Keeping Schtum

“Being nice to someone you don’t like doesn’t mean you’re fake, it means you’re mature enough to tolerate your dislike for them.”

I stumbled upon that quote this morning and thought to myself wow, how true is that?! Well only of course once we replace the ‘being nice’ part with ‘being civil’, because come on we’re only human after all, can’t expect too much from us! In an ideal world we’d be able to permanently block out all of the people that we didn’t like, but in reality that’s not always a viable option.

We all have the misfortune of knowing individuals who we just can’t stand for whatever reason, but who also happen to be permanent fixtures in our lives. Basically these people are here to stay and I’m slowly but surely starting to wrap my head around this.

I’m also learning that it’s not always worth it to explode and start a full on feud with said person/people, because in essence that only makes you feel good in the short term. Step back before you react; consider the bigger picture and the potential repercussions before you open your big mouth. And when you do that, you can usually see that the can of worms that you’re about to unleash onto everyone around you will cause much more harm than good; sometimes it’s best to focus on keeping the peace, rather than on wreaking havoc. Like my mum always says, you have to pick your battles. Some people are just not worth the aggravation of entertaining an argument with, so save your breath for someone/something more deserving of your time and energy.

And look at it this way, keeping schtum is a great way to practice self-control. If you can manage to stand in the same room as someone who really grinds your gears, with a smile on your face and NO angry outbursts or eye-rolls, you deserve a gold star my friend, no actually you deserve much more than that, you deserve an ENTIRE red velvet cake! To tolerate an irritating person is not a job for the weak-hearted and whenever I manage to restrain myself and go against every fibre of my being that’s pushing me to say something to said person, I feel strong, like I can move a mountain or something! Honestly, it can be so empowering to know that you possess the inner-strength to be the bigger person when you need to be. And on days like those I feel like I’m finally getting the hang of this whole adulting thing :P.

17 replies

  1. An immensely nice write up! 🙂
    I had myself smiling at several occasions where I found a very neat articulation of ideas that I harbor somewhere fuzzily in my mind! Take for example you saying ‘civil’ instead of ‘nice’ ! Ah!The Right words make it feel like a revelation!
    And this one-
    “To tolerate an irritating person is not a job for the weak-hearted and whenever I manage to restrain myself and go against every fibre of my being that’s pushing me to say something to said person, I feel strong, like I can move a mountain or something!”
    Wow! Perfectly put once again! 🙂

  2. I worked on a High School campus and was always hearing (girls) talk about someone “being fake” when they were polite/civil to someone they didn’t like. It was fun for me, thinking back to the days when I would have been right there with them, but being so glad now that I have learned that much about adulting, that I can be civil and move on. They have yet to learn that every battle isn’t worth fighting; what a relief to be beyond that particular learning curve.

  3. I very much like the message, cool heads and held tongues do indeed offer rewards in crowded rooms

    “The art of the anti-social is to appear as all expected and keep within the burning will to reduce to ashes much needed bridges”

  4. very well said and explained! although it is energy draining thing to bear with irritating people around, but you are right in the end we get more mature and tolerant.

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