Wednesday, October 10, 2012

day 10: the truth doesn't have to hurt

When God installed the filter that runs between my brain and my mouth, I'm certain that it was one of the cheap ones.  And for the most part, it works just fine, especially for all of the big, chunky obnoxious comments that I keep to myself on a regular basis.  But suffice to say that I'm not known for my finesse in addressing difficult situations or subjects.  I'll blame it on my immigrant grandmother.

I'll be completely honest with y'all, well, 'cause that's what I do.  Sometimes, I don't even realize how mean some of the things that come out of my mouth really are.  My heart's not made of stone; and while I'm pretty good at apologizing, I probably take for granted that the people who know me just accept this as one of my flaws.

Yesterday, while I was focusing on not complaining or bringing nonsensical drama to the party, I was apparently failing to pay attention to how I was saying what I was saying.  It was brought to my attention by a third party {because, I'm apparently a wee bit intimidating as well}, that I may or may not have said somethings that may or may not have hurt a person's feelings.  This is not the first time I've been notified of such a thing and so I was not surprised, but definitely a bit remorseful {but only sort of, because, I mean, it was the truth}.

But still, it left me wondering if I could have delivered the same message with just a tad less brashness.  Would the message have been lost?  Would my sweetness have been perceived as weakness? Does causing a person to shut down or feel the need to defend themselves really help the message?

After some serious thought on the matter, I'm going with a big fat no.  A spoonful of sugar really may help the medicine go down!  Who knew?  And thus, one more reason to work on my sweetness: to be more effective.

I've heard relationships be compared to bank accounts via many different sources.  The way I sometimes pretend that I have an unlimited supply of money in my checking account is similar to the seemingly endless supply of support,  patience, and understanding from my beloveds.  I roll along all hunky-dory-like until I gravely discover after procrastinating on paying the bills for one-too-many days or one-too-many humorously judgmental declarations, that I have once again, taken for granted how far I can really stretch a dollar of either currency.  The remedy, apparently, is to save four dollars for every one I spend and to give a person four positive statements for every negative.  If this is true, I've got a whole lot of complementing {and saving} to be doing!

The next phase of this whole sweetness project is to employ my newly aquired questioning technique to understand the logic behind a person's action instead of making mean, mocking, or angry judgements and assumptions; to watch my words and the way I use them; and to avoid at all costs making any interaction a public spectacle.

This is, by far, the most difficult task I've set for myself yet.  So, please, help a sister out: what do you do, or have you done, to help you remember to bite your tongue {especially when you're so Mike Tyson angry that you'd like to bite the other person's ear instead}?  Thanks in advance, I knew y'all would have my back!


  1. Today, I had a girl that was yelling at me about an issues that really didn't have anything to do with me. I had to remind myself that I was the adult and that my getting angry and raising my voice was not going to help her. I also reminded myself that the other students in the room were probably watching to see my reaction and that made me stay calm.

    Not sure if that would help in every situation, but it worked for that one - thinking of how others would view me and realizing that I couldn't change the situation by getting angry back.

    1. Yay for you for keeping your cool! I've had to remember this most in school also, I think it's easy to let the power get to my head...especially when other people are watching. It really puts the behavior of a specific person we know into perspective!