Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Edit Your Life: Nobody Asked You (b.k.a. what to do with your unsolicited opinions)

Ah, the unsolicited opinion. 

We all, at one point of our lives or another,  have been the victim of the nastiness of an unappreciated opinion by some jerk who felt entitled to toss it on you. 

And yet, many of us find ourselves still victimizing others with our own unsolicited opinions. 

Unsolicited opinions are far different from the solicited ones in that solicited opinions are asked for. Whether or not they are considered or even appreciated is up to the asker. But the responsibility of the opinion; good, bad, or indifferent; lies with the asker, because he or she asked for it

The unsolicited opinion however, was completely unasked for, and, most likely, will be completely unappreciated. 

We treat out opinions less like a personal thought that can be dropped and more like word vomit that we have no choice but to spew out on an unsuspecting and unappreciative person. And in this age of social media, the plague of unsolicited opinions has become a tsunami like wave that is threatening to drown us in the asinine, inconsiderate, and often times, unnecessary opinions simply because people feel emboldened by a screen and a keyboard rather than saying whatever they have to say to someone's face.

Just blurting out what you think to someone, is never a good idea. Things to remember when you have an unsolicited opinion that you think you want to share: 

-Unsolicited opinions show your entitlement
Think about it; you just saying whatever you feel like shows that you feel that you are completely entitled to do so. You feel like you simply have a right to say whatever you want to people without think about how what you have to say may make the other person feel or if what you say may even be received. Just as long as you get to say it, who cares about how the other person feels, right? Wrong. Entitled is never something used as a complement, but a character flaw, one that does eventually end the person to whom it is said about alone (or surrounded by the wrong people). That's not a good look.

-Unsolicited opinions show that you are prideful
Not only does your word vomit make you look like you're an entitled punk, it also shows your own pride. It is completely prideful to think that this person to whom you have formulated your little opinion even wants it. It makes you look like you think that you are more important that the person to whom you wish to share your opinion. And self importance is another character flaw no one wants to be accused of.

-Unsolicited opinions show that you are inconsiderate 
If being prideful and entitled weren't bad enough, sharing your unsolicited opinions makes you look very inconsiderate. I mean, dude, do you really think that this other person about whom you have concocted your little opinion woke up today thinking "I really cannot wait to hear from (insert your name here) about my (insert the thing you developed your opinion about here)? Probably not. So when you took time, that you could have been doing something more productive, to create your tiny opinion, did you also think about how it would be received by that other person? I guarantee if you had, you would know that it is probably unimportant (which it probably is) and to just keep it to yourself. If you didn't consider the other person, guess what? That makes you inconsiderate.

-Unsolicited opinions show your motives 
Sharing your opinion, especially in a public forum or online could expose more about you than just your opinion. It could expose that you could be a glory hound or an attention seeker, looking to appear important when in truth, you just want to get noticed. Neither of those is a compliment by the way.

And finally...

-Unsolicited opinions are like assholes
Everybody has one and nobody really wants what may come out of there. 

There are times when we, as good citizens, must tell someone that they have broccoli stuck in their teeth or the toilet paper hanging from their foot. We do this in a loving way (a whisper to the person) and they appreciate it. We do this loudly and callously and we embarrass the person and they hate us for it. Which would you rather have?

So, instead of word vomiting all over a person with our unsolicited opinion, let us be more considerate and humble and realize that if this person wanted to know what we really thought, he or she would ask us.