Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Because men don't understand why a woman asks for advice and then won't take it

'She’ll ask for your advice

Your reply will be concise

She’ll listen very nicely

Then go out and do precisely what she wants'

Henry Higgins – My Fair lady

Asking for advice is just that. Asking for advice.

It always seems to astonish men when women ask for advice and then do something different. This is primarily because men don’t know what asking for advice is. They see it as a weakness, assuming everyone should be born knowing everything already. When it comes to advice they never ask for it, nor do they take it.

So it comes as a delight when a woman does ask for advice, because they have a chance to 1) impart their genius (which they love) and 2) give her direction (which they also love).

But it isn’t like that for women. Women ask for advice because they are weighing things up. And here is a scary thing to know. Often, they don’t actually want nor need the advice. They are really summing you up over a certain issue. So for men, when a woman asks for some information, they assume she doesn’t know something and wants to learn. But for a woman, it’s a chance to see the other person.

Deep inside every man is a belief that he is a genius (we have seen this before) so it is perfectly natural that everyone who knows them should ask for their advice. It makes sense in the way they see the world. It’s not in the asking they are surprised. It is in the mulling over his advice, the weighing it up against other advice you’ve collected and then, if it isn’t the best advice received, rejecting it. This is what men can’t get their heads around.

Which leads me to another point. Men will very often happily give advice on topics they know nothing about. Because no matter how little they know, they will be absolutely sure of one thing: they know more than their woman does on the subject.

In romance novels women do ask for advice and they do take it or they don’t take it depending on the quality of the advice, and men simply say they don’t really know if they don’t. It is all clear and it is all simple. The people who give bad advice in romance novels are villains, and the baddies always get theirs in the end.


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