This happened a few years back when I was in the middle of some disagreement with my flatmates. I don’t remember the agenda now but I haven’t been able to forget a text my friend sent out to the group – ‘People should worry more about the chilly on their tongue rather than the chilly in their food‘.
While this was specifically targeted towards one of our friends who had got real nasty in the war of words, I loved it and it really kept me thinking for a long time. Time passed and I dint realise until yesterday how this phrase had become an important principle of my life.
A few days back, my family was arguing about something and it ended with one of us saying really hurtful things to the other. Now let me tell you, my family is very close-bonded. We fight and argue with each other all the time but the next day, there will be a conference call and we will be laughing like nothing happened. It has been absolutely organic and nobody even notices. But this time, the issue was a really major one, at least that’s what I thought. It had kept me up all night and I couldn’t see any closure in sight.
As usual, the next day it started with a normal conversation over conference. I had assumed we will continue our previous day’s argument but someone started with what to gift my sister on her wedding anniversary which was a couple of weeks later. I was a little disoriented and calmly chimed in that it would be best if we give each other the gift of sweetness of tongue this year. People were taken aback and I reasoned that we should promise to try our best not to say hurtful things to one another however bad the situation is. A couple of them who have been victims quickly understood and agreed but a few were clueless. They thought age is catching up and I am getting overly dramatic. Finally, we settled with….a Microwave.
Those were wise people who compared words with arrows, bullets and leaves. Once shot, it can’t be taken back. It is true. Almost every single time I reacted in a fit of anger and said hurtful things, I regretted it almost immediately. I would say sorry later but words stay. The person who said it might think apologising earnestly would make the animosity go away but that doesn’t happen. Many times, the said words are so painful that the scars don’t heal for a long long time. It hits back some time later in life when we least expect it.
It was pure wisdom when someone quoted – ‘Never reply when you are angry. Never make a promise when you are happy. Never make a decision when you are sad. You will regret it.‘
When something like this happens to me, I start penning down all my hatred on paper just to get it out of my system. After I am done, I take a stroll, come back, read the paper and throw it away. By this time, the anger is gone and no one was hurt.
I think if everyone makes sincere efforts to stop spewing hatred from their tongues and try to keep anger out of their words, we would have a much happier society. An easy way to do this is by following the above quote.
What do you think? Do you have any other tips or tricks?