Doers, Teachers, or Your Heart: Who’s Advice Should We Take?

Doers, Teachers, or Your Heart: Who’s Advice Should We Take?

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Sometimes it seems like everyone’s got advice for us, on traffic or otherwise.

So how do we decide who to learn from?

Should we learn from those who’ve done it, or those who teach?

Read on and we’ll find out.

NOTE: Normally my post would be precision-brilliant, loaded with hand-made art and images, tweetables, and beautiful typography.

There’s a very good reason why this post is simpler, and more bare-bones than usual, and it’ll be revealed further down.

That said, it’s one of the juiciest, most dramatic things I’ve ever shared.


Hi. My name’s Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca of

And I call myself a “success coach.”

And for the last 6 months, I’ve been coaching clients, uplifting them in powerful ways…

…all while living on the streets, homeless.

Pretty ridiculous, right?

Well, it gets even sillier, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

Because this raises the question…

“Should anyone take my advice?”

Have you ever felt that way?

I asked myself that question sometimes, even though I’m born to do what I do.

Most entrepreneurs, most leaders, most people who’re building something have felt like they’re not good enough to advise people.

Or that they don’t know enough to be called an ‘expert’.

Or that they’re a fraud at one point or another.

A common tip I hear in marketing circles is “declare yourself an expert“, and following that “if you’ve read a few books on a certain subject, you’re more knowledgeable than most people, and you can help them.”

Well, I’ve lived and breathed success, wisdom, life skills, and media since I was a child.

We’re talking 30,000+ hours – I’ve read more than ‘a few books’.

But better than that, I’ve helped to unlock huge happiness, success, and potential in many people, and I’ve got radiantly glowing testimonials to prove it.

Because I do what I love.

I’m not ‘declaring myself an expert’.

I’m using natural gifts I’ve had since I was little.

When I was a child I’d use epic levels of insight, wisdom, and understanding to get my parents to see why they should let me set my own bedtime, swear if I wanted, and get a job on my terms, not theirs.

Insight & understanding is my thing.

And I love what I do so much that I’ve kept it up through eviction, sleeping on people’s floors, and damp park grass – and I’ve even coached ‘privileged’ rich kids who’d bumped into my homeless ass on the steps of their condo’s lobby.

Why do people listen to me?

Because you can’t argue with people’s natural gifts and passions — and those are the things that make an incredibly strong foundation of any business, project, or blog.

Your natural gifts, passions, and interests are attractive to people. They bring traffic.

Even when life lays you low, they hold power, and I’ll show you an even more extreme example shortly.

For now, we’re a little clearer on why anyone would take my advice… but what about when you’re bombarded with opinions —

Who’s advice do you take?


It’s confusing sometimes.

The internet is filled with experts.

Family and friends always want you to listen to them (often times just so you’d play small and not push their comfort zones with ballsy moves.)

I remember when I was starting my first business — my friends and family all wanted to tell me what to do.

You’ve gotta sell online”, “you’ve gotta pound the pavement”, etc. etc. etc.

Some advice I took, some I didn’t, but in the end, you start to realize you’re taking advice on how to break out of the mold and sustain a business from people who’ve never broken out of the mold or sustained a business.

So here’s where you get the Jay-Z line:

“And as for the critics, tell me I don’t get it
Everybody can tell you how to do it, they never did it”

– Jay-Z, Already Home

It often doesn’t help to take advice from someone who’s never “done it.”

And since I’m not physically an obvious example of “billionaire-dom” yet, since I’m homeless even as I write this, maybe people shouldn’t listen to me, right?

‘Cause I’ve never done it? I’m just like the advice-givers who talk the talk, never really helping, right?


I might look like them, but I don’t live life like them.

I’ve done something far better.

I’ve been happy, comfortable, at peace, and basically had fun with my life In Every Horrible Situation You Can Imagine.

This kind of ‘realness’ and serenity is something even billionaires can’t buy.

And it’s rare; not everyone can teach it to you.

And speaking of teaching, that brings us to our original question: How do you decide who to listen to and learn from?

Do you get taught by someone who’s “succeeded” in your eyes? Or in society’s eyes?

Do you get taught by someone who loves to advise you and teach, but who’s never really “been there”?

I have a story for you that I think may help.

The story of the 3 teachers

Once upon a time, there was a wanna-be entrepreneur named Joe.

And Joe had invested all his time and money trying to learn how to be one.

