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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Eating Our Words

Pin It Have you ever said something before and then immediately regretted it?

I know that I have.

I think there have been times in each and every one of our lives that we’ve said something that we wish we could take back; however, once we’ve said those particular words, it has already become too late…they suddenly become history. The terrible thing about words is that they also seem have a way of coming back to haunt us…

You see we live in a world where much of the communication we have is shared verbally, as well as with the written word. Obviously you must be a person who shares things with written words because you’re reading this blog post. But how often have you been reading something and then had to reread, positive that you must have read it wrong? After all, there’s no way that somebody would have written that and put it out there for the entire world to see.

Yeah, you know the kinds of things I’m talking about.

Sometimes these choice little tidbits have been put on peoples’ blogs, or on their Facebook statuses, and these individuals were seemingly confident that the person they were writing about would never see them.

But like I said before, words have a way of coming back to haunt us.

My good friend, Karen, from A Peek into Karen’s World once said, “We've gotten so used to our LOLs and JKs, and hiding behind a computer screen that we often forget [that these] there are real people on the other side with real feelings.‬”

Now, I’m not saying that we should sugar coat everything we write, but we really should be more careful that the things we put online aren't things we wouldn't be willing to say to someone else face to face. Chances are, our words will come to find them somehow, and then have a way of coming back to us as well.

I think of Madonna, a woman known for her singing for the past few decades – but slightly less well known for the books she’s written for children. One book Madonna wrote a few years ago is set in 1949 and is titled, Mr. Peabody’s Apples.

Mr. Peabody is a baseball coach and teacher in Happyville, USA. One day, he finds himself coming to an empty baseball field and wondering why. One boy, Billy, the batboy, approaches him with a desolate look letting him know that another student spread a rumor that Mr. Peabody was a thief after he’d seen him taking apples from a local market.

Mr. Peabody was instantly judged by the people of the town—and most of them started to avoid him after that. Mr. Peabody decides that he needs to show this rumor-spreading student, Tommy, that what matters is the truth – not how things might simply appear. He teaches Tommy a lesson about how important it is to carefully choose our words and to not cause harm to other people around us.

The lesson is simple, and yet powerful…like feathers in the wind.

We use words to communicate each and every day. I know that I do. I try to make it so that I choose my words carefully.

Do I always? Unfortunately not.

Am I trying to do better? Absolutely.

In the words of Thumper’s mother from the movie, Bambi, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

What wise words indeed.

5 comments:

Cherie said...

I think it has always been human nature to "stick thy foot in thy mouth" from time to time but with the age of technology it somehow is worse.
Bambi's mother was very wise!!

Joan said...

"In the words of Thumper’s mother from the movie, Bambi, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”"

I thought my mom said that!

Great post. =)

Kim Stevens said...

Amen . . . in our ever so technical world of today I think that some people hide behind their technologies, saying things that they would never say to someone in person, and not just because they didn't think but just because they can.

Karen Peterson said...

It's a little surreal to see myself quoted. :-)

I am trying to do better about keeping my words AND my thoughts more kind. It's an ongoing struggle, especially with some people.

Anonymous said...

HI, you would be surprised I guess? but people fromt he other side of the planet - from Kazakhstan - feel the same... words are so poweful and it's a chalange to manage them... especially with those who are so dear to you!
Marina, Almaty, Kazakhstan
PS and thank you for sharing

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