Why be mean?

It’s very common when we’re angry or resentful to lash out and say mean things to people. When we’re having a bad day, we tend to do the same thing. We do it because were either jealous, or just hurting ourselves. It’s never on a conscious level, but either way it’s not something we’re likely to get away with. These things tend to come back on us.

Being mean not only has its repercussions, but it also means we continually cross the line as far as our behaviour is concerned. No one should have to stand their guard because we say mean things. If the shoe were on the other foot I’m sure we’d feel the same way.

Perhaps we need to take a step back and pause, collect our thoughts and regain our composure. It’s easy to bring the history with that person back into that situation just to prove a point and to be mean. Some of the time I’m sure we don’t even know we’re doing it. We need to stick to what the presenting issue is (if at all) and let everything else go. Minor discussions will always become heated discussions, if we don’t let other issues go.

If we’re wrong and won’t back down, it’s better we say nothing, rather than say something we will later go on to regret. Give someone else the last word because they deserve to have the last word. When we Challenge someone for challenge sake, we are mean.

At the end of the day, being mean alienates friends and family. No one wants to be around mean people. When we learn to stop being mean and using it as a defence mechanism, we get to keep family and friends.


26 Jul, 2012

10 thoughts on “Why be mean?

  1. I usually back down because I’ve always avoided confrontation.

    I didn’t grow up around arguing and I don’t like it. I try to get along with everyone and shy away from arguments and fighting. I have to be really upset and stressed out to argue with someone.

    1. You’re lucky Lisa. I grew up with arguments based around family issues.

      In a way it’s helped me change the way I perceive and do things now, which I am grateful for.

  2. I used to think it would have been nice to grow up in a family environment with no arguing, but someone then told me that it is important to have experience of confrontation and negotiation in your formative years as these are invaluable tools for later life.

    I guess this is true if a balance is achieved as I can’t see how constant arguing can be a positive thing for anyone. The trouble is that not many families seem to get that balance right.

    1. Any form of arguing is damaging. Of course it is important to grow up with different experiences and in some circumstances having to negotiate can be very helpful.

      I definitely don’t think anyone benefits from confrontation. Confrontation just adds to more stress and came make us ill.

      You’re right in many respects, families should work on achieving a balance and speaking from my own experience, they don’t always get that right.

  3. I have the issues with conflict control, due to having poor impulse control which is a symptom of my Bipolar Disorder.

    However I have been working on the skills to live in the moment which allows me the benefit of controlling my anger which comes out as being mean. It’s a process for me which I will work on for the rest of my life.

    The way I look at it, if I’m working on myself and growing, then I am living a fuller life.

    1. I think that when you separate the two issues Brian you will know that your conflict control is down to what you deal with and not you. You don’t choose to have Bipolar.

      When your meds are under control and you’re having a day without Bipolar symptoms, then you’ll act and behave like everyone else. I think you’re right to work on yourself. I think this is something we all should do. None of us are free of the restraints of life.

      You’re spot on, the more you work on yourself, the more you’ll grow through your experiences, the more you’ll cope with your Bipolar.

      Love the attitude. It’s great.

  4. I actually used to seem to enjoy being around mean people until I finally realized that I didn’t have to spend time with them unless I had to!

    I was pretty mean as a child, which stemmed from being overwhelmed by the chaos at home and not knowing how to process the overload of emotions. There came a point where I couldn’t stand myself which is when I became the total opposite and was way too nice to people.

    This has caused me to be like a doormat which people seemed to enjoy wiping their feet on. I seem to be at the point where if I want to really live, I have to learn how stand up for myself without being really mean about it.

    I’m hoping that I can really be able to do this, since I know my life won’t go anywhere until I do!

    1. As a child dealing with my own set of problems I was angry and when I was angry I sometimes said mean things.

      When I wasn’t being mean there was a very caring side to me which came out every now and again. In my 20’s I became nice and would do anything for anybody.

      There does come a time when we have to find a balance whilst living our own life. I think I have achieved it perfectly now. I am sure you will get to be where you want to be having found your own balance.

  5. Very true indeed! I find my diet dictates how I react to people. If I eat food I am intolerant too, I get very angry and snappy. I’ve learned to take a step back and think.

    Great post!

    1. Thanks Mat and welcome to the site.

      As you rightly say, having an intolerance to certain food can make us feel less than happy and can affect the way we behave towards other people.

      Like you I have also learned to take a step back from things and think before I speak. Glad it works for you too.

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