How to Deal with Unsolicited Advice

I absolutely despise receiving unsolicited advice.

It can be very difficult to remain silent and not tell this person off, but we all know that it will not improve anything. I struggle to remain silent when someone is spouting (un)sage advice my way, but I am getting better at dealing with these uncomfortable situations and preventing them from being repeated.

You have to understand why people who dole out advice behave the way they do.

People who give unsolicited advice think that everything is their way or the highway (or at least should be).

People who give unsolicited advice are control freaks.

They also might not genuinely feel this, but giving unsolicited advice helps propel this false narrative in their minds. They genuinely want to be seen as strong and insightful, so they continue to push their own agenda to those around them.

People who give unsolicited advice are in dire need to feel powerful.

So, the real question is, how to deal with unsolicited advice when it comes your way?

Like anything in your life which is causing you grief, you need to ensure that you are asserting strong boundaries with others in your life.

Take a pause, if in the moment you can feel your anger rising, and walk away from the situation.

Try saying something like, “I really appreciate you giving me advice in the past and I know that you are coming from a place of support when you are telling me what to do, but I was hoping that moving forward I could let you know when I am looking for advice, is that okay?”

Let the person know that advice is not what you were looking for.

Sometimes silence is the most powerful answer of all.

You also need to take accountability for how you might be exasperating the situation.

Receiving or giving unsolicited advice is not healthy in any situation and can force people to pull away from people giving said advice. It can be very tough to receive unsolicited advice because it can make you feel less than, or that this person thinks that you are not capable of handling the course of your own life. Remember that this person is not thinking about how you are receiving this information. They are dealing with their own problems and try to keep that thought in the forefront of your mind. At the end of the day, if all else fails, you have to start distancing yourself from this person, for your own well-being and life.

I write about issues that are near and dear to my heart, with the hope that my stories, experiences, and struggles may empower others: amanlitt.ca

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