I spent a little time this afternoon flipping through a magazine that I enjoy reading. But I got stuck on one of the pages. It was an advice column, and I wondered what ever happened to Ann Landers or her twin sister Dear Abby. I know, I know…you’re probably thinking, “They’re dead by now.” But I’m talking figuratively.
When Ann Landers or Dear Abby was the thing to read in the newspaper every Sunday, the advice always seemed so practical. So worthwhile. It didn’t matter what the subject was, both authors really gave a thoughtful, adult response to some of the questions that were often so childish, and selfish.
What I read today in the magazine was also responses to childish questions. The difference I noted was that most of the responses were just as childish as the questions. Well, no, you don’t have to forgive your friend for snubbing you that one time. Why, it’s perfectly OK to get your child in on the white lies you’re telling your neighbor. Whatever happened to honesty is the best policy? Or, treat someone the way you’d want to be treated? I think that’s what I liked best about those old Dear Abby columns. She could reprimand someone for their selfish behavior and she’d still come across as sweet. Ann Landers could tell it like it is, and you sat up a little bit straighter by the end of her columns.
The advice I read today was not any that I’d take from anyone, but I wondered who listened to this type of advice that was shallow and petty and pretty selfish? Not me. I closed up the magazine and moved on to another Saturday project.
DAY 295 HOMEWORK: Pay attention to the things you’re reading. Just because it’s in a magazine or on the internet doesn’t make it accurate or right. It’s ok to walk away from bad advice, and to get other input if needed to discuss the validity of the advice.