We asked folks we admire to share one piece of conventional advice that they disagree with.

Mama Shye | Wifey & Mama, Natural Hair Care Business Owner, Musician

“POSITIVE VIBES ONLY” I know this may come as a shock from those that know me, but something I have definitely learned and have grown a great deal by taking into consideration is that in order to grow, we have to be able to navigate through the negativity as easily as the positivity. Whenever I’d find myself discouraged, sad, depressed, etc. I’d always find myself right back in that space one way or another when I’d try to “hurry up and be happy,” or “be strong, don’t cry.” I’d never take the time to FEEL. To go THROUGH the emotion rather than around it, so every time it resurfaced I would never be able to fully heal and push forward. This would affect my business in procrastination, this would affect my home life in not allowing the ones who love me most to love ME. Read more>>

Phung Huynh | Artist, Educator, Activist, Community Organizer, and Mother

“Pull yourself up by your bootstraps.” I strongly disagree with the false belief that anyone can elevate and achieve success on their own. We all need our communities and belong to a greater scaffolding collective in building ourselves and each other. The original intent of the saying, “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” was meant to be an insult directed towards a man in Nashville who claimed to have built a perpetual-motion machine during the 19th century. An 1834 publication then responded to the claim that the man can hurl himself over a river “by the straps of his boots.” Bootstraps were designed to help the wearer put on the boots. They were not designed for the impossible task to lift oneself off the ground. Read more>>

Habiba Faisal | Student and a Blogger

One of the most conventional and spontaneous advice all of us have come across is “Follow your passion”. While I don’t completely disagree with the phrase, I believe it should be interpreted and understood properly. The moment we hear this, we think about all those successful college dropouts who are now famously known as billionaires, we dream of reaching that mark and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it. But it takes more than a few risks to get there. In my opinion, one should be rational while making such choices and keep in perspective all the possible consequences. Following passion is justified. Read more>>

Kyle Doohan | Wedding FilmMaker

One piece of conventional advice that I hear a lot is that a person should diversify to decrease their risks and not go “all in” on any one thing. While I think that there are many areas in life in which it may make sense to hedge your bets, I think with business it’s really powerful to be focused on one thing at a time. I know earlier on in my career as a filmmaker, I was more focused on the short term and trying to make sure that I booked enough clients and was staying busy. But over time I’ve realized that these short term gains can come at the expense of long term growth. I think when I am focused on going “all in” on one part of my business and trying to make sure my foundations are sound, whether that be in my creative process or client management or any number of things, my business growth is much more consistent and manageable. Read more>>