Can you think of a time that you heard advice only to dismiss it because of a very strong opinion you that you held?
In fact, I’m pretty sure that I’ve ignored words of wisdom hundreds of times in life. More often than I can think of, really. You see, when I was growing up, the adults in my life drilled in me the belief that I am smart. “You’re a very intelligent girl”, they’d say. “I’m so proud of you, Benita. You’re going to go a long way” were the affirming words that helped to mold my beliefs and self-confidence. But these statements also led to some epic fails. Why? For a large part of my adult years, I wasn’t smart enough to see that sound advice comes from many places, including situations I didn’t like.
Being likable makes it easier for you to put your guards down long enough to hear what others are saying. But there’s a difference between hearing and listening no matter who is delivering the message. Ever heard the saying, ‘When the student is ready, the teacher appears?’ Well, that applies to every area of your life. To hear, you only need to vaguely notice sounds in passing. Listening, on the other hand, takes more focus. It’s where you stop, lean in, and pay closer attention. The same skill can make you wiser with money. Listening to those who have been where you’re going and are the person you want to become. Sound advice comes from many sources, too, like friends, relatives, and mentors who become your trusted advisors. If you can’t find a person to fill these shoes, ask people you to give you a referral and if that doesn’t work out, try topic-specific blogs, books, and magazines.
It’s been years since I wore the cape of Miss Know-It-All. As I have gotten older, my perspective has changed. I no longer let personalities get in the way of what I need to know because the goals are to become the best version of myself possible and live an amazing life.
How about you? Have you heard and acted on any smart financial advice lately? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below.
When you hear a good strategy, a life lesson, or a simple tip, listen. Ask yourself, “How can I use this to move closer to improve my finances, live my best life and design my future?” Then, do as my good friend says, ‘Eat the meat, my friends, and throw out the bones.’