rant control

In the past couple of days, there has been lots of talk about certain people ranting in the heat of the moment. While I am in no way in the Super Bowl spotlight, I definitely let some of my own venting through words here on this blog stream out of me and unfortunately sour some relationships that didn’t deserve that treatment.

As a writer for more than 20 years, often times I have found it easier to vent using my fingers more so than my mouth. As we know with a lot of online commenting that has been getting viler and meaner, sometimes the things we put down on paper…or computer screen…are overdramatized and push boundaries much farther than they need to…or should…only for dramatic affect or to prove that one has “skills.”

For me, it was using an exercise to write daily that led me down a path that definitely didn’t deserve to be taken. Worse, it was shared in a public forum where these vindictive words should have never seen the light of day beyond the pale light of my monitor.

If, by some off chance the people I hurt with my words happen to see this…again, I’m truly sorry!

Sure, a certain Seahawk has every right to say the things he said…just as I had every right to write what I did. But that doesn’t make it right…or protection under “free speech.” It was hyped up talk in the heat of a situation that, given the wisdom of a few days and a chance to cool off, probably would have never been said, or at least not said in such a mean-spirited public way.

balloonThe similar yet vastly different situations should have remained private. The rants should have been spewed onto paper and then burned…let go like a balloon taking flight in the breeze. The end of that sure would be much more peaceful than letting words fly that cannot be taken back.

What it comes down to is we are the words we say/write. We are only as good as our last interaction. Unfortunately, not stopping to think before we speak can leave a bad taste in someone else’s mouth….and ultimately in our own.

I’m reminded of an article I read on the “Six Principles for Developing Humility as a Leader” and one that really sticks out:

Resist falling for your own publicity. 
We all do it: whether we’re writing a press release or a self-appraisal, we put the best spin on our success — and then conveniently forget that the reality wasn’t as flawless. Drinking in the glory of a triumph can be energizing. Too big a drink is intoxicating. It blurs vision and impairs judgment.

Instead of recognizing the growth and opportunity that was presented to me over a long period of time, I chose to be petty and selfish and created way more drama than was the reality. It’s good I see that in hindsight. It’s bad that I aired my rant where someone’s eyes other than my own saw it.

Let’s just hope the damage can be undone.

Again…if you’re reading this (you know who you are)….I’m deeply sorry!

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