Often when we are busy on our soapboxes of our opinions and our reactions to the actions and words of others, we wish to open our mouths and spout great swelling words of our own thoughts. But my friend.... so much of the time we don't have all the facts! We are quick to judge others and tell them what we think about their lives and how they should run them. And we end up stepping on toes, or into messes we would rather not be in. Ever had to clean your shoes off from something you stepped in?
In consideration of the many people I have counseled down through the years, here's a free bit of advice.
BEFORE YOU SPEAK REMEMBER THESE 5 LITTLE TRUTHS....
1. Is it the truth?
2. Are you walking in their shoes and know all about the issues at hand.
3. What you are about to say, will it provoke the person to better works?
4. Is it going to help the problem at hand?
5. Are you in authority over this person and have the 'right' to speak into their lives in such a personal way?
If you answered no to any of these questions, keep your tongue tied up and lodged in your throat, and trash the words you were about to say.
I have seen too many people tripped up by anxious words and emotions of others that literally stop the progression of healthy relationships. This is the test of good communication.
But here is some good news for you! Even if you blew it, don't quit. Keep reaching out because in the end, it can actually draw people together in understanding when both parties don't walk away.