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miWisdom today… When people go through periods of great difficulty in their lives, we naturally have a tendency to try and assist them through their problems by providing them with techniques and strategies that we believe will help them overcome their challenges. Is this really the right and just way to go about assisting a person in need?

First of all, what may appear to be the right way around a problem to us may not in fact be the most ideal solution for the other person. Yes, we may well have gone through a similar experience, or we may have heard or read about others overcoming this sort of challenge in their life. Yet, can we rightly justify the act of providing helpful advice without first truly understanding the other person and their experience from absolutely every angle imaginable? Because this is exactly what it will take to provide this person with the right and suitable answers they are after.

When we freely help others, do we even consider the repercussions of our good nature? Is what we are doing for them helping them in the long-term? Is this empowering the other person to overcome other similar challenges in their life without your ongoing support or influence? Or is your act of helping them through this problem actually making them dependent on you now and in the future? There is an old saying which identifies this principle clearly:

“Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; and you have fed him for a lifetime.”

There is also another saying which states:

“Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; and you can sell him fishing equipment.” – However, let’s leave that for another time 🙂

When people are in great difficulty they only seek one single “thing” to begin with. This one “thing” is so powerful that it may well be the trigger that will empower them to take the necessary steps and actions to overcome their challenge single-handedly. So what is this one “thing” they seek? It is assurance from someone who can show that they understand their problems and challenges. They are looking to connect with a person who will be there for them as a satellite bouncing ideas back and forth.

Once this person feels comfortable that someone understands them; that they have the support of someone who is supportive of their plight – now you can move onto the next step, which is all about empowering the person from within. To do this, one must learn to lead a conversation by asking the right questions that will allow the other person to think independently and reflect upon their life and circumstances.

Giving advice is much like the act of giving a man a fish. You will feed the person with a solution for today, but what will they have left for tomorrow and the uncertain future that awaits them. However, by asking insightful questions that encourages the other person to think in unique and creative ways, is very much like teaching them to fish.

By guiding the other person to seek their own answers within, is one of the greatest gifts one is able to give to a child, a family member, stranger or friend; because it is one of those gifts that just keeps on giving whether you are in this person’s life or not.

Next time someone is in difficulty, you might find it helpful to ask yourself the following set of questions:

  • How can I provide this person with reassurance that I am there for them in their time of need?
  • How can I show them that I understand them and their situation wholeheartedly?
  • What insightful questions can I ask that will encourage them to think in a unique and creative way about their problems and predicament?
  • What sorts of questions could I ask that may well empower this person to take immediate and positive action today?
  • How else can I show them that I am supportive of their difficulties, problems or challenges without giving advice?

If you have a similar learning experience or would like to add to the list of questions, you may do so by commenting below.

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miWisdom today… Building strong relationships with others all rests upon the finer details. It is all about knowing a matrix of interesting habits, hobbies, likes, values, beliefs and ideas about the other person which usually determines the strength of your relationship with them. By knowing and understanding these intricacies you will not only be a greater influential force in their lives, but will also build stronger and longer lasting emotional foundations that can potentially last a lifetime.

  • What do I really know about this person?
  • Do I know this person’s beliefs, values, hobbies, interests, small unconscious habits, or their ideas about themselves, others and the world?
  • How could I get to know them at an even deeper level of understanding?
  • How can I use what I know about them to help influence them in the right direction?

If you have a similar learning experience or would like to add to the list of questions, you may do so by commenting below.

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miWisdom today… If you want to influence someone into taking a new direction in life, approach them from the perspective of a greater or higher cause. Provide them with a new purpose, something bigger than themselves that they can strive for and achieve. In this way you will be influential beyond measure.

  • What does this person believe in?
  • What is this person passionate about?
  • What are this person’s highest and most profound values?
  • How can I now use this information to influence them along a new direction and path?

If you have a similar learning experience or would like to add to the list of questions, you may do so by commenting below.

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miWisdom today… At every chance that you get, you must instill powerful and empowering beliefs in kids, even if you must set up an elaborate plan to create an environment where these beliefs will flourish and be ingrained in their psyche. It isn’t what happens to these kids that matters, but rather what a child is lead to believe that they are capable of.

  • What powerful and empowering beliefs do I want to instill in this child that will serve them for a lifetime?
  • How can I create an elaborate environment that will ingrain these beliefs into their psyche?
  • Whose assistance will I need to pull this off successfully?
  • In how many other creative ways can I do this in the future to ensure that this belief is securely ingrained in this child’s mind?

If you have a similar learning experience or would like to add to the list of questions, you may do so by commenting below.

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