It's so easy to complain about and criticize other people. After all, many of the people around us say and/or do things that get on our nerves or upset us. It seems that a common reaction nowadays is to respond with anger or irritation. What's ironic is that we often react to someone else doing something that we ourselves have done (often on a regular basis!)
I try not to get offended at what other people say/do. It probably helps that I have a mostly mellow personality and that I'm probably too lazy to get riled up about much. (Or maybe I just have so much else to do that it's not worth wasting my time!) I can understand why people get angry and upset- it's not like I'm oblivious to the snide remarks, rude comments, or inconsiderate gestures.
I look at it this way, though: if I can make it through an entire day without once saying or doing anything that hurts or offends someone else, then I have the right to get offended or take something personally. Except that by doing that, I have immediately made that right null and void! Instead, I try to remember that we all say/do things that we don't mean. We aren't always aware that some things may come across the wrong way. When you stop to remember that we all come from such diverse backgrounds and experiences, it's a wonder we can communicate at all!
I've also come to realize that if I say something bad about someone else, it ends up making me look worse. What's to make a friend or family member think I won't say something bad about them if I talk about others negatively? And how can I face God if the only people I'm nice to are the ones I like? Isn't learning to love the unlovable part of why we're here in the first place?
One of my goals for the New Year is to be more careful of the things I say about others. I'm not going to obsess over whether or not every little thing I say is going to offend someone else, because I can't control that, but I can make a more concerted effort to only say nice things. If I slip up, though, please forgive me.