People Don’t Really Care How Much You Know… Until They Know How Much You Care

caringHow do you reach another person’s heart?  In this case, I don’t mean romantically.  Rather, to move a person to action.  Why should someone else listen to you?  Who made you the fountain of all knowledge?

Parents, teachers, gurus, advisers, counsellors… do not always have an easy task!  It can involve a great deal of patience.  All of the knowledge, experience, insight that you have acquired and are now trying to impart to a child, student, disciple, client or patient.  It may seem to go in one of their ears, and faster than the speed of light, it fleas straight out of the other ear.

Sigh!

At the end of the day…no matter how much you might try, it is up to an individual whether they listen, whether they heed, whether they apply all the well-meant advice and guidance offered.  Each person has to make their own decisions and live with the consequences.  It can be painful to watch at times.

I have done a little teaching.  I often remembered a phrase which I heard from my parents many times.  As the title of this post indicates:

People Don’t Really Care How Much You Know…

Until They Know How Much You Care

I thought about that a lot.  I know it was true in my own case.  I heeded the advice of those I was convinced truly cared about my long lasting welfare.

clever clogs

I have family and friends who have many academic accomplishments under their belt.  However, at times, they seem to want to lecture us on a series of topics that are of very little interest to us.  We do not debate that they are clearly very knowledgeable on these subjects. However, it is difficult to endure a lecture on a subject that bears little relevance on your life.

Without sounding overly sceptical, I have reached an age where I can see that advice on everything from diet, vitamins, finances, health can change from year to year.  I am a lot more cautious and shrewd in general.

No matter how clever you might be, the truth often is, people don’t really care!

Unless…they know that you really care.

When someone is trying to teach me, train me, move me to change something or prompt me to action..what really touches my heart is seeing a glimpse of their heart.  When they put their heart, their conviction into their words.  When they skilfully help me to see the true value, the benefit of their advice.  When they are undoubtedly sincere, genuine and disinterested in their motives.  It is so much easier to swallow their goading, even if initially it is unwelcome.

HugAdvice reaches my heart when I am sure that they truly do care.  They might not be voicing exactly what I would like to hear.  Even if sounds perfectly reasonable and is delivered with polished eloquence, I may chafe against the counsel to begin with. Sometimes my own heart wants to lead me in a very different direction.  But at they end of the day, I am won over by realizing I am loved.  Someone cares enough to point out to me that I need to make a change or take an action that might be uncomfortable to me.  I am grateful for that level of concern.  Eventually I see the evidence of genuine care.

I have to make my own decisions.  I have to live with those decisions.  I have to be happy with my decisions.  If I regret my decision, it is wise to admit that and make a change.  I am more than happy to listen to the opinions of others.  But what sways me is not just how clever they seem, but the combination of how caring and concerned and convinced they are.

So whenever I am in a role where I have to offer advice…I try to keep that phrase to the forefront of my mind:

People Don’t Really Care How Much You Know…

Until They Know How Much You Care

I am going to admit to you… I am so tired my head feels numb, so I don’t think I explained that very well… but you do know what I mean don’t you?

Remembering Retrospectively Reaps Rich Rewards

How do a window-cleaner and a nurse manage to feed and clothe seven children?  There were so many of us.  In our family everybody had little jobs to do.  We all had to help out from a young age.  Money was always going to be tight.  But what Mamma and Dadda could not provide in a material way, they more than made up for in imparting lessons for life…wise and healthy habits for a life-time.

pound coin

I still remember Dad training me to wash the car for the first time.  When he told me he wanted me to do it…I was chewing gum, I put one hand on my left hip and held out my right hand and demanded “fifty pence should do it!”  Dad glared at me.  He said, “this time you won’t receive a penny, partly because you have been cheeky and partly because I am going to help you so you know how to do it.  But from now it will be your job to do it every weekend and I will give you £1.”

Dadda managed to teach us some vital lessons about money.  Dad would buy chocolate and if we wanted to eat it, we had to buy it off him (paying a bit extra than the price he had bought it for).  Dad reasoned that if we wanted to buy it at a cheaper price, we would walk to the fifteen minutes to the local newsagents, which would go a long way undoing the damage of the chocolate we bought.  Without taking away our choices, he decided to make it a bit more difficult for us to eat rubbish.  Clever Dad – just one of his many clever little ways.

My sister did so much better than I did.  Mandy saved her pocket money and bought clothes and she looked after them very well.  I went through a stage of spending my pocket money on music and sweets.  Eventually I learn to do the same as Mandy (partly because she refused to lend me her lovely clothes!)…but it took me much longer to learn to be prudent with my pennies.  With guidance and training, I also learnt to look after what I owned because I would have to replace my own clothes when I ruined them.

Then there a lesson I will never forget…and looking back retrospectively, it makes me marvel at my Dad for being such a wise man.  It was my first summer with my own radio.  I loved listening to music.  Before I had my own radio, I used to take Dad’s car keys, climb into the car and turn the key just enough for the radio and electric items to work, without starting the engine.  I sat there listening to music for hours…and ran the car battery flat…I did it twice before Dad realized I would be better off with my own little radio.

radioOh how I loved my radio!  There was a daily competition which captured my youthful excitement and enthusiasm.  I think if you heard three specific songs in a row you had to call the number advertised and if you were caller 252 you won.  You would win £1000.  They gave away £1000 everyday.  I never did win, but when the phone bill came…OUCH OUCH OUCH!

Dad showed me the phone bill…I could not believe my eyes.  Pages and pages of me ringing the same phone number at a premium rate over and over.  I spent a lot of money on trying to win…around £400.  What did Dadda do?  What do you think he did?  I had to pay it back effectively by not receiving my pocket money for many many months.

This experience taught me never to gamble.  I still pull a face when anyone talks to me about buying lottery tickets, or playing bingo, or having a flutter…Nooooope!!!  Never liked the taste of any form of gambling since my bitter experience as a 13 year old.

Which is what Dad wanted.  He had big money troubles as a young man.  He became engrossed in horse-racing and other sports.  Lost a lot…won next to nothing.  He stopped gambling before he married my mum, but he still found it difficult to be strict with his pennies.  However, he managed, and I take my hat off to him for how well he did.

I wonder whether he was partly motivated by wanting to teach his children how to view money and what it can buy.  All his kids are fit and healthy and able to earn a living – and appreciate the lessons in life we received.  Retrospectively looking back on my childhoood…aaaaaah!…

Treasure Chest

…all of the lessons in life from my parents…I feel rich…I feel so immensely wealthy.  They have set me up for happiness on a vast scale.  I have a treasure chest of lessons from Mumma and Dadda that keep helping me take wise steps.

I have to admit, the more I put my retro-spectacles on and bring back into my mind the lessons in life Dadda and other family members taught me…I am full-up of love and appreciation and respect for the loveliest window-cleaner in England!  My  Dadda.

Wisdom is priceless.  Far more value than gold!

Retrospective

Better Get Your Skates On

skates

Did you own a pair of roller-skates?  Who knew such fun could be had on eight wheels!

My Dadda was determined to teach me how to lace my own shoes.  I struggled with it so much. It was was one of several key practical tasks that seemed to take me ages to master.

He patiently showed me time after time, but I gave up and in the end gave up, resorting to tucking my laces under my foot.

All changed when I was gifted with one of the most delightful presents I have ever received, a pair of blue roller-skates! They became the most prized of all my childhood possessions.

It did not take me long to master the lace-tying technique with this new incentive!

You cannot skate with loose laces. Nope, not unless you want to end up black and blue and on your way to the local Accident and Emergency unit.

Can you hear my Dadda: “Come on Mel, better get your skates on!”