Why Being Offended Destroys Productivity: Part 1
Everybody gets offended. Everybody gets offended, but should we? Now, this is a bigger question than this post can tackle. I’m convinced Christians should be the least offendable people around. What I want to focus on is being offended in the church you serve and the people you work with. If you work with someone they will offend you at some point. At the same time if you work with someone you will offend them at some point.
Three Reasons We Get Offended
- A feeling of inferiority. When you don’t have high self-esteem or a strong sense of self you are more prone to be offended by everything. Low self esteem is a constant reminder that you are inferior. Often it’s not the other person that is making us feel inferior, it’s really the way we view ourselves.
- Rigid thinking. This has to do with people who think there’s only one way to do or say things. When someone breaks away from that pattern, they feel like there’s no order and they get offended. They’re usually also very sensitive about any criticism of their beliefs.
- Egocentrism. Making your ego too important turns you a little paranoid. You start thinking everything revolves around you and that other people are always talking about you, looking at you, or pointing at you.
So when we get offended we become consumed with our hurt, anger, or frustration. It becomes all we can think about. Being offended is an emotional way to punish someone else.
Problem of offense: Offense consumes you but doesn’t change others.Offense consumes you but doesn’t change others. Click To Tweet
Being offended can consume you, but has little effect on others. Based off research being offended actually causes others to stay the same and be turned off by you. “Arguing that people are immoral or ‘bad’ people if they don’t engage in the desired act (whether it’s recycling or choosing sustainable seafood) is just going to turn people off and make them less likely to listen to the good reasons for choosing ethical behavior,” Rebecca Reczek.
“Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults—unless, of course, you want the same treatment. Don’t condemn those who are down; that hardness can boomerang. Be easy on people; you’ll find life a lot easier. Give away your life; you’ll find life given back, but not merely given back—given back with bonus and blessing. Giving, not getting, is the way. Generosity begets generosity.” Luke 6:37-38.
Being offended turns your heart hard and it can boomerang. Meaning it has a way of coming back to hurt you. Instead, be easy on people. Why? You’ll find life a lot easier.
In part 2 of this blog I’ll share some practical ways we can become less offended. For now, think about how being offended has stopped you from being productive? How many hours have been lost because of offense?