Five Magic Advice Tools

Giving advice can be tricky. Whether the target person asked for it or not, the manner in which advice is given colors how it is received. I'll describe here five magic tools. Before blurting, it will be helpful to think, and determine which tool is best.

Magic Advice Tool: Options. "I wonder if we could explore options together." "It seems to me that your options might include..., on the one hand, or..., on the other hand." "I'd like to listen to what you consider to be your options."

Magic Advice Tool: Next Step. "I'd like to hear what you want to do about this." "I wonder what you see as your next step." "I think I've listened well to your position, and I wonder if ... might be your next step." 

Magic Advice Tool: Desired Outcome. "Draw me a picture, if you will, of how you'd like to see this turn out." "I wonder what you want out of this situation." "I'd like to hear your bottom line, the outcome you would most like to have here."

Magic Advice Tool: Personal Opinion. "If I were in your place, I think I would...." "In my opinion the second arrangement seems better than the first." "Well, I heard you ask for my opinion so I will tell you; I like...better than...for this situation."

Magic Advice Tool: Personal Instance. "Once when I..., this is what I did...." "I remember when I made a hard choice like this and this is what happened...." "I remember how I felt when...." "There was a time when I thought like that...."

In order to use Magic Advice Tools well, one must keep vocal volume and pitch steady to the end, not rising as for a question, and not emphasizing any word more than another, especially not "I" or "my." This is for giving advice without "you should."

Copyright 2014 Wilma Zalabak

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