Friday, January 9, 2015

THINK!

The other day, my friend Shannon wrote a post about never going to the library again.  As someone who spent her formative years in the Wolcott Civic Free Library three times a week, it broke my heart.

Often, someone will contact me when they've had a problem with a teacher.  They want to get my opinion regarding curriculum or grading or another concern and I am happy to  offer whatever insight I may have.  Occasionally, I will tell them that I think the teacher is wrong and they have a legitimate complaint, but encourage them to approach the teacher with the concern first.  Most often it is simply miscommunication.

But sometimes, teachers and other folks who work with the public can be butts.  Shannon ran into one of those at her beloved public library, and now she's never going back.

There is a trick that I try to remember when I'm dealing with a parent or a student and I'm afraid the situation could escalate--I try to remember to THINK before I speak.  (I got this from a poster, but they wouldn't have posted it if they didn't want me to use it to help others!)

(PS--I know what y'all are thinking: that I'm some kind of loose cannon who goes all ape$hit and has no filter.  That's just in my personal life, not my professional one. And DL can't send me back, so it's okay.)

So, here's what you want to THINK about before you say something that might cause hard feelings:

 

*Is it True?


*Is it Helpful?

 
 
*Is it Inspirational?
 


*Is it Necessary?

*Is it Kind?


As bloggers, these are good words to keep in mind when we comment, as well.  I know folks who have received some very nasty comments on a project or décor choices, and frequently they will laugh it off as if it's a sort of badge of honor, but let's be honest--it's not nice.  I once had someone call me stupid on one of my posts, which hurt my feelings (even though I know that of all the things I am? Stupid is not one of them).  Even when I disagree with someone, or know they have their facts wrong, or they have something on their blog that's blatantly misspelled, I'm not going to say anything if I don't THINK first.

I wish Shannon's librarian had thought about these questions before she'd had the exchange with Shannon.  I wish others would THINK before making an already tense situation even worse.  I find that keeping these questions in mind keeps things from getting out of control.  And makes for much nicer commenting.




12 comments:

ART aka Anna-Ruth Taynton said...

I LOVE This post! I am sharing :)....sometimes it takes a lot of strength to keep quiet and put a smile on your face...

Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

AMEN. i really wish they would think before they speak or react on social media... there needs to be much more of this going on and less hurtful words floating around.

Andrea said...

Thank you for this, as I am on the cusp of sending a letter to the school and as this helps keep me in check, I think it may also validate my concerns! (I will be kind about it though, I swear)

Little Miss Maggie said...

So true, Kirby. We live in a frustrated angry society and a little kindness goes a long way. As for misspellings and grammatical errors in a blog post or a difference of opinion, I say don't sweat the small stuff. Is it really that important? Great post.

Danni@SiloHillFarm said...

Ah....words from the wise! I like your acronym and am going to try to remember it as it's possible I have been guilty of saying a few things without considering all aspects. You are my favorite teacher in blogland!

Eliesa Prettelt said...

Loved this post. Wish it was a pop up before you could comment on someone's post. "Did you THINK about what you are going to write?" Although I don't think the internet trolls would pay it much attention.

Linda at French Hollow said...

Very well said - and so true. Thank you.

Joanne said...

My mother always said, " If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all". I try to live by these words. In today's world there seem to be a lot of impatient, stressed out, or down right angry folks out there. Sad that they also ruin the day for others. Be happy!

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

I am usually good about THINKING in public but at home, not so much!

Art and Sand said...

I used to use THINK with my Leadership class. I really stressed the "need" part. Did they really need to share whatever gossip they were sharing?

Sherry @ Thrift My House said...

Great post Kirby! Great advice!

Shannon Fox said...

MWAH! Thanks for passing along this wonderful information. I read all the thoughtful comments as well. We all need to think, and practice grace.

xo ~Shannon

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