Thread: Mastering My Bad Speech Habit

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    Mastering My Bad Speech Habit

    I notice that I slip and engage in negative or harsh speech sometimes. I wonder how others might have completely mastered the issue of refraining from negative speech? Or if others have a certain way of dealing with it that helps them in some way.

    I understand we are human and completely overcoming this is not that realistic. But I would like to hear from others who are concerned also about their speech and what may have worked for them to lessen their negative speech.

    Daily remembrance of the Right speech vow is of course one that I can take up and do to help with this and I am committed to that as of Today! I remember someone suggesting a "solemn" vow to overcome something can work, that something solemn and serious can have power. I suppose reflecting on the negative karma that will result from my speech is another good practice also!

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    Forums Member justusryans's Avatar
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    Hello Heartflute, I also sometimes struggle with Right Speech, I try to overcome this by trying to recognize this when it happens. I try to remember harsh speech is not skillful, and is not a valid way to get a message across. I did a lot of reading about the subject and the best I can come up with is that negative speech is caused by anger. Anger is a secondary emotion usually triggered by other issues. Fear, hurt, and embarrassment can all cause anger. I try to remember that it is unhelpful to fall into that pattern of thought. I believe it can be overcome to some extent by being aware. Hope this helps. Good luck.

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    Anger makes sense as the cause. I am trying a technique of affirming that I speak move and act form the heart and the soul. which frames this a little differently than trying to stop something negative, turning into doing something positive.

  4. #4
    Hi Heartflute,

    This previous topic in our Zen forum : "How can we let go of anger?" might be helpful:

    https://www.buddhismwithoutboundarie...8783#post78783





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    Heartflute - I do agree that anger can be the origin of bad speech.

    In my case, it can be a negative emotional reaction to something I've seen or heard. Sometimes it seems justified, other times there's no time to think it through.

    More recently, I've found it useful to give myself 10-15 seconds before uttering anything. It gives my mind some valuable time for reflection, and it gives the person I heard it from time to reflect on their words, too. Then, when I speak, I try to do so from kindness and compassion as far as I can.

    I try not to beat myself up for wrong speech, though. As you say, we are all human and we may never overcome all our faults. I try to just notice my mistakes, move on from my errors and try to do better according to my own moral code.

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    Forums Member Genecanuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justusryans View Post
    Hello Heartflute, I also sometimes struggle with Right Speech, I try to overcome this by trying to recognize this when it happens. I try to remember harsh speech is not skillful, and is not a valid way to get a message across. I did a lot of reading about the subject and the best I can come up with is that negative speech is caused by anger. Anger is a secondary emotion usually triggered by other issues. Fear, hurt, and embarrassment can all cause anger. I try to remember that it is unhelpful to fall into that pattern of thought. I believe it can be overcome to some extent by being aware. Hope this helps. Good luck.
    Thanks for sharing this Justusryans,

    This really reminded me of something that I heard a while ago. That the other side of hurt is anger. I had to breath a lot and contemplate how I responded to a highly agitated and angry family member this weekend. Not sure if I totally succeeded but I tried to be aware of my own feelings and respond with kindness.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Gene

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    Forums Member KathyLauren's Avatar
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    I am ex-military, so of course I learned to curse like a sailor back in the day. I had to consciously break myself of the habit when I returned to civilian life.

    I cannot claim to be perfect - sometimes the quality of my speech does deteriorate - but it goes against the grain enough that I am instantly aware of it. Maybe not quickly enough to stop the words coming out, but quickly enough to slam on the brakes and avoid continuing in that manner.

    Om mani padme hum
    Kathy

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