checking the microphone and webcam

I know how to make people shut up

Stop worrying if people would tell you to shut up

When you’re worried about other people telling you to STFU, several bad things happen when trying to gain social media stature:

  • You only speak when you’re totally sure of yourself.
  • You carefully measure how everyone will react.
  • You make sure nothing you say will cause anyone to think less of you.

You think this is smart. And to a certain extent, it is. If you want to get through life without anyone disliking you, then buttoning your bottom lip, keeping your eyes to yourself, and getting on with your business is the perfect strategy. Just like you can learn how to write like Hemingway, you can master how to speak like Hemingway.

But no one tells you that it’s also a good way to spend your life in fear.

You can never say what you really think for fear that someone will disagree. You can never tell other people what they really need to know for fear that you’ll ruin your relationship with them. You’ll never get around to writing the book or blog you’ve been planning for fear that no one but you will think it’s important.

Sure, everyone who knows you will like you, but not many will know you. You’ll lose all the qualities of a good writer. The fear of “shut the f*ck up” will have driven you into mediocrity. It’ll crush any chance you ever had at greatness.

Of course, what choice do you have? No, you don’t want to be a timid, mediocre writer, but you don’t want to be one of those people who doesn’t know when to shut their mouth either.


Smart and witty comebacks to shut up

  When someone is deliberately trying to be rude by telling you to shut up, you should answer in a way that makes you seem like the more sophisticated person. Here are some smart and witty comebacks to shut up that will put the speaker in their place.  

12“I don’t remember ordering a glass of your opinion.”   This is just another way of saying you were not speaking to them and didn’t require their opinion.Photo by Kevin Kelly on unsplash
Photo by Kevin Kelly on unsplash
13“Why don’t you?”   This is a quick and easy comeback to remember. You are basically telling the other person to shut up instead.14“You’ve had your whole life to be a jerk. Why not take today off?”   This is a good response to use with someone who is constantly mean to you. The comment tells the speaker that you are tired of the whole mean person act, and they should really give it a rest.

You May Also Like: 40 Ultimate Comebacks When Someone Calls You Ugly

15“Please, lead by example.”   This is another way to tell the person to shut up, too. It just sounds smarter when you say it this way.photo by Maria Krisanova on unsplash
photo by Maria Krisanova on unsplash
16“Why? Is it because I’m saying things you’re not smart enough to understand?”   A great way to make people who are being mean to you feel bad is by making them feel stupid. This response does exactly that.17“Shut doesn’t go up.”   Normally, when you shut something, you shut it down and not up. This is a smarty pants response that is also vaguely funny.Photo by Jungwoo Hong on unsplash
Photo by Jungwoo Hong on unsplash
18“Not too many people like you, do they?”   This response will really sting a bully, especially if they often act out for attention. It suggests that what the speaker is doing is exactly the reason why no one likes them and that it would be a good idea to stop.19“If I wanted to hear from an asshole, I’d fart.”   This response is snappy and a bit crude. It can also be funny when used on a friend.

You May Also Like: 30 Witty Comebacks When Someone Asks Why Are You Single

20“Do you hear that? *silence* That’s the sound of me not caring.”   This response simply means that you don’t care about the opinion of the aggressor. It allows you to make light of their comment instead of being offended.Photo by jonas mohamadi under pexels license
Photo by jonas mohamadi under pexels license
21“I’m sorry, could you repeat that? I have a hard time listening to haters.”   This is a good response to the speaker know that you aren’t paying much mind to their negativity.22“I envy everyone you have never met.”   This is just another way of saying you wish you never met the speaker and that people who haven’t met them are lucky because they don’t have to put up with their nasty attitude.

The 7 annoying types of people who wont shut up

These mistakes are so common, in fact, that they’ve all been turned into clichés.

I’ve never seen anyone collect them all in one place before, though, so just for your benefit, here are seven types of people who never shut up.

Type #1: People who are too big for their britches

The people I most often want to shut the f*ck up are what my mother would call “too big for their britches.” They’re trying to sound smarter than they really are, pretending to know more than they really do, or acting like their life is better than it really is. They come off as phony, and it rubs everyone the wrong way.

The truth: you can’t fake being an interesting person. If you find yourself feeling like you have to pretend, then the problem isn’t your writing. It’s you. Go spice up your life, and you’ll find it infinitely easier to write something other people want to read.

