How To Become Skillful At Nagging?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Octavio Ocampo's 'Mouth of flower' (repro) by Andrada Radu
"Put a bridle on thy tongue; set a guard before thy lips, lest the words of thine own mouth destroy thy peace... Of much speaking cometh repentance, but in silence is safety." - William Drummond


I remember writing a post about dealing with nagging moms. Now, I realize that I may have turned into one, instead. I used to think that it's a parent-affiliated thing where their inner nags go berserk and start to nag at them to nag at their offspring and partners. How I was mistaken. I used to be aloof. I'd rather pipe down than verbalize better methods of doing things to others.

Now that the nagging syndrome has hit full circle, I'm left with a bitter taste in my loose mouth.

In my earlier blog post on the subject, I viewed it from an angle of a person who was being nagged at. Now that time has progressed and turned me into a semi-serious nag, I shall take the spot of someone who can start a nag on cue.

When did I become aware that I've become a nag?

I would say it started with the nagging I've received from my mother. According to my mother, she nags because she cares. Taking this perspective, I taught myself to nag when we interacted. Funny then when the table's turned, she'd called me a nag, in a tone of voice that clearly wasn't reeking in utter joy. The caring that I'd shown through repetitive words of so-called advice did not translate. Nagging is indeed a double-edged dagger.

How did I feel when I become aware that I've become a nag?

I felt quite strange to be on the giving hand of a nag. I started to feel that I've crossed an invisible yet important line. From the carefree child of hipster/rebel inclination to a crabby person. Blame the genes, upbringing, whatever. And for what the mouth does when the ego needs to take control.

It's nice to care but to have to yammer on the same points on and on can be taxing. I'm not a full blown nag, yet. But being the occasional nag has taught me that the more words I have to articulate to drive in a point, the less effective they are.

Instead of getting positive vibes from the person I've nagged at, it feels as though invisible daggers are being thrown my way. I often use nagging to counter nag the nag starter to drive a point where in the end, I lost energy points and the nag initiator, quite pissed for having to listen to my nonsense, would just stop speaking entirely.

How do you stop yourself from initiating a long and winded nagging?

It's all about having perspective. If I'm starving and my eyeballs are about to pop out, naturally I am inclined to take the irrational route. Word battles may ensue over completely nothing. Something so trivial is uttered and the nuclear war of words will be unleashed.

Add to that the monthly gift of blood shedding the kinds only women experience, a nagging would simply be the tame and friendly version of an all out explosive argument.

So, here are some nagging rules set for my own sanity which you, dear reader can utilize for a better management of your casual nag disposition.

Do not nag:

At a person who is mentally out of it, drunk or in any state where their mind's been compromised.
At a starved person because a hungry person is an angry person.
While you are tired, stressed or/and hungry. Pretend to be mute until after food and drinks have been devoured.
When you've important things to attend to because nag is whack!


The occasional nagging can be indulged:

To counter a fellow nag with an aim to stifle his/her nagging.
To display affection at a loved one because you truly care and love him/her oh so much, it hurts (only in little doses as it can backfire).
To waste time in idle entertainment of seeing another person gets his/her undies twisted in a bunch (reserved for people you dislike as a subtle form of insult).
To get in the good side of someone you like who is indulging the occasional nagging or is a full-on chronic nag.


Phew, this post sure feels like a nagging rant. I hope you'll find this helpful in tackling your own nagging tendencies.

For those with nagging mothers who've commented rather enthusiastically on how to handle the nag attacks, be warned that that you have been exposed to the nag virus and will find yourself nagging sooner rather than later. Warn your family, friends and significant others!

All recent born and chronic nags alike, drop your comments down below! Tell me your story but refrain from nagging at me, please!

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shanaz@RS | 4:40 AM | Labels:

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