Life is an adventure and it is your adventure. There are many times that people give us valid advice and you should always hear what someone else has to say. But when is it best not to take someone’s advice?
Listen to what people have to say, and then think about what feels right to you. Much of the time people are saying something to you with the best of intentions. The problem is everyone’s advice is colored by their own experiences – even mine. So, if someone warns you about a path you are on because it is something that they went through and it scarred them or did not turn out well, do not be so suborn that you cannot see the valuable info that they are giving you. At the same time, though, this path that you are on may be the exact one you should be on, so keep that in mind as well. There may be people who have been in similar circumstances or that want to accomplish similar dreams. You should hear what they have to say and see if anything they are saying can be molded to fit your situation. But always remember, you will never be in the exact same circumstances or have the same goals as someone else. There is always something a little different in every person and every situation. The fact is no one knows what is right for you except you!
An example is when someone says, “don't work so hard, just take small steps.” Many times this is very good advice. But when someone uses it as a way to slow down your good progress, disregard it. You may be going too fast for someone else, but that does not mean that you need to slow down for them. Everyone has their own pace, and when someone is inspired their pace can increase 10 fold. You always want to be going at the speed that feels good to you. This means not too slow that you feel stagnant, and not so fast that you are stressing out. There is that magical area in-between those two extremes, which will be different for everyone.
You will get people giving you their two cents on every aspect of life, but fitness is an especially good example. Everyone seems to know the best supplement for you, which workout is better, how the lemon juice cleanse is better than the the paleo diet, or the Mediterranean diet or the cookie diet. There are thousands of possibilities, and everyone thinks they know what the best one for you is. Someone may say that you need to follow a paleo diet, but you actually do better with a higher amount of complex carbs. Everybody is so different. This is largely why there are so many different diets and workout books available. Again, only you know what’s best for you.
Whenever you are in these situations, stop and ask yourself some questions:
What does my gut tell me?
What experience have they had? Could this be used in my decision making?
What if you make the "wrong" decision? Well, here's the thing. There really is no right or wrong. Sometimes things may not turn out like you wanted them to, but everything we go through builds us into who we are. So, as long as you can filter for the lessons you are learning in every situation, then you are on the right track. I know that this is something you have probably heard before, but it's true. It does not mean that everything you choose will be sunshine and roses. It means that you are taking the path that you feel is best for you at that time. The other side to this is if you are having a strong gut feeling you should do one thing, but someone tells you to do something else and you listen to their judgment verses your own, you may wind up wondering what would have happened if you listened to your own instincts. That, and if you had taken their advice and things turned out badly, how you would have blamed that person, even though it was your choice to go that route.
You can always turn things around, so don't worry so much if everything is not going as perfectly as you want it to. Learn what you can from this experience. One of the fundamental beauties in life is freedom of choice. If you choose poorly then don't worry about it. Make a different choice and move on. Do not give up your freedom of choice. If you do, then you are not living your own life anymore. Rather, you are now a puppet.
Again, this is not to say that you should not listen to people and take their words under consideration. People may have some outside view of the situation that can be helpful for your decision making process, but in the end make up your own mind. You are in charge of your life, do not give that power away.