The wisdom of life is ephemeral. Some can produce grandiose thoughts in a cramped kitchen, while others can write works that will be understood decades later. But there is a wisdom that has been used since the Vatican and ancient Rome: the ability not to say too much.
As a child, I was a talkative kid, I talked a lot about myself, I liked to brag and even tell things that didn’t happen (this is common to many children). I thought that in this way I would gain popularity, friends, and respect (isn’t that self-promotion?). Luckily for me my teacher said the following:
“If you want to be respected and understood, do more and talk less about yourself. Your deeds and actions are the best teller of your story”.
What he meant was not immediately clear to me, although, thanks to his authority, I tried to follow his advice. It was only later that I understood:
Until you have told about yourself, until you have created a solid image of yourself in the heads of others, you are free, you can be anyone, you can be understood in your own nature.
Often we don’t let others understand us, we talk a lot and create a false image, which causes problems in communication. And this problem is more serious than you think: even the people close to us do not understand many of us because the image created by our talk in their heads is still strong, we wear these masks for decades and often do not understand why we feel lonely and misunderstood.
If you want to be listened to and understood, speak less frequently, but in substance.
Those whose tongues are loose are rarely taken seriously over time and this leads to loneliness. We see a reflection of ourselves in the people around us: their attitude to us. If we talk too much, we will not be taken seriously, and over time we will absorb this reflection from those around us.
When you become an authority among others, many people begin to turn to you for advice. But giving advice to people is a very difficult and unpromising thing to do. When someone tells us about a failure or a problem, they don’t need advice – they just need support and understanding.
Spoiling relationships with loved ones and losing their trust is very easy: you just have to give them advice every time they share their problems and worries instead of understanding and listening.
If you do that, over time our loved ones will stop sharing their emotional experiences with you and will become aloof, hiding their lives, and we won’t even understand why, because we tried so hard, trying to help with valuable advice.
Of course, asking for advice is different, but if you haven’t been asked for anything like that, you just want human understanding.
In general, I am surprised at the number of success-bloggers, business coaches, and all kinds of gurus today. It’s trending. But we are all experts on life retrospectively, but for some reason we are wrong time after time. Why? This is how life works, and mistakes are part of life. Therefore, your advice can be not only useless, but destructive.
When people tell us about their problems, a million questions and solutions come to mind, and everything seems clear, but as soon as it comes to our lives, we cannot give such a “waterfall” of advice to ourselves.
The fact is that we treat other people’s problems more simply, we are less immersed in them, we create superficial judgments and trivialize them (hence the reams of seemingly valuable but useless advice). Truly helping people is about understanding. It is an art that is mastered gradually: he who can feel himself in the skin of another person will learn to understand better not only others, but also himself, and this is a great gift.
And one more important life lesson you must learn:
The one who gains intelligence and respect is not the one who focuses on the flaws and problems of others, but the one who makes those flaws invisible and insignificant in conversation with you.
It took me a while to master this skill, but it was extremely valuable. Modern people often “accidentally” step on other people’s “calluses”, casually mentioning their happy marriage to someone who has recently divorced (adults often use such methods because of their insecurity and desire to become more authoritative).
There are a lot of such people and our gut tries to avoid talking to them in advance, even if they smile and cover themselves with good intentions. If you want to win true authority and lifelong friends, there is no need to press other people’s calluses (they already know about them, make the person feel stronger than before the conversation with you and he will become your admirer).
If you master this skill, you will have a lot more connections. The people say about such interlocutors: “They are easy” (which means: “This man or woman is very polite and friendly and I would be happy to get to know him better”).