There's four things that stick out in my head about photography.
1. If you have one model and 100 photographers and the same lighting setups and camera settings...at the end of the post processing part...you're still going to have 100 different pictures. Artists are artists. We are all very different individuals and how we do and see things is unique.
(This is why you must always look at the body of work each photographer does and not just base it off of their word of what place they told you they work at).
2. It's not the equipment that makes a great shot, it's timing, skill, and patience. Too many people believe that if you have that camera, that lens, that modifier, that light and etc., it's going to make you great. No...it's not!
Utilize whatever you have and grind on it! If you only have a kit (beginners) lens, use it until the wheels fall off. Learn to use natural light, and to throw light with that pop-up flash, learn to use whatever is available as your weapon and master it. Even after you think you have it mastered, start all over again and do it again, and again and again. For those photographers that laugh at those who use a kit lens...remember, most of you had to start somewhere.
For those of you with lots and lots of lenses and don't use them...look your style and know what you need and don't need in your tool box of toys. Who knows, maybe another photog may see it for sale on eBay, Amazon, or Craigslist and thank you for it, or do some very interesting/inspirational things.
3. You only have two people you work for. Yourself and your client. Don't listen to others!! Those others aren't you, and most will try guiding you for their own interests, or beliefs. Hell, most of the time they're the ones who keep up drama.
Regardless of whatever people base off social media and "likes", 1+'s, TFP, or "photo credit", or whatever...don't work for them. Satisfy your clients that have paid you and value you for your skills and time.
Photo credit and suchlike don't and aren't going to get you anywhere unless you KNOW it's for a good cause, or it's just to sharpen your photography skills. Besides, I'm still looking for another business that accepts photo credit as a payment.
4. Take and make time to try new styles of photography. This means if you photograph people, then go out and take some landscape photos, or vice versa. Don't be afraid to push yourself to new realms. It breaks the monotony and allows you to escape to try new things.