We've all dealt with it at some point- verbal fertilizer (otherwise known as B.S.), permeates our lives every day, and we all need to recognize it! It can be a good thing, but most times it just gets in our way. So what kinds of verbal fertilizer am I talking about?
Gossip- 'Did you hear about....?' usually starts this one off on the latest dirt about friends, family and the latest neighborhood drama. Our hearing instantly becomes sharper when we catch this particular phrase in passing, and not one of us is immune to the temptation to eavesdrop on someone else's business, good or bad.
Bragging- 'That's nothing- wait until you hear what I did....' only makes us roll our eyes and seek out forgotten (yet non-existent) obligations. Some even revel in this one-upsmanship even if the event was horrible; if you nearly died in an accident, these people would reply..."That's nothing, I died twice, and I broke a nail clawing my way out of the coffin!"
Complaining- I heard a pastor say it would be interesting having our words smell like our attitude. Complaining would carry the odor of that rotting fuzzy green fruit lying in our crisper, giving off a stench that would gag a goat. Okay, so the didn't say that last part, but it's still an interesting idea. Would people would stop complaining if that happened? Maybe. Either that or breath mint sales would skyrocket.
False Flattery- 'You have the nicest children!' she said to the mother of the Children of the Corn...this does nothing to help the person in question, and makes the flatterer look foolish. Mean what you say, but don't be mean when you say it. And if what you plan on saying can't be taken as anything but mean, then don't say it at all. False flattery might get you somewhere in the short-term, but in the end, it will catch up with you- like chili through a toddler.
So, is there good verbal fertilizer? I would say yes- just not the B.S. kind.
Speak truthfully, yet tactfully. Give real compliments of something you admire in someone. Brag about friends and family. Anything said that will grow a person instead of tearing them down. That's the good stuff! Especially waiting before speaking!
Think on this- a farmer has a lot of cow and horse poo. If he puts it on the field right away he'll do more damage to the soil because the poo will ferment, making heat and 'burning' the soil. But if he let's it dry out first and then puts it on the field, it helps the plants grow! So hold on to that poo you planned on dealing- it might just take a little drying before it can be used to better the world around you- and isn't that the best kind of verbal fertilizer after all?