Years ago I was going through a very tough time. My mom had just died, I was having major marital problems, found out my dad a brain tumor and my teenage daughter was being quite rebellious.
Needless to say I wasn’t in the best of spirits. I was very depressed and was hanging on by a thread. To top it off I was working mandatory 60-hour weeks at a job I couldn’t stand.
I would get called into the managers office several times a week. I’d usually be written up for “my tone of voice”. Used to upset me quite a lot! I’d say I could not help my tone of voice. It wasn’t like I was yelling or anything; I never cursed or said anything derogatory.
I began seeing a psychologist so I could sort out all the problems in my life. One of my assignments was to stop whatever I was doing, and write down my thoughts several times per hour.
After a couple days I couldn’t handle my thoughts any more. Every single thing I wrote down was negative. A lot of it was stupid stuff – like ….
“That dress looks ugly on Mary” or “Sue is gaining weight”
This was a real “Light-Bulb” moment for me. No wonder I had a “tone of voice”. Every thought I was having was negative and condescending to others or to myself. My negative thoughts were flowing out – not only in my tone but in my actions – which were making people feel like I was being hostile.
From that time forward every time I would have a negative thought, I’d immediately replace it with a positive thought – such as “Mary’s hair looks nice today.”
It was amazing how quickly things changed. People stopped complaining about me and life at work became bearable.
Learn to be aware of your thoughts and make a conscious effort to always think positive thoughts.