Everyone Loves to Give Advice, Most of Us Shouldn’t Listen!

November 9, 2012

I had a problem with asking too many people for life advice. My theory was that I could get different opinions and then just pick the best one, rather than create my own advice. I just never knew how to generate my own thoughts.

The problem was that everyone is happy to give me advice. Poor people tell me how to be rich. Fat people tell me how to be skinny. Miserable people tell me how to be happy. Couples stuck in unhappy marriages give marriage advice. People who’ve never started a business give me entreprenurial advice.

You get the idea.

Even I am part of the problem. I love giving advice even if I have no clue what I’m talking about. It must be human nature to want to solve other people’s problems.

Now that I’ve had enough misery following ignorant people’s misguided advice, I came up with a formula that’s helped me out a lot.

Old formula: ask anyone around me for advice on all topics

New formula: write down the question first, then look for people who’ve mastered that issue and seem trustworthy & likeable; then read their books.

Premise: regular folks are rarely equipped to give advice that helps. We need to seek out an expert who specializes in that field.

I’d rather listen to a regular guy (ie Gabriel Method) who’s lost 100+lbs and is healthy & muscular now (but hasn’t scientifically tested his theories with a double blind study or whatever bs) rather than a fat doctor who cites scientific studies on how to lose weight. If it’s so easy, how come he’s still fat?!

If you want to have xray vision: just look at your family, friends and colleagues. When they give you advice, just know that you will end up just like them if you do what they say.

Meaning, if a pessimistic whiny miserable coworker gives you tips on making money or happy marriage, just smile & dump that data into your mind’s trash bin. If his advice was so great, why is he living such an unhappy life?