Is this something that anyone ever really masters? Is it a skill? Talent? Learned behavior? Innate intuition? Good or bad judgment?
Are some just born with a better filter than others?
Honestly, I think it’s one of Life’s greater challenges – figuring out when to open your mouth and when not to. It’s a universal dilemma.
Then, if you do decide to open mouth, how do you keep from inserting foot?
I have a few friends who have a tendency to say whatever they feel needs to be said – knowing (or maybe not) that the outcome may be disastrous. When I am not the receiver, I SO appreciate their honesty, courage and willingness to speak the truth. Being the person to whom they are speaking can be a bit uncomfortable to say the least.
Yet, when I try that route, I usually end up feeling incredibly guilty and hurting a lot of folks’ feelings.
The opposite end of that spectrum is always keeping the peace – and I am lousy at that, too.
A friend once said to me (this might be an AA-ism), “Does it need to be said or do you need to say it?”
I thought that was a pretty good filter to apply to things.
Unfortunately, I have trouble seeing which is which.
So today, every day, I am trying to answer this question in so many areas of my life; do I open my mouth because I am so f-ing tired of keeping it shut, knowing that I am setting myself up for some serious abuse?
Although, keeping my mouth shut isn’t stopping the abuse.
Do I say what I want to say to a friend and risk losing that friendship forever?
Do you speak the truth knowing that no matter how you say it, it’s not going to be heard?
Do you tell someone to “cut the shit” even though really, it’s not that much of your business, yet the person needs to hear it?
Do I tell the truth to my children to help them understand, while knowing that it will also hurt them?
Do I say, out loud, to anyone, what kind of craziness goes on inside my pretty little head?
Can I put the inside thoughts on the outside?
For now, it appears that I will take the easy way out and write cryptic little snippets here on my blog, not really putting it out there, but pretending that I am.