Sometimes, my head is not where I want it to be…
[pretty weird isn't it...?]
One thing I’ve wished I could change about myself is that I tend to get riled up by things…sometimes I say, I won’t let this small thing get to me…but if something bothers me, it’ll keep pushing on my brain, wanting to be acknowledged. It makes me feel a little…
I’m not saying I have a rage issue, but I let things get to me more than I should. I aspire to have a zen-like calm in the face of whatever provokes me. In the meantime, I have learned a few things about anger…like it never enhances my communication skills when I “talk angry.” I used to think that putting on a frowny face and a harsh tone in my voice showed people I was to be taken seriously, but I’ve learned a lot of people (not surprisingly) don’t respond well to anger…they get angry/defensive in turn or they just shut down. And, I almost always feel bad about how I acted as some time passes (and on the occasion when I deal with a genuine jerk, I console myself that they are someone else’s problem…not a constant part of my life). Also, sometimes I can feel how corrosive anger is, how much it burns me, no matter how justified I think it might be. And that’s hard to shake off.
But I think I’ve gotten better over the years. Maybe it’s a regressive or iterative better (two steps forward, three steps back) but I’ve learned that when something makes me angry, the worst thing I can do is react in anger. I have to retreat a bit, regroup, figure out if there’s a way to turn the anger into something productive (a better way of going about something that frustrates me, for example).
And I’ve learned what things will distract me and give me space. When I play with the cats at the animal shelter, I find I totally forget whatever might be bothering me while I give a sweet kitty a head rub, or make sure everyone has plenty of water (a couple of the more playful ones constantly tip their bowls over, which is always fun). And inside my head, it gets more like this.
Sometimes, as anger flashes into my head…it takes a while to remember that it’s a lot better for me to be like this last picture (ooh..and notice how the women have parasols to shade them from the heat of the sun [sun/heat/anger]…aren’t I being metaphorical [either that or I chose this photo and then realized I could work the parasol angle..])….but I get there (or close enough) eventually.
And of course, there’s always my “living art” that can give me a sense of peace
Having a sense of humor doesn’t hurt either….
Are you easily bent out of shape? What helps bring you back to calm when you’re angry?