"What’s your last piece of advice for our readers?” This was a question posed to me by a reporter recently, as we concluded the interview. Don’t listen to all advice, I said.
She thought it was pretty funny, as I’d just given advice for the last thirty minutes.
We are bombarded with advice and not all of it might be fabulous. What works for someone else might not work for you, but how do you know?
In today’s world where everyone claims to be an expert of some sort, people are very quick to give (sometimes unwanted) advice and some of it can have a huge impact both positively and negatively on you, and determine the course of your career, health, life, relationships.
My very first business mentor told me not to call a business Basic Bananas. I’m glad I didn’t listen.
I didn’t dump her as my mentor because a lot of her insights were brilliant, however in my gut I knew that Basic Bananas would work for us. It might not have worked for anyone else, but I’d been working in advertising and branding for long enough to trust my intuition about this one.
It can be challenging to know what advice to take on and what to ignore. The easy answer is to take all advice with a grain of salt and trust yourself first and foremost.
The issue is that a lot of people have come to rely on outside advice and forgotten how to even trust their own intuition, so I thought I’d break it down into three factors that will help you determine which advice to follow and which to acknowledge, but recognize isn’t suitable for you.
Who is the person giving you advice? Do they have experience in that specific field?
For example if I am looking into property investment, would I take advice from someone who owns no property and is broke or someone who has a successful property portfolio.
Would you take flying lessons from someone who has never flown a plane before? Nope!
So when getting advice, check if the person has a track record and knows what he or she is talking about.
Sometimes you might even want to consult a few people and if you are getting conflicting advice, which is highly likely, let’s look at the advice itself.
Evaluate the advice you are given, especially if it is detrimental to your future, your health, your life, your business or any other aspect of your world.
Rather than blindly following someone’s directions, use your own judgment first. Remember, not all advice is equally as good or bad for everyone.
If you are unsure or confused about some advice, make two lists, one that is pro advice and one that is con advice and then see where you can come up with more arguments.
If someone tells you you should change your career, make a list where you list all the reasons why this is a good idea and another one why it isn’t. One of the sides will most likely outweigh the other.
Take all advice with a grain of salt, even the one you are reading right now.
Don’t just blindly follow a guru, instead learn to be your own guru.
You already are your own guru and you already have most answers within you, but sometimes your ‘guruness’ is shadowed by outside conditioning. Learn how to trust yourself again by trying to listen to your own gut instinct. Intuition can be practiced and learnt.
About a decade or so ago I decided to start listening to my own intuition more which didn’t come easy at first for a Swiss born Australian who was used to make decisions based on logic. Slowly I learnt how to fully trust in myself and now most big decisions I make are not based on logic. Some of them even come across as completely irrational, those are often the best decisions I make!
You don’t need another guru, you already have one, you have you!