How to take advice that’s not your style

I’ve been getting a lot of advice recently. It’s all really good intentioned… but some of it just won’t work for me. So today, I’m going to give you advice (giggle!) on how to take advice- even if it doesn’t seem like something that would work for you!

Do you have cleaners?

I have a friend who has cleaners come to her house. She absolutely loves them. And she recommended them to me, as well.

Maybe you don’t know me very well… but having cleaners come to my home would drive me nuts! The idea of dodging people as I’m at home (either working or relaxing) would make me batty. And honestly, I don’t mind cleaning. I find it sort of relaxing.


Given that I don’t dislike cleaning and don’t want to have people in my house… it’s just not a good way for me to spend my money.

So, is the advice bad? Not really!

Look behind the advice

To make ‘bad’ advice work for you, you have to dig a little into the motivation. What my friend was really saying was, “I’m a lot happier with a clean home” and “I feel really luxurious when I get something taken care of that I don’t like doing”. Those are great pieces of advice! She just didn’t say them that way!

I have another friend who recommends getting your hair done every 4 weeks. Uh huh. Again, good for her… but just not what I’m into. But her underlying message, “I feel good when I treat myself a little” is a good one!

Have you received some advice that has a hidden message?

There’s a lot of advice on the surface that seems like it totally doesn’t suit you, and it’s easy to just toss it out the window. But I encourage you to think about the motivation behind it… you might discover a juicy little nugget you can use!

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  1. Barbara SAYS...

    I’m a crafter, my house is clean but never “straight” I tell my friends if they want to see Me, come anytime. If they want to see the “House”—–make an appointment.
    I have a sign in my LR that reads “creativity is messy and I’m very creative”

  2. Helen SAYS...

    As I read through “advise” immediately this came to mind to ask you-all your thoughts. I’m a mature gal (yrs-wise), my hair is long (mid back) — a friend (?) said to me after not seeing me for a while … with a unpleasant expression on her face “oh, you have let your hair grow longer” Until that point I was feeling good about myself (which is not always the case) … how do you respond to a comment like that, plus how do you keep it from hurting????

    • Oh, friends. They’re not always so helpful, are they?
      I would just say, ‘yup, I did!’ and pretend you didn’t notice the expression 🙂
      How to keep it from hurting is a very tricky question. Here are some ideas.
      1) Could your friend have just been shocked? Often, my husband (when he is surprised at a change) seems like he’s expressing a negative emotion, but he’s actually just taken off guard. She might need time to adjust.
      2) Is your friend the queen of all hair? Do you think she should tell you how your hair should look? Or is she a human that has opinions that may or may not be right for you? If you like your hair, do you really care what she thinks?
      3) And this one’s harder… is there a grain of truth in her comment? Maybe your longer hair style could use a 1″ trim to clean up the edges? Or maybe you had it in a ponytail with a clip that looked old? It can be hard to see the truth in a hurtful comment, but sometimes there’s a little something in there that you might hear… but not change entirely.
      Just some ideas… hope that helps!

  3. Eleanor Meagher SAYS...

    Asking for my advice puts you under no obligation to take it. This was said to my daughter so that she owned any decision that she made. Old enough to make the decision and old enough to face the consequences or the good fortune from having made the right decision.

  4. Justine SAYS...

    I found that I got a ton of unsolicited advice when I was out with my infants (I had twins) or young children.

    Everyone has strong opinions on feeding, sleeping, pacifiers, etc.

    Things I would say are
    “That’s interesting. I’ll think about it.”
    “Thanks, but what we’re doing works for our family.”

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