Want My Advice?

Are you sure you need advice?

[Cross-posted from Medium.]

Want my advice? Are you sure? Stop and ask yourself this:

Do I already have the answer?

I come back to this quotation a lot:

Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t.

― Erica Jong

Sometimes when I want to ask an individual or group for advice, Jong’s statement pops into my head, and I ask myself, “Do I already know the answer?”

Typical human behaviours and traits:

  • We know what we should do, but we don’t want to do it. 
    Potential reasons: We don’t want to do the work, we don’t want to feel the feelings, we don’t want to hurt others.
  • We look for validation for what we know we should do, as if someone else’s approval matters.
  • We look for validation for what not to do so that we can use that as an excuse to avoid responsibility for our decisions. 
    For example, “She told me not to.” or “He told me that my idea wouldn’t work.”
  • We don’t trust ourselves or our judgment, which relates to external validation.

Read the rest of the post here.