Monday, January 10, 2011

In Trouble

I got a scolding today. I won't say who administered it or what it pertained to, because that's not really relevant. I will say that nobody likes to be chided, and after years of teaching and aunting (and delivering more than a few tongue lashings myself) I have come to understand that such a rebuke is usually more for the benefit of the scolder than the scoldee.

As good as it feels to vent your righteous indignation, being reprimanded makes most people very defensive, and as a corollary, deaf to your message. All they're thinking of are excuses and reasons why you are more wrong than they are. That's exactly the position I was in today-- speechless, but also angry and closed-off to any legitimate concerns that may have been expressed in the admonishment.

So, although it's a little late in the new year, I hereby resolve to scold not, and also to curb my own negative reactions when reproached, because neither is especially productive.


  1. It doesn't sound like a fun Monday...hope Tuesday is better.

  2. My dad used to call this "venting your spleen." Rather an organic sort of description for a person who's busy building walls rather than bridges. Sorry about that scolding. After a dept chair gave me one of those experiences, I never wanted to talk to him again (impossible). But (maybe) because he felt guilty, that next semester I also got the pick of good classes.

    Yeah--I'm always the one finding the silver lining in my clouds. Here's hoping you get some silver lining in yours.