Monday, January 9, 2012

Decoding "What do you think?"

If you ask for advice, it's good if you let people know that you're wanting support of your idea instead of actual advice. Does that make sense? If someone really has their mind made up and they just want support, how could they best let this be known?

"I'm going to move to Alaska and start a snowboard business. What do you think?" It's possible that this person actually just wants you to tell them what a GREAT idea it is! If that's the case, there has to be a better way to word the part about, "What do you think?" Otherwise, you'll just make a level-headed thinker out to be a jerk when they tell you that maybe there is a lot to consider when going to Alaska (or whatever the example is).

"We're thinking about buying a bigger house." This is something my family considered recently, and I even picked out the perfect house! I only told a few close friends, and we discussed my budget and if it would stretch it too thin. I genuinely wanted their feedback, maybe it was because I didn't have my heart totally set on it? Well...I did a little, actually. But after sharing the cost of utilities with my friends, thinking about the closing costs, costs of selling our current house, etc, it just didn't seem to be the right idea for us right now. The friends I told gave me sound advice and even encouragement (in the form of prayer for wisdom), and when one of them questioned if this would really fit in our budget or if Dave Ramsey would approve :) I didn't feel like they were being mean at all.

So I keep thinking...how can we discern when someone really wants advice or if they're just seeking support of their idea?


4 comments:

Ashley said...

This is a hard thing! We have another couple that we have told "please tell us the truth! Please speak wisdom into our lives! Please point out when we're not making the right choices!" I tend to just try not to ask people's opinions when I don't really want them. I just make it a statement rather than a question.

Steadfast Ahoy! said...

Usually, just talking the issue over with another person helps put things into perspective. We can usually figure it out for ourselves with a sounding board.
Rosemary

Bethany Haid said...

I think if its good to support the person's wishes and their realistic goals.

"A new business! How exciting to think of that! And in Alaska, too? I hear that its really pretty this time of year. I can tell you are really excited about this opportunity."

OR

"I personally think your business idea is risky. You are a new snowboarder, and you are a native Missourian. I think your new business venture will prove difficult until you learn your market and the culture!"

pglm said...

NICE TO HAVE FOUND YOU....THANKS FOR STOPPING BY MY PLACE...I'll be back to read some of your older ones this weekend. blessings...and you are right....the small things are what matters.

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