I wrote a post recently called Do I Change My Tune Quickly? This post is connected to that.
I’ve often noticed how our reactions to being reminded about something that we have said can vary so much. Some of the reactions may include:-
- being taken aback by the fact that the person we spoke with remembered what we said
- disbelieving that those words came out of my mouth
- being shocked by the memory of actually saying it
- feeling offended about being asked about it
Do you remember what others say?
I think the majority of people fit into two groups.
Those who remember what others say and those who don’t!
Of course, there is the matter of content! For example, I may remember a lot of detail regarding what people say about food, whilst I won’t remember what they say about the names of different drinks, for example.
Why does any of this matter?
This isn’t really an issue for you if you don’t remember what others say or you don’t ask them about it after it’s been said. For those of you who do remember the specifics of conversations and bring it up at a later date, because you care, you are are nosey or something else…it can be an issue.
An unexpected reaction
I know at times, I’ve been concerned about something that was shared with me. This made me want to check how things were with that person, when I next met them. However, I recall one occasion when I asked about the concerns someone raised with me and he denied saying anything like it, and he also said he would never say something like that! I was left hurt and confused. After some reflection I realised that I shouldn’t have felt either! I should have accepted it, dropped it and moved on. Why? Because, unfortunately, I have probably done the same!
But shouldn’t we mean everything we say?
The problem is with emotion! The way we think, our behaviour, the way we speak and what we share varies according to the way we feel and what we’re experiencing at the time. The highs and lows aren’t everlasting and neither are the situations that we’re experiencing. Yet, we often forget that and think, speak and behave from the perspective that it won’t pass and this is where we may get caught out.
Imagine, if I was in a really happy mood and I offered to help someone for a lesser fee than my usual. Later, imagine if something changed between us or my financial status became unstable or I was feeling negative about a completely unrelated issue; but the impact managed to cloud how I felt about other things too!
What would happen?
Would I stick to my word or go back on what I said?
This is one example of how we can change when we experience different emotions. Other examples may be around things we say about others when we’re in a bad mood or how we may defend someone, when their conduct really doesn’t warrant it, because we are extra fond of them at that moment in time.
How can we strive to remain the same regardless of emotion and external circumstances?