Most, if not all of us carry chips on our shoulders each day. Even for those who’ve been able to identify and remove their chips, they have a tendency to return when one’s guard is down. They wreak havoc in our lives, especially in relationships.

The feeling of being offended is a strong emotion and is likely one of those chips sitting on our shoulder. Just waiting to be unwittingly knocked down by someone with what may just be an innocent comment or question.

We interpret our own meaning of what another person says or does. That information is filtered through emotion mind and the many things obscuring our mind’s eyes and ability to accurately reason. Our interpretations or assumptions are very likely to be very false.

Often, the perceived slight wasn’t even intended or was misinterpreted by the other person. This creates an exhausting cluster of trying to explain one’s actions and smooth things over to prevent the situation or relationship from devolving or exploding.

The offended one may blow their top, expressing their rage by becoming violent or saying mean and hurtful things they’ll likely later regret, fast tracking the devolution and creating a sinking vortex of frustration and powerlessness.

This vicious circle makes relationships with shoulder chipped individuals problematic and at times exhausting. Often they are people we love, those closest to us. If they could realize how their way of being is a state of constant waiting for the chip to fall, for their fuse to be lit perhaps a chance at relief is possible.

The first step is bringing the chip to the person’s attention. One might do this with the Stewie Griffin patented compliment sandwich, with the chip feedback in the middle surrounded by two nice things.

Resolving the problem and ameliorating the toll inflicted on all parties is needed for happiness. In the short term, setting and holding boundaries can be of assistance but for long term sustainability and recovery one must gain insight into their own psyche by processing emotional and psychological causes and triggers. To accomplish this one must create mental healing for oneself.

13 thoughts on “Chips On Our Shoulders

  1. Anya Abraham says:

    This could not have come a t a better time. Just yesterday I had a huge fight atleast from my part where I took offence of a thing I couldve made the other person see the way i was seeing it. You are absolutely right about it being seen through our personal experience. The pent up anger and frustration from god alone knows where is just bearing on everything and this was a lovely reminder to let that go and stop and rewind a little to put a lot of things into perspective. Distance and instant messaging has added to that on a greater level. 🙂 Thank you so much for compiling some of the feelings so often felt and putting your take of it out there

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anya, it makes my heart happy you found my writing meaningful and helpful :). You are very welcome, it is my pleasure. Thank you for commenting and sharing of yourself for relatability. I hope you come back soon 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Anya Abraham says:

        Thank you so much for supporting me 🙂 I’m happy to have made your acquaintance 😀
        Have a nice day, Sir.


  2. Excellent post. I, like pretty much everyone else, struggle with this. Thanks so much for writing about it and giving some great advice. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The struggle is real for sure. Even when we have knowledge and insight in this area it continues. Dee, thank you very much for your compliments, you are very kind and thank you also for stopping by. I hope you return soon 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I will definitely be returning. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  3. beth says:

    this is such a great reminder, brandon. everything we encounter is seen through the lens of our own personal experiences. it’s good to stop and think about this before we react.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Beth 🙂 Yes that is absolutely true!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Kingston Lim says:

    “We interpret our own meaning of what another person says or does.” A lot of pain and grief can be averted by proper communication on how all involved parties perceive a situation. The failure to do so leads to information asymmetry.

    Actually reminds me of a Key and Peele video when they were texting each other, Key shows up to a bar with a baseball bat.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. For sure Kingston. One potential problem is when the offended person, despite our attempts to assure and even prove to them the innocence of our intentions, they then choose not to believe us in our attempts to clarify. As to the exhausting effort often needed to convince them can be very draining

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Timothy J. Verret says:

    Great blog post, Counselor Brandon, and quite timely. In fact, I was just talking about this with a friend about how in this day and age of quickly-written texts and FB Messenger, there is so much misinterpretation and hurt feelings in flux. In fact, that friend that I just mentioned had texted me tonight that he was willing to talk in about 20 minutes and if that would be too late, and my response was, “No, that’s fine.” Well, he took that as “no,” it’s fine that he couldn’t call me back in 20 minutes. Now, bear in mind, me and my friend are highly sensitive creatures, so this happens all the time. But it happens with the not so highly sensitive creatures, as well. I think you are right that it comes down to resolving the miscommunication right out the gate. I feel I have the right and most definitely the need to tell someone to please fill in the blanks of their communication to me. If I need that clarification, I speak it, but I try to bring up how I am perceiving it rather than what the other person is doing or not doing. Clarification, clarification, clarification, especially now when we type a text in no-second flat and send before we realize what we have even “said.” Great post, Counselor Brandon, and thanks so much for sharing. I would like to post this on my writer website if okay with you?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you very much I appreciate your compliment and thank you for sharing of yourself. So much can be lost in translation via messaging those are great additional and vauable point. Sure, I would like that, go right ahead 🙂


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