If you read last week’s blog, (and we certainly hope you did!) then you have figured out whether you are an Inside Thinker or an Outside Thinker. Both ways of processing information carry strengths as well as some inherent problems.
If you are an Outside Thinker, your spouse, family and friends may sometimes think you have some outrageous responses and ideas. They may not have put two and two together and come up with the reality that you simply think out loud and you’re not really going to go down there and picket that store until they give you a refund. And your idea to build a tower in your back yard so you could have a better view is just something that popped into your mind…and out your mouth. So remind them…often… that you are just thinking out loud. Because they forget, especially if they happen to be Inside Thinkers.
If you are an Inside Thinker, your spouse, family and friends may often think you are being anti-social and don’t want to join the conversation. That you are stonewalling them. They need reminded that you simply need a little time to think it through before you answer. So you can say something like, “Let me think about that.” But make sure you actually come back with an answer for them. Sometimes, Inside Thinkers think they did answer out loud when they actually only thought the answer inside. Have you ever said, “I told you what I think.” But your mate says, “Nope, you never answered me”? Ten to one you simply never answered out loud. Your thoughts were so big that you thought they were out loud.
So here’s our advice to both you Outside and Inside Thinkers: remind the folks you’re talking with that you are either spouting off or mulling over the situation you all are talking about. You will avoid so many misunderstandings if you do. Remember Proverbs 16:23: The heart of the wise guides his mouth.
More Friendly Advice is also dealt with in our article Reconcilable Differences, (https://marriages.net/reconcilable-differences/). Also watch our webinar How to Handle Differences Webinar, (https://marriages.net/webinars-3/how-to-handle-differences/).