How To Own Your Words

Some thoughts on manners and human behaviour

We go online and meet people. Yes, behind the avatar/headshot a real person lives, with emotions and reactions to whatever we type. Often people forget that and live in their own head, taking only into account their intentions, forgetting how the written word can be attributed with another meaning. And we perceive a monster instead of the real person.

Mad woman A joke can become an insult, a smile cannot be seen and ‘LOL’ is often disregarded, because we all know a typed LOL doesn’t necessarily mean there is actually playful laughter. And thus people give the words the meaning which lies within themselves.
Someone who is prone to expecting an insult will sooner be offended by a joke than the next person who is more inclined to take things on a lighter note. And so an online row is born. One which could have been avoided if the parties would have only taken the time to make a real connection instead of a fleeting ‘passing in the night’ and ask for the other party’s intention.Why not take the simple, but more confronting route and send a message to the offending person and ask for explanation? Why do people take a defensive position, and go into offence creating even more friction.

Sharpening claws Solving a problem, however difficult and even more so online, is always better than fuelling one by adding words to the out of control situation without taking a step back and calming down first.
But even better would be to think before typing and pressing ‘submit’ or ‘send’. Remember the world can’t see your facial expression, your body language and hear the tone of your words. Be extra careful with your words and realise how one simple word can lead to an online feud, because sorry is often a word too difficult to type. Elton John sang it and he seems to be right. Sorry seems to be the hardest word, but it is a most powerful one.

puppy dog eyes Even if you know you haven’t offended someone, because you never meant to and you know your typed words didn’t have that meaning doesn’t mean that other person cannot be offended by them.
So why not just type an apology and explain you didn’t mean to hurt or offend? Why not own your words and their unintended outcome? It will not hurt you, in the end it will earn you the respect of your peers. Showing your embarrassment has a positive function. If you mean it, and yes your words will show their true meaning if you take the time to use the right ones, you will gain the trust and be judged more positive in future than when you do not show the least bit of understanding and embarrassment for the out of hand situation.
Remember being sorry for the outcome of something bad you did, even if you didn’t intend it as a bad thing, doesn’t mean you are a bad person. You did something you shouldn’t have, own it, learn from it and don’t make the same mistake again. In the end you and your social surrounding, be it online or in the ‘real’ world will life a much smoother life.

Fast Movin’ Train by Pam Howes

Click to go to Amazon page

     Click to go to Amazon page

What can I say? This book made me smile and cry a little. Every once in a while you come across a book that you have to put down because of an overload of emotions. This was one of those. Pam Howes shows us love against all odds and how, when two people really want to put in the effort, things can work. Even if it’s in ways unexpected.

The way she sets scenes and conveys emotions is something many authors can only dream about. Her imagery and ways of drawing the reader in the heads and hearts or her characters makes this book worth reading not once or twice but more often. And this is coming from someone who hates to read true romantic books. In this one however the author held me captivated by the lives and love of her main characters as if it were me. And by doing so she had me living this romance and feeling everything the main character did.


My only complaint would be that the ending came a bit too abrupt. I would have liked to know how matters with Mike and Jennie were resolved and if Rod and Mandy truly lived happily ever after.


I know I’m repeating myself, but I absolutely fell in love with this book and will certainly look for the other titles this author has available.