Blurt – “To open one’s mouth without engaging one’s brain…”

To Blurt?

Blurting, we all do it from time to time when our mouths speak before our brain is engaged. For example:

Who was that ghastly bloke hanging on to you last week? He looked like a right old lech, did you manage to get rid of him….

Oh, he’s your fiancé? Of course, I was just joking- he looks like a lovely chap, no honestly…!’

I often work within larger organisations as a coach/mentor. Some time ago I was involved in sorting out an unfortunate attack of blurting which had serious consequences for all involved. In brief, two senior managers had an underlying issue which neither had tackled and had lain dormant. Most of their colleagues knew they ‘didn’t get on’ but the real problem had never been addressed.

Say What You Mean – But Don’t be Mean

The inevitable happened and one day in a particularly stressful situation one of them blurted. Out came the grief held in for months and they heard themselves giving voice to long held thoughts, slights and grievances. The damage was immense.

We managed to resolve the situation by dint of mediation and some assertive talking but it wasn’t easy and the wounds will take some time to heal.

How much better it would have been if either one of the parties had felt able to behave assertively, professionally and as an adult, and take some control.

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Posted on April 16th, 2012 by

4 Responses to “Blurt – “To open one’s mouth without engaging one’s brain…””

  1. Shona Easton says:

    Oh no, I did this not so long ago and found myself wiggling out of the hole. How embarrassing it was too!

  2. Shona Easton says:

    Ok then, stepdaughter no: 2’s choice of degree not going down too well with her Dad & other family members and it came up in conversation with a friend recently so I voiced all their concerns. Only it turns out that, that subject is my friend’s field of expertise….ooops, and I had just (kind of) been dissing it! Next time: engage brain before speaking!

    • Jane says:

      It’s the kind of mistake any of us could make…..What was the degree?? 🙂
      My husband’s best one was when looking a picture on our wall, many moons ago, and saying “I hate that picture. Why did we hang it up?” The people who actually had given it to us as a present were sitting right there so I began giving him the ‘please shut up right now‘ look. He, not ever having learned face talk, further compounds things by saying “Why are you looking at me like that-you hate it too!”
      Then he realised and bolted from the room leaving me to try and pretend he’d been joking all along!

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