Wisdom lies in knowing when your perspective isn't wanted.

When to Step Back From Sharing Knowledge

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have all the answers. However, I’ve always tried to share what limited knowledge and insights I do possess in an effort to help others. My intentions were good – I genuinely thought that providing a different perspective could be valuable. However, I’ve come to realize that my attempts to enlighten or correct often missed the mark in ways I couldn’t see at first. Rather than appreciation, I was frequently met with hurt, anger, and damaged relationships.

The truth is, most people don’t want their beliefs or viewpoints challenged, even if the challenge comes from a well-researched place. Egos are fragile things, and the human need to feel validated and secure in our personal “truths” is hard-wired. By pushing my perspective, despite my good intentions, I was inadvertently triggering defensiveness. My humble efforts to share understanding translated as arrogance and dismissal of others’ realities.

It’s been a hard-learned lesson in humility. While I haven’t stopped sharing knowledge entirely, I’ve become much more judicious and self-aware about when to hold back. Sometimes, despite how convinced I am of being right, providing perspective is more harmful than helpful in that moment. It may mean swallowing what I think is the truth, but it’s a small price for maintaining relationships and personal peace. I’m still learning, but I’ve gained respect for accepting that my knowledge has limits, as does my ability to impart it onto others. A willingness to listen rather than speak is often the wisest stance to take.

Hamed Azimi

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