Thursday, June 2, 2011


Yesterday was one of those days where almost everyone I came into contact with said or did something that triggered me. Could have been one tiny little misplaced word like "best." Could have been something as simple as someone saying no to my (really great, brilliant, super helpful and perfect) suggestion. Could have been someone telling me I was confusing them, as opposed to them saying they were simply confused.

Turns out I was doing some triggering of my own. Things I said in jest dropped deeper than I'd intended. I guess you just never know what's going to trigger you, and when you're going to do the triggering.

It does beg the question, however, how careful must we be to watch out for that sort of thing? I am all about sensitivity, or so I think, until someone busts me on my own actions. Then again, I think I do some of my best work totally uncut. Pulling a Dr. Phil, if you will, calling it like I see it.

Even when someone says, "I need advice... " or "Tell me what you think..." or worse yet, "Tell me the truth..." it can, and often is, dicey to do so. Maybe that's why we have professionals - maybe the answer is to just shut up and listen and not offer anything back whatsoever - let those that are hired to do so, do so.

I don't know, what do you think? Tell me the truth.

Photo from


Anonymous said...

The truth is people want someone to listen to them more than they want advice, even if they say they want advice.

One of my triggers is the word trigger. I hate it. Reminds me of a woman I work with who went to a few counseling sessions and can spout psycho babble but has no insight whatsoever and is the most self centered person I've ever met. Even worse than me:)

I'm okay with you using the word.

Anonymous said...

god is great beer is good and people are crazy

Wanda said...

We are all responsible for our own feelings. We are all responsible for our own behaviors (including speech). If someone (not in a professional setting) asks me what I think, I usually question them a bit to find out whether they really mean it. If they really want to talk, they talk. If they want to know what I have to say, they stop and listen. It's all about the relationship and being--not about doing the right or wrong thing. said...

I think you've gotta know your audience. Some people ask for truth, and mean it. Even if it hurts a little. Others don't want the truth at all.

I think...the intention in which truth is offered, is everything. Asking myself why does it feel important for me to say this?

Then again, I know nothing, and flub every other day.

Robin said...

I have fallen for that line "Tell me what you honestly think" before - so I am very wary. I find I am too blunt or I am way too sensitive and just about the time I am about to give up on all human contact (I am an engineer, I could do it) I realize that as messy as relationships are - they are really all that matters.

I have no advice, except to say some days suck and some people suck but mostly they don't.

(I had a sucky day yesterday- maybe you can tell.)

jill irvin said...

I'm starting to understand why my grandparents (and anyone I know over 70) tends to just smile and nod when us younger kids vent about our struggles. It's like they just know.... listen with a smile. I'm so jealous, wish I was in that place.