I’m urging you to stop Googling “how to fix digestive issues” and searching “how to improve gut health” on Reddit. Your gut healing is not about you becoming the expert. It’s about you creating a team of experts and a community of people who can help you find the answers and gain the knowledge that you need to gain so that you can apply it and take action.
*This is a modified transcript of an episode from my podcast, The Nourished & Thriving show. This episode is titled “Beyond Books: Learning More About Nutrition Won’t Heal Your Gut”, which you can find on your favorite listening platform here.
*This is not medical advice.
First things first, I’m a registered dietitian on a mission to help you increase your impact and legacy on the world while healing your gut and reducing your IBS symptoms. My goal is to inspire you to live vibrantly and provide valuable resources and information that empowers you to take bold action towards your health goals.
Let’s talk about knowledge. Now you may think that has nothing to do with your gut health and fixing your digestive issues, but it has all the things to do with healing your gut.
Before we dive deeper, let’s do a little time warp and go back to when I first started my podcast – I kicked the show off with episodes on each of my Six Stages of Gut Rehab. So if you haven’t listened to those, make sure you go back and listen to them, because they are really helpful in seeing the big picture of what healing your gut even looks like, what that process looks like, and some really big pitfalls in places that people get stuck along the way. You can also read a quick synopsis on my blog here.
So now when we talk about knowledge, know we are talking about one of those stages of gut rehab, because it could be the thing that’s really holding you back. So now I’ll ask: Is knowledge holding you back? Is learning holding you back?
You might be thinking, “What? How?!” This is how it happens…
You know the quote Thomas Jefferson is attributed with saying, “Knowledge is power”? Thomas Jefferson said this with the intent of building a state university, which is a really marvelous thing to work on, create and build and distribute knowledge to people. Now, the abundance of state universities is a stark contrast to the times when accessibility to education was scarce. A few hundred years ago, most people were not educated and therefore, had no ways to better themselves. This created a huge rift in society between people who had resources and those who didn’t. That gap is still present today – narrowed and made smaller because of the accessibility to information with the internet and podcasts and millions of information points at your fingertips.
In some ways, we’ve almost gone from one extreme to the other, where people didn’t have enough access to knowledge and now it’s like trying to drink out of a fire hose. It’s way too much information to be able to sort through. I hear it all the time… “I just need to learn more,” “I just need to study more,” “I just need to read more,” “I just need to listen to more,” etc. “Only then I will I know how to fix my digestive issues, or have a better understanding of my body, or know how to better my gut health, and then I’ll feel better.”
This is where I disagree with Thomas Jefferson’s statement, “knowledge is power.” I actually agree more with Napoleon Hill in his famous book, Think And Grow Rich. Hill says, “Knowledge is not power. Knowledge is the potential for power.”
Knowledge is absolutely still necessary, but you do not need to be an expert in every single thing. Nor should you be. Nor can you be. We are limited by our human capacities to learn. Napoleon Hill followed his statement up with a story about Henry Ford. In this story, Ford sued newspapers for saying he was uneducated. During this trial, Ford was put on stage as a witness against himself. The attorney was asking him all of these really detailed questions about history and academics. Henry Ford finally says, “If I wanted to answer any of these questions that you are asking me, I have a button on my desk where I can call any number of people who bring me all of the information possible that I would need to know.” I think that is really powerful. You don’t have to know all the things in order to have power, whether it’s in your job or over your own body with your health.
It’s not about you becoming the expert. It’s about you creating a team of experts and a mastermind and a community of people who can help you find the answers and gain the knowledge that you need to gain so you can apply it and take action, right? If you only focus on reading and learning and not taking action, eventually you’ll get to the point where you determine you need to become a doctor or a nutritionist yourself.
Really! I’ve talked to people like that, and that’s wonderful if you become so passionate about nutrition or health through your own experience that you want to help other people. But if you feel like you need to gain all of that information just so you can help yourself, you are making it way more difficult than it needs to be.
If you continue to learn and retain information, you get stuck in that second stage of gut rehab, which I call the Root Cause Researcher. You just research and research and research, and then you start to find out that everything contradicts everything else. So how can you possibly know what the right answer is or what the perfect solution is to your struggles?
When everything is contradictory, the way out of it is to try things – to take action. You have to have experience, and that is the value that I, as an expert in gut health and registered dietitian, bring. I’ve helped hundreds of people, so I’ve seen what works and what doesn’t work. I’m part of masterminds with other providers who see what works and what doesn’t work. I bring all of that experience of application of knowledge to you. And I also bring you the knowledge that’s most important for you to know so that you’re not sifting through the internet with billions of data points, trying to figure out how to fix your digestive issues – or worse trying to figure out how to even get a grip on all of this information that’s out there.
If you spend all your time researching, but are too scared to take action. Or if you have taken action, but it didn’t work so you returned to researching, then you’re stuck. You’re no better than an encyclopedia, right? You have all the information and facts, but you still don’t know how to apply that knowledge. The application of knowledge is what is really powerful and is most likely missing from your health journey.
So is knowledge power? Knowledge is powerful and it is required for power. But it’s really just creating that potential, right? It’s what you do with that knowledge that makes all the difference in the world. So if you just sit on your knowledge, you may know a lot of random facts, but you’re not going to be any better off at the end of the day. If you are in pain and you are struggling with your gut health and you’re spending hours online researching or doing courses, but you’re not able to apply that information and see meaningful change, what have you gained? Now answer me this: what have you lost? How many years of your life have you spent doing that instead of living?
This is your reminder that knowledge has to be applied.
If you thought, “That’s me, I’m a Root Cause Researcher!” and you’re tired of being stuck there, I would love to talk with you about how to get you unstuck and how to free up your time so that you can go live that beautiful life. Request a free, no-commitment Nourished Clarity Call today to see how I can help.