Spotlight: Linda from Mad About Genealogy – Why ignorance is a huge asset.



Reading Time

4 minute read

A few weeks back, Linda (Mad About Genealogy) had sent an email with a curious line…

be a super-blogger now

First of all, I don’t just interview well-known bloggers. I aim to interview world-class bloggers, regardless of stature, fame, income, etc. Bloggers with hustle, growth mindsets, drive, and a passion for helping people with their content

Besides, the “biggest name” I’ve interviewed has THE lowest downloads of any interview I’ve done (really).

So I did what any podcaster would do….

I invited Linda to be on the podcast NOW. Why not be a super-blogger NOW?

Which do you think is the case?

  • One starts as super, which leads to being “successful” down the road.
  • One starts as “successful,” which leads to being super down the road.

For those of you rolling your eyes, I *do* understand what Linda meant by “super-blogger,” but my point remains: Just because you’re not a widely-known influencer doesn’t mean you’re not worthy of recognition and impact.

Thus, this lovely interview.

Linda has a lot to offer you. And me. I thoroughly enjoyed our talk, and I know you will to.

Let’s be super-bloggers right now. All of us. Let the rewards come and go as the gods will it.

Listen to my episode with Linda:

or listen on Apple Podcasts \ Google Podcasts \ Spotify


Show notes and referenced links

  • Linda’s freebie: A Googler’s guide to finding out more about your ancestry! (um cool. My kind of freebie. Opt-in up top by the way)
  • – the go-to for family history stuff.
  • Find My Past – Trace your family tree, aimed at British I believe
  • Amy Johnson Crow – Another big genealogy blogger

Key Takeaways

1 – Focus 101

To be honest with you?

I don’t have any great answers for you to stop chasing shiny objects.

We all know it’s my greatest weakness (lol)

However, here are two suggestions I’ve been given to work on focus.

  1. Micro level – eliminate distractions like they’re going out of style.
  2. Macro level – Take time to step back and be objective.

Micro – I use to automatically block certain websites, like Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Gmail, Amazon, and YouTube.

This. app. is. gamechanging. for. your. work.

Also, it’s cheap. Grab it and start scheduling “freedom sessions” that will force you to focus on your work. You will 4,301% get more stuff done. (Pro Tip: Set it to automatically block you checking gmail every morning till 10:00am. Guarantee you’ll go crazy for a few days, then get used to it and 10x productivity in the mornings)

Macro – Step out of your own skull every now and then and look at yourself from above.

See yourself from an outsider’s perspective. Am I working on the right things? Am I being focused on my pre-defined goal?

(define that first btw)

FYI, this does not happen on it’s own. 

You’re going to have to schedule certain times to meditate, take long walks, journal, etc…to be able to see yourself with complete objectivity.

But it’ll dang-sure help with focus. Put it on your calendar.

2 – High BS detectors

Whenever I see new bloggers in the “HOW TO BLOG SUCCESSFULLY!!1!” niche spamming Bluehost links, I think of the BS detector.

***BS Detector “bee-ess dee-tek-tor” (noun): The ability to see through people’s attempts to manipulate you or sell you.

Bloggers have high-BS detectors for affiliate links. Especially meta-bloggers and personal finance bloggers.


  1. Trust is needed for blog growth and product sales
  2. BS destroys trust.
  3. Therefore, the best way to gain trust is by not spewing BS

Does your audience have high-BS detectors? Authenticity and transparency is your bread and butter for blog growth.

This was one of my KEY takeaways from FinCon17.

3 – Ignorance can an extremely valuable asset

From “Do The Work,” by Stephen Pressfield and Seth Godin (Pressfield is the same author behind one of my all-time fave books, “The War of Art.” It’s amazing):

The three dumbest guys I can think of: Charles Lindbergh, Steve Jobs, and Winston Churchill. Why? Because any smart person who understood how impossibly arduous were the tasks they had set themselves would have pulled the plug before he even began.

Ignorance and arrogance are the artist and entrepreneur’s indispensible allies. She much be clueless enough to have no idea how difficult her enterprise is going to be–and cocky enough to believe she can pull it off anyway.

Remaining ignorant, whether by choice or not, can actually be an advantage.


Have you ever known that guy/girl who always seem to win? Got elected class president? Top of class? Somehow landed a $450k job?

But they’re not even that smart!

Knowledge, smarts, and even intelligence can also be disadvantages.

Those “advantages” could…

  • overwhelm you with all the tasks at hand (especially important work, which usually seems impossible)
  • make you want to play “the same game” as your bigger, smarter, competitors
  • distract you from the small and seemingly insignificant tasks that NEED to be done.

Does this make sense?

Malcom Gladwell actually wrote an entire book about the advantages of disadvantages. Something Jack Ma (founder of Alibaba) has also given as one of the clutch components of the early days of Alibaba.

They weren’t huge, and they had no cash. Disadvantage?

Not for them.

It forced them to think differently, move faster, and move into other areas of opportunities their competitors couldn’t.

People like Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, Jeff Besos are viewed as visionaries now…but there was most definitely a LONG time where people likely thought them crazy, stupid, dumb, ignorant.

How can you remain dumb right now?

What likely outcome could you selectively ignore…in order to grow?

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