While writing for the Chicago Tribute in 1997, Mary Schmich wrote: “Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.”
But Schmich was right. Advice, while typically well-intentioned, is only ever someone trying to tell someone else not to make the same mistakes as them. But the problem is, we all have different life experiences, personalities and emotions and what works for one person might not work for someone else.
To combat this, we recommend cutting through the noise, taking a step back and separating the good from the bad.
We’ve cut through the advice noise and flipped it round the other way. Team, what’s the worst advice you’ve ever received?
I am pretty lucky to have been surrounded by loved ones who have always given me great, strong advice, and are rarely wrong with their words. But I have to say that a piece of advice that I strongly disagree with is “Good things come to those to wait.” If you want something, you have to take action and go after it. Good things come to those who work!
Someone once told me I should dye my hair dark in order to be taken seriously as a female professional. Obviously I didn’t take this advice - it just made me question the mindset of the person dishing out this advice and ask why I would ever be judged on the colour of my hair rather than my work, my conversation or my achievements.
Black makes you look slimmer. Now don’t get it twisted, I am 100% on board with an all-black ensemble most days. But I honestly think the perception that black makes you slimmer (as well as the fear of horizontal stripes) put me off wearing any colour for my entire adolescence. Fact is, colour is fabulous and I’ve been inspired by the colours flying into Clearbox these days. I’m sure everyone else has opted for something much more profound, but there you have it.
I’m lucky to have an amazing, supportive family around me that can share their wisdom when I need it. So I have to admit, I’m really having a hard time thinking of a bad piece of advice. Instead, I’m going to flip this and actually share the best piece of advice I’ve ever heard, which came from my mom. Always trust your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, listen to that voice in the back of your head!
“Try this new peanut butter Kit Kat!” (if you know, you know)
One piece of advice that I find very frustrating is, ‘live life to the full.’ For a start, live life to the full, is such a vague sentiment. What is full? Where is the barometer for life fulfilment? And why do I have to? It’s completely unrealistic to always be living life to the full and I have always thought it puts a lot of pressure on people to constantly be enjoying themselves and perpetuates the fear of missing out. No, for me, living life to the full is expensive, and extremely tiring. Sometimes, all you really want to do is stay in the house and just, be.
“Don’t support Arsenal, they’re rubbish” rings in my ears from pretty much everyone in my life when I was six or seven years old. It hasn’t all been plain sailing, but I’ve watched those lads win the Premier League without losing a game. If you’re not an Arsenal fan, you don’t have a ticket to that party. And before you ask - no, I wouldn’t trade it for a European Cup. 49, 49 undefeated…
But remember folks…
"Advice, like youth, [is] probably just wasted on the young”