We love to give advice. I love giving advice. You love giving advice. We’re an opinionated people. It’s what we do.
- “You shouldn’t date him, he’s wrong for you.”
- “Don’t do that, you’ll end up failing.”
- “Ehh, that’s not what I would do.”
- “Well here’s how I would do it, but you do what you want.”
But how often do we take our own advice?
- How many wantrepreneurs who teach entrepreneurship have never made money being entrepreneurs?
- How many life coaches who sell their life coaching services don’t have their own lives together?
- How many web designers have poorly designed web sites?
- This list is endless.
“I don’t know.”
I don’t feel comfortable giving people advice I don’t follow myself. It’s OK to say, “I don’t know,” if somebody asks for your advice or an opinion.
It’s also OK to say, “Listen, if you really want my advice I’ll give it to you, but I’m not in a position to give you advice on this topic.”
What’s not OK is giving people advice via a blog, info-product, website, podcast, e-mail, telephone, or face-to-face and not following that advice ourselves. That is toxic, irresponsible, possibly dangerous, and weak. We see it regularly anyway.
If I had enough vitriol I’d link to the dozens of articles I see on a weekly basis that are founded in bullshit, but I’m currently vitriol-less.
If you’re not an expert, don’t claim that you are. It’s OK to show your flaws. It’s OK to not be an expert. You don’t need to fake it til you make it.
“Fake it til you make it” is the rallying cry of those far too interested in selling you something subpar instead of doing something that matters.
You’re better than that.
That’s my advice.