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...and how to know the difference

How do you know what advice to take and from whom?

As a completely nontherapeutic answer to this question, as in, here's a little "good" advice from the DMK "been there, done that squad", we suggest you consider the subjective nature of the answer to that question.   

It's generally based on a multitude of factors that can make any advice good or bad depending on your circumstances, people giving and accepting advice, as well as, the unexpected or unusual occurrences that affect the advice.  Whew!  So ya.  It's complicated.

But, no worries, we can help you navigate the common concerns of taking advice. 

If you're not sure if the advice you've been given is good for you, consider some of the following before taking action or ignoring it.  You should empower yourself to consider all advice, then take charge by implementing the right solutions, your way.

Consider your source

It's common for many of us to use this as a black and white decision maker when determining if we should take advice.  It's easy to think if we speak with someone knowledgeable in their field of expertise or with more education then ourselves, then the advice is good.  And, in more cases than not, the advice is in fact, good. But, should you take it?

Taking advice when you know it's good, but not what you would do

While it's a good idea to consider the advice in making your decisions, don't wholly rely on their advice to make your decisions that affect your life.  You're the one who pays for the result, so be the only one making the decisions.  Consider anyone offering advice only as a contributor to your decision making.

Should you get advice from anyone?

Sure.  Getting advice doesn't mean you have to take it.  It just means you have another perspective to consider.   So, don't rely to much on "the right people" giving you advice.  It may surprise you to know that people of all ages, walks of life and education level can enlighten you with suggestions that could help you come to a solution. 

Bad advice can help

Even bad advice has a place.  When getting bad advice, it sets the boundaries of right and wrong.  It provides a counterpoint from which you can draw comparison.  It fills in the picture of your problem so that you can better realize what not to do, in hopes of determining what you should.  

Consider your situation

Other than counselors, therapists or doctors with a complete picture of your situation, most people, even good friends, may not know the depths of your problems.  Instead of providing advice that is considered therapeutic and complete, their advice is provided according to their limited perspective of you and your situation.  In many cases, their advice is on the basis of their life experiences and wisdom.  Advice from friends can be fantastic and spot on, but just like ours here at DMK, it isn't therapy. 

Friendly advice may not apply to every aspect of your problem or life like that of a licensed healthcare professional.  In therapy, a trained therapist knows the right questions to ask in order to help you find solutions for whatever troubles you.

Our philosophy is for you to consider the advice that seems most fitting your circumstances and life and discard the rest.  Again, consider as many sources as possible in order to widen your perspective to reach the best decisions.  

In fact, with more sources, the less likely you'll place too much emphasis on one or two advisors.  This will better your chances that your decisions will be your own with the help of others, rather than decisions made by others.

Improve problem solving skills with the help of "problem solvers"

Unless you have numerous friends with a great deal of similar problems it may be impossible to find a friend or loved one who is qualified to answer your questions about the problems you face.  However, if it's someone you respect, it may be worth asking, regardless of if you think their answers may be out of touch or not right for you. 

You may be surprised about advice you get from those who have less experience with problems like your own, because their value as a problem solver is that good.  You may hear suggestions you didn't previously consider, or your source may be able to provide advice about reaching an answer to a problem they can't help you immediately solve.

The key is to really listen and openly consider what this person has to say.  Open your mind and try to understand their reasoning.  Even understanding someone you disagree with can provide a great deal of help. 

Trust your instincts

In many cases the problems we face have built-in solutions that we subconsciously or perhaps outwardly already know but block ourselves from implementing.  Fear, guilt, laziness are all powerful components of walls we build for ourselves.  Our self-imprisonment is, in many ways, all that holds us back from career success and life fulfillment.  

Don't get stuck in the decision-making phase 

So, when someone gives you advice that just seems off or not in line with what you already know must be done, resist the temptation to follow.  Instead, face your problem with complete honesty.  Set yourself free and use the advice you were given as an obvious comparable to what you know needs to be done in order to move forward.  

Formerly take control of your life and make decisions that require, not only action, but in many cases, change.  Allow advice, good and bad to wash over you and either affect the change you want in your life or not.  But trust yourself to make the decisions to solve your problems.  

Your future as a good decision-maker

The way you build self-trust is to prove to yourself rather than others that you've got what it takes to manage your life and solve the many challenges that affect it in an expeditious and forthright manner.  Each problem that arises will be easier to solve as time goes on. 

Eventually, you'll wonder why it took you so long to take control of your own life and decisions!  It starts with trusting in yourself to make the right choices.  Soon, you should be able to look back to the problems of the past and they will either seem trivial or you will revel in your strength and perseverance to overcome them.  Either way, you will feel empowered to face anything and anyone that blocks your success and personal happiness.


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