The Challenge of Good Advice
Length: 648 words (1.9 double-spaced pages)
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Good advice is in the eye of the beholder. Advice needs to be relative to the situation. If something is missing from advice the whole topic may be dismissed. If there is too much some info may be missed because some is forgotten or attention diverted.
For advice to be good options should present themselves. I won't want to be told there is only one way to do something. No straight forward answer should ultimately clinch it for me. I'd want insight from a variety of sources. Such as verbal and non-verbal, sentences and actions. Cautioning against something too much may have the reverse effect, every once in a while I've been known to see what will happen, even if guided to do otherwise.
The same advice given to two different people may trigger different actions. My mother has said this to me "Save your money for something you really want" when I was young, like age 9, I ignored this advice because I wasn't ready for it and I "wanted" candy. My age, 18, allows me to listen better save it for college or to buy a car. The older I got the more willing I was to accept advice. It all depended on what I was thinking and feeling at a particular time or age. Or 18 year olds, like some of my friends could disregard the advice as well and just "want" to party.
To me good advice comes from someone I respect or even want to be like. However, if that person is on the wrong track with advice then they could lead me astray. Their so-called good advice may be the worst advice I could ever receive. Taking advice has to be a judgment call as well as a learning process. If I were to choose the wrong path it would be no one's fault but my own.
I usually want drawn out examples of situations in order to choose what advice is good for me and what is not. Yet my brother wants advice straight to the point and easy to refer back to. Then sometimes I want a little of both. To me the somewhat drawn out examples help me to choose the path to go. With more examples I'm bound to remember at least one if not more. The short, but not always sweet, explanations may leave room for interpretation which occasionally have led me to the eve of destruction.
Presentation is another key to good advice. If I were getting advice from a shady individual I would most likely ignore them. Since his advice and view of life probably got him going in the wrong direction in the first place. Or if someone told me something sarcastically, with little eye contact, angrily, or if the person says something and they themselves don't go by it then the advice would have little meaning to me. This person may one day tell their child, "Do as I say, not as I do."
Examples as I've mentioned before are essential. If I were told "Don't take the money" someone would have to have a good reason for me to take their advice. Such as: "That would be stealing", "You'll have to pay 25% interest on it", or "Where do you think that has been?". Any one of those would tell me to leave the money in the place that it stands.
People are giving me advice all over the place. There is no way that I can do it all, or want to. I'm the only one that can decide what advice is relevant and what isn't. My ego, Freudian term, is one of the mediators in this world that helps me decide what is good and what is bad when it comes to advice, along with a little bit of help from my friends, and parents.