GrasshopperNotes.com - Thoughts for inspired living


August 24, 2011

None of Your Business

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:01 am

Have you ever witnessed an accident waiting to happen and done nothing about it? If you’re human and you’ve been conditioned to mind your own business, you’ve bitten your tongue countless times.

The upside seems to be that you can say “I told you so,” but that’s not as satisfying as it’s cracked up to be, at least not for me.

I have spoken when it’s none of my business if I noticed the outcome would be far worse than the upset my observations would produce. Have I been wrong? Yes, many times. But this isn’t about me; it’s about us.

How do we discern when to speak up or clam up?

Through much trial and error, I’ve found that the successful speak up signals I receive come from my gut and the less than successful signals come from my head. If it seems so logical that it has to be shared, it’s probably time to zip you lip. But if your gut is leading the way, it’s probably time to open your mouth and say what you say.

Jerry Stocking offers another rule of thumb that can be applied here: Paraphrasing: “Speak when you normally don’t and don’t when you normally do.”

If you have a rule to speak up no matter what, your counsel will be ignored more often than not. If your rule is to always mind your business, you will witness a lot of avoidable pain.

Minding our own business may have been taught to us as good manners but may stand in the way of us offering a helping hand.

There is risk in speaking up or clamming up, so risk is no longer the issue. The issue is: Can I be helpful or not? The operative words in that question are “or not.”

Our ego will always think our advice is helpful; deeper parts of us may not agree. “Look before you leap” has been with us for centuries but an up to date version might be: “Check in before you speak out.”

It’s a way of getting your mind out of “Mind your own business.”

 

All the best,

John

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