Free Advice – What’s It Worth?

Most of us have heard the phrase: Advise is worth about as much as we pay for it.

That is, when something is free it is often taken for granted, not considered worthy or “suspect” (e.g., what’s in it for the provider of such “free advice”?).

All valid questions and concerns that should be addressed prior to taking ANY “free advice.”

I’ve been a bit concerned about that perspective relative to this blog. That is, I hope these questions aren’t standing in the way of anyone making best use of the information provided. As such, I thought it would help to clarify a couple of things…

First…The “primary” audience for this blog consists of my:

  1. Four amazing sons who “presently” live at home, although 2 are scheduled to move into their own apartment on July 1st. As previously mentioned, I’ve often found myself counseling one or more of these guys and realized that the others (who weren’t present) could also benefit from the conversation. So, I determined that it made sense to write all this stuff down to ensure each receives the benefit.
  2. Nieces and nephews who we only get to see occasionally. It is my hope that the information shared here serves to augment their life as well.
  3. Two brothers and parents who never fail to offer feedback and inspiration!
  4. Network of close friends and colleagues whom I hope will benefit from what is shared here, and/or forward it along to others who might.
  5. Finally…Since I happen to provide this information on the “open net” ANYONE with an Internet connection can make use of it.

Second…This “material” is far from free, as it cost me a GREAT DEAL of invested time and money. This “investment” includes, but is not limited to, the following…

  • A number of years, in my mid-20’s and 30’s, when I was subscribed to a program (for a fee) which provided invaluable personal development information and training via a:
    • Tape of the week (this vs. Podcasts or other current technology 🙂 )
    • Book of the month
    • Monthly seminar
  • The countless hours spent listening to audio programs, reading books and attending seminars, as well as other training programs provided by my employers and those I have continued to take on my own.
  • And, finally, nearly 51 years of life-experience which includes:
    • Being married to the same (awesome) woman for over 26 years
    • Raising 4 sons who are fully-enabled for a successful launch
    • Ascending the ladder of Corporate America from data entry clerk to Vice President (in only 16 years) to owner of my own business and being self-employed (for the past 13 years)

As such, considering the foundation from which this comes, it would seem appropriate to place an extremely high value on this “free advice.” Especially, since I have nothing to gain or lose if others (besides my immediate family) make use of it – or not.

An apt proverb that comes to mind is: Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth 🙂

If you are not familiar with the meaning of the proverb, Wiktionary defines it as:

Do not unappreciatively question a gift.

Especially, with no strings attached…

In closing, I truly hope you and yours make best use of available information and education (whether you get it here and/or elsewhere) to achieve your goals and dreams! Don’t be like (many) others who resign themselves to “this is just the way it is.”

As Henry David Thoreau puts it:

The mass of men [and women] lead lives of quiet desperation.

It just doesn’t have to be that way, if we decide to be different from the masses.

All the best! And, there is much more to come!

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