Did you ever think about HOW you advise others in life? I have found that is a question rarely asked, but it is essential for all leaders!
As a business/life coach and founder of Live With Purpose Coaching, I recognize now more than ever in my life that the source behind HOW I advise my coaching clients, readers or my books or guests who listen to me speak around Running Down Your Dreams is of paramount importance.
It is easy to give advice. Even more so for the extroverted, A-type personalities of the world. Many people can spout off at the mouth with ideas before they really think about the how to best advice a person. It is easy to do, and I know I have done it before, though it will never be best or wise. It is something I always try to avoid.
I believe the most important factor in giving/receiving great advice is based upon the source or origin of the advice that is given to the person. I truly believe everyone in life is in a position to give advice to others. Now business owners, leaders in business, coaches, counselors, pastors, doctors, lawyers, accountants, financial advisors, public speakers, authors and consultants might be asked to do it most frequently, however the source I seek to share today is one for us all to embrace!
People that are close to us, trust us, seek us out for input and/or are under our leadership; give us access to their circle of influence which can affect their entire life path, and that of those close to them. We should take this responsibility and opportunity very seriously! We shouldn’t give advice (especially for serious matters) with some pat answer. We should make sure we consider the source of where the advice is coming from when we offer it to others. I see 2 major paths…
2 Paths for Seeking and Giving Advice
When someone is struggling with something personally or within their career, we are well advised to first consider where the root of our advice is coming from. Below are two lists that I find many times people’s deepest motives stem from when they seek and give council. The first list stems from one’s typical emotional response to their difficulties, circumstances and expectations in life. There is none more prevalent than selfish-ambition. Many people bring their dreams before me since that is where my books and speaking platform as well as coaching largely is focused on. I am asked time and time again to evaluate one’s dreams and to encourage them through my advice in terms of how to pursue their dreams. My prayer and desire in advising others is to ensure that my advice and their next actions don’t come from anything from the first list below. Satan is the master of deception and we many times lie to ourselves and believe his lies without realizing it. It is easy to do what we want in life no matter what. It is easy to try and hear what we want when we ask people for advice and to dismiss those that might challenge us if our intentions stem from the “works of the flesh” list below.
Fortunately, there is a better way. We can be led, seek and follow the advice of other’s that is rooted in the characteristics of the very spirit of God – His Holy Spirit! Who better to ask than the creator of universe! If the advice you get from others truly stems from encouraging or reinforcing any characteristic on that second list below (even if it is contrary to what you hope to hear), then it is great advice to heed and take action on friend! Doing the right thing is never wrong, and doing the wrong thing is never right. The very word of God promises us that if we seek Him, He is faithful and will teach us and instruct us in the path we should go:
Psalm 32:8 – 8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
Works of the Flesh
- Selfish Ambition
Works of the Spirit of God
So, the next time you are asked to give advice to someone will be stop and reflect on where your advice is coming from? I pray you advice them to travel the path that is led by the Holy Spirit vs. anything that is led by the characteristics stated above which are the works of the flesh. Everything we do matters in life in God’s eyes!
*I help my coaching clients focus on important life lessons like these so they can achieve better balance both personally and professionally. If you’d like to find out more about my life coaching company, Live With Purpose Coaching, feel free to contact me at (717) 283-2377.