I think this was a topic I delayed speaking about frankly because it can be very offensive. However, I owed it to my readers and myself to make sure that I address this topic sooner than later, as the conversation is very necessary.
One of the most valuable lessons we learn in life is the importance of supportive friends. Friends you trust to be open with. Friends you know value honesty. Friends that recognize when the truth is hurting you so they help you as much as they can get through the pain, discomfort and confusion associated with said truth. And friends that most importantly, regardless to how information is shared with you, always always always have your best interest at heart.
Now here comes the caveat, because just because people have your best interest at heart, and love you, support you and want great things for you, not all of those individuals can share with you wisdom, and/or good advice. And as we currently see in the individual occupying the White House, wisdom has no bearing on age. And you clearly can't grow and change in an environment that agrees with and accommodates you.
Growth is in the challenges.
Growth is in the lessons.
The best thing you can teach yourself in this life time is to trust your instinct. To follow that energy and power within you that tells you when something is wrong, right, good or bad for you. Because your instinct will be the first GREAT piece of advice you ever receive. But again that's something that you have to teach yourself and actively practice not to question. As many of us are finding out (or will soon find out) going against your instinct yields some very undesired consequences.
Yet, I am not here today to teach you how to recognize your intuition or trust it. I am here to remind you that it is there and it is your best source of "GOOD" advice. Subsequently, I want to advise you that the friends you have in your life are also there to help you with good advice. But as in all great lessons, you have to recognize the difference between those who know who you are at every phase of your life, are accepting of who you are, and recognize how you receive information (in order to properly communicate with you), versus those who are in the same space in life with you, and agree with your choices because they too lack the experiences to share with you wisdom.
Wise friends know what to say, when and how to say it to you to help you be the best version of yourself. However, it's equally as important to be aware of what advice from the wise (wisdom) looks like.
Wisdom considers the whole picture. Wisdom is not provided through assumptions. Wisdom doesn't allow you to make excuses based on someone else's action or inaction. Wisdom confronts your selfishness and provides solutions that are not just for your good, but for the good of everyone involved. Wisdom considers not only the person its being provided to, but also the person(s) whom are being discussed. Wisdom is unbiased. Wisdom is objective. Wisdom is not always preferred.
Many of us know who their wise friends are. Many of us recognize those friends as wise, but many of us reject their advice because of being stuck on who the individual was, versus who the individual has grown to be. Or we essentially reject the advice because it doesn't serve us in a desired way. Because as I have tried to illustrate up to this point, wisdom has no pride as it's completely void of ego.
Wisdom makes people uncomfortable. And even those who are deemed wise are uncomfortable in many facets of their life. Not because they are not truthful or living right, but because with wisdom comes a responsibility to understand that selfishness is second nature and desired by most. However since the wise don't operate in selfishness, they do not align advice in selfishness and their advice is often rejected, misheard and deemed mean or bad. Thus, they are often met with resistance to simply share good advice.
So even if you are the person who chooses not to recognize and listen to the wise friend, remember that your intuition is the first piece of "Good" advice you have. Completely trusting your instincts encompasses humility and release of control. Trusting your instincts is faith that your gut is telling you to operate in a capacity that will yield results aligned with your highest good. Because continuing to reject the advice of the wise and turning your back to your intuition, will continue the cycle of bad karma you encounter listening to the advice of like minded individuals who have yet to evolve from their selfishness.