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July 02, 2010

Unsolicited Advice

There's always someone who shares advice and issues warnings and likes to control conversations, isn't there? Years ago, I heard myself running around telling what I saw and joining conversations so that I could get my two cents in. One day as I was spouting on about some experience, I listened to what was coming out of my mouth. Apparently I didn't do that often enough because I didn't like what I was saying or how I was speaking. Like a know it all. Like a big britches.

Since that day I take my time before I speak. I listen first. Shock of all shocks, sometimes I see the wisdom of speaking only about what the other person is saying, no need for me to bring in some similar experience or change the focus to me. Surprising I know, it was for me too.

45 comments:

Ms. Anthropy said...

I suffer from that malady, myself. I still have a lot of learning to do and I need a muzzle.

Opaque said...

That is a good insight and some good advice.

Determination said...

really good post... I have to remind myself sometimes to just listen to the other person.

secret agent woman said...

It's funny, but since I have a job that sometimes required giving advice, I have become very, very careful about actually doing so. Because I know well how worthless unsolicited advice is.

Dave King said...

Good post. Well said.

Brian Miller said...

hmm...much to think on you have given us techno...buttoning lip slowly...smiles.

Jannie Funster said...

I started wagging more than barking too -- makes a world of difference.

Mr. Stupid said...

That's good advice. Listening first does help.

DJan said...

I've been thinking about this topic a lot, since I used to be known for never being able to keep a secret, and realizing how much I've changed. Funny picture, too!

Sassy Pants Freckle Face said...

Funny, Funny! Hope u have an Awesome 4th!!

Rock Chef said...

And then you started blogging...

Jeanie said...

I have come a long way myself in learning to be a listener and I find it a nice place to be. It is always good to get a gentle reminder. Thanks.

Casey Freeland said...

That's awesome because in this media, after your posts, what almost everybody does is relate to what you have said with their own little anecdote.

So, just this once, let me just say that you have an excellent point and I really enjoyed reading about your perspective.

Phew, that was hard...

TALON said...

That photo cracked me up because so often the advice people give is definitely not helpful!

Really listening to someone is hard work. That old saying about having two ears and one mouth for a reason is an apt one.

Great post, TechnoBabe, and a great reminder to really pay attention to how we interact with others.

English Rider said...

It used to be called repartee...

jillsy said...

You've hit the nail on the head!! Only wish more people saw it that way! I have definitely toned down in opinion department as I've gotten older.

Eileen said...

Oh, I do that ALL THE TIME!
I notice I do that in comments too! HORRIBLE!
And, here, I was just going to do it again. I'll keep my self-centered thoughts to myself!
Great post!
All the best,
Eileen
PS ~ Thank you for all your kind comments to me! You're a sweetheart.

Robert the Skeptic said...

I have a variation which I call the "don't tell, don't ask" policy. If you ask me, expect to receive an answer.

Suldog said...

Well, here's what I think...

Oops!

SabiSunshine said...

I do the same and i need to work on it too .. love the post

Ina in Alaska said...

That is very wise counsel. I have made it a point to listen to what is being said around me and I have discovered surprisingly that everyone is really only talking about themselves most of the time. Listening is a good thing. Thinking before speaking is an even better thing. Waiting a day or two before complaining about something is completely fantastic. Happy weekend to you and your wonderful husband. xoxoxo

Kristina P. said...

I like to be chatty and give advice, but I also know when to shut up and listen.

Ed Pilolla said...

i have a wise friend in ireland who won't speak in conversation without pausing before saying anything. at first, it's weird to experience. but it's a rich way to participate in sharing.

lots to be learned from those who do things differently for a reason, i guess.

Syd said...

I see this happen a lot. And it used to bug me. But now I smile inwardly and wait for the blowhard to quit blowing.

Joanna Jenkins said...

First-- The photo is a hoot. I love that one!

And second-- Good for you. It's a great reminder to shut up and listen-- A reminder most of us could use.
Thanks Techno.

Hope you and your hubby have a great July 4th weekend.

xo jj

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Hilarious photo! Some people are just like that...but I simply can't imagine you would ever be! Great thoughts! Have a wonderful 4th of July! Love, Janine XO

Unknown Mami said...

This is a lesson I have been learning for sometime. You know sometimes there is no equivalent in our experience and it's okay to just listen and comment on what's being said without bring it back to our own background.

I've noticed a few times when I've totally hijacked the conversation. Not my proudest moments. Live and learn.

Maggie said...

It happens to each and every one of us at one moment and we need to realize when it is ok to speak out. :)

anne h said...

Wow - yes!
And fish DO pee in the water...
I've always thought that, too.

Fancy said...

Well said, Technobabe! What an excellent post!! I think learning to listen is the best policy.

The Urban Cowboy said...

My ability to listen more and talk less seems to get better with every passing year.

Ocean Girl said...

Your comments tell me you listened.

Beth said...

Listening is a lot harder to do than people give it credit for...

Shrinky said...

Yes, sage words indeed! But in truth? I rather doubt you were ever as desensitised as to often fall into that trap - the very fact you can recognise and discuss it here, proves your heightened awareness of other people's needs (smile).

KleinsteMotte said...

Thanks for the wisdom and gentle reminder. I think the comment box does me in. I shall really take more care.

lisleman said...

really you should - - - - - just kidding

Dare I show your post to my wife?

columnist Mary Schmich wrote:
Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

Cheryl said...

I'm guilty of doing the same. I have tried very hard to break this "bad habit".

beth said...

thanks for the reminder !

too many times i have pulled my foot out of my mouth and i wouldn't have had to, if i had been patient enough to just listen....

and both feet, at the same time, YEP, i've done that, too and WOW, it smarts !

jozien said...

hmmm i still do that. But hey there's hope for me, i already recognize it when others do it to me :)

Wandering Coyote said...

I know people like this, too, and yeah, sometimes I do it myself. I'm glad you've have some insight about this!

The Absence of Alternatives said...

A good advice for all! (And the picture is hilarious!)

Kathy M. said...

That's one of my biggest character defects. God's not finished with me yet, but he's at work...

Hilary said...

I have nothing to say on this matter. ;) Except that you chose a great image with which to illustrate this. :)

Julie said...

This is brilliant. I am so guilty of this. Thank you for once again shining the light on truth and making me think!

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Best lesson ever. I came from a family where everyone interrupts, gets their point across no matter what, etc. I also notice a lot of girl friends are so judgy about child raising.

I try and keep my opinions to myself unless someone asks.