ON THE FRIENDSHIP
Giving Advice to a Best Friend or Anyone
Means That You Either Lose or Break
One day German poet and dramatist
Otto Erich Hartleben visited a doctor about his health problems.
The doctor advised Hartleben to quit
smoking cigarettes and to stop drinking alcohol. The doctor added, “This visit will cost you three
“I’m not paying you,” retorted
Hartleben, “because I’m not taking your advice.”
Undoubtedly, you have found this out
through experience: Most people won’t follow advice - regardless of how good it is - as was the case with
poet Otto Erich Hartleben.
Your advice to a best friend may very
well be helpful, but if it means that you best friend must put in some work and effort, he or she will
likely discard it. Giving advice may not only be a waste of your time and energy - it can be dangerous to your
friendship as well.
It is particularly dangerous to
offer advice when you haven't been asked for it. This is one of the rules of
friendship. Some people will refuse to take advice regardless of how good it is and how
noble your intentions are.
Your relationship with your
friends can get strained to the limit if you persist. People may not realize that you are trying to help
them. On the contrary, they may think that you are highly judgmental and are trying to make them wrong. Your
advice is likely to be ignored because most friends don’t want to admit they are wrong.
The only thing to do
with good advice is to pass it on [to your best friends]. It is never of any use to oneself.
- Oscar Wilde
Check out the 101 Ways to Have Great
Friends. Indeed, trying to solve other people’s problems with your unsolicited advice
is as futile as trying to change people. It’s best not to get immersed in other people’s problems, including
those of your spouse, friends, and co-workers. Trying to solve their problems is tantamount to saying they
aren’t capable of doing it on their own. Benjamin Franklin may have given us the best advice possible about
giving unsolicited advice: “Wise men don’t need advice. Fools don’t take
See more quotes about advice on
Sensational Quotes for Smart People Website.
It may be dangerous to give advice
even if it is solicited. The problem is the advice we give friends may be the opposite of what they expect
or desire. “When a man comes to me for advice,” quipped Josh Billings, “I find out the kind of advice he wants,
and I give it to him.”
Giving advice [to best
friends] isn't as risky as people say. Few ever take it anyway.
- William Feather
Giving advice that friends
expect may be a good strategy at times, but it can be dangerous in certain situations. Taking into account that
many people don’t have a complete and sensible appreciation of their own predicaments, it follows that they may
in fact expect advice that will end up hurting their cause.
Even giving good advice can get you
in trouble - particularly when it involves the truth. Oscar Wilde wrote, “It is always silly to give advice, but
to give good advice is absolutely fatal.” There is a lot to be said about telling the truth - but it is often on
the first rung of the living-dangerously ladder.
For instance, whenever a friend asks
you how she can improve the meal that she just cooked for you, it is wise not to mention the twenty things you
would have done differently. Otherwise, you could end up without an opportunity to eat any more of the soufflé
because you will be wearing it over the expensive shirt you wore for the first time.
Advice is seldom
welcome. Those who need it most, like it least.
- Samuel Johnson
All things considered, giving advice
to anyone means that you either lose or break even. You seldom win. Whenever people accept your advice, and it
turns out to be helpful, people likely won’t acknowledge you for it. They may not even remember that you gave it
to them. Whenever they accept your advice, and it turns out to be harmful, people won’t forget who gave it to
them. They will probably even resent you for having given them bad advice.
Summing up, it’s best to avoid
getting involved in people’s personal affairs,especially if you haven’t been asked. As a well-balanced
individual you shouldn’t need to inflate your ego by giving unsolicited advice. If you are going to give any,
however, advise the person that it’s best to avoid freely accepting advice from anyone else - and that includes
Whenever you feel compelled to
respond to a request for advice, say it simply. Make it short. Don’t rant and rave. Even so, on extremely
sensitive matters, be sure to duck when flying objects start coming your way.
Friendship Quotes about
Between Best Friends
The art of giving advice to best friends is to make them believe that they though of it
- Unknown wise person
Never trust the advice of friends with difficulties.
- Unknown wise person
When a man comes to me for advice, I find out the kind of
advice he wants, and I give it to him.
- Josh Billings
Whatever your advice [to a best friend], make it brief.
The best thing one friend can do for another is to refrain from giving advice.
- Unknown Wise Person
If I wanted to become a tramp, I would seek information
and advice from the most successful tramp I could find. If I wanted to become a failure, I would seek
advice from men who have never succeeded. If I wanted to succeed in all things, I would look around me
for those who are succeeding, and do as they have done.
- Joseph Marshall Wade
Friendship will not stand the strain of very much good advice for
- Robert Lynd
When friends stop being frank and useful to each other, the whole world loses some of
- Anatole Broyard
Best friends don't want advice. They want
- Unknown wise person
Advice is what we [friends] ask for when we already know the answer but wish we
- Erica Jong
COPYRIGHT © 2016 by Ernie J. Zelinski
Author of The World's Best