Getting the best relationship advice - the 'who, what and when'

Letters: HOPE

You may just want the best relationship advice when you have some relationship questions. Or you're going to need the best professional advice to try and save your relationship or marriage if you are in real trouble.

In this article I'll cover what kind of relationship advice you should avoid at all costs.

I'll also give you some ideas about who you might want to turn to, and what to consider when you want to consult a professional for expert advice on relationships.

Just in case this isn't entirely what you're looking for - see also: 25 Common Relationship Problems to find out what you can do about them.

Dalai Lama:

Can you get the best relationship advice from family or friends?

First of all I'd really like you to try and tune into your own intuition.

You'll know deep down when you're ill-advised. You'll be questioning yourself and may sense that something's wrong... even if you can't immediately put your finger on it.  

You might really want to go with the advice you've been given because it's what you want to hear. Yet you won't be able to help feeling a little 'niggle' that something about it isn't quite right.

Secondly, you'll need to consider if the advice you've been given is biased or unbiased advice on relationships. I'll explain more about this, but before I do - a word or two about who you should definitely not ask for advice ...

Do yourself a favour; don't take any advice from someone (family or friends) if:

  • they like to gossip - no explanation necessary!
  • their own relationships lunge from one disaster to another - also self-explanatory
  • they treat others - anyone - with contempt
  • they speak in a derogatory manner about others
  • they like the sound of their own voice
  • they can't help but turn any conversation to their own troubles
  • they're too keen to voice their personal opinion

Value yourself! You deserve the best advice, particularly when you're down at heals.

Be aware of biased advice on relationships

It's real a gift if you have friends and family members who are really supportive and keen to help.

However, the decisions you make and what happens to you will affect them too. Most of these wonderful people, therefore, are likely to offer you guidance and counsel that is biased (although they might not be conscious of this). That means that their suggestions, relationship tips or warnings are likely to be somewhat 'coloured' by self-interest. In other words: they are unlikely to give the very best relationship advice however well-meaning, wonderful and kind they are.

So, when you seek help and advice, by all means speak to friends and family - in fact I think it's a very good idea to share your troubles. However, just be aware that their direction and advice to you may not be completely impartial.

People who are not directly involved with you are more likely able to offer unbiased relationship advice. It has no bearing on them what you decide to do and they won't be affected - regardless of the outcome of your decisions.

So, where do you go for that kind of counsel?

Finding the best possible relationship help

Despite what I've mentioned before, you may well be fortunate enough to have one of those wonderful 'souls' amongst the people you know who's able to respond to your needs without much of their personal 'stuff' colouring their advice.

These rare individuals will have enough self-awareness to ensure that their perceptions and opinions don't get in the way of the advice and guidance they offer you.

10 Things to look for in the person you turn to

In general, the kind of person who's likely to be most helpful to you...

  1. has great listening skills (see link further down for more information)
  2. is non-judgmental
  3. won't 'preach' (unless of course you're seeking religious advice)
  4. won't be directive (i.e. telling you what you should or shouldn't do)
  5. will absolutely keep your conversation confidential, unless you're likely to harm yourself or someone else
  6. will probably have plenty of life experience
  7. will offer advice or a personal opinion only if asked
  8. can offer wise counsel and information without any expectation of what you do with it
  9. won't think any less of you if you decide to act against their advice
  10. won't take over and act on your behalf without you asking them to - or even knowing that they're doing so

Personally, I'm really fortunate that I have people in my social and professional circles who I can turn to. However, I so realise that not everyone has that opportunity.

So, who do you turn to particularly for relationship advice if you don't have access to anyone with the above qualities?

How to get expert relationship advice

You may want to consider getting advice from a professional.  So, let's have a look at what kind of relationship advice you need.

Here's a list of the various professional services or other resources you might want to turn to:

8 Ways to get the right help

  1. Couple counselling for intimate relationship problems, whether or not you're married
  2. Personal counselling if you have issues with relationships in general (or have other personal problems)
  3. Online counselling - for yourself or the both of you. To find out how you can have your own online counsellor, see my page: Online Relationship Advice
  4. Relationship coaching - if the two of you just need a bit of a boost
  5. Books, articles and websites if you just want some relationship questions answered
  6. Religious counsel to help you with your relationship or marriage
  7. Legal advice either before you get married, start sharing certain assets, or at the end of a relationship when you decide to separate or divorce 
  8. Downloadable resources - I recommend self-hypnosis downloads

Questions about your relationship?

For all your relationship questions I have a huge number of online relationship advice articles on my site, covering stress and your relationship, infidelity, ending a relationship, divorce, as well as dealing with criticism, rejection, sexual problems and dealing with arguments.  

I so hope you'll find all the info here useful, so please do browse my pages when you need relationship advice. You can also share links on your favourite social network or forum to help others too!

New! Rate this article (anonymously)...

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I frequently update my articles based on feedback, therefore I really value your vote. If you think I've missed something, please do let me know in the comment section below.

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Elly Prior

Hello you! :-)

It's me - Elly Prior, I'm the Founder and Author of this site. I'm a 'real' person! I'm hoping to make a positive difference, small or large, to every person who visits my site.

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Alternatively -  there are licensed therapists waiting to help you right now. You can connect with a therapist as often as you want on any device, whenever it suits you. For further information, see my page: Online Relationship Advice.

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