Tag Archives: Defensiveness

Don’t you emote all over me!

5 Jul

“Shame on you!” they screeched from the atrium outside the full gallery of the NC Senate floor in Raleigh. 

The topic was a rider concerning abortion clinics that was attached to a Senate bill without much notice.

Emotions bubbled over as slogans were hollered in one direction.  Little to no discussion took place between the legislators and the protestors.  That would require listening and thinking and an actual give and take CONVERSATION!

No one thinks anymore.  We feel.  And sometimes we emote loudly and clobber you.  Other times we sentimentalize our ideas in a more quiet way.

You can tell from our language.  Count how many times both you and I employ the words, “I feel that….” instead of “I think that……”

Why is that?  Could it be that we have changed our verbs as a defensive move?  Do we believe that no one will attack our feelings?

You’ve often heard it repeated, “Feelings are neither right nor wrong, they just ARE.” Thoughts, on the other hand, CAN  be labeled as wrong or racist or judgmental or arrogant, and the worst epithet of all, ‘INTOLERANT’!   But not so feelings. If what you’ve served up is just one of your ‘feelings’, then to attack THAT is to attack YOU.  People hold back somewhat if you swim around in the feelings pool.

Therefore, camouflaging our positions with feeling language is a strategy to ward off attacks, thereby giving us a go at lobbing the last word and possibly……….. WINNING.

Maybe it’s all about the adrenalin rush that comes from besting someone emotionally.


Your Homework for the weekend:

Tally up in a 24 hour period how often you hear or use I feel that..” in lieu of “I think that…”