Before Retaliating, Consider Your Options


ARE you quick to react when someone attacks you?

While there’s instant gratification to be had from immediate retaliation, sometimes it may not be the best course of action.

You could have reacted too soon, without all the facts. You could have been justified in your comeback, but you could still lose in the long run if what you’ve done becomes part of a twisted narrative that puts you in a bad light.

There are advantages to waiting it out.

Assuming it’s not a do-or-die situation — with lives at stake or business opportunities to be had or lost — waiting patiently lets you get more information to make an informed decision about your next step. 

Jump in too quickly and you may not have had enough time to think things through.

By letting it simmer, you get a chance to hear others’ thoughts on the matter. You can seek the counsel of your inner circle and draw up more effective plans to push ahead — be it in response to the attack or to seek revenge in a different way altogether.

If you realise you were not necessarily in the right and there was some justification for the attack, you can fly under the radar for a while and let the situation blow over. It may still have a life in the virtual world, but in a couple of weeks so many new incidents could have popped up to relegate your troubles to a much lower position.

Keeping a low profile also can be disconcerting to the aggressor, who will be wondering what’s afoot. It’s uncomfortable watching over your shoulder all the time.

Chris Rock Selective Outrage
Chris Rock gets his own back in his one-hour Netflix special, Selective Outrage.

Chris Will Rock You

That must have been the case with Will Smith after his slap-happy performance at the last Oscars.

It’s taken Chris Rock a year to marshal his thoughts and launch a riposte after that  infamous Will Smith public smack at the awards ceremony televised around the world.

Bully for Rock, for showing restraint in the face of such public bullying.

The year since was time well-spent by Rock, as he probably sorted through the various offers before settling on Netflix for his big payday.

The slap that was seen and heard around the world was returned with some to spare by the multi-award winning comedian, filmmaker and actor. 

A year on, the sting of that moment has swelled into a public payback and payout. Selective Outrage, performed live at Baltimore’s Hippodrome Theatre, is less a stand-up routine as it is a well considered reflection on life and the emotions that must have followed such a public beating.

Dressed in all white, Rock was in perpetual motion, prowling angrily onstage, and delivering an expletive-riddled tirade.

While there were hints of what revenge was to come, the full retaliatory blow was saved for the end of the hour-plus live recording. He took pleasure in twisting the knife in the infidelity Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett talked about so publicly on her show Red Table Talk.

Rock brought up the “selective outrage” Smith practices, picking on someone “he knows he can beat”. 

Rock used the past year stewing, brewing and churning. While he wanted to get his own back, he also used the platform to strike out with a style that was less about humour and more about hitting the emotional jackpot.

Resulting in quite the successful retaliation.

See also  The Lesson Of 2020


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