First he tried learned from Mr. Morris, a teacher at school… who was good at teaching, but had never really ‘made his fortune’, and instead he just taught the curriculum — he’d never done it, and it was clear that what he was teaching had little personal impact — so Joe eventually stopped listening.

Then he tried learning from Perry, a ‘self-made millionaire’, but Joe quickly found that he had no idea how to teach what he’d learned.  He kinda sucked at it, in fact. All they could do is say “I did this” and “I did that” and “I made 1,000,000 off a list of 4,000 people, and you can too.”

It was so frustrating.

He was tired of spending years with these people… trying and struggling to learn from the Mr. Morris’s, who were pretty patient at explaining things, but with no ‘realness’ in it.

He was done trying to learn from the Perry’s of the world, who because they’d bumbled their way through life experience and handled the ups and downs, felt they were qualified to teach others — even though *teaching* wasn’t their strength at all.

And then, when all seemed dark… Joe had a chance to meet a third teacher: Donald.

At the time, Donald’s business was on the rocks; things did not look good.

He did NOT appear to be someone who could teach anyone how to run a successful business.

But Donald had created businesses before and showed that no matter what life threw at him, he had what it took.

Donald also had a natural gift for teaching.

  • Can a singer sing, no matter what the circumstances?
  • Can an engineer invent, no matter how bad life gets?
  • Isn’t it true that people have natural, powerful gifts that can make a huge impact in others’ lives, and that those natural talents require no “proof” or “societal approval”?

That was Donald in a nutshell.

He had the magic.

Whether people recognized the amazing things he could teach and the way he made learning fun and easy immediately or not — all the ingredients were there.

A singer doesn’t have to be a super-star on stage to move you with their voice.

A teacher doesn’t have to have a huge empire to help you ryze.

So even though it looked like a scary gamble for Joe to invest in yet another teacher, especially one who didn’t seem to have the credentials or results Joe was looking for — at least currently — and risk getting burned again…

…Joe hired him.

Do you know why?

Because Joe needed a teacher, period.

Because the way to sort out who to listen to isn’t by “how things look” or by “someone who’s an expert”…

…the way to know is to tune into your feelings.

It’s to look for the singer who never stops singing, the engineer who never stops engineering, and the passionate teacher who can’t help but teach, period.

The way to know who to listen to is to check for the natural passion and the gifted blessings that a person can never turn off, possessed by someone from birth to death.

So for me, I know I’m 100% like Donald.

You see…

I’m in the worst situation I’ve ever been in

I’m writing this post while I’m homeless, and I’ve been running my business like this for almost 6 months (though I’ve done it before).

I almost feel like quitting.

I’ve had just enough clients to keep me on life-support, stringing me along.

It’s not my #1 idea of fun.

But even though life has taken almost everything from me, every day I wake up and help and reach more people.

And just like a musician has his instrument, I have my own tools.

Even without shelter, I still help people through my beautiful Dre Beats laptop – it’s my prized possession and my life’s work.

Or rather… it was.

Remember in the beginning when I said it gets ‘sillier?’

Well it does…

Because suddenly, after 6 months, my laptop was stolen.

It looks like I’m a laptop-less blogger, homeless, success-coach.

And it’s okay.

I’m rebuilding… again.

Now I’m at an internet cafe, with no HTML, an uncomfortable keyboard, no home, no computer, no food, and no sleep…

I’m still helping people to Ryze up.

For me, healing emotional scars, clearing mental clutter, and giving uplifting insights is like breathing.

For me, unlocking people’s potential, in any area of life, in spite of any excuses, is natural.

I never turn it off, and no matter what life has thrown at me, I do what I love, reaching people the best way I know how.

A teacher who’s ‘real’, experienced in life, and who’s fantastic at teaching, is who you want to listen to.

Those kinds of people — throughout all life’s ups-and-downs are worthy of traffic — and they’re the kind of person you want to listen to.

And if you have your own business or blog, this is the kind of real, true, natural talent I recommend you base it on.

And I’m one of them – and I need help

Because right now I could really use a boost in exposure, traffic, and clients.

And I’ve had quite a bit already and I deeply appreciate it all.

For example, Ana’s hosting this article and putting me in front you, fine people.

Two bloggers started separate Ryze fund-raisers on my behalf.

Some clients who were hesitating to purchase, pulled the trigger.

People are tweeting, facebook-sharing, google+’ing and spreading the word.

