Civility and manners,  Communication,  Events & news,  Photo stories

When silence is golden

“Tune out the cheap shots people take at you. Don’t waste words on people who deserve your silence. Sometimes the most powerful thing you can say is nothing at all.” ~Angel Chernoff

These days, I can barely stand to listen to political rhetoric, debates, or campaign speeches. Everyone has gotten so nasty; so cringe-worthy critical. Sometimes I’m tempted to turn away and risk being uninformed. But I know better.

Often called “too sensitive,” I used to be devastated by criticism of any kind, whether it was directed at me or someone I cared about. Thanks to my freelance writing career, I’ve learned that constructive criticism — even rejection — can lead to growth and improvement if I’m willing to listen up and push my ego aside.

On the other hand, it’s important to spot the difference between constructive criticism and “cheap shots,” as Angel Chernoff points out in today’s quote. Cheap shots, or deliberately nasty comments, are destructive to our personal, political, and professional relationships. We need to remind ourselves that they only reflect the character of the people who made them. ~CL

Throughout my career, I've worked as a book production editor, travel magazine editor, features writer, and weekly newspaper columnist. My award-winning lifestyles features and essays have appeared in many national magazines and anthologies, including Newsweek, Reader's Digest, The Christian Science Monitor, Writer's Digest, Victoria, Better Homes & Gardens, Bella Grace, and more. My weekly Sunday "Life Lines" column ran for 14 years in The Daily Tribune (Royal Oak, MI) and won a First Place (Local Columns) award from the Michigan Press Association. My essay collection, Writing Home, includes 93 previously published columns and essays focusing on parenthood and family life.

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