Throwing Shade, Side-Eyes and Other Covert Communication That Messes Us Up

Photo Credit: PicNoi-Clarke Sanders

Photo Credit: PicNoi-Clarke Sanders

What's on the menu for today? A good read, a bit of shade and a cut of the eye, on the side. 

The other day I wrote about civility or the lack thereof in the broader culture. I get a sense that there are a lot of folks who are out to claim their title as the baddest B$&h in the streets. Something similar to what used to go down on the middle school playground back in the day.

So what is up with the whole idea that in order for us as women to get through issues we have to resort to insults, mean behaviour or indirect yet aggressive behavior aimed at humiliating or shaming another person we dislike?

Here's my thought on the matter...we need to let it go!

What is it? It's that toxic weight we carry when our default position is to respond to others from a place of contempt or malice.

It's that negative weight that follows us around when we are in our homes and our offices. It seeps into our psyche and before we know it...this is just how we operate.

What I am talking about is the idea that somehow instead of being upfront communicators we should get comfortable 'reading people', 'throwing shade' , or dishing out 'side eyes' to those we aren't fond of or who, perhaps may not be fond of us.

These covert and frankly uncivil behaviors (yep, I called it like I see it) don't do anyone any good. It's catty at best, destructive at worst. I've been guilty, hands in the air. When I first strolled into the corporate world I also brought along my attitude. I'm direct yet I had to learn how to tone down my directness so it didn't come off as insulting or rude. I also had to keep my eye roll in check. Sort of like, rolling it but in the back of my head where it couldn't be seen.

Here are 4 reasons to ditch the shade, cancel the read and straighten out the side eye for good.

1. No one lives in our heads but us, so don't expect anyone to read your mind. Being direct ensures that your point is made and it gives the receiver a chance to state their position. The hope is that it can all be done respectfully. Side eye is just that, it's from the side. Not everyone will pick it up. Learn how to eloquently get your point across, say what you mean and get heard.

2. Stories are great, yet they suck when used to draw conclusions about someone else's behaviour. If it didn't come from the horse's mouth, then chances are it's inaccurate. Wondering what someone is 'trying' to say? Ask them. If they are rude or respond in a way we don't like, we just need to walk away. I've learned that this is the best approach for maintaining our composure and reputation. When they go low, we go HIGH. Michelle Obama, she said that!

3. We will form better bonds. People will either like us or not. No guessing in between. It's ok if they don't, we cant be for everybody but we should know who is truly in our corner. If we aim to approach others respectfully, we increase the likelihood that we will form better connections. Cantankerous spirits tend to get cantankerous results.

4.  You create space for positive vibes. Negative energy is like quicksand, the more of it you encounter the harder it is to break free. We need to drop the negative energy. It's heavy weight. We will carry this toxicity around with us and it will stifle our growth.

Women we need to come together to embrace positivity. If you feel that you are receiving negative energy, check in with the person who is sending it. Ask questions in a way that opens up a dialogue. You may be surprised to discover she wasn't shading you all along.

Positive vibes only!

What are your thoughts on the issue?

 

Your Friend In Success,

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The Professional's Coach

 


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