It was an abnormally warm spring day when I took my mother to the park to tell her I was moving away.
We sat on a bench facing the rippling river; I was feeling both the weight and promise of a season about to change when my mom offered her go-to line, "Well don't you just want to pray about it a little whi-"
"No, Mom," I cut her off, lovingly. "I already prayed on it. This is what I have to do. I need to grow. I can't do that here."
She nodded in agreement, took a beat, and began laying out ideas to help me fulfill my vision quest.
In that moment, I discovered the power of firmly yet lovingly rejecting advice that does not align with personal convictions - no matter who is offering it.
Vet Your Loved Ones’ Advice Too
It seems painless to blindly follow the advice of those who love you, but as get older, life will show you that it is wisest to evaluate the who, what, where, when, why, and how of everyone's advice first. Yes, that includes Big Mama too.
Real life isn't set up for the age-old idea that we should only take advice from those who love us. In fact, it offers anecdotal proof that we should examine their counsel just as much, if not more than anyone else's.
I'm sure that if it isn't you, you know at least one person who forfeited some of their deepest ambitions under the counsel of those who loved them dearly:
They went through with law school to make their parents proud, knowing acting was their dream.
They married the girl who looked good on paper when they were in love with the girl from around the way.
They had children to make their spouse and family happy when they didn't want children at all.
Parents want their children to experience "better" lives than their own. And sometimes, even our friends don't understand our visions and will advise us based solely upon financial stability and safety. While there is nothing inherently wrong with the desires of our heart, they can pull us out of alignment with our destiny if we receive them blindly when presented at the wrong time, for the wrong reason, or from the wrong motivation.
Advice based on living a "safe" life is meant to be loving. But to live safely leaves so much to be desired in regards to passions and dreams. Safety usually translates to comfort - and comfort doesn't usually produce great things.
My mother's advice to pray about my move wasn't bad advice. It was simply: 1) poorly timed and 2) motivated by fear.
First, I already had the answer I'd prayed for. So, to pray again would be futile. Second, her reason for wanting me to pray was to delay my decision because she was afraid for me to live so far away.
Getting advice is a lot like solving a math test problem. The advice is the answer but in order for it to make sense, you need to show your work, and reasoning.
When receiving advice, ask the person for their reasoning and listen with your mind as well as your heart.
Seek Wisdom From The Courageously Wise
Great lives demand courageous counselors. There must be an element of courage that accompanies any advice. Most of the time we ask for advice when we've got a difficult choice to make, right?
When the fork in the road feels colossal and your answers to life's questions are vague at best, it's crucial to have people in your corner who have faith to believe the impossible and the good sense not to advise you off a cliff. For example, if you're gung-ho to put a down payment on a space for your new business, a courageously wise person might be just as excited about your new venture as you are but she would first pump the brakes and inquire about your business plans, investors, etc.
Courageously wise people take big, giant leaps of faith but they also understand that there are levels to the game of life. They'll be your #1 hype man but they will never let you play yourself by doing too much too soon or skipping key steps on your path.
Listen To Those Who’ve Been Here Before
"Never ask advice of someone with whom you wouldn't want to trade places." - Darren Hardy
If they've not mastered the path you're traveling, why do you need to know what they think?
Don't worry, I'll wait.
That's like asking someone with perpetually poor credit to walk you through the steps to financial freedom. It sounds crazy because it is crazy. Yet, we do it everyday -- allowing friends and family to toss their two terrible cents into the bank of our lives, adding very little value.
Instead, connect with those whose lives are a reflection of achievement in the places you're looking for answers. Just as a receipt is proof of a purchase, please keep in mind when seeking and considering advice that there must be proof of mastery.
What are some of the key takeaways you've learned in either receiving or giving advice? Share them below in the comments!
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This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
If there’s one part of the face that seems to be the most vexing to correct, it’s the under eyes.
This delicate area has a way of being tipped off by our irregular sleep patterns, stress, and the straining that comes from our computers and phone screens. From puffiness to dark circles, it can be irksome to find the right products to soothe our under-eye concerns. Thankfully, there’s one solution that delivers a brighter and more awakened look over time, and that’s under-eye masks and eye patches.
Eye patches are giving our under-eye bags an eviction notice because they can’t hang our glowing faces rent-free. The beauty of these patches is that they are designed to bring your eyes targeted results through concentrated doses of active ingredients directly to the skin under the eyes. Typically made of thin, gel-like material and infused with ingredients like niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, caffeine, and even green teas, these small but mighty patches depuff your puffiness, brighten your dark circles, or tighten fine lines.
While every under-eye differs in its needs, every eye can benefit from an under-eye mask or patch that suits its concerns. And to help, we’ve put together the best under-eye patches to hydrate, soothe, and brighten your eyes.
The KNC Beauty All Natural Retinol Infused Eye Mask, 5-Pack, is a retinol-infused, all-natural product designed to rejuvenate your eyes. It promises to provide hydration, smoothness, reduced puffiness, and brightness without the use of chemicals. With ingredients like retinol to refine skin texture and stimulate blood flow and aloe to soothe and reduce redness, it's like getting 8 hours of beauty sleep for your eyes.
These cooling hydrogel under-eye masks from Topicals promise to fade the appearance of dark circles and discoloration in just 15 minutes. The set includes six masks and offers benefits that brighten, hydrate, depuff, and cool your under-eye area.
Peter Thomas Roth Potent-C Power Brightening Hydra-Gel Eye Patches
Grab these eye contour gel patches to brighten the eye area and combat signs of aging using a powerful form of vitamin C called THD Ascorbate, which is 50 times more potent than traditional vitamin C.
BeautyBio's Bright Eyes consists of 15 colloidal silver-infused eye gel patches designed to provide instant depuffing, brightening, and revitalization to the delicate eye area within 10 minutes. They also contain natural collagen to help diminish the appearance of fine lines, which we love.
These viral hydrogel masks offer moisture and nourishment to rejuvenate tired-looking skin. Their Snail Secretion Filtrate contains "Mucin," an effective moisturizing ingredient that soothes damaged skin and delivers deep hydration, making it suitable for dehydrated and damaged skin types. Your under-eyes will thank you.
Try these caffeine-infused patches to reduce puffiness in the under-eye area. The product features clean, vegan ingredients such as caffeine, niacinamide, and hyaluronic acid for deep hydration and moisture delivery.
The Forever Eye Mask is designed to be the “last eye mask you'll ever need.” This thin, lightweight, and reusable eye patch can hold gels, serums, and creams close to the skin for better absorption, helping your skincare products work more effectively.
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