The momentous events of the past 18 months have certainly generated their fair share of energy — too much of it negative. Between the U.S. presidential election “resistance,” COVID-19 and the Afghanistan exit, there seems to have been endless accusations and finger-pointing, all over the place.
If we want to lower the temperature, I particularly like one therapeutic approach that I read about recently.
It recommends that people pause and ask themselves three questions before criticizing or arguing with someone else – whether offline or on social media:
- Does this need to be said?
- Does this need to be said by me?
- Does this need to be said by me right now?
Actually, this is a good recipe for all of our interactions in our business, professional and personal lives.
Or as a wise friend of mine puts it, “Living the Golden Rule – all the time.”
One thought on “Arguing, finger-pointing, and other nasties.”
It’s a narcissistic curse of the educated to think we must inform everyone of our “special” insights, likes and dislikes. These days — a genuinely turbulent era — the “dislikes” come out as venting and sheer hatred. Tact has gone out the window, so I applaud this column’s advice.
No matter how smart and superior we think we are, do we really need to behave like a sound truck and tell off anyone who might disagree with us? Of course not! We don’t walk past someone in the street and gratuitously say, “You have bad breath!”
Zipped lips can be a form of kindness and a governing principle might simply be, “Let’s not contribute to the misery of the world.”