Week 5 – Some Things I Think I Think (That’s My Opinion!)

Opinions are one thing I have plenty of but I really thought I’d be able to control them throughout the week. All I needed to do it slow down and insert a thoughtful pause before responding, right? This turned out to be easier in the planning stage than it was to carry out. Part of the learning here was that it took real effort to hold my tongue and/or converse without voicing my opinion. It got better throughout the week but I’m far from accomplished on this point. Once again a work in progress. And progress I will.

Sometimes I was half-way through asserting my opinion before I realized I had crossed that line. I got a little chuckle out of how quickly it happened without me thinking about it. At first I didn’t want to stop. My opinions are good and they’re well thought out, I said to myself. Then I thought, isn’t that an opinion? Hmmmm…Even funnier was how I later tried to backtrack off my opinions once I realized what I had done. It didn’t help but it was funny.

Inner Battle

My reactions were much more constructive in other cases. Soon I was able to control my visceral responses when circumstances may have prompted an animated response full of my thoughts on a multitude of matters. A look, a wry grin or sometimes a constructive redirection of the conversation all did wonders. Then it hit me; how much mental and physical energy had I wasted voicing and debating my opinions and those of others? To what end? Those conversations, whether personal, work related, political or philosophical usually ended in predictable ways because they always followed the same patterns. I’ve found that energy is much more useful focused on positive accomplishments. I knew it in my head but that’s still an “Ah-ha” moment for me.

And another thing; when I didn’t voice my opinions those conversations changed. I asked more questions and I listened more. I started to realize the outcomes were changing too, and good ways. We might be on to something here. This is a behavior worthy of becoming a full-fledged habit so it’s staying in my quiver.

I’m excited to see the learning process in action. The progress this week was noticeable and I like it.

“If I must be a slave to habit let me be a slave to good habits.” – Og Mandino – The Greatest Salesman in the World.

Can’t wait for week 6! Giddyup!

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10 thoughts on “Week 5 – Some Things I Think I Think (That’s My Opinion!)

  1. rukario71

    Awesome blog! Part of growth is slowing down to go fast. By incorporating a pause even for a moment, you had actually told the “Watchman at the Gate” Woah, let’s screen that a bit further.

    Well done!!

    -Rewa

    Reply
  2. kathyseys

    Thanks for the chuckle and honesty!. Trying not to voice your opinions..is hard. What surprised me is how many opinions I do have and on how many things. Although this past week was spent mostly with a box of Puffs, I still managed to voice an opinion or two. But, like you did catch myself. My husband Willis was glad my throat was so sore, couldn’t voice anything:). And he enjoyed letting me know when I was voicing an opinion. What a good helper he was. Good exercise. Speaking for myself, more work needed.

    Reply
  3. Cheryl A's - Master Key

    I love your blog and so relate – I truly didn’t realise how opinionated I was and when I actually slow down to stop giving my opinion – I also found I listened better and asked more questions. I have a long way to go, but enjoying. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  4. dennisa60

    Yes Dennis, It’s amazing our ‘knee jerk’ reaction that is so ingrained into all of us to have an opinion. I really like your insight as to how you were able to change course during conversations and ask more questions, thereby changing the course of the content to a more positive one I’m guessing. Great awareness on your part!

    Reply
  5. masterkeydeanna

    I so agree that we all have far more opinions than we realize. I’m hopeful that not only will this change within me but also in my family. What a glorious world we can create when we all just learn to listen more and speak less. Talk about a challenge!

    Reply
  6. mgleong94010

    Great job and an insightful blog! I loved your ‘a ha’ moment, to pause and then to ask more questions. It makes the other person feel that you’re listening more to them.

    Reply
  7. earch2014

    Opinions are like involuntary reflexes some of the time. Slow down, listen…. it isn’t important to speak your every thought…. I say to myself. I like your Pause and ask more questions also.

    Reply
  8. mkmma4debbie

    I can relate to the chuckling at yourself. I can only imagine what people are thinking when I start to say something, stop mid sentence, and giggle out loud. I really enjoyed reading your post. Thank you.

    Reply

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