【陳慧珊】有一種教育,叫學習做決定 (34)跟意見……保持距離

2017-04-27


我們大多數人都鄙視接受別人的意見,像關於我們應如何過我們的生活;我們怎樣才會變得更好;或我們為何不可以跟他們的方式過活。儘管我們並不欣賞別人對我們的決定和行為所作出的看法,但我們大多數人仍然會不自覺墮入陷阱:不自覺給予別人意見,而沒考慮對方的需要或感受。

「意見是知識和無知之間的一個媒介」──柏拉圖說。

保持一個情感距離

無知會令我們在錯誤的時候、跟錯誤的人、依錯誤的程度和錯誤的態度,去表達意見。

有時候我們犯了無知的罪。我們可能無意中利用一個機會去確定我們是好人,而不能抗拒地給那些遭受不幸的人意見。然而,就算在那些意圖給予意見的場合中,在我們表達意見前,都好應該小心地評估我們的伙伴和環境。

因為當其他人仍未有準備接受我們的意見時,他會視每一個意見為對他的陰謀,即使是無意的。當這種情況出現時,只會滲透消極的情緒,而那些有價值的話題,諸如故事、經驗和感受,都會在嘗試交流的過程中被浪費掉。

同時,我們需要衡量我們自己是否受我們目前的情緒所影響;又或在跟朋友、家人和熟人見面前,受着我們之前的情緒影響。考慮到我們現在的心態,我們是否在情感上已裝備好去提供意見;是否有適當的面部表情和手勢?或是否以適合的語調和態度?這些是否都沒有引起不舒服的感覺?

保持一個精神上的距離…

有些人聲稱了解我們多於我們自己了解自己。他們不會把他們的意見,建基於研究、反思或客觀的評估上。他們不會認為(或選擇看不到)他們是基於自己的價值觀點、生活方式,以及策略,來提供意見。他們假設適合他們自己的,都可以或應該適合其他人。

他們還假設他們自己更有經驗、更有學識、更漂亮、更強壯,及/或更富有,而這些「權力」證明別人應按照他們的判斷去生活。這種意見提供者,被虛榮所蒙蔽;被想像所背叛;被無知所欺騙。

舉例,育兒可以是個非常敏感的話題。有些人沒意識到,他們正犧牺自己的正直、善意及有價值的友誼,來換取自我的滿足感,以求能在別人的育兒習慣上給予嚴肅的意見。

一個能幫助限制我們在育兒上給予別人意見的方法,是經常提醒自己:每個孩子都是獨特的。有些小朋友只有一般和典型的需要;有些需要特別的關注。父母在分享他或她的沮喪和恐懼時,當要分享導致他們情緒和行為的細節經過時,可能會感到尷尬。因此,除非我們肯花時間去瞭解和表達同情,否則沒要求下胡亂給予意見,只會造成傷害多過帶來好處。

當距離讓我們更近…

在我們太快給予意見前,這可能有幫助我們去記着:真正有知識的人不會給予無理的意見。聰明人通常在觀察、學習、反思和表達同情時,保持沉默。

當聰明人在精神和情感上都保持距離時,並不意味著他們不關心;這反意味著他們非常關心,並決定給對方,根據他們自己的步伐和空間醒覺及成長,沒有額外的意見負擔,是友誼、相互尊重和信任的最寶貴禮物。

通過預期的細心,而不是以虛榮來威壓,聰明人會幫助拉近彼此,以保持或得到友誼;一個明確的良心;及/或我們自己的謙虛。 

因此……從他們身上,我們學會做到保持一個距離,當我們在形成和(可能)表達意見時,這將有助拉近彼此以將這些知道轉移給別人。 

通過少些注視在給予意見這件事上,我們將創造空間去製造有用的溝通和答案,這些能有助我們在相互依賴的社會中相互協調運作。

 

 

Decision Making is Educational

“Keep a Distance…from Opinion”

Most of us despise being on the receiving end of opinion about how we choose to run our lives, how we could be better, or why our lives have turned out the way they have.  As much as we don’t appreciate other people’s take on our decisions and behaviors, most of us still fall into the trap of giving opinion without regard for others people’s needs or feelings. 

                                  “Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance”

-Plato

 

Keeping an emotional distance…

Ignorance will provoke us to express opinion at the wrong time, to the wrong person, at the wrong level, in the wrong manner.

Sometimes we’re guilty of ignorance.  We may unintentionally take advantage of an occasion to confirm that we are good human beings and cannot resist offering a helping opinion to those who seem to be suffering from misfortune.  However, even in those rare circumstances where opinion is intended to console, we should always be careful to evaluate our company and the situation before we express any opinion.

Because when others are not in the frame of mind to receive our opinion, he will perceive every opinion as a conspiracy against him, even when it’s unintentional.  And when such a scenario is established, only the negative will be penetrated, and other valuable subjects which surface during an attempt at communicating, such as stories, experiences, and feelings, will be wasted.

At the same time, we need to assess whether we ourselves are being influenced by our current emotions, or the previous emotions that we’d carried over upon arriving at a meeting with friends, family, or acquaintances.  Given our existing state of mind, are we emotionally equipped to provide opinion, with the appropriate facial and nonverbal gestures, in the right tone and manner, which would not provoke ill feeling?

Keeping a mental distance…

Some people claim to know us better than we know ourselves.  They do not base their opinion on research, reflection or objective assessment.  They don’t realize (or choose not to see) that they are giving opinion based on their own values, perspectives, lifestyles, and strategies.  They assume that what applies to them will and should apply to others. 

They also assume that they are more experienced, more educated, prettier, stronger, and/or wealthier, and these “powers” justify that others should follow their judgment of how one should live.  Such opinion givers are blinded by vanity, betrayed by imagination, or deceived by ignorance.

For example, parenting can be a sensitive subject.  Some people don’t realize that they are in danger of trading off decency, good-will, and valuable friendships for the self-gratification of giving harsh opinion on other people’s parenting practices.

One strategy that may help us practice restraint from offering parenting opinion is to keep in mind that every child is an individual.  Some children have general and typical needs, while others need specialized attention.  A parent who shares his or her frustrations and fears may be too embarrassed to share the detailed process leading up to their emotions and behaviors; therefore, unless we have taken the time to understand and empathize, an uncalled for expense of opinion usually does more harm than good.

When distance brings us closer

Before we’re too quick to offer opinion, it may be helpful to keep in mind that the truly knowledgeable person will not give an unwarranted opinion.  The wise usually keep silent in observation, learning, reflection, and empathy. 

When the wise keep a mental and emotional distance, it doesn’t mean that they don’t care.  It means that they care enough to decide that giving people room to be awakened and to grow, according to their own pace, without added burden of opinion, is the most valuable gift of friendship, mutual respect, and trust. 

And by being mindful in anticipation rather than by being overbearing in vanity, the wise will help bring us closer to maintaining or gaining friendships, a clear conscience, and/or our own modesty.

Then…from them, we may learn to practice keeping a distance, when forming and (possibly) expressing opinion, which will bring us closer to transferring such knowledge to others. 

By being less fixated on opinion-giving, we will make room to form useful communication and answers that may help us help each other to function harmoniously within our interdependent society. 

 

作者:陳慧珊

 

其他文章:【陳慧珊】有一種教育,叫學習做決定 (33)渴望的受害者

                   【陳慧珊】有一種教育,叫學習做決定 (32)我們的定位:父母與孩子的中間人

 

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