It all started in July, when I challenged myself to be larger than life! I was tired of playing it safe, being scared and caring so much about what other people thought. So I made a commitment to be bold and daring in my life by using the skills I am most passionate about: Listening, problem-solving and connecting with others.
And the answer was crystal clear…I was going to offer free advice in Washington Square Park! So, I made a sign that said, “Free Advice” and headed to the park the very next day. I sat there for three hours and spoke to about 30 people. It was so rewarding that I committed to go to the park as often as my schedule would allow. Here I am, three months later and it’s still going strong!
Suddenly, my whole world revolved around the concept of advice.
“What kind of advice do you offer?”
“Why do you give advice?”
“How can you give advice on any topic?”
“What makes you different than other people who offer advice?”
The act of answering these questions multiple times a day resulted in a clear point of view on the subject matter. It has forever changed the way I give advice to my friends, family and even strangers in the park. I would love to share it with you…
I believe this method of giving and receiving advice allows for an authentic experience. Self- discovery is much more powerful than receiving an answer from someone else. No one can take that “Aha” moment away from us because it came from within. That doesn’t mean other people can’t guide us on that journey. To ask for help, learn different points of view and have the support of loved ones are beautiful gifts. But it should not take the place of learning about our own thoughts, feelings and beliefs. In the moment of hardship, it may seem easier to take actions based on what someone else thinks, but in the long run, that can lead to more problems because we’re only running farther away from ourselves.
So, I invite you to ask yourself, “What does the word advice mean to me?” I had never thought about it before but in doing so, I’ve learned so much about myself. Now, I have the power to choose how I will give advice and what I will do with advice when I receive it. I’d like you to have that same power of choice!
Please, share your thoughts!!
-Lisa, aka Free Advice Girl