Monday, April 5, 2010

Avoid Instant Wisdom

This thought descends directly from the old saying "Think before you talk".

My little brother once threw a key towards me. He threw it a bit steep and I could not catch it. I immediately felt like telling him 'You should have thrown it flat, so that it will cross me no matter how slow you throw'.
But I thought for a moment. Another day had he thrown it flat, the key would have hurried past me, and I would then tell him 'You should have thrown it steep, so that I will get the time to align with the flying key'

And so I did not tell him anything.

I realized that when I form 'wisdom' from instant experience, that instant wisdom goes useless more often that not.

If you are older than someone else you live with, you must have had this moment in your life when they did some mistake and suddenly you jumped on them and told them that they did something extremely foolish, something which must have been avoided.

But from now on, when you think someone just made a silly mistake; instead of reacting quickly with an instant wisdom "You must have done the opposite"; just think whether that mistake is a real mistake at all. Whether it could have been really avoided. Whether you are just giving out instant 'wisdom'.

And in case it was really foolish, tell them what could have been avoided.
In case it wasn't, just smile, and move on.

Remember, think before you advise.

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