Giving unsolicited advice-Why do people do it?

When we ask for advice from someone that is very knowledgeable in certain areas or from someone whom we admire, this can be very useful both in the short term and long term.

On the other hand, unsolicited advice from close family or even from complete strangers can be an annoying and sometimes insulting behaviour.

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It could be done in a well meaning manner by some people but in most cases unsolicited advice is self-serving.

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The more well meaning reasons someone gives unsolicited advice are firstly because they are trying to be friendly, secondly they are just excited to share something that worked for them or thirdly they are just completely altruistic.

Some other motivations that might be harder to spot however are listed below:

Helplessness & wanting to solve your problems: If you are sharing some thoughts on how you are struggling in a certain situation, the listener may think that you need them to fix your problem rather than just validate what you are saying. They think that by giving you some sort of solution you will feel happier. This isn’t the case though in most situations.

The need to be needed:
Some people just have an intense need to be needed and to feel important. It’s as simple as that.

Narcissistic tendencies: People who may have a Narcissistic Personality, think that what they have to say is very important and they tend to be in the role of ‘teacher’ very often. They think that they are better than you and that their opinions are of high value, so they tend to offer advice all the time.

Dominance: This is similar to the behaviour of a Narcissist. Being dominant in a conversation is very important to some people. They want to be the most influential person and they have difficulty understanding why somebody might not want to hear what they have to say.

Being judgemental: If someone doesn’t like the way you are doing something, then they will give you advice so you can change it. This is when unsolicited advise becomes insulting.

So how do you respond to someone giving you unsolicited advice?

This can be rather tricky. If your reply is too detailed then this might encourage more unsolicited advice. If your reply is too agressive or defensive, then this may cause an argument or even damage your relationship with this person.

Simple, clear and short responses are the best. It is important to set clear boundaries and to be assertive when necessary.

”I will think about it”

”That’s an interesting point of view. I will consider if this is right for me”

”Thank you but I would rather do it this way” or ”I would rather stick to my plan”

”I am not looking for any advice right now”

”That doesn’t suit my values”

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What are your experiences with unsolicited advice?

If you liked this post then please feel free to share & comment.

Love Athina ♥

© All blog posts and images are owned by me and Courage Coaching. Please don’t use without consent and only re-blog if you would like to use the information on here.

 

 

The importance of self-reflection & self-awareness

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This quote speaks to me in so many ways..

Through coaching, I aim to guide people find their answers through enabling them to self-reflect on where they are at currently and where they want to be. Self-reflection is very important in the process of change, as is persistence (which I talked about in this previous blog post- The importance of persistence).

The driving force behind change, is when an individual is able to look at their current life and notice that there is something negative popping up for them. If we feel negative or sad about something, then this can be the one thing that pushes us to make lasting change. If we don’t have self-awareness however, we remain stuck in a sad or negative existence and just keep repeating the same mistakes or habits over and over again.

As a survivor of complex trauma, I luckily became self-aware from a young age. I noticed I was struggling more than other children at school and had really low confidence. I found it very difficult to focus on school work the older I got and when I hit 15 I was already very depressed.I used art & poetry as a way to self-soothe and manage my emotional pain and luckily sought therapy when I was 17.

Over the years, with extensive therapy, I learned to tap into my emotional self-awareness even more. I continued to question my choices and behaviours and realised that actually it wasn’t my fault I was so sensitive and depressed but actually that my parents were both narcissistic, specifically with NPD. I was diagnosed at 29 as having Complex Post Traumatic stress and was told by my therapist that I was incredibly resilient and able to self-reflect a lot more than most of her clients. I left the session that day happy to be someone with self-awareness and wouldn’t change this for the world!

Self-awareness is incredibly hard for people with NPD, as well as the ability to feel empathy for others. When a healthy individual hurts others and causes them distress, they usually genuinely apologise and try to make a change for the better. For people that are aware of their actions, of their flaws, are sensitive to their body sensations, sensitive to their health and are also able to make sensible choices, change comes more easily.

What are your thoughts? How destructive have you found people that lack self-awareness?What difficulties have you had? Are their times when it took you a few failed attempts to finally have an epiphany about an unhelpful behaviour you may have had?

Thanks for reading

Much love Athina ♥

© All blog posts and images are owned by me and Courage Coaching. Please don’t use without consent and only re-blog if you would like to use the information on here.