My copywriter turned up the juice overhauling the copy on page after page at aiming to stir people to action.

Now… I’ve poured my heart and soul into everything I do.

I never stop helping and impacting the world the best ways I know how.

I feel pretty beaten down by life and I’m not ashamed or afraid to ask for help — I could really use a hand.

So here’s your chance to contribute

I understand if you don’t really know me (though I have guest posted on TGC before), but if you feel inspired to share my story, connect with me further, donate, or get in on The 30-Day Comeback Fundraiser, it may literally save my life.

Click here to read the more details of my story and get your offer of The 30-Day Comeback (with exclusive Ryze content).

100% of the proceeds will go to me, to get me back on my feet and keep me touching hearts.

I’m Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca.

I deliver fresh views on taboos, unlock potential, and help you ryze up — and I appreciate your attention.

Thanks so much for reading, I love you all.

Keep ryzing!


Note from Ana:

Jason is amazing.
His story is eye-opening.
The book is worthy.
The price is way too low.
The link is here <== get your own copy.

(I am reading mine…)

Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca

Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca (@ryzeonline) is a positive badass, delivering fresh views on taboos to help game-changing entrepreneurs ryze past plateaus. He’s been featured on,, and Follow him @ryzeonline.

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41 Comments (click here to leave a comment)

  1. Matt Kennedy

    Hey Jason !
    Heart touching story you have shared with us.
    Our best wishes are with you man.
    don’t lose and keep hard working.
    Matt Kennedy

  2. I am absolutely speechless. Inspirational post indeed. Only few people are as gifted as you Jason and by reading this post, I sort of have a belief that you will not give up regardless of the circumstances you are going through. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience among us.

  3. John Di Carlo

    The last thing I read before turning out the light. I felt flat and unworthy before reading this; now I feel more like Rocky! Thank you Jason, thank you Ana, I’m speechless!

  4. Great post. The story doesn’t apply just in entrepreneurship. It applies to general aspects of life as well. This is very inspirational. I hope things continue to look up for you.

  5. Yes, Thomas! You totally get it! :)

    I feel understood :)

    Thanks for your comment. And you’re right, I use my computer many many many hours a day, everything is digital these days.

    To have it (and all the creative projects + products + services on it) taken away, felt pretty bad :)

    Hopefully, I keep ryzing, and with the help of people like you and everyone here — I am!

    Thanks again!

  6. My heart goes out to you. More than anything, I can’t believe your life-line (your laptop) was stolen. That sucks.

    I’ve been briefly homeless. I lived in poverty for a large part of my life – eviction, begging neighbours for food etc… the lot. I know how life can get you down.

    You seem to have what it takes to rise up again.

    • Thank you so much, Anne! I really appreciate it.

      My life line is back online! Thanks to the love and support of the world, I’m blessed to purchase a new laptop!

      Just setting up the software now.

      Phase 1: Done!

      Next phase: ID, and stable shelter!

      And you’re both incredible women 😉

  7. Just purchased my copy of the Ryze Comeback book… Looking forward to that amazing piece of work…

    Additionally I encourage everyone to FOLLOW ALONG with the Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca comeback story in the guest post I published today for Ryze listed below…

    All the best buddy we’re here to support you!!


    • Ryan, dude, thanks for helping me share my story, and thanks for following along with it, and thanks for buying The 30-Day Comeback, and thanks for just being you and the support and everything.

      And you’re right to point them to the post I wrote on your site, because even though touches on my story, I always aim to bring something fresh, and the angle of a hero’s fears, pains, and successes can help everyone going through their own dark times.

      Most people are telling them how to AVOID pain, I teach that sometimes you need to EMBRACE it.

  8. Hi Jason,

    I also spent a year or so living on the street, truly homeless. I didn’t have the connections you have, and the despair and loneliness was all encompassing. I recommend against anyone taking up the hobo life. However, I could take away two big parts of my present makeup. I know that I am “strictly from hunger” and don’t have any problem getting up and going to work every morning. I also don’t have any fear of being homeless again…I’ve been through it and I know I could deal with it. This and my faith in Christ gives me the strength to lay my principles on the line time after time. I hope your path is about to travel a much better place than where you find yourself now.

    Lou :)

    • Lou! It’s really interesting to speak with others who’ve done similar things.

      In the past I’ve been a hyper-productive, insanely hard worker, and in fact, I’ve done more, with less, while homeless than most — possibly a world record of some kind, I dunno.

