Not That They Always Take It

A recurring theme in my life is people turning to me for advice, and then ignoring it.

I don't claim to be right all the time, nobody ever is, not even the wisest people among us, and I am certainly not one of those. But within my own sphere of reference I think I can hand out sound advice.

I have come to the conclusion that often when people appear to be seeking advice, what they are really seeking is empathy and justification. There's nothing wrong with seeking those things of course, but it would really help if people were honest about their needs!

Monday I spent most of my afternoon giving advice to someone who had been fired from their job in very unpleasant circumstances. I felt I had this person's full attention. He did, after all, come to me and specifically ask me "WHAT SHOULD I DO?". Those very words. He also said "What would you do?" and then asked my advice on several specific areas. He wasn't just whining or looking for pity - or so it appeared.

I answered each of his points. I listened very carefully to each one, and gave my very best suggestions. I feel in my own mind that the advice I gave was optimum. There is no perfect solution to anything, but there are better and worse ways of dealing with things, and I offered what I believe firmly to be the better ways.

And he totally ignored absolutely everything I said.

I'll give you a couple of examples. Top of my list of what not to do was to get into any more confrontational situations with his ex-employer.  So yesterday he went straight over there and got into an argument with him.

Top of my list of what TO do was to write down everything that happened before he forgot any of the details, so that if in future he needed this for legal reasons, he had it ready.

So when I asked him yesterday if he'd done this, he said no.

But there he was back yesterday, seeking more advice. This time it was to ask me for ideas of where he should seek work. I gave him several suggestions. It was immediately obvious from his reactions that he had zero intention of following up on these suggestions. If he does, I'll eat my hat.

Sometimes I ask myself why I bother, but you know I'll do it again. Maybe I should take my own advice..............

chovhani chovhani
46-50, F
1 Response Dec 4, 2008

Do they listen? I have a feeling thay do not then why bother.