Sunday, July 5, 2009


"Sometimes one pays most for the
things one gets for nothing."
-Albert Einstein

"Free advice is seldom Cheap."
-Quark, "Star Trek, Deep Space Nine"

There are basically three types of Advice:
1. "Free", unsolicited advice.
2. Advice sought for the purpose of assurance and conformity.
3. Advice sought for self-improvement.
The first type, "free", unsolicited advice, abounds all around us.
We experience this type of advice every day. On the television, in
the newspapers and on the radio this type of advice consists of the
daily "news" articles, and "expert" Opinions, which tell us what we
must know, how we must think and, subliminally, how we must
This type of advice also comes to us by way of our family, friends
and even strangers who are continually attempting to impress their
opinions upon us. "Free", unsolicited advice is a kind of advice
which we accept as truth, and act upon, simply because it comes
to us from a source which we want to believe is reliable.
"Free", unsolicited advice carries the least, if any, value. And, for
those of us who act upon this advice, we find that following this kind
of advice usually costs us very dearly in the end.
In addition, free and unsolicited advice also consists of "advice" which
is imposed upon us by those who wish to either sell us something,
relieve us of something, or recruit us into their particular group,
faction or cause.
Whenever we are being bombarded with free and unsolicited advice
we must always ask ourselves "what is the motivation of the person
who is 'advising' us?".
The second type, advice sought for assurance and conform-
ity, is the advice which we seek after we have formed an opinion,
or have come to a decision, on some matter. We then want to deter-
mine how many other people agree with us. We seek out this type
of advice because it makes us think that our opinion or decision is
correct if many other people agree with us. When we seek out
assurance and conformity it is because we have either not taken
the time to personally and thoroughly research the issue confronting
us, or, we are dealing with too many unknowns.
In this instance we tend to believe that if a great number of other
people agree with us, we must be right. In addition, in seeking this
type of advice, we disregard all contrary opinions. Then, when we
think that we have enough conforming opinions, we go ahead and
do whatever it is we decided to do in the beginning. And because
we disregard all opinions which are contrary to our initial decision,
this type of advice-seeking is simply designed to massage our ego;
not to gain Insight. Therefore, this type of advice barely, if at all,
rates above the level of "free" and unsolicited advice.
The third type of advice, Advice Sought for Self-Improvement,
is the Advice we seek when we are looking to improve ourselves
either mentally, spiritually, personally or financially. This is the only
type of Advice which possesses Value and Wisdom. Advice Sought for
Self-Improvement is Advice we seek from those persons who have
already achieved whatever it is that we want to achieve.
Unlike the first two types of advice, Advice Sought for Self-
Improvement must be sought out. And although those persons who
possess this type Advice are willing to give it away freely, they do
not waste their time attempting to impress their Wisdom, experience
and knowledge upon others. These persons understand that they
cannot teach the un-teachable and they cannot motivate the lazy.
These individuals invest their time Learning new skills and honing
the skills they already possess. They are the true Seekers and
"doers" of our current Age. And, if we are to gain honest and reliable
advice, it is these individuals whom we must seek out.
In the end, as always, we are solely responsible for our decisions and
actions. When we allow our thoughts, Decisions and actions to be
ruled by either "free and unsolicited advice" or "advice sought for
assurance and conformity", we have placed our Destiny in the hands
of others. However, whenever we seek out "Advice for Self-
Improvement", we then become a part of that minority which are
truly Seeking to be the very best that we can become.

Comments and Emails: I welcome comments and emails from
people with similar thoughts and feelings. My email address is
located in the upper-left area of this page. Comments can be
posted by using the "Comment" link located below each article.
Also: If you found value in this article please feel free to forward
it to other like-minded individuals, organizations and sites.

Disclaimer: None of my articles should be considered to be
either advice or expertise. They are simply personal opinions
and no more. Everyone is encouraged to seek competent
advice from a licensed, registered, or certified professional
should such advice or service be required.

© copyright Joseph Panek 2009
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