What is important in therapy is not the point of view of the therapist or what is true or not, for even if many methods are based on science, they are often subjective and submitted to cultural differences and sensitivities.
Giving advise is a very serious matter, whether you are a therapist, a friend, or a relative.
I often think that the best approach is to make a person feel good about the stage she, or he, is at, because it is the ONLY WAY to access the next stage.
For instance, for a person that has been told, quite often, by the people around her, that she should "get out of her comfort zone", but feels stressed about it, it might not be a good idea to encourage her to act, even if the benefits of doing so, seem clear to the outside eye.
The reason is that people are, when in doubt, easily impressed and influenced by their surrounding. They tend to compare themselves to others and when they do, they feel miserable or "smaller" than others.
When a person relaxes, knowing that there is no need for her to do anything, as long as she is fine with a situation, a door of ease opens inside of her and later on, many things can be contemplated.
The stress of "having to" has been lifted.
For nothing can be lived fully, or enjoyed, before the fruit is ripe.
Another example would be a person feeling anger against the whole word. It would be pointless to make her see that being reasonable is better, for anger is, at her stage, an upgrade, an ascension, in the emotional scale, from depression and passivity, to anger.
The approach here, would be to help the person live the anger fully, without acting upon it.
Later on, the next available emotion on the scale can be hit easily.
Acceptance is therefore, the most loving and effective approach, whether from a friend, a relative, or a therapist.
What is better is not always what should be immediately applied, because "better" is often the enemy of "good", as the expression says. Also, because "our" "better" is not always someone else's "better".
Whether in therapy or education, often times, a place of love and safety is the only thing required. We do not need to tell a person, or a child, what to do, but to provide the tools so that they can figure it out at their own pace, without getting hurt or hurting anyone else.
One can also apply this to ourselves.
When the next stage can be prepared is when a question is asked.
But not any type of question. A real question. The one that can be recognized by the tone of voice, the look in the eyes, the body language, the energy of the person.
A question is often more important to the person who asks than it is to the person who answers, for a question, when genuine, is a window that invites fresh air and newness in.
At this point, one can suggest, softly and respectfully, an alternative.