It’s alright for you to laugh….
Or is it?
Or would you really if you were aware of the impact?
Interesting thought occurred when I recently viewed the promo for an upcoming TV Show.
An impacting one for me as the simple phrase that many others were able to laugh at had actually been my experience.
The phrase I am talking about started with the words, “Don’t take this the wrong way…”
Oh, that in itself is an introduction to be aware of, no matter who you are! But due to my previous experience it was one that I have become very wary of.
Then some of the following words from that phrase were; “….. and it ruined my life”
What an impact this can have when you are the one receiving the words.
Sure this is a comedy show meant to bring humor to the stressful life we lead today. I understand how light humor is used for this, and I also believe that it is helpful, after all laughter is as good as a medicine.
“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine” Proverbs 17:22
But at what cost?
If laughter and joy is achieved at the expense of another is that really true joy?
Joy, laughter and happiness are things that we all need in life, a smile is so much nicer to receive, and a laugh a great release and is good for our health, but not when it is at the expense of another person.
As I deliberated a bit more on this, I was able to see how others may take something I say in the wrong way. Without any intention, I can so easily hurt another by the wrong use of words, simply because everyone has past experiences.
It was my past experience that caused me to initially be offended by this promo and the way this was brought across as a ‘laughing matter’. My instant reaction was to disagree with it.
Although there is no direct pain lingering from my past experiences, hearing this wording became a new found understanding (or reminder?) of how there is a cause and effect process.
I felt the beginning of a new understanding, in that although my journey was similar it was also different to many others. Each of us has a journey and as such we require different time frames for moving on.
How many others that have been through similar experiences have viewed this and been unable to process the resurfacing of hurt?
I am not in a position to change the way media presents this sort of comedy, nor am I out to make a big song and dance about it. But from this experience I have been challenged.
Challenged to watch my words more closely, challenged to remember that others have experiences, joyful and painful that make them who they are, and they may respond accordingly. Challenged not to be offended by this and not to carry other’s offences.
As I continue to work through the pain of my past and use it for good, to support, encourage and inspire others I will now be more consciously aware of how simple words/phrases really do impact others.
I am challenged to make another person’s day be remembered by a friendly, encouraging and supportive phrase, one that can be used to bring further joy.
I am so blessed and enriched by the experiences I have travelled through, and by accompanying these with ‘wake up’ calls like this, I hope that I can pass this joy on to many others.
My experiences can be read in my book, “My Hidden Confidence” – I would be thrilled to receive your feedback from reading this book.