Receiving advice is a wonderful thing if we are open minded, but yet determined to discover by our own application for the precise way that it will fit for us and the advisor. If we would only accept the advice for what to do and mimic how another does it, we would learn very little. We wouldn’t gather and add to our own deepening of perspective by merely imitating another. We learn best by prescriptively doing for ourselves beyond the guidance.

There is an unattributed quote that states, you can tell me to do something or tell me how to do it, but not both. The essence here for me is that if the advisee isn’t genuinely engaged in the what or how, the lesson goes largely unlearned and inapplicable in other matters.

For yourself, focus to give and receive advice as a matter of a shared engagement. Be cautious with offering unsolicited advice, this is not the way to engage another in the learning and process. Giving another the answer they do not yet seek is no better than an unwarranted mandate upon them. Fit the what and the how together with another so that both you and they may progress from it together.

“Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.” — George S. Patton —


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s