      I never know where my path will take me… it’s possible somewhere worse, but I am open to whatever life brings, and I do have some preferences lol 😀

      The love and good will of humanity is flowing my way though, through donations, places to share my story, and comments like this.

  9. Astro Gremlin

    Jason, I’ve been there, well almost there. I always had a roof over my head. You get lost sometimes, despite what Daniel Boone said. If you can write, there’s only the detail of getting somebody to buy it. You will find a way if you know what a way looks like.

    • Thanks so much, Astro! You’ve touched on something powerful here. “Being there.”

      I wrote a post today on where I explained that there are “some pains which are avoidable, and some pains which are meant for your life story.”

      This was the latter. To be a hero, you need a hero’s story, and since I was little, I always wanted to be a hero, means I have to embrace the fear and the darkness.

  10. Great post – while my situation isn’t nearly as dire as yours, I understand having some of that “magic” but sometimes feeling like I have no business trying to teach others because I haven’t “made it” yet.

    This was an eye-opening and uplifting post in its own way.

    Thank you for doing what you do. The world is better for it. You’ll be in our prayers here. :)

    • Thank you so much, Lindsey!

      For me what I realized is, no matter if I have proof, no matter if my current situation speaks well of me, no matter if life has laid me low for whatever reason…

      My GIFTS, my natural TALENTS, are always there for me, and there to help others.

      I can’t help if they see it or not, but I’ll never look around at my surroundings again and think: “maybe I’m a fraud, maybe I’m not a wise success coach.”

      Because I was born for this. Period.

      And we need more people, and *businesses*, feeling that for themselves.

      It would solve most of the confusion and stumbling :)

      And thank YOU for seeing and hearing my story, thanks for the prayers.

      Much love, Lindsey (rainwater is a beautiful name 😉

  11. For some reason I cannot get the purchase to work. Is there an email where we can send you a donation via PayPal? Or a link to a straight donation elsewhere?

    Good luck, God bless.

    • Julie! I’m feelin’ the love! Thanks so much! A really beautiful, fulfilling number of people and sales have been made for the fund-raiser, and I’m super-touched.

      I’d love to help fix any glitches, but in the meantime, re: donations ->

      I tried, but Paypal requires me to be a non-profit in order to setup a donation button now. you can donate direct at my paypal address :)

  12. Brilliant post J. You know what you mean to me my friend and this post sums up allot of things people wonder when there is so much information out there. I can’t take advice from a person that doesn’t have experience with anything. I can’t learn anything and might end up getting the wrong information in the end. At least when a person has experience with certain topics, you can learn from their mistakes, their victories and apply some of what they said to your own goals. You have to do YOU always, and use your own mind.

    So happy to see you over hear at Ana’s site and bravo girl for sharing his story. This is our blog community doing their part to spread the word. Jason is awesome person and friend.

    • Sonia! Thank you so much for swinging by and contributing.

      Thanks for the lovingly kind words and praise for me, for Ana, for the post, for the community.

      You do things for the blog community, and New Bloggers in particular that is magical.

      What do we do in an advice/information saturated world? 😉

  13. Hi Jason,

    I actually have a laptop that I no longer use and if you want it then it’s all yours.

    It isn’t top of the line and may need a new power supply unit but it does work and has wireless capabilities. I think the last thing I was running on it was either windows XP or Ubuntu.

    I know it’s not much but hopefully it’ll help in some way. Feel free to contact me privately if you’d like more details.

    Best of luck to you in everything you do.

    • Adam, dude… that is absolutely incredible. That is my kind of helping hand sir. I deeply appreciate it :)

      Ubuntu! lol! I haven’t used linux in aaaages :)

      It is a great help, truly, Adam.

      I’d love to connect with you and see where we go with this.

      Brings tears to my eyes, man :)

      • Hey Jason,

        Feel free to contact me though my contact page on my site so I can give you some more information on the laptop. Hopefully Ana doesn’t mind me redirecting you but I’d rather not post my personal email address in such a public place.

        Oh it’s a Gateway running Win XP. I’ll see if I can get the power supply situation squared away as well. I’d rather see this put to use by someone who can use it then have it collect dust on my shelves.

        • You got it Adam, and Ana got to where she is by helping people, and you can feel it in everything she posts :)

          And I really really appreciate you looking into the details as well.

