“Ride the horse in the direction that it’s going.” — Werner Erhard
Everybody’s got something to say about what you do.
People you know, people you love, people you hate. Even people you’ve never met in posts like this one.
They tell you what to do, who to be, and how to live.
“But nobody who tells you what to do actually knows what’s best for you. So stop listening to them.”
People don’t know you as well as they think they know you.
No matter how long you’ve known a person, they don’t know the real you. They know the version you choose to share with them which might be 80% of yourself, but it’s never 100%.
The advice they give you can only be as successful as the amount they know about you — the real you.
People tell you what they WANT you to do.
Even people with the best intentions are influenced by their own desires.
They want you to be happy and successful, but in a way that fits their own definition of those terms.
That definition may not match your own.
People tell you what they WOULD do.
The advice people give you is based on what they would do in a similar situation.
But what they would do is based on who they are, not who YOU are.
Their intentions may be genuine, but the reasoning is often misaligned.
People don’t know what you should do either.
Just because somebody has an opinion about what you should do doesn’t mean they’re right.
Opinions aren’t facts. Take them for what they’re worth.
People are jealous of you.
Not always. Not often. But sometimes.
It’s not pretty, but jealousy exists and it clouds the advice you get from certain people about certain situations.
People want you to change.
Just because somebody loves you doesn’t mean they love ALL of you.
They may want to change something about you and that bias colors the advice they give you. But the thing they want to change about you may be a thing you love about yourself.
People DON’T want you to change.
Other people may love you so much the way you are that they fear your growth may impact your relationship with them.
But it’s in your best interest to evolve into the person you want to become and the life you want to have.
Beware the person who fears your evolution.
Other people are not you.
Ultimately, it comes down to this.
You are the expert on you.
Nobody can know what’s best for you better than you can so trust your instincts, stop listening to others, and own your decisions.
You’ll be glad you did.
BONUS: One easy way to make better decisions for yourself…
One of the best ways to build confidence in your decision making is to broaden your expertise and deepen your knowledge about how the world works.
And I’ve got a secret weapon for you when it comes to doing that — my For The Interested newsletter.
Every Sunday I share 10 ideas (similar to the one you just read in this post) about how to get better at your life, work, and art.
It’s like a cheat sheet to help you make great decisions.
Want to check out the next edition? Click below to sign up:
“You have far more control over your behavior than any outcome. And if you focus on your behavior, it’s possible that you’ll end up with an outcome that exceeds your expectations.”
“I’ve always kept pictures of my heroes above my desk to keep watch over me, like guardian spirits, to remind me who I want to be. These days they help me remember who I wanted to be when I first got started.”
“Patiently, he works his magic.”
“The most interesting information is found in stories, so ask people to tell you one.”
“Cynicism is lazy, it’s the easy way out. If you only expect the worst from society, you never have to worry about being wrong, or disappointed.”
“If you want people to resonate with you, you have to give them something real to resonate with.”
“Don’t just think about the subject matter, think also about — and in fact primarily about — the job that your content is doing for the reader or the viewer.”
“People party because they’re bored — they want something to do. Now we have Netflix — you can watch series nonstop. There’s so many things to do on the web.”