer to the question that he had asked earlier.  he was so curious because it wasn't a topic that was covered in the course textbook and he never went over the topic in class.  I told him that I had read about it in a book. 

He then nodded and said, "With a little knowledge, you can do a lot of damage".  And this is something that stuck with me all these years.  It also brings me to the point of this article:  There is enough information available for you to achieve any objective ti is that you wish to achieve.  It does not matter if your goal is to lose weight, start a business, or find a natural treatment for a disease, the information is out there.

In most cases, information can be obtained for low cost or free.  If you want someone else to do most of the heavy lifting in terms of research and save you some time, then you may need to be willing to pay a premium for good, solid, thorough information.  In that situation, you will need to pay an expert/coach, attend a seminar, or purchase some training courses for the sort of specialized information that you are seeking.  The point that I am illustrating is that whether the information is free or not, it is out there.
Now as far as the free information available, the most obvious place to get it is on the Internet.  You could jump on search engines like, Google, Yahoo, or Bing.  Websites such as Wikipedia.org and Howstuffworks.com are also very interesting and helpful.  Not only is YouTube a great place to watch entertaining videos, it is a destination for an education.  The YouTube channel, Khan Academy is highly recommended.  I am not saying that everything out there on the Internet is true and accurate, but these websites are good starting places. 

Another resource for free information is the public library.  It is like the Fort Knox of information and can literally be used as a come up. I am a huge proponent of public libraries, because I grew up in poverty and the library was a safe haven for me. This is why I do not scorn most homeless people who frequent the library.  The ones whom utilize their time wisely are simply taking advantage of whatever free resources they can in order to get on their feet.  

Being a resident of South Florida, the library system that I normally use in Broward county, is an awesome system.  It gives patrons access to free computers with Internet, free Wi-Fi, e-books, reference volumes, huge online databases of articles from scholarly journals, audio books, DVDs, CDs. The Broward County library system also offers patrons free classes on how to use a PC, how to surf the Internet, how to use Microsoft Office, how to interview for a job, and how to create a resume. From time to time, there also free lectures from SCORE.  In addition, if a patron seeks a particular book that is not available in BCL system, a librarian may be able to borrow that book from another system that has it through an interlibrary loan and Worldcat.  These are just a small sample of the benefits of using the public library. So if you aren't using the public library to your advantage, you are slipping, seriously.  

One of my favorite stories about a person that used the library to her greatest advantage, is the J.K. Rowling story.  She is the author of the Harry Potter series of books.  At one time in her life, she was a divorced, single mother relying on the dole (the U.K.'s form of welfare).  She spent hours in the library researching and reading material to write her Harry Potter tales.  Long story short, she is now worth nearly billions of dollars, because of the royalties that she receives from the Harry Potter books, movies, and merchandise.  That's how she was able to leverage her knowledge in order to become a more educated and wealthy woman.  

Always be about the business of acquiring more knowledge because knowledge is power and knowledge is the new money.  When you acquire knowledge, then put it to good use.  After all, what good is it if it's not used?

© Copyright 2013  Susan Broadbelt

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