Type #2: Snobs who look down their noses at everyone

Of course, you can take it too far. Some people have done so much that they seem to look down their noses at everyone. For them, it’s not a matter of trying to impress anyone. They genuinely believe they are superior. They’re the Michael Jordan of their industry, and no one comes anywhere close to matching their talent. What’s more, they make sure everyone else knows it.

Every once in a while, I see beginning bloggers dipping into this mode. Usually, it’s a successful person that’s starting a blog, and they believe their achievements entitle them to continued attention. Big mistake.

No one is entitled to attention, not even celebrities. If it became obvious that they were looking down their noses at everyone, they’d lose huge portions of their audience.

Type #3: Cold fish

For a medium that’s supposed to be about self-expression, most bloggers are surprisingly cold. Their writing reminds me of something I might’ve read in Biology 101. It sounds like they’re trying to impress the teacher with their knowledge, and they’ve forgotten that blogging isn’t writing an essay. It’s a conversational medium.

To be conversational, you can’t be cold. You have to be warm, edgy, and most importantly, FUN.

Type #4: Anyone who talks the talk but can’t walk the walk

You know those people who are always talking about what they’re going to do, and what they’re saying sounds really good, but they never actually get around to doing it? After a little while, you stop believing them. If they keep it up, you eventually stop listening altogether. No one has time for someone who talks a good game but doesn’t back it up with action.

The same goes for bloggers who focus too much on attention-grabbing techniques. All too often, I see folks talking about how they’re going to publish a free report, talking about how they’re going to write a book, talking about how they’re going to start a course, but they never get around to doing it.

Your readers might not care too much, but other bloggers watch this type of thing. Do it long enough, and you’ll lose their respect, which is disastrous when you’re trying to grow a blog.

Type #5: People who beat around the bush

Why do some people never shut up? Some residents of the Southern United States can be very sensitive about this one. To them, beating around the bush isn’t poor communication. It’s cultural heritage. You don’t just come out and say what you mean because, well, that’s “just not the way things are done ‘round here.”

That’s nonsense.

I’m from the South, currently living in the South, and I love my Southern heritage, but beat around the bush for more than a couple of minutes, and I’ll ignore you with the politest of Southern smiles. I don’t have time for figuring out what everyone means, online or otherwise. Either get to the point, or STFU.

Type #6: Morons talking out of the wrong end

Ever know someone who makes stuff up, just to have something to talk about? It doesn’t matter if the story actually happened. It doesn’t matter if their opinion is based on any sort of proof. It doesn’t matter if everyone in the room knows they’re full of crap. As long as it’s interesting, they’re going to tell you about it, sure enough.

In short, they’re talking out of their ass.

When you’re a blogger, it’s easy to make the same mistake. You start out with lots of stuff to write about, but sooner or later, the well just kind of runs dry.

The problem is, your readers expect you to keep publishing on a regular basis, and that means finding something to write about and learning how to write articles fast. In a moment of desperation, you might be tempted to choose a topic you know is foolishness, just to keep your readers happy.

Big mistake. Online, people are even less tolerant of BS than they are in real life. If you want them to listen to you, you’d better either say something that has at least some foundation in reality, or say nothing at all.

Type #7: Long-winded gasbags

Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how interesting you are. Talk for too long and people will resent you for using up their time, even if they enjoyed listening to you.

They’ll also hesitate to connect with you in the future.

3. God will tell you His own secrets!

Amos 3:7 tells us:

Surely the Lord God  does nothing, u nless He reveSurely the Lord God does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.”

God will give you glimpses of what He wants to do in the future. He doesn’t do it so you can talk about it all over the place. Sometimes it’s not time to release a secret like that. More often, God just needs you to pray.

Prayer might be the biggest reason God will tell you His secrets. So, when He gives you a dream, vision, word of knowledge or prophecy about something that He wants to do, start praying like crazy. Find Scriptures that support it and start speaking those into the situation. If you will do so, you’ll be a spiritual midwife, helping to birth the thing the Holy Spirit wants to release.

If, however, you go blab about what God wants to do and He didn’t give you permission to talk about it, somehow it can lose power:

  • You can lose the impetus to pray;
  • Other people’s doubt can hinder the new thing; or
  • People that aren’t on the same page with what God is doing might even try to hinder it.

