The Thing About Advice

When you need it the most is when you are least able to assess its value. If you could, you wouldn’t need to ask for advice! There are many paths out of a dark valley, but which one’s the right one for you tends to be hard to see not because you don’t know it, but because it’s dark.

That’s why well-meaning friends may offer us a reasonable yet totally ill-fitted solution to our situation, and we’ll ride right off the next cliff. Their advice was the best they could give, but our temporarily flawed sense of judgment prevented us from realizing it was not the right tip for us.

As a corollary, we rarely seek advice when we’re doing well, even though that’s when we have all the time and wits to judge each recommendation based on its own merit to our unique situation. We wait until we’re back at rock bottom, and the random help roulette starts anew.

Don’t wait to seek help until you’re so desperate you can barely see what kind of help you’ll need. Draw on friends and mentors regularly, and keep a file of escape plans at hand so that in case of emergency, you can keep calm and break the right glass.