I have found pregnant women who have been jilted by their lovers who deserted them in their hour of need. I have uncovered one who went to prison for pimping out his stepdaughter, and two for selling stolen fractured silver. A few have committed suicide, and several have registered patents and invented things. Two were in the movies, a few went bankrupt, and several were attorneys. Many of them immigrated to America and three were murdered in the Holocaust. The list and the stories go on and on.
As I have gotten involved in connecting with the genealogy community, I have learned quite a bit. I still am not interested in seeking certification as a professional, as that is not what interests me, but I admire those who do so if their intention is to help others and serve the general public in their quest to find their "family tree." And of course it is a pursuit that for some can provide some financial rewards.
In that recent "connecting" I have noticed that it is easy to be influenced by the "you should do it this way" or "you should do it that way" mentality of those with greater genealogical knowledge and experience. Some of that is just the general tendency of humans as they become more experienced to want the less knowledgeable or less experienced to do things "the right way." Maybe it is the influence of all the crap trees that are on some of the online tree sites put there by the inexperienced; maybe it is ego, who knows? And of course there is the constant drumbeat regarding citing sources. But citing sources is just plain common sense anyway.
But really, none of that "experience conflict" matters, because for the hobbyist to succeed, in my view they need to take a different tack. So, I offer this pledge that helps me. Hopefully it will be helpful to other hobbyists:
- Don't take this too seriously. It is supposed to be fun. Remember it is a hobby, not a job.
....and no, the rest of the pledge has not been cut off or deleted. There is really only one thing to remember.