Advice. While it’s easy to come by, it’s rare that it’s life changing. When it comes to pieces of advice that can alter the course of your life, the source matters.
Most often, it’s best to seek out people who have already achieved success in the areas that matter most to you. As Tony Robbins famously says, “Success leaves clues.”
Meaning, when looking out for pieces of advice, never forget to listen, watch and observe.
11 Life-Altering Pieces of Advice
Below are 11 life-changing piece of advice that we all should’ve been taught—but most likely weren’t.
1. Forgo Advice for Deep Listening
During your life, your loved ones will invariably come to you to rant, tell you about a problem, or express emotions such as anxiety, sadness or fear.
Your impulse will likely be to help them or give advice, but more often than not, that’s not the support they really need to receive.
Most often, the greatest gift you can give another human being is a listening ear. Let them feel their emotions, because as a wise mentor once told me, “A feeling fully felt dissipates.”
What others want from you is not a fix, but for you to be strong, present and still. In short, they want you to listen. They want you to witness.
Put simply, listening is one of life’s most essential and sacred skills.
2. Savers are Losers
Nearly everyone was taught by their parents to save.
Unfortunately, this is the worst lesson you could have been taught, because money that is saved decays every year at the rate of inflation (approximately 3.36% per year).
This means that 50 years from now, an item that now costs $100 will then cost $600.
Put another way, your $100 will only be worth approximately $16, due to a cumulative rate of inflation of over 560%. It’s value will have dropped dramatically. Pretty disturbing, right?
In short, inflation causes your money to go down in value, while it causes assets to go up in value.
This is why you must stop saving and start purchasing assets that have the potential to appreciate in value over time.
Ideally, they will pay cash flow too, which leads us onto the next tip.
3. Cash Flow is the Holy Grail of Wealth
As mentioned above, all too many people try to save their way to wealth. However, the problem with this approach is that savings disappear the moment that you spend it.
For this reason, savings do not create financial freedom. This is why people who have accumulated $10,000 (or even $100,000) typically feel as much fear as those who haven’t saved any money at all.
In contrast, cash flow is the holy grail of wealth because it replenishes itself. This lets you use it to pay your life expenses.
For this reason, the secret to achieving financial freedom is—and always has been—to use earned income to buy income-producing assets.
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4. Learning Is a Lifelong Process
Just because you finish school, doesn’t mean that you’ve learned everything that you will ever need. You’ll spend your whole life learning — from the people in your life, from strangers, from experiences you have and the media that you consume.
For this reason, you have to be extremely careful about what (and who) gets your attention.
As long as you keep listening and reading, you’ll learn from all sorts of different people with all sorts of life experiences.
And remember, if you’re not getting paid what you’d like right now, it’s a sign that you have more learning to do.
The single best way to expand your income is to continually stack news skills on top of existing ones until you are rare and invaluable within the marketplace.
5. Your Inner Voice Always Knows
Sometimes in your life, you’ll get a feeling that something is right or wrong for you, but you won’t have a concrete reason why. Trust that feeling.
Your subconscious knows things that you don’t have words for yet.
Your inner voice is all knowing. You may not always like what it has to tell you, but it always knows the answer.
As the wise Glennon Doyle reminds us, “I don’t believe in advice. Everybody has the answers right inside them.” Put simply, no one else knows any more about your life than you do.
6. Criticism is the Sign of Impact
While criticism can be tough to take, it’s always a sign of impact. No one on the world has ever made an impact without attracting criticism. This is because your role as a leader is to attract community of people who believe in your movement and repel those who oppose it.
At its core, criticism is a sign of success. For this reason, you should want more, not less, criticism.
Ask yourself, is there anyone in the world worth admiring or celebrating who does not get criticized?
Plus, constructive criticism can improve the quality of your life and work and listening to it will strengthen your character.
7. Courage is Your Birthright
Courage comes from knowing you can handle whatever you encounter.
All too often, we forgo doing what matters most to us out of fear. Fear of physical consequences, fear of tough emotions, fear of judgement from others.
When you feel fearful, remind yourself, “Fear is only in my mind. I was born to do this.”
Remember, you were born with infinite courage. It is your birthright to step toward fear and conquer it with courage.
8. Hiding is for Fugitives, Children and Turtles
Unfortunately, all too many of us were taught as children to play it safe, blend in and fit in. We were told not to be loud, not to take risks, and not to attract attention.
In essence, we were taught to hide in plain sight.
Unfortunately, this is one of the worst pieces of advice we could have received. This is because money always has and always will follow attention. Respect also follows attention. And, contribution follows attention.
Life is not about hiding, but about being seen.
When you step into the spotlight, you will attract your people (community), positively impact their lives, and expand the meaning and significance of your life in unthinkable ways.
9. Life Doesn’t Have Mile Markers
You may feel like life is a sprint to the finish where you have to meet certain milestones in a certain time frame. Well, that’s where you’re wrong.
There’s no deadline for checking things off your list. Enjoy yourself and stop comparing yourself to the calendar or to others.
Plus, when you do take breaks, you’ll be able to evaluate your path and decide if you’re still on the right track for what you want in your life. It’s not worth running fast if you’re moving in the wrong direction.
Move confidently in pursuit of your goals, but don’t forget to do it on your timeline and terms.
10. Failure Is Feedback
Many people are afraid of failure. But, learning from your failures is one of the most important things you can do in life. Not every decision you make or every single thing you try is going to work out for you.
Mistakes happen, and you’ll learn from them and approach things differently in the future.
What’s most important in life is that you take prolific action in pursuit of your goals.
As you do this, life—and other people—will give you valuable feedback.
Your job is to integrate this feedback, adjust and keep moving quickly and passionately in pursuit of your goals.
11. Be Extraordinary (“Extra Ordinary”)
Being a unique individual is one of the best parts of being human.
Don’t listen to people who try and make you feel bad or ashamed for being yourself. These people are struggling to embrace themselves for who they are. They are deflecting their issues onto you.
As a successful friend of mine often says, “Michael Jordan doesn’t leave YouTube comments.” Meaning, successful people don’t break down others.
Only weak people attempt to attain self-worth through hurting others. Put even more simply, “Hurt people, hurt people.”
To become extraordinary, you’ll need to become extra (“beyond”) ordinary.
As a tactical tip, remember to embrace your “WWW.”This stands for “weird, wild and wonderful.”
The things that make you weird, wild, and wonderful are usually what you are meant to contribute to the world and leave as your legacy.
These Pieces of Advice Are Just the Beginning
Of course, no list of advice is comprehensive. There are many of other pieces of advice that could positively impact your life.
What pieces advice would you add to this list? Reach out to share them with me, because I’d love to hear about your life lessons too.
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