by Jonathan Hilton
Never am I amazed when it comes to the outrageous things that come out of people’s mouths on a daily basis. It doesn’t matter if it is about someone that you know or about a celebrity or someone who lives in your community, when you say things that are mean spirited, demeaning, or just plain idiotic, you are not only spreading gossip which may or may not be true, more importantly you are lessening your own humanity in the process. I am encouraging you to T.H.I.N.K. before you speak. This simple acromym can help you to stop being a total creep and make you a better person in the long run.
Is Your Statement TRUE?
When it comes to speaking, we could go a long way in lessening the misery of others by knowing whether what we say is the truth. Unless you are one hundred percent sure that what you are saying is true, then it is just gossip and you should keep your mouth shut. There is nothing good that can come from spreading lies. It will only serve to cause harm to others, and eventually it will be you that everyone is telling lies about. Keep quiet and you will be surprised how little misery you will be causing. The truth of a statement should be the first thing that you think about when you start to speak about the actions of others.
Is your statement HELPFUL?
Perhaps on the surface you don’t care about being helpful, but understand that every word you utter is either going to help someone or hurt someone, there are no idle words or actions. So think for a moment, if what you are about to say has a helpful value to it. If it does not then, DON’T say it. Even if you are just “joking”, it is not helpful to spread rumors that are not helpful to someone else. Even if you don’t like them, you can keep your mouth shut, because lives can be ruined because of gossip, and that is unnecessary pain that nobody has to deal with. Being helpful and supportive can help pick someone up and carry them through a tough time.
Is your Statement INSPIRING?
Will what you say cause someone to do something good with their lives or will it cause them to do nothing. If you speak in criticisms and sarcastic derision you can expect to find
a collection of pain in your wake. That will be your legacy, not that you are smart, helpful or kind, no that you have done nothing but hurt others by spreading gossip and participating in small minded talk. Look for the good in what you can say, or say nothing at all if that is all you can muster, and you will be setting an example to inspire others to be more positive as well.
Is your talking NECESSARY?
This is important to ask yourself, even in a setting, where your gossip style talk will be acceptable, is what I am saying necessary? 99 times out of a hundred it probably isn’t because most people speak of others in a negative manner for two reasons, one they see their own short comings and problems in others and distract from their misery, or secondly they are a totally empty soul and misery loves company. If your talk is necessary then by all means talk, but if it is not, please shut your cake hole and be silent.
Kind should be in your thought
Many times kindness is the last thing that we associate with our words, but it should be the first. Someone who is going through a rough time does not need to have their situation spread around like a wildfire. A word, thought or sentence of kindness that will allow them to feel like someone cares can literally save a life. Being kind rather than mean takes no more effort and the results are more positive for everyone involved.
Examine the things you say and why you say them. It is far more a reflection on you and your character than it is a reflection on the people that you say bad things about. The critic always criticizes the weakness in others that they first see deep inside themselves. Consider the family, the children, the parents or the friends of the person that you are criticizing before you let the words fly from your mouth. Imagine if it was you, because some day it just might be.