• Sheila Penelope Thorne

That’s Just Mean – Habit or Anomaly?


I spoke to a therapy, peer.¹ As basic as it sounds, do people think a mean approach is acceptable or even effective? There are times to be firm, but your communications should not reflect your emotional upset.There are times when someone is obviously not paying attention when the light changes and need a quick honk of the horn to bring them into the moment. It’s a firm way to warn or to alert potential danger, like when someone is drifting into your lane. However, we’ve all experienced and probably used the horn at one time or another in frustration.

Right? No one is perfect, we all do things on occasion we wish we could edit out. But, is it out of character or a habit? You accidentally knock over a glass and break it. “Unintentionally” does not change the result; the glass is broken. Often, there is an “excuse” for poor behavior rather than an apology. The excuse is the rationale of the offender, something expected to absolve what happened rather than take responsibility. Which is why the apology is needed, an acknowledgement of bad behavior and damage. An acceptance that something was inappropriate and needs to be controlled.


Which one are you? Do you have an occasional acrimonious communication, one that is uncharacteristic. Something when you apologize for, there is a comment to the effect of, “yes, that’s not how you normally are?” Or is it more of a habit that your communications reflect a bitter tone? Are you mean? Who do you want to be? This week, notice, do your communications tear down and alienate or build up and unite?

¹ Therapy Peer – work colleagues who keep you in check. They are people you can safely vent to when you need assurance you are doing the right thing. They listen and support you so you can avoid the CLRs (career limiting remarks). They listen to what you’d do if you went low and encourage you to keep going high.

#email #mean

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