Are You A Part Of The Ask Or Guess Culture?


“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.” ~ Nora Roberts

Are you a part of the Ask Culture or the Guess Culture? I ran across this brilliant online discussion by Andrea Donderi about cultural expectations and wanted to share it. How well do you accept being told “NO?” Do you ask for what you want or do you beat around the bush and accept things you don’t want? The key to happiness lies in this distinction. Read on and see how you fit into these two groups.

“In some families, you grow up with the expectation that it’s OK to ask for anything at all, but you gotta realize you might get no for an answer. This is Ask Culture. In Guess Culture, you avoid putting a request into words unless you’re pretty sure the answer will be yes.

Guess Culture depends on a tight net of shared expectations. A key skill is putting out delicate feelers. If you do this with enough subtlety, you won’t even have to make the request directly; you’ll get an offer. Even then, the offer may be genuine or pro forma; it takes yet more skill and delicacy to discern whether you should accept.

All kinds of problems spring up around the edges. If you’re a Guess Culture person then unwelcome requests from Ask Culture people seem presumptuous and out of line, and you’re likely to feel angry, uncomfortable, and manipulated.

If you’re an Ask Culture person, Guess Culture behavior can seem incomprehensible, inconsistent, and rife with passive aggression.

Thing is, Guess behaviors only work among a subset of other Guess people — ones who share a fairly specific set of expectations and signalling techniques. The farther you get from your own family and friends and subculture, the more you’ll have to embrace Ask behavior. Otherwise you’ll spend your life in a cloud of mild outrage at the Cluelessness of Everyone.”

Does this all sound familiar to you? I definitely grew up in a Guess Culture. “It’s not polite to ask!” I shake my head at where polite society ever got anyone. Talk about psychological warfare. I still have to practice Asking for what I want. Oh the injustice of NO! lol

And this all plays into the Law of Attraction, prayer and meditation as well. Ask and you shall receive. If you are coming from a wishy-washy Guess Culture background how can you ever really get in touch with your feelings and express to the Universe what it is you want?  I “guess” you just get what other people want. Who wants to live like that?

Take a look at your closest group of friends and family. Is the Ask or Guess culture alive and well in your social circles? Take a good look at how honest you and your family are when you’re sitting down for dinner this Thanksgiving. How long to do you hesitate before you ask someone to pass the gravy? Just ask! If we could all just graduate to the Ask culture, what a happier place the world would be. But to ask means to be honest with others and yourself. Until we learn to be honest with ourselves how could we ever expect to be honest with someone else.

I guess that makes sense. What do you think? Just asking. 😉

Happy Thanksgiving.


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