I have learned,
the hard way, that giving advicecan be a double-edged sword. Whether you are asked to give it or not, people may be offended. There can be many reasons as to why this is. The receiver didn’t ask for advice, the giver of said advice choose the wrong words, both the giver and receiver are running on fumes; there will always be circumstances that we are unaware of.
Even though someone may ask for advice it doesn’t mean that they are ready to hear it. Advice is usually an opinion based off of experience or it is wisdom that comes with age. Advice is a second opinion, a different perspective but the problem with this is that it is an opinion. I’m sure you know the saying about opinions! If not, they are similar to snowflakes, no two are alike.
When you are giving or receiving advice via messaging, ie text, comments, involves a whole new level of added problems. Typed words may have emotion attached but that emotion is not translated. Words hold multiple and varied definitions. They are more often misconstrued than when said and heard verbally. When we speak to one another we have a tone that the receiver can pick up on, good or bad. In person body language is a good determiner of emotion. Neither of these is present when communicating online or through text. It is left up to the mood of the receiver to interpret the words based off of how they are feeling and guess what? They may just so happen to be having a bad day and your words are a confirmation of what they already know but do not want to hear. Things get ugly in this type of situation.
Nowadays you can hardly offer advice to someone without having a license to back you up. While it isn’t smart for us to diagnose ourselves using the internet, it is also frowned upon when labeling others according to your opinion. Because when you are not a professional that is what it is considered, labeling. While I am not a therapist I will often offer my ear to others allowing them to vent. When giving my advice I always remember to say, “it has been my experience …..” to clear the air that my advice is based solely on my own experiences. This does not ensure that the receiver takes my advice as given but it makes them aware that it is an opinion, not right or wrong.
Everyone has had the friend who is in a toxic relationship. What do they do with your weekly advice? Basically, shove it up their ass and continue doing what they were doing returning to you the next week with the same problem. Experience is the best teacher but that doesn’t keep people from asking for or giving advice. Although we are a nation of sensitive souls, we crave the answers to our problems which we seek out in others. There is default in that. We put too much emphasis on others opinion and from there we choose our own over the suggestions given to us, each and every time until we learn for ourselves. Am I right? Of course, I am! 🙂
By no means am I suggesting not to reach out or offer advice. What I am saying is think before you do. Are you going to take the advice? Are you ready to hear what you already know? Are you in the right frame of mind to accept someone else’s opinion about your personal situation? Were you even asked to give the advice you are giving? Think about it before asking for or giving advice the next time. You just might find you are saving yourself time and your friendship.
Love & Always,