Breakthrough leadership letting go

AUDIO: 5 Reasons What You Think You Know Can Hurt You

by Greg Yates | Breakthrough Leadership

They say there are only two things you know for certain in life: Death and Taxes.

Back in 2008, when the real estate market crashed, I decided to refinance one project in order to provide funds to support another one. I didn’t see the problem. I had worked out the logic in my own thoughts, like imagining the conversation you would have with a policeman if he pulled you over for speeding. I thought I had a “perfectly good explanation.”

What I “thought” I knew landed me in prison!  

What I “thought” I knew about the situation was irrelevant. There was pain waiting for me on the other side of that decision I never imagined. You can read about it in my book, “Broken, How Being Broken Unlocked the Greatest Success of My Life.” I had no idea the result of this decision would be three years of litigation, tens of millions in liquidated assets and almost a year in prison.

There were other options. I had relied on the wisdom of being in business for more than 30 years. But, I wasn’t relying on God.

  • Do you believe everyone expects YOU to have all the answers?  
  • Have you ever gotten stuck in your own wisdom?  
  • Have you been hurt by the things you thought you knew?

It’s terrifying when everyone is depending on you!

You’ve got to take this amazing journey with me. Let me share with you what I’ve learned through my brokenness. I spent years defining this parallel that exists in decision making and…

These are the 5 Reasons I’ve Learned What You THINK You Know Can Hurt You


1. We Don’t Know What We Don’t Know

Thinking we know keeps us from searching for true wisdom.

  • Think about your children. They don’t know what they don’t know. You’ve got a Father too and He has promised to give you wisdom if you will ask for it. Until you reach beyond what you know, you are doomed to get hurt.
  • We need key advisors we can trust. We need more than just our brain and our experiences. In difficult decisions, we tend to isolate ourselves. It’s impossible to know what you don’t know when you are alone.

2. Experience Isn’t the Best Teacher

  • Learning from your own mistakes is extremely costly and time consuming.
  • You can’t improve if the only one you’re listening to is yourself.

3. What You “KNOW” Sabotages Your Growth

  • It’s said that the greatest obstacle to future success is past success.
  • If you rely on being right, you’re settling for much less than your potential.

4. You Limit Your Resources

  • There is always more going on than you realize. Only God knows what is really happening and how to navigate it.
  • If you’re decisions are based on your own resources, the results are limited.
  • Jesus told his disciples to feed the 5,000. If they relied on their own resources, they would have remained hungry. They had to rely on what they didn’t know.

5. You Get Stuck in Past Momentum

  • Bad management of bad experience results in more bad results.
  • When you’re comfortable in your past momentum you’re more likely to get it wrong. You won’t desperately seek knowledge when you think you already know.
  • Peter knew how to fish but if he hadn’t listened to Jesus about it, they would have caught nothing.

You Can Turn Limited Knowledge on its Head!

What we “think” we know may be our source of greatest vulnerability. But, what we KNOW we KNOW is still the most powerful truth that ever existed.

We don’t know what we don’t know, but we do know the source of all Wisdom!

What you know sabotages your growth, but who you know, releases unlimited growth.

You’re ready for a Breakthrough when you let go of what you “think” you know.  

Add your comments to the conversation: Have you ever experienced a time in your leadership where you finally let go of what you thought you knew? Post your reply below.

About Greg

Greg Yates has been a Chicago area businessman for over 30 years. He’s the author of the book, "Broken - How Being Broken Unlocked The Greatest Success of My Life". He has simultaneously owned 14 different businesses in a variety of industries; including real estate, manufacturing, payroll, and technology. Greg has also been an investor and a board member. He attended Olivet Nazarene University. He has a passion for flying. He’s had a pilot’s license for over 30 years and owned a variety of airplanes. Greg and his wife Vicki have been married over 37 years. They have a son, a daughter and seven grandchildren.

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