One of the most remarkable advantages of the Internet is how it has given people a medium to express their views. What was once reserved for an elite few is now thrown open to many. People have wonderfully used this opportunity to make themselves heard. But there is a problem even with this. Earlier people would have felt they were reading only the expert’s opinion and not the common opinion. Today, chances are you might come across people complaining that they have heard way too many opinions but are yet to come across someone authentic. Because, hidden inside all of us is an analyst, waiting to pounce on current affairs and give our “views”. God bless blogosphere!
This is where our tolerance levels come into the picture. Considering how we spend a good part of our time on Social Media and at a time when News channels have become 24*7, it is essential that one learns the art of tolerance. When there are too many “authentic” sources, and self-proclaimed experts, the probability of the noise being over the signal is quite high.
You might wonder how hard is it to come across someone with a conflicting opinion and still respect their freedom of speech and move on. Isn’t it fair that everyone is entitled to an opinion, just as you are entitled to yours? Why does it become difficult for some to accept that, people have their own rationale behind their choices. Why do people don’t get that we have no business telling others our version of what is right and wrong. Is it that difficult?
Well, honestly I’d like to believe that it is not as difficult as it seems. But when people get on your nerves, the need to tell someone off is just overwhelming and cannot be ignored. While there are some who give their opinion, there are others who thrust their opinion on your and are hell bent on proving that they are right and others are wrong. That’s when we it becomes extremely difficult to hold ourselves back. Things would’ve been much better if people did not have the overpowering need to prove a point to someone. If you asked me, I’d don’t think proving anything to anyone matters even after a few minutes. So why waste your time and energy on something which is not worth it? So what if the other person walks away making you feel like you’re wrong. Deep inside you know the argument or the person is not worth debating, so you might just walk away and save your time.
I have a very simple formula for dealing this. I classify everything into two mutually exclusive categories : My Problem vs Others Problem (a.k.a. not my problem). So when something falls in the first category I try to do something about it. But the minute I realise something falls in the second category, I just walk away. Isn’t this simple? How I wish everything around me belonged to the second category. We all know that is too good to be true. So how does you deal with the ones which fall in the first category?
After a lot of thinking, analysing and reasoning I came up with 3 ways to handle unavoidable situations where your tolerance reaches emergency levels. It might not be foolproof, but worth a try.
The Mind Voice
This is perhaps the most effective technique I’ve experimented with. When people around you can’t stop talking non-sense, all you have to do is to put that lovely smile of yours and pretend to listen, while you speak all that you want to IN YOUR MIND. I noticed this when I was watching a sitcom, and the mind-voice turned out to be a pretty great idea!
Write it down
I write everything down. From the my Todo lists to list of ice cream places to check out, so that I don’t have to burden my mind with too many things. In a similar way, I’d imagine I was chatting with or drafting a mail with the know-it-all I was dealing. I’d type my heart out and use all those cleverly disguised sarcastic comments in my messages and hit an imaginary Send button after a spell-check.
Shout it out, but…
Sometimes you just need to get the words out and you’d feel better only if you hear yourself say those words. The last resort here is, you could just lock yourself in a room and vent everything that’s been bothering you. The fact that there is no one at the other end to take the conversation forward would actually help you to bring it to a logical end. And it comes the closest to giving someone a piece of your mind.
The good thing about all the techniques mentioned here is how it helps you get everything out of your system. It’s better you don’t keep such thoughts to yourself because it would do no good. And honestly some people aren’t worth your time and being remembered.
You might probably wonder why you have to go through all this. That’s the problem when dealing with another person. You never know what words could hurt someone or when you might cross a line. Yes, your words may be justified and you might probably be right in wanting to convey your message. But if you think of the damage that a few words could do and you never know whose doors you would end up knocking tomorrow, why would you give those words the power to decide your equation with someone? Do you really have to prove that point and strain your equation for a lifetime? If you feel your words are plainly for your moral satisfaction and it wouldn’t make a difference to the other person, then they are better off not knowing what you had in store for them.
Because some people mean more to you, despite their words. That’s when you begin to appreciate the beauty of the words left unspoken. As for the others, well they don’t deserve your time!
Image Courtesy : Pixabay