- April 13, 2020
- Posted by: Philip Struble
- Category: Uncategorized
“You can choose to be unoffendable.”
author of Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better
The dictionary defines offendable as to cause resentful displeasure; irritate, annoy, or anger: a remark so thoughtless it can only offend.
So by deduction, being unoffendable is the state of mind where nothing can be so resentful that it causes any displeasure, annoyance, or anger.
Unoffendable is the state of mind that nothing can tick you off.
You would think that being unoffendable is an amazing feat of human willpower considering how we constantly hear how someone is offended by practically everything. It seems as if it’s so bad that if I said I like dogs better than cats, someone is going to be offended.
As business leaders and entrepreneurs, we need to understand that the main problem with being offended is that we quit listening and stop learning once we decide we are offended. When we are offended, we assume we are absolutely correct in our thinking and that nobody can tell us anything new.
And to some, simply that thought alone is offensive—but we are all fallen, fallible people.
The way I see it, there are two sides to the “unoffendable” decision.
The first side is our role in being unoffendable. As such, we are both the receiver and distributor of an offense. When someone says or does something, we get to choose if we are to take offense and hence take some sort of action. Additionally, we also can choose to be the offender and cause someone else to be offended.
The opposite roles are true for someone else. People outside our control have the choice to say or do something at which we get to choose to be offended. People we interact with have the choice to be offended by our words or actions, despite what our intent is for those actions. They also get to choose to offend us.
In all the various scenarios of who is offending whom, the only actions you can be concerned with are the ones you control.
You get to choose to be offended by another person or entity or not. That TV show, politician, or news article is out of your control, but it is your choice to be offended or unoffended.
You also get to choose to present something that might offend others. We all have our opinions and have the right to express them.
But in choosing to express those thoughts, the questions are: Are you simply pushing “cultural” buttons? Will expressing your opinion make a difference? Are you responding in love? Will your response add to or detract from the conversation? Is there a better way to respond?
How to Practice Being Unoffendable
- Think before responding, better yet, when in doubt, don’t respond.
- Choose to forgive.
- Realize that when we get angry at someone, we’re making presumptions about their motives, attitudes, and abilities that we can’t truly know.
- Choose to let your anger drive you to action instead of indignation.
Luke 17:1 says.
And he said to his disciples, “Temptations to sin are sure to come, but woe to the one through whom they come!
As I mentioned earlier, we are all fallen, fallible people. What Luke is saying is that it is presumptions of us to think we have the right to be offended by someone else. God’s role is anger and judgment, not ours.
Forfeiting our right to anger and offense makes us deny ourselves and be others-centered. Amazingly, when we give up on being angry and offended, we start thinking of others, and our lives and businesses change for the better.
So, one more step to practice in being unoffended is:
- Pray and ask God to remove any anger, malice, and offense and help you to begin being unoffended.