We certainly are living in interesting times. People everywhere just seem to be angry and aggressive. You can’t pull out of your drive way in the morning without someone flying up a residential road and hooting like a crazy person even though they are not even near you yet. This is a daily occurrence. If someone dares to actually wait for the robot (traffic light) to turn green, they are hooted at and have all sorts and vulgar language and hand signs thrown at them. People swearing at other drivers for no apparent reason other than the sheer delay caused by traffic. Why is the world so angry? I get it, we are living in stressful times, we are all under pressure and everywhere you look you are hit with bad news. I personally do not watch the news. I also limit the amount of time I spend on social media because social media is a great tool for those negative people to ensure that they spread the negativity. I guess misery loves company and we all those Facebook friends who have to spread misery, the ones that you unfollow to avoid seeing another post bitching about something or other. There is always something to bitch about, even if they have to dig or stalk the other negative trolls to find something, they will find something to share. I went off Facebook for over a year for this very reason. I have become much better at scrolling past the “feel bad” stuff. Quite frankly I don’t need it or want it in my life. But as life goes sometimes it comes flying right at you like bat out of hell.
I am pretty calm, even when the taxi cuts in front of me. My thinking is that me shouting at him makes no difference in his life but it does make me unhappy and probably pushes my blood pressure up so what is the point really??
I am very good under pressure and very good at calming a situation down. One of the reasons I absolutely thrived in the hospitality industry is just that, I am able to calm people down. How do I do it? If I think about it, I always start by apologising and then asking how I can help the situation or the other way around, depending on the situation.
Today was no different, I get a phone call, after I have done more than my fair share of preparation for the event and even gone so far as doing other people’s work. The colourful words being shouted at me were fun to say the least. I calmly said, “I am sorry that you are so stressed out but what can I do to help you?” He was struggling to paste a schedule into a document and getting himself into a complete state. Obviously a very stressful day! Needless to say, I asked him to send me both the schedule and the document and I would see what I could do. While I was working on the task, including fixing errors as I came across them, the phone rang again. “Lisa, I am terribly sorry about how I spoke to you, it was unforgivable, I am just under so much pressure and I am very stressed.” I responded that it was no problem at all and that I