How to Give Advice Without Being Judgmental

Giving advice is a tricky thing. On one hand, you want to help the person seeking your advice, yet you don't want to come off as judgmental. How do you strike a balance between being honest and being respectful?

Well, fret not, my fellow advice-givers. In this article, I'll share some tips on how to give advice without being judgmental. Are you ready? Let's dive in!

Start by Listening

The first step in giving advice is to listen attentively to the person seeking your counsel. Pay attention to their tone, body language, and the words they use. Give them your undivided attention, and don't interrupt them.

As you listen, try to understand their situation and the challenges they're facing. Put yourself in their shoes and look at things from their perspective. This will help you empathize with them and build trust.

Be Objective

When giving advice, it's important to be objective. Approach the situation with an open mind and try not to let your personal biases influence your advice.

Take a step back and look at the situation objectively. Ask yourself, "What would I do if I were in their shoes?" or "What advice would I give if I didn't know this person?" This will help you avoid projecting your own values and beliefs onto the person seeking advice.

Avoid Making Assumptions

It's easy to make assumptions about someone based on their situation. However, assumptions can be detrimental to giving effective advice. Instead of assuming anything, try asking clarifying questions.

Ask open-ended questions like, "What have you tried so far?" or "What do you think would be the best solution?" This will help you better understand their situation and avoid making unfounded assumptions.

Offer Solutions, Not Criticisms

When giving advice, it's important to offer solutions, not criticisms. Criticizing someone's actions or decisions will only make them defensive and less likely to accept your advice.

Instead, focus on offering solutions. Ask questions that help the person see different options, and encourage them to weigh the pros and cons of each option. Provide guidance and support as they make their decision.

Use Non-Judgmental Language

The words you use when giving advice can make a big difference. Avoid using judgmental language or phrases that put the person on the defensive.

For example, instead of saying "What were you thinking?" try saying, "Can you tell me more about why you made that choice?" This will encourage them to open up and share more about their situation.

Acknowledge Their Feelings

When giving advice, it's important to acknowledge and validate the person's feelings. They may be feeling anxious, frustrated, or embarrassed, and acknowledging these feelings can help them feel heard and understood.

Use phrases like "I can understand why you feel that way" or "It's completely understandable that you're feeling overwhelmed." This will show the person seeking advice that you're empathetic and that you understand where they're coming from.

Be Positive and Encouraging

Finally, it's important to be positive and encouraging when giving advice. Encourage the person seeking advice to take action and offer support as they take steps to make positive changes in their life.

Use phrases like "I believe in you" or "I know you can do this." This will give them the confidence they need to move forward and make positive changes in their life.


Giving advice without being judgmental can be a challenge, but it's essential if you want to help someone. By listening attentively, being objective, avoiding assumptions, offering solutions, using non-judgmental language, acknowledging their feelings, and being positive and encouraging, you can help the person seeking advice feel heard, understood, and empowered to make positive changes in their life.

So, go forth and offer your advice with confidence! Remember, you have the power to make a difference in someone's life.

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