Social Question

wundayatta's avatar

If it works for you, do you push it on others? Do you feel like other people push their solutions on you?

Asked by wundayatta (58663points) September 17th, 2011

Seems to me that a lot of people are happy to tell others what has worked for them. Yoga worked for me. You should try it. Sex isn’t that important to me now. You should think that, too.

There’s a difference, of course, between telling someone what worked for you and telling someone they should do it. The first is a story, and the second is advice, and that advice can get so strong that it feels like they are telling you that if you don’t do it the way they did, there’s something wrong with you.

I think it is natural to be enthusiastic about things that help you. And to some degree, I think it is natural to want to encourage others to try it, because you believe it will help them. But it seems to me it is really easy to move from encouragement to pushing.

Do you push? Do you feel like others push you? Or do you share?

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18 Answers

Joker94's avatar

I rarely push anything on anybody, unless it’s something that’s deadly serious. Other than that, my friends rarely try to push anything on me. Sure, it’s happened before, and it usually led to absolute shit, but hey, it happens. Whenever I advise people, I usually tell them what I would do, but I never tell them what they should do. Usually, I’d just let somebody know they should do what they think is best.

gailcalled's avatar

I try very hard to mention what works for me only if I am asked. I have learned, slowly and painfully over the years never to offer free advice.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Quite the opposite. I generally preface any solution by saying ‘I don’t work like other people’ or ‘our relationship isn’t like that of others’...not in a sense that it’s so unique, you know? but in the sense that we really don’t follow the same rules (gender norms, how to be together, how to conceptualize risk and reward in life, etc.) and so whatever I do just doesn’t work for people who are seeking more security, stability.

dappled_leaves's avatar

Guilty, though I try to be aware of it and curb it. Sites like Fluther are not helping. :)

tinyfaery's avatar

Nope. People are not the all the same.

XD's avatar

It’s really hard not to gush, but I’m better than I used to be. Restraint is definitely a learned behavior.

I think the key is knowing when someone is ready to hear whatever it is that you have to say, assuming they ever are.

athenasgriffin's avatar

I think most other people are kind of different than me, so what works for me will probably not work for them. I mean, most of my friends are really different than I am, and we like totally different things and have really different lives, so rarely would it even be appropriate or smart for me to say, I really like this thing, do it too, or you shall regret it.

But I have been known to invite people to do things that I like with me, just to see if they would like it. But I only bring it up once, and I take no for an answer.

MrPORCUPINE's avatar

A curious thing…even before I started pushing, they run away already. Strange, just strange.

It varies, depending on my perception of someone. If he’s likely to not stick me, I will start by saying, “Why don’t you…” If he’s some kind of a prick, I’ll begin with, “What if…”

DominicX's avatar

I really try not to push things on people. It really bothers me when people turn into “salesmen” just because they like something; I understand you’re enthusiastic about it and I’m glad that it works for you but you need to try and aggressively sell it to me. I’ll try it if I want to.

EB_631's avatar

Not really. I believe everybody is different. Their brains, emotions, thought patterns….they work differently from other people. There is never one answer for everybody. I mostly try to help them find the answer for themselves, instead of telling them what the answer should be.

Sunny2's avatar

I tell of my own experiences, but to suggest that what worked for me would work for them is presumptuous. If they ask me for more details, I’ll keep talking, but whether they use what they learn from me is strictly their business. Push? No way.

Aethelwine's avatar

All I can give you is what I’ve experienced. I won’t push it on you, but if you ask, that’s what you’ll get from me (my story). Otherwise I’ll tell you to do what you feel is best for you.

I have noticed how many people here at Fluther immediately tell someone who is having marital or relationship problems to go see a therapist. I don’t like it when people push that idea. It is possible for a couple to work things out with each other if they are willing to be honest and communicate with their partner.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

The way I see it, if I see someone with a stack of board, buckets of nails, but no hammer. I will try to give them the hammer. I(f they won’t unclench their fist I may try a few times. After that, I will leave them to pounding the nails anyway they want, with the heel of their shoe, a rock, bottom of a beer bottle, etc. I don’t have time to waste trying to tell them how best to hammer nails, they will soon figure out, they should have taken the hammer when I offered it.

Aethelflaed's avatar

Good question. I try really hard to not give unsolicited advice or tell others what to do, because I hate it when others do it to me (and in general). So, you know, trying to cut out the hypocrisy. But, I must admit, I do still do it on occasion. It’s usually with smaller things – try this toothpaste, this tequila-type liquor, this brand over that, etc – where it’s more of a “try it, if you don’t like it, you don’t like it”. And I think there’s a difference between saying “try this” and “stick with this”, especially if it’s not a permanent or large choice (like, try being married/separated/a parent/a homeowner/etc). It’s sometimes tough with food, because I am very passionate about food, so, for instance, I have one friend who does not like avocados and I love avocados, so it’s a bit more work than I’d like to not say “You simply must try this guacamole.” But it’s also something I will do if I’m with someone whom I know would be open to the suggestion: For example, I have one friend that loves trying new beers, so if I came across a new and unusual one, I wouldn’t hesitate to tell her that she should try it. But would I tell that to a coworker or classmate whom I didn’t know unless they specifically asked for new beer to try? Probably not.

There are a couple things I get a bit more pushy than others. Normally, it’s because it’s either not known about at all as an option, or it is known but is portrayed in “the media” differently than it really is. It’s a bit of a hard line to walk in not advising someone but also letting them know about it.

But, I do hate unsolicited advise. Partly because I think it comes from a place of assumed superiority, that one would think that of course I give a damn about their opinion on the matter and would consider their advise, and partly because many (if not most) people get really upset if you don’t follow their advise. So you complain about a problem supervisor, and you think you’re just swapping stories over happy hour, and they tell you to deal with it in this way, and then when you don’t do that but the problem also doesn’t go away, they think you’re inactive or personally snubbing them or just bitching and you should shut up or… I’ve lost more friends than I care for because they couldn’t stop telling me what to do with my life, and I didn’t take them up on it.

JilltheTooth's avatar

If I’m in the commando phase of something that’s had a stunningly positive affect on me, I’ll push. (For example, I quit smoking about 3 months ago and my smoker friends I’m sure are getting sick of me giving them the book title see what I mean? I just can’t help myself!) but mostly I’ll share, discuss if they want, not discuss if they don’t.

Mariah's avatar

This is a good question. My mind jumped first to how I tend to feel when other people with ulcerative colitis say they don’t want to take any meds, or say they’ll never ever get surgery. Knowing what I know now, and knowing that those decisions have the potential to make them very sick, I always want to jump in and “save” them. It’s hard to reign that in; I know it’s not welcome. I just remind myself how annoyed I felt when an acquaintance with Crohn’s tried to push her “magic” diet that worked for her, on me.

gailcalled's avatar

One of the best tidbits that my therapist threw out to the ether was that unwanted advice is considered hostile behavior. Make of it what you will.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I try to relate what’s worked for me, throw it out there and then it becomes whatever people want it to be.

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