Today’s lesson: Accepting "advice"…with grace

Today started off on an awkward, yet funny note, as the little tap dance known as “get your morning caffeine in the workroom” got all messed up and I had to start my morning with a radio interview and two impromptu meetings without my normal cup of tea.  I survived, and thus began another day of highs and lows.

The highs included the AR State Supreme Court declaring an adoption ban unconstitutional.  According to this ban, I’m unable to adopt or be a foster parent if I’m in a relationship with a man, but not married.  If I was in a relationship with a woman, civil union or not, same goes.  This law was passed by more than 1/2 of my fellow voting Arkansans, which goes to show that elections are not “the will of the people.”  Not this people, anyway.  Now that the Supreme Court has ruled, I’m told by a friend who knows such things that we’ll face a possible state consitutional amendment next year.  I think I’d like to send all those people who voted for this ban to a group home or foster situation for a few days and see how they feel about denying kids a chance at a loving home. Ok, stepping off my soapbox.

Except to say that another high point was learning that the Glenn Beck show is going off the air.  The only negative: Jon Stewart won’t have as much material.

The lows came from the usual stuff; too much work, feeling like I’m not helping my staff enough, feeling inadequate and missing my friends, etc.  The lowest point came when I snarked off after being offered a bunch of unsolicited “advice” in an email.  While my reaction was understandable (maybe), it was certainly not noble. 

But I choose to take a lesson from it.  I need to learn to take unsolicited advice more gracefully. After all, there’s never going to be a shortage of it.  I also need to ask for advice more.  I always feel better after asking someone for help or advice, as do they.  Virtuous cycle, right?   Can you imagine how much less drama there would be in life if we were all comfortable with being given unsolicited advice?

Well, this put me in a better frame of mind going into a dance concert by Compania Nacional de Danza II tonight (that’s a mouthful), but I confess that I didn’t take it from theory to practice as I chatted with a patron:

Me: Did you know this show is part of a series of performances that are only $10 per show?
Patron: Really?  I didn’t know that.  You should run some sort of marketing campaign so people know about it. 
Me (silently counting the hours/dollars we spent on the campaign): Um, ok.

Fail.

I should have graciously said “You’re so right!  Tell me where I could advertise that might reach you!” or some such. 

Oh well.  Maybe next time.

But the show was wonderful, beautiful, soothing, calming, (insert therapeutic adjective here).  And now my pretty pooch is sprawled on the bed next to me, taking up more space than me.  Life is good.  Tomorrow is a new day, and if the government doesn’t shut down, maybe next week a lonely kid will be able to find a home.  

So go ahead.  Hit with me your best “you know, have you ever thought about doing this?” advice.  I can take it.

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