Be very careful when God tells you about His own future plans. Pray into what He shows you, and unless He tells you to say anything, shut up. 🙂

So, yeah, we can’t say shut up

Aside from the fact that saying “shut up” is very disrespectful and demeaning, the following are also important reasons why you’d want to remove shut up from your (and your entire family’s) vocabulary:

Model the Golden Rule

I don’t know how you do it but in my family, we teach our child to treat others as he would like to be treated.

And we do that by modelling the behaviour we value.

We want him to mind his manners so we thank him. And when he thanks us, we say, you’re welcome. Always.

We say please when we want something from him. And like all children, he imitates that quite well and now – at the tender age of 3 – says please automatically with very little prompting.

Young children are amazing imitators. That’s how they learn best.

And, in their minds, their parents are perfect so if their parents are saying shut up, then it must be okay.

In other words, saying shut up to a child effectively teaches them that it’s okay for them to tell you and other people to shut up.

Would you like your children to tell you to shut up? Would you like them to think it’s okay if another adult – a teacher or a nursery keyworker, for example – tells them to shut up?


Probably best not to expose them to it then.

Also, imagine if you get called into school or nursery because your child told another child to shut up.

How would you feel?

I know I’d be mortified. What about you?

Model restraint

When you give in to the temptation to yell “shut up,” you’re showing your children that they can push your buttons. And not just that, but you’re showing them exactly which buttons to push and how to do it.

You lose your authority as a parent.

The antidote is to model restraint, self-control and the ability to step back from emotional outbursts and wait until you’re calm.

And you can show this by not quickly yelling shut up any time you need some peace and quiet.

Restraint is also one of the most important life skills your children will learn.

As they grow older, they will face all sorts of situations with a variety of people and you want them to learn, for example, that telling their boss to shut up during a board meeting is not in their best interest.

Model creativity, communication and problem-solving

Saying shut up to a child doesn’t solve the problem you’re having. Why do you want them to shut up? And what do you want them to do instead?

If you have a young child and you ask them not to do something, guess what they do? They’ll do exactly what you just told them not to do.


In Joyful Toddlers & Preschoolers, Faith Collins wrote, “We all think with imagery, and children even more than adults.

If I say, “Don’t run in the street,” what’s the image that comes into your head? Now, how about if I say, “Please walk straight along the sidewalk.”

The word “don’t” is a modifier that is very weak compared to the strong image created by the rest of the phrase.

This is why, if you say “Don’t jump in the puddle,” the average two-year-old will go directly to the puddle and jump in it, and be slightly puzzled as to why you’re annoyed.

Joyful Toddlers and Preschoolers

Get Now
Joyful Toddlers and PreschoolersGet Now

Sometimes you need to be creative and explain yourself a bit so your child understands exactly what you need and how you feel.

In fact, if you’d laid the foundation, you could even tell your child that you need some calm down time.

For this, I highly recommend reading the book, Calm Down Time, with your child. It’s been a game-changer for us.

Also, you’re playing the long game, remember?

As your children grow up, you want them to know that you’ll always be there should they need support, that they can still come to you and that when they do, you will listen – without bashing or shaming them.

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:Joyful Toddlers & Preschoolers – The book that will help you side-step power struggles and set limits without punishing or yelling. Containing current research and written in clear language, you’ll learn:✦ How to use connection to transform “no” into “yes.”✦ What to do when you can’t get buy-in from children✦ To enforce boundaries in ways that strengthen relationships✦ Support children’s emerging self-regulation skills✦ Get your housework done while children help or play happily✦ Create more time for yourselfIn other words, this book will show you simple ways you can create a healthy home life that meets your needs and those of your children.  Calm Down Time – An amazing book that needs to be in every child’s room. This will give young children simple tools to release strong feelings, express them and calm themselves down. It teaches young children the ability to talk about what they feel, create their own calm down space and to understand their parents when the parents get upset. When I lose my temper, my three-year-old now asks me if I need calm down time and offers to read me the book.It’s a godsend!

Reader Success Stories

  • J. J.

Sep 19, 2018

    J. J. Sep 19, 2018

    “Thank you for an instructive and non-judgmental article. Some of my coworkers display varying degrees of social consideration. I need to learn to put up and maintain better boundaries with them. I will be trying some of this advice.”…” more

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