I find myself sometimes making unintentionally sweeping statements.
You know the kind of thing. You may recognise their nature. Typically something occurs to us and we respond with a vague generalisation, wafted out into the world as if by setting our disappointment, frustration, anger, bewilderment free, we make it better. Earlier today, having been obstructed by several people whilst trying to push a shopping laden trolley across a precinct to a car park, I uttered…
“People are annoying aren’t they?”
This sentence of course, excludes detail as to specifically which people, in what specific circumstances, by which specific actions. It also suggests these unnamed people are causing annoyance in me. Of course they can’t, only I can create that in me, through interpretation of their actions.
We postulate generalisation such as this all the time though.
“Sometimes I wonder about this business!”
“What are the parents doing?”
“I can’t abide stuff like that”
“I’ve got so much to do”
“Middle lane drivers!”
Each misses out specifics about who, what, when, where and how.
Maybe we would benefit from recovering the specifics, so that our response can be more attributable, more actionable, more accountable?
But maybe that’s why we do it, so we don’t have to act, or own it?