Advice From Me? You Have to REALLY Want It!

I had a dinner date with a couple friends a few weeks ago. They were talking about their marital problems and relationship problems respectively, and asked me what I thought.

I came close to snorting my adult beverage out my nose. “Uh, why are you asking ME? You KNOW how I am about things like this!”

One friend said “Because we know that you will actually tell us what you think and won’t try to pretty it up and spare our feelings if we’re wrong.”

The other friend concurred. “Yep. When anybody asks your opinion, they have to really want to know, because you will tell it like you see it. EXACTLY like you see it.”

Hunh. I think I may now know why I do so poorly in places where happy feelings are stressed over actual outcomes….

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3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    kcduffy said,

    It has taken me a long time to stop giving my real opinion or belief on things when asked. Because your friends are right – most people only want you to validate what they already believe or think or do…they don’t REALLY have any intention of doing anything different.

    I do a lot of ‘Isn’t that interesting’ type of conversations. I have little interest in the daily dramas of other people’s lives, I’m sorry to say. Best friend bought me a t-shirt that says “Thou Shalt Not Snivel” and I cherish it!

    • 2

      swampie said,

      My mistake is when I’m in a meeting and the HMFIC says something like “how can we turn this situation around?” and I think he/she is seriously asking for input and instead it is a rhetorical question.

      Now when I’m the HMFIC, I really want people’s inputs, especially the ones that are on the ground doing the job.

      • 3

        kcduffy said,

        Duffy has taught me that MOST people who are in position to hold meetings and ask that question really don’t want it answered. F’rinstance, the unionized government transportation company no longer has ‘moving passengers quickly and safely from bus stop A to bus stop B in a timely manner’ as their job description. The job is to get every union member – based on seniority – every hour of pay and benefits possible, with as little real WORK as they can manage. And if someone was stranded or needed a ride due to bus breakdown, he was NOT ALLOWED to give them a ride, not allowed to take the driver a new bus, or help them get where they were going in any way.

        Duffy nearly went crazy for the 2 1/2 days he really worked there, because he believed they really wanted solutions to the problems.

        You and he would make a great team!


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