There was a time that a very powerful group of people ruled my life and had all the answers. They always knew what the best thing to do was. It seemed that everybody trusted them and based many personal decisions on what this group had to say. I finally stopped listening to them and started to listen to me and have been happier ever since.
If you are tempted to do the same, let me tell you who they are and where to find them. They are the voices without faces. They are the people who came into our lives without bodies. You meet them at stores, in offices, and they even come to your home with visitors. They exist in our lives at times of uncertainty when guidance is sought.
I imagine they were created with good intentions because somebody wanted a second opinion. Most likely, an innocent inquiry took place between two friends where a suggestion was offered based on a similar situation which turned out great for a third person. That is when a trusted ally and an unknown person became the “they” who influenced a decision. From then on, “they” infiltrated many second opinions. It took pressure off of us when we were uncertain. The only thing is they had no idea what was best for us.
The way to remove their influence is to simply remember that YOU know what is best for YOU because YOU have all the facts. It is your life, your emotions, your challenges, your decisions, and your success. I still may turn to the people that I trust for suggestions, opinions, and guidance only because I know them personally and value their experiences.
Another version of them that lurks nearby, with more credentials, are what I refer to as the wise ones who may have had an impact in our lives. They are hiding in the words of wisdom. I admit that I can benefit with words of wisdom, but only when I can relate them to my personal experiences. That is why I almost cringe when I hear a quote cited as a piece of advice. For me, unless the person sharing a quote can relate it to their own experience and evidence of success, it is only hearsay.
For example, a friend may see my exhausted efforts with dog training and remind me how Edison never gave up when inventing the light bulb. Sharing his quote “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work” has little effect on me. I need something more, more personal. How many times has my friend attempted something before it worked? Give me something to hold on to. Because you see, even though I can recognize Edison’s burning desire to make it work, I’m not so sure I have that same desire to teach Jasper to ‘stay’ on command.
It is my life. I am the one influenced by what is best for me. By removing popular opinions and unsolicited advice of good intentions and eliminating the wise-ones accomplishments will enable you to focus on your unique and valued intellect. You can do better than they ever could with your life. It is your wants, your actions, your joy, and your success that allows you to be true to yourself when you are the power behind your decisions.