When to Stop Asking for Advice

When to Stop Asking for Advice

photo (6)What am I going to do?

It’s the question that rolls around in our minds when we are faced with certain life situations where the answer isn’t as obvious as we would like it to be.  Should I take that job?  Should I break up with my boyfriend?  Is now the time to finally start my business?  Should I invest that much money into a business coach?

Oh, it is never ending isn’t it?  It’s all of these things that make life so much fun.  And it’s also the excuse we need to get our girlfriends together with a nice bottle of wine, deep conversation and most likely their thoughtful advice.

When we ask for advice, most of the time what we are really looking for is an answer.  We want to know what we should do and since we can’t make up our minds, we turn to our friends, colleagues, mentors, etc. in hopes that they can shed some light on the situation and ultimately tell us what to do.  Shame on us for trying to take the easy way out.  We should know by now that the only person who knows what we should do is ourselves.

About a year after starting my first business I didn’t feel quite right.  I knew in my gut that I didn’t want to build that business anymore, but I was so nervous to talk to my business partner about it.  I turned to one of my friends to ask her what she thought I should do and while I don’t quite remember her exact words, she basically told me I needed to suck it up and continue to build the business.

I was devastated because that was not the answer I was looking for.  I knew deep down what I needed to do and instead of moving forward with my instincts, I was searching for validation from others before making my final decision on how to move forward.  Although it was an uncomfortable situation, I am so glad that I trusted my instincts and left the business.

Over the years I have had some amazing mentors and while I have learned something from each of them, the handful who have made the biggest impact in my life are those who never told me what to do.  They did, however, ask me tons of questions.  Questions that at the time I would get frustrated by, but somehow they always ended up being exactly what I needed to come to my own conclusion on what to do about a particular situation.

I’m not saying to never ask for advice, but there comes a time when we need to learn to trust ourselves and do what we know we should do.

Have you ever turned to a friend to ask them what you should do even when you knew in your gut what the answer was?  What advice do you have for us when it comes to taking your own advice and listening to your gut?  Comment below, I’d love to hear what you have to say.