does a good listener give advice?

July 21, 2011 10:57am CST
i would consider myself to be a good listener.. my fiancee's sister has become one of my best friends over the time myself and my partner have been together, and she relies on me alot with her problems. she would actually phone my partners phone, say hi and then ask to speak to me, even though they are sisters. one thing i pride myself on is the ability to see both sides to every story, even if gemma is having a problem with a boyfriend, and she hates him and needs me to take her side, i will still be able to objectively see where he is coming from.. but i also give advice along with this listening.. and it nearly always works out great. but what if one day it doesn't, and i've given someone that advice? .. is it always good to give advice, or sometimes, does a good listener stay quiet?
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7 responses
@keihimekawa (2010)
• Philippines
25 Jul 11
It's great to hear that you are great pals with your fiances's sister. I was never like that with my ex :P Anyway... I also have quite a number of friends who tell me their problems but I never really give advice UNLESS THEY ASK FOR ONE :D I would comment on their thoughts, the situation, the reason why the problem surfaced but that's all. There are people who only needs someone to listen to them. Something like.. An outlet or something. To have someone to pent up their emotions and not keep them bottled up inside :)
25 Jul 11
i guess we may get used to the fact that whole we have friends, family, partners etc etc.. we will always be emotional and verbal punchbags lol! :)
• Philippines
25 Jul 11
Hahaha that is just so true! So better toughen up 'em ears. Lol!
25 Jul 11
lol so the next time a friend or family member needs big chats, we need to get the shin guards and ear mufs out! lol!
@toniganzon (40000)
• Philippines
22 Jul 11
There are times when i just needed somebody to listen to me and don't wanna hear any advice, but just someone who can hold my hand and assure me that everything's gonna be fine by their mere presence. There are also times when i desperately seek advice and mere listening won't do for me. I want that friend to at least say something so i would know what to do. So being a good listener actually also entails being a good adviser. One cannot give a sound advice if one isn't a good listener.
22 Jul 11
i love this response. i've been debating in my head which is best, to listen or to give advice, but it depends on the situation! .. theres sometimes that advice isn't even called for but there are other times that just sitting there nodding my head and listening won't help my hurt or angry friend.. so it just depends on the situation, and what way my friend is behaving :)
@toniganzon (40000)
• Philippines
22 Jul 11
YOu got it. It all depends on the situation.
22 Jul 11
thanks!! :)
• Southend-On-Sea, England
29 Jul 11
You do sound like a good listener and a good friend. I never give advice though just in case it backfires.
29 Jul 11
yeah see thats my problem. it's never backfired yet but i'm starting to think to myself uh oh, what if it does ya know?
@SIMPLYD (74910)
• Philippines
22 Jul 11
Yes, a good listener could also give a good advise, but not at all times. It depends on the problem being relayed. If the listener has been in the same situation and have survived it , then she can give a good advise.
22 Jul 11
yes i think your right. advice is good to give if you've been in the same situation and come out the other end!
• Philippines
22 Jul 11
For me that depend to the person who are expressing his/her emotions. if he/she needs some advise then i will but if (s)he is only need my ears and hugs then ill do that. I don't personally give advise but options and possibity in both ways the advantages and disadvantages. Still the decision is with in the person who are in distress.
• Philippines
22 Jul 11
Advice is good to give also but it will always be up to the person who we give it to - like it will be his/her decision in the end and never ours. All we can do is just listen as he tells his story or worry and we comfort them with our support and presence because like them, whenever it's our turn in wanting to be listened to, we want their support as well. A good listener doesn't have to be anything except to be a good friend. That's what matters the most when a friend confides in them with their problems
22 Jul 11
yeah, i suppose the fact i'm even there listening to them, i've already done more for them that i probably realise. i think maybe i give advice because i feel i need to do something, and because i cannot physically help them, i try to verbally help them. but sometimes thats wrong though, because maybe they don't want my advice, maybe they do just want my ears.. i think i need to listen to peoples stories from start to finish and maybe then i'll have a better idea of when to open my mouth lol!
21 Jul 11
I never give advice to people, only opinions. I always try to make it very clear that it's an opinion and not advice, because people frequently assume I'm suggesting they do a particular thing. Being a good listener is one thing. Having someone mess up their life then blame me for it is another. I wouldn't care if they blamed me for bad eventualities but they would, even though it's their own fault what happens in their own life, so I'm very careful to just say what I think, not what to do. Opinion only, in my.. er.. opinion! Of course, my opinion can be a course of action that I think is best, but it's down to the person to decide whether they do that or something totally different. They are the only one who can choose. Often, the best course of action (especially if you're somewhat detached and logical about things) is to provide several ideas. If you say they "could do A, B, C or D, for example" it gets them thinking for themselves. That's even better than advice. But hey, this is all just my opinion anyway!
22 Jul 11
haha i liked that last line, that made me laugh. i think you're right, about the a,b,c,d thing. i do try to give my friend more than one option, but maybe i should try a little hard to give these one or two more options? i have a tendency to know which option i like best and hammer that home.. so if i was to give them more optionsi could still give my advice, or "opinions" but wouldn't feel like i'd pushed them into anything, because it's up to them to choose one of the 2, or 3 or even 4 options! thanks!
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