Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Spare Advice

If you have any spare advice that no one's using, I'll take it.

Here's what I mean.

In the last few months I've had an odd set of similar interactions from people. They each told me about advice they had given to a friend, a coworker, an employer, or someone else. But, they said, the recipient didn't take the advice.

In each case, I found the advice very valuable. In one case, it inspired me to outline an entire project I now have to pursue.

Where do we find inspiration? Wherever we can!

Why does good advice bounce off one person and stick to another? Probably 80% happenstance.

You have to be ready, in a mood, and capable of taking in advice. If you're busy, overwhelmed, or focused on something else, then your "receptors" are not working.

We all get huge amounts of advice that we ignore. Most of the time, that's probably a good thing.

But I recommend being open to inspiration. Carry note cards and write down good ideas. Stick them in a folder. From time to time, go through that folder and bring out an idea or two.

You may not have been in a situation where the idea made sense "back then." But maybe it makes sense today.

It also helps to talk to a lot of people -- including people outside your core circle. One of the great things about travelling all over the place meeting new people is that I get exposed to lots of ideas.

You have to have a filter, of course. But the more ideas you're exposed to, the more GOOD ideas you're exposed to.

So if you're walking down the street and a shady character says "Hey, buddy, got any spare advice?" that's probably me.


  1. Carry around notecards? Is that like carying arround papyrus or stone tablets? :)

    Showing your age man.


  2. Technology that never fails. Completely random access. Fast. Reliable.

    And to be honest, the stone tablets were inconvenient.


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