Thankfully, I Didn’t Listen To Mr. Stranger’s Bad Advice

I’m on a lot of weekly thought-provoking email lists. One of my favorites is Isaac Morehouse’s. Isaac is the Founder and CEO of Praxis, a remarkable company tearing the traditional education and career paradigm to pieces. Seriously, if you don’t know what it is, click the link and share it with someone you know who might benefit.

Anyway, Isaac’s weekly email today was about ignoring advice that one might perceive as bad and then asked the reader to think of a time they’ve done just that. It encouraged the reader to see what happened afterwards. 

 

Well we do grow up with our minds fertilized with bad advice that is probably well intended. While I have a long list of what I can think of off the top of my head, there’s one encounter I remember distinctly.

It was December 2013 and I was at a holiday party talking  with a group of friends and strangers about my acceptance to Praxis and how excited I was to move from Detroit to Charleston in January. One of these strangers spoke up, saying something like:

 
I just got my MBA, I’d advise you to get back to school and finish. Get your degree. The job market is ridiculously hard right now and aside from feeling good about yourself doing this Praxis thing, you’ll be kicking yourself in a year or two when your friends are employed and you’re back to bartending.
 
I had to search for months to get job after graduating. You’re not gonna just change all of society. I can’t see this really working out for you. It’s not even proven yet, you just said it. You’re the first. That’s risky.
 

That was a valid thought to consider. Praxis was untested and I have to say I was scared. Praxis offered no guarantee of being a viable alternative for me or anyone. Not really. I’ve written previously about how I almost backed out. I even drafted the email to Isaac Morehouse, the CEO and Founder of Praxis, stating my intention to leave.

What I didn’t share in that article is that this doubt was perpetuated by some bad advice from Mr. Stranger.

Ultimately, I decided to ignore Mr. Stranger’s advice. I wanted to do Praxis because it was untested, because I was going to be the first. Why? In the deepest core of me I saw the vision of what Praxis will become (and I still do today) and I was not going to miss the opportunity that comes with being among the first to give them a chance.

The result? Praxis is the best decision I’ve made for my professional life.

I wish Mr. Stranger well, as I don’t know who he is anymore, but the advice he pedaled could have led me to a dramatically different life that I have today. I could have followed it, maybe I’d have my degree now. Maybe I’d just now be starting at an entry-level position at some business, or maybe even interning for free.

I am partial to the real-life alternative of what I do. I work with entrepreneurs and CEOs of fantastically successful companies to create an Authority Marketing Plan for their personal brand during a private, day-long brainstorming and consulting session which these individuals pay me deposit and fly from around the country to attend. I’m 23. I am fulfilled and exhilarated by my work.

I ignored Mr. Stranger and built a life in a beautiful city, attaining incredible skills in communication, sales, inbound & outbound marketing, copywriting, management, and more. Should I leave my company, I’m phenomenally employable because I know how to specifically communicate the value I bring to an organization. More than that, though, I do not need employment, as I know have the skill set to launch my own company when I desire to.

I ignored some bad advice and reaped the benefits.

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