OFFICE BANTER IS ALWAYS PRETTY SURREAL as you reflect over what’s said, from a historically relevant viewpoint. I sometimes wonder if people have the remotest level of self-awareness as to what they say and how they say it.
Then I got to thinking about a certain piece of video footage of myself at a family function years ago. I was in a pretty arrogant mood, it was Christmas time, and my behaviour was not really in keeping with the spirit of Christmas.
Not that it was that bad that many other people would have really noticed—but as it was played back later I noted, personally, that it wasn’t very good.
It’s a bit like when you hear your spoken voice from a recording… ‘Do I really sound like that?’ is the bemused, embarrassed thought to self, often vocalised to any who’ll listen. We often accentuate the negative about ourselves, don’t we?
The trick in relational settings, surely, is having the instinctual self-awareness (one of the pillars of emotional intelligence) to retract the words and tone before they leave our mouths.
But, then again, we must also forgive ourselves for the things we do say—and for how they’re said—that are regretful.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.