We each have our unique perspective on life shaped by our unique experiences, including our career choices, family, friend choices and sport-of-choice, etc. When we share life advice with others, they process it according to their own life-colored perspective. They choose whether to accept a piece of advice in full, in part, or reject it.
This filtering helps our decisions because a surgeon’s advice to a mechanic might only apply to certain aspects of the mechanic’s life, depending upon the subject matter. The surgeon’s favorite kick-boxing move might not work for the mechanic because the mechanic has a rotator cuff injury. The mechanic would modify the move to fit her range of motion if she chose to try out the new move.
When the mechanic’s brain makes these swift adjustments, she is not judging the surgeon’s character or kick boxing talent merely because the surgeon prefers to deliver her opponent a left hook instead of a swift kick to the groin. The mechanic filters the information she receives from the surgeon and decides which parts of it work for her.
When we remember that everyone we interact with will receive our statements through the lens of their own life experience, we withstand apparent rejection more easily, without taking it as a personal affront. The mechanic felt no disrespect for the surgeon when she modified her move. Likewise, when recipients of advice focus on the information and not the person delivering it, we hold the other person as whole and respect their experience, while also honoring ourselves and our individual needs and experience.