i value insight and new ways of seeing things.
i enjoy connecting with other people, learning from them, their stories, the parts of themselves they choose to share.
but advice? not so much.
it's just never really worked for me, been all that useful, or effective, as either the giver or receiver.
it assumes that what worked for someone else, what was good and true for someone else, will automatically apply to me. that it is safer to trust someone else's voice, instead of listening to my own. that opinions are somehow truth, instead of one person's beliefs or judgments.
it subtly or explicitly says that i should always be on the look out for something outside of myself, just over there, that will make everything make sense.
it preys upon fear. but more then that, it creates fear, this sense of lack or not quite rightness, coupled with urgency. as if we are always, just moments away, from messing up or missing out.
it offers salvation in the next self help book or online guru, selling the keys to the kingdom, the path to enlightenment, the holy grail of living large.
but what if i don't want or need to be saved?
(and i'm not opposed to a good how to list. (in fact, i love some of them).
and i like an informative youtube video with tips on making crepes or poaching eggs, and i can always use pointers on how to bowl something besides gutter balls.
but the steady stream of advice on how to live my life? thank you, but no.)
"a list of things for which i do not need advice"
- how to be more.
- how to be less.
- how to be authentic.
- how to get skinny.
- how to make money on the internet (by giving you my money).
- how to/"the secret" to attracting things into my life.
- how to hate my body.
- how to love my body.
- how to parent.
- how not to parent.
- how to do ______ in a day, an hour, before i am old because old is for some reason considered bad, and faster is always better, right?
- how to make women, or men, want me.
- how to get a woman, or man.
- how to keep a woman, or man.
- how to not feel bad about yourself for cellulite/lack of education/not meditating/not buying all organic food (the very set up implies that i must be feeling bad about it, that perhaps i "should" be but no worries because now i will be rescued with words of advice as to how i no longer need to be)
- how to be good.
- how to be badass.
- how to get rich in three easy steps.
- how to pump up your ego by becoming famous, a celebrity, adored by others.
- how to not have an ego at all.
- how to be ready for swim suit season.
- how to bounce back after baby.
- how to survive the end of the world (because it's coming and if we don't get ready, we're doomed.)
- how to quit my day job, travel the world on ten dollars a day, and look down on all those sad pathetic people who choose to do something as mundane and ordinary as working day jobs and keeping their kids in un-glamorous public school.
- how to be successful by acting like a man.
- how to be a woman.
- how to seize the day, make the most of every opportunity, live every moment to the fullest, not let life pass me by. quick, hurry, rush, you are probably missing out on something life altering or mind blowing right this very second.
- how to stop comparing myself to others (by comparing myself instead to the standard of good self esteem or the virtue of non attachment).
- how to make my kid smarter.
- how to feel superior to other people (by breast feeding. by not having any pain in labor. by having a "natural" birth. becoming a size 2 only 2 months after giving birth. by abstaining. by indulging. by saying yes. by saying no. by caring. by not caring.)
- how to get ahead.
- how to get ahead while looking sexy.
- how to be sexy, even while pregnant, or sick, or suffering, or after menopause (certain magazines are a gold mine for these gems).
- how to move beyond the desire to be sexy.
- how to be mindful.
- what i should do when i have cancer.
- what tests i should take to predict cancer.
- what i should do to never ever again get cancer.
- after the fact advice, on how divorce is bad for kids.
- how to change myself.
- how to accept myself.
- how to fix myself.
- how to do better.
- how to be better.
- how to be best.