That's the answer.
The only person you can control and whose actions you can control is yourself.
With so many posts all attempting to get the other person to change their minds, we should always keep in the back of our own minds that no one can change another person.
No one can change another's heart for them.
No matter the force applied to an argument.
On this forum for example there are from time to time seen posts by people that clearly are nasty.
Oh they may break the rules, they may be filled with 4-letter words,they may be all kinds of things that we know the owner of this forum will not allow.
But for some reason they show up anyway, as if to dare the owner to clear them away.
I cant change the mind of the person who posted such words.
I cant pull them aside and whisper into their ear, "Your topic breaks the rules, and will get you in trouble"
All I can do is sit at my computer keyboard and try to write things that show my concern.
if that does not work?
(It never works most of the time) ...then what else can I do?
I can place the person's name on my IGNORE LIST.
Thats about it.
Thats all I can do.
I cant control the posts of even my closest new friends on this message board, but I can control my own actions.....I can control who I allow to be on MY computer screen.
Thus, I have only one tool to use to effect any change around here for the better.
I can tell people that they have broken the rules, and that unless they change their ways I will ban their words in the future from ever appearing on my computer screen.
Does this work?......
Most of the time, yes.
Yes, it does work to warn people that their words are about to be banned from even being read , "IF" they care that their words are being read.
"If"..........It always comes down to the question of IF they care or not.
Look, I'm not going to try to kid you....there are a few posters that don't give a rip if I read their words or not...
They will go on posting their same manner, breaking the rules, being trouble makers, and they don't give a rip if I add their name to my IGNORE LIST or not.
But a lot of people that take the time to write to me, actually do care a great deal that I do read their words..
They spend a lot of time writeing to me, so they would take serious the ability to have their words show up on my computer screen.
Thus they take the needed steps to make sure their posts turn up on as many computer screens as possible.
That means they control themselves.
They edit their words.
They withdraw topics that go against the forum rules.
They do whatever they need to do to have all their posts appear in the best light.
The only thing I have to always do, is not read the words of people I have added to my IGNORE LIST....
Thats all I have to do, and trust me, thats easy...(No heavy lifting in not reading...LOL)
Once i add a name to my IGNORE LIST, I dont read their posts anymore, and thats the end of that story.
Is their a way off my IGNORE LIST?
In the beginning, years ago i would have said "no, it's final"
But I was talking about this topic with a forum friend who wrote to me on the side over this matter, and she convinced me that I should watch if anyone on my list actually got in so much trouble in the future that they got themselves banned from the forum by the owner.
If that should happen, if someone on my IGNORE LIST gets banned, then I was told that it would be a good idea at that point to take them off my IGNORE LIST.
Here is the reason why....
If a person gets banned by the owner, what is happening is that the owner of the forum is attempting to set down the rules in more clear terms to the person banned.
But the owner will allow the banned poster to come back after a time ...
This 2nd chance that the owner of the forum allows banned posters is nice.
The owner is saying, "If you play nice you will be allowed back on the forum.
At that point, if the banned person is also on my IGNORE LIST, it would be helpful and very supportive to the forum owner if i took the name of the person off my list so that they can also start over with me and have a 2nd chance too.
Thus, taking their name off my IGNORE LIST is showing support for the owner of the forum as they attempt to give the banned person a 2nd chance.
This whole subject has come up for me here again in recent days.
In all the time I have been a member of this forum I actually have had to add only 2 names to my IGNORE LIST.
And I did that only after i had sent many, many warnings to the persons that proved to be pointless.
So this subject does not really come up much in my life...but when it does I feel it is important enough to make sure I have stated my intentions clearly and reasons for banned someone from having their words appear on my computer screen from now on.
I dont want anyone in the future to say that "Alan didn't tell me"
Trust me, if I have to add a person's name to my IGNORE LIST, it's because thats the way they wanted it to end up.
But like I said, if you stick to your guns, if you don't back down, if people see you being very serious about this subject of who gets to appear on your computer screen, if they come to understand that when you are forced to put a name on your IGNORE LIST that its not a joke, that this tends to be taken serious by a few who actually care about their own words they post.
I cant change them.
I cant make them care if they get banned by me or not.
I cant make them post different.
all I can do is ask them "Do you care that your words are read by me or not?"
If they care?....then its up to them to change themselves.
If they dont care?....nothing i can say or do would change that fact.