          Hopefully it can run Photoshop + Dreamweaver, but at this point even a browser to keep with me and take to the library, would be nice :)

  14. On the day that I post on Twitter this “aha”: “I know with certainty, doubt only rises when my mind places labels and words upon the experience; my heart knows the way, absolutely.”….you come along and affirm it. And, that is just what *I* needed :) You *are* is amazing to see. a tribute to your spirit and passion. Perhaps that is “your” answer…you thought you might have wanted to “quit” but your heart asked you to Ryze. Inspiring in all ways!

    • Amazing, Joy! I love the timing :)

      And I’m glad you’re feelin’ the post and my message and what I’m all about.

      As for my answer — I live on the edge every moment, any second I could gain a massive inheritance from a distant family member, or any second I could be hit by a car.

      That’s the power and mystery of life, which I wrote about over at

      The magic of society is we all live and operate as if this isn’t the case :)

      Inspiration rules!

  15. hello jason
    really enjoyed your post even though it was a lengthy one. i think we should take advice from everyone but ”do what you heart says”. thanks for this post

    • Hi Prabhat! Thank you so much for your comment, and I’m really glad you enjoyed my post. That’s what I aim for :)

      You have a pretty good summary there, room for brevity lol :)

      P.S. I don’t measure the length of my posts, I start and stop by feel + intuition, but if they turn out lengthy + substantial, I’m proud :)

  16. Hi Jason,
    Man, I will definitely do what I can to help you out.

    When it comes to receiving advice from others I am generally all ears. I don’t claim to have all the answers and some of the best answers I ever gotten where from the least unlikely sources.

    Keep your head up. :)

    • Totally appreciate the support, Justin!

      I’m glad you have such an open attitude, man, that rocks!

      I’ve learned to be very sensitive and selected to the advice I take in, especially the ‘intention’ behind it or where it’s coming from :)

      There’s no shortage of it around, and it’s often conflicting 😀

      I’ve also learned that in this life time, not all will be answered :)

  17. Jason,

    I liked your story about the teachers and it seems to encompass a lot of people. You can see attributes of a couple or all three in many people we listen to. I agree that it stinks sometimes to have the ear of an influential and successful person that can seeming do themselves but not really be able to show you how. Also great advice on not listening or perhaps not taking to heart the opinions of those who have never done what you’re tying to do as at least in my experience it seem to be mostly negative, but sometimes it is worth a listen.

  18. Ana Hoffman

    Thank you so much for having the guts to share your story, Jason; this kind of transparency is not something you see every day… or even every other day… or ever?

    I appreciate all you’ve done for Traffic Generation Cafe and other bloggers; hope more people are ready to return the favor.

    • LOL! Haha… now that you mention, yes, I suppose this sort of thing is a bit rare.

      I guess singers do it in their songs, talking about pretty intense stuff…

      We have a great community, and it shows :)

  19. Brilliant post Jason,
    I’ve read your post before and i must confess that i so much love your writing style.

    As for me, its always good to go to someone who has done it the hard way before without any short cut and is also able to teach, this is because they can tell you how they started and all the processes they undergone before getting to where they are.

    I know how it feels to loose a laptop, although i haven’t lost mine before but i sure know how i will feel like if i should because my PC is my second DAD, so its a pity.

    I will check out your book and most probably buy it.

    Please no matter what comes your way, try and manage it well because that will differentiate you from failures. God sure have a better plan for us all.


    @ Ana, thanks for allowing Jason to lecture us today.
    @ Jason, thanks for sharing. We love you too.

    • Theodore, wow… what an uplifting, fantastic comment to contribute.

      Thank you so much, I really appreciate you.

      I always love hearing that my life, stories, or expression is loved and moves people. It’s awesome that my other post stood out in your mind.

      You are right about the laptop, it was quite an intense feeling. I’m working on getting a replacement though :)

      Well – I guess I’m on the right track: I’ve managed whatever comes my way, so well, for so long, doing More with Less so productively, that I must be some kind of world-record holder.

      I’m thankful for the chance to share :) Keep ryzin’!

  20. Hi Jason,

    It’s great to see you here at Ana’s place. And I can’t believe how productive you are. I’ve just finished reading your awesome guest post at my blog, and now I’m reading one here and it’s just as brilliant. Wow.

    You’re one of the most impressive writers online, and I have learned so much from you Jason. Keep hustling and keep being awesome.

    PS. I have bought the product, and I have just watched what I’ve received, but it looks really good.