Average adult asks for life advice more than 6,000 times in their life, survey finds

Thirty-five per cent of people said their mother is most helpful

Alice Hughes
Tuesday 03 November 2020 10:44
A mother speaks to her son
A mother speaks to her son

Adults will ask for help and advice more than 6,000 times in their life, going to friends for relationship advice and mothers for parenting tips, according to a new poll.

A study of 2,000 Britons found the average adult has turned to 31 people for help so far over their lifetime.

Over the course of a standard week, they ask for help or advice twice — a total of 104 times a year.

It also emerged people are most likely to go to their mother for health advice and father for assistance with finances.

The study, which was commissioned by Olbas, found when it comes to fashion and relationships Britons are most likely to turn to their peers, while careers and technology are advised by partners.

Dr Angharad Rudkin, psychologist and expert working with Olbas, said: “We are designed as social beings, and from the day we are born we seek support from those around us in order to stay healthy and well.

“As we grow, so does our support network, but our mums and dads will always hold a special place in that network.

“We are more likely to need support and guidance at times of change, such as moving to a new house, becoming a parent or dealing with a relationship breakdown."

The study found that 35 per cent of people said their mother is the most helpful compared to just 13 per cent who chose their father.

Almost a quarter even admitted their mother will always be their “go to” in life no matter how old they are.

It also emerged more than half believe it’s natural for advice to be passed down through generations.

Who adults turn to for help and advice, and when: 

  • Help with relationship advice – Friends
  • Help with moving house – Dad
  • Help with gardening – Partner/spouse
  • Help with finances – Dad
  • Help with career queries – Partner/spouse
  • Help with cooking – Mum
  • Help with technology – Partner/spouse
  • Help with fixing/buying a car – Dad
  • Help with treating illnesses – Mum
  • Help with parenting advice – Mum
  • Help with fashion advice – Friends

But it’s not just people, as 52 per cent have also turned to Google for answers to their queries, while 43 per cent have watched YouTube for advice.

It also emerged that of the 60 per cent polled who are parents, more than half said their own mother was the most helpful in terms of giving help and advice when they first became a parent.  

They were followed by friends who had children (13 per cent), their mother-in-law (12 per cent), and sisters (12 per cent).

And if their child is ever unwell, more than a third of parents turn to their mother for help.


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