In case it isn't obvious from my blogging, I like to talk. I like to communicate all my thoughts and feelings and I'm really not too worried about who hears them. I am often surprised by others' reticence or privacy concerns, and if I cause offense to other people it is most likely because of saying too much, too openly. Every once in a while I receive a little slap on the wrist, from someone telling me I should watch what I say... and I remember for a little while, until it fades and something flares up again.
This week, I've had two instances of these sorts of flare-ups - both from people, not friends of mine, telling me that I need to learn to shut my mouth sometimes. In the first situation I was accused of pushiness - in the second, gossiping. I think I'm guilty of both. A good deal of both scenarios, right now, can be explained by sheer boredom. I simply don't have much to do - so, a personal project, or a juicy story, become an elixir for me, something for me to feast my energies on temporarily. Which I suppose is fine until it crosses someone else's comfort threshold, and that's not always apparent to me.
I worry that boredom doesn't fully explain it, though, because even in my busy working life I was not famous for discretion. I just say what I think, as soon as I think it. And my worry is that this quality is going to limit my success in life; the most successful people, I think, master the skill of when to speak and when to remain silent. Not just successful in work - but also in interpersonal relationships.
All I can do is to try to be better. I can try to listen more and talk less; stay out of other people's business; think before I speak. I would like to ask, to all of the blog readers out there who are friends of mine, for you to help me in this quest by letting me know if I have overstepped a boundary, or if I have spoken when silence would have been wiser. Somewhere in my brain, a particular sensitivity gene is not well-tuned, and I know of no other way to shape it, other than to solicit your constructive criticism.
P.S. I held off on posting this for a while, as I contemplated that saying, "Well-behaved women seldom make history". Seriously considered a whole alternate attitude. Then decided that "Life is a long lesson in humility" is a better quote for today.