Recently I posted an item on how to keep an argument with grown kids from getting ugly. One of the pointers was to think before you speak. Take a deep breath before you plunge into the heat of the moment.
In a recent New York Times column, David Brooks brings that point into the instant-communication era of the Internet and its social media tools.
"Communications technology encourages us to express whatever is on our minds in that instant," he wrote. "It makes self-restraint harder. But sometimes healthy relationships require self-restraint and self-quieting, deference and respect (at the exact moments when those things are hardest to muster)."
His bottom line is similar to the old-era approach: "A new kind of heroism is required. Feelings are hurt and angry words are at the ready. But they are held back."
So it seems we not only have to control our mouth, we have to keep those thumbs from tapping on the keypad as well.