If You Wouldn’t Trade Places With Them, Why Take Their Advice?

“That’s just not how business works,” said someone with zero business education, background or experience to me.

I think this sounds or look best,” suggests someone who isn’t even close to the marketing field.

If you wouldn’t trade places with them, why take their advice?


I am someone who used to (and many times still do) take everything personal. If they didn’t like my work, they had to think I just didn’t get it. All of the edits on that project must mean they think I’m stupid. I was constantly worried that I was the one who didn’t understand or belong. I was concerned about being able to accept feedback and how that was different from knowing I was doing the right thing. 

I came to realize a consistency in all of these situations. They were people whose opinion I could (for the most part) respect but I would never trade places with. The opinions or advice from people who had never experienced what I was going through let alone attempted what I was trying to attempt…really didn’t matter.

A doctor wouldn’t listen to me on what to do during a surgery. An actor or singer wouldn’t take my tips. If you were to post your product or logo online asking for feedback from people who had no expertise or training…why would you take that inconsistent and possibly detrimental feedback to heart?

You know the saying ‘Not my monkey, not my circus?’ or what about ‘If you don’t pay the bills you don’t get an opinion’? If someone doesn’t have skin in the game, money invested or a partnership invested…why should they have any final decision in YOUR time, YOUR money or YOUR reputation?

Don’t take criticism from people you would never turn to for advice.


In relationships, our next steps for personal, financial and professional decisions…I’ve been selective of who and what I listen to. If I choose mentors and guidance from people I admire and aspire to follow, imagine what would happen for my career? Imagine if I could walk in the footsteps of those who are before me in this industry? There are plenty of Brene Browns, Gary V’s, Jasmine Stars, what have you but there are none like YOU. There will be no one who is 100 percent you and your path. Just because they’ve succeeded in a type of business does not mean that it’s the right path for you. I’m not impressed by fame, millions of dollars or an untouchable attitude.

What I do want to know is are they happy? Do they run their business and not let it run them? Are they able to earn money that supports the lifestyle with their family they want?

Because those are some of the things I’m looking for and if they’ve figured something out that I can copy I’m all for it. Our ultimate goal is to succeed but how we get their and our definitions of success are vastly different.

Advice will always be freely given but it’s up to you to decipher what’s expensive or worth it to accept. And people looking to give away free advice are often shady, hurting in their own way or struggling with their own demons. Their input may be influenced by past failures and a jaded perspective. Let them grow in the shade. Move toward the light!

As a business owner, you need to decide specifically what you want to achieve. What extraordinary things do you want to achieve? Where and when do you want to work and what work-life balance is acceptable for you?

I want to master, own and create the life I want. I want to unashamedly accept praise for m hard work and be 100 percent responsible for any success or failure. I, by NO means, think I am any better or worse than anyone else but I will be damned if I’m influenced by those settling to be average and mediocre in life.



“Why trust the knowledge of a brickmaker about jewels? Would you go to the breadmaker to inquire about the stars?

No, by my tunic, you would go to the astronomer, if you had power to think. And next time if you would have advice about jewels, go to the jewel merchant. If you would know the truth about sheep, go to the herdsman.

Advice is one thing that is freely given away, but watch that you take only what is worth having. He who takes advice about his savings from one who is inexperienced in such matters, shall pay with his savings for proving the falsity of their opinions.”

The Richest Man in Babylon

So what did we learn here today kids?

Never take advice from someone you wouldn’t trade places with. And remember, Some things grow well in shade.



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