When performance is your goal and you’re listening to advice from others, expect to achieve only as much as they have achieved.
If you wouldn’t switch places with someone in the area you’d like to improve, if you don’t envy where they are, don’t listen! Don’t even ask—their opinions will likely bias you.
(This includes me!)
For example, your family may want the best for you, but often they will know little about the topic they are advising you on.
Good intentions ≠ good outcomes.
As a reader pointed out, this only applies when your goal is to achievement towards an easily-measurable metric of performance— but not when your intention is to, for example, become wiser, develop grace, and develop a facet of yourself that is less-easily measured. I agree.
As another reader accentuated, this doesn’t necessarily apply to “don't do X and you won’t fail like I did” advice either.
Perhaps the most insidious advice is overconfident advice?
Also, please let me know if it seems that I have any essays that betray this! And reach out if you have thoughts about how to improve this, or any of my essays.
Posted 2021 March 4, last updated 2021 March 17.
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