Why do we hate getting advice

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

The problem with Advice

Why do we hate getting advice?
After all if the person giving advice wants to help us then why we refuse that help?

Moreover most people don't feel good when someone tries to explain to them why they should change their behaviour but if those people realized on their own that they have to change they usually do it.

Why do we hate to get advice from others yet we apply the same exact things when we discover them on our own?

The first cause of that problem is the desire to be right. Humans have the desire to be right and this force is more powerful than most people imagine. The desire to be right isn't just there because people hate change but it's there because it helps a person maintain his psychological stability.

A person's world is based on his own beliefs. Any threat to those beliefs might be considered a direct threat to the world that person is living in. In my article How people twist the facts to support their beliefs i explained how so many people twist facts in order not to threaten their psychological stability.

After all , to some people, realizing that something works in a different way can be a serious shock that can send them into an identity crisis.

The intentions of the person giving the advice

Another major problem with advice is the perceived intention of the person giving the advice. If someone believed that the one giving them advice has bad intentions then the advice might be rejected even if it was correct.

One popular example of this case is believing that the one who is giving you the advice wants to put you down. If the advice threatened the person's Ego in any way then it might backfire. If a person felt that the one giving the advice wants to challenge his personal ego then certainly he won't accept that advice.

Egoistic people are more likely to refuse advice since they usually have a perception problem that let's them mistakenly assume that people are trying to challenge their egos.

In such a case the advice can be seen as an attack attempt on the person or on his beliefs.

People like the things they discover on their own

The same advice given by a person can be rejected then later applied once the one who received it earlier finds it again on his own. It's so popular that a person changes his behaviour right after reading an article or a book even though he previously rejected the same idea when it came from others.

The self discovered advice in such a case seems like it's coming from the self even if someone else said it and this is why it usually gets easily accepted compared to advice coming directly from friends and family.

Some people hate to be reminded of the truth

Some people , especially the ones who prefer to escape from reality, hate getting advice because it ruins their mood as it reminds them of reality.

This is usually common with medical advice where a person who drinks for example hates to be reminded of the fact that drinking is bad. In such a case that person prefers to bury his head in the sand and give his back to the ones who try to give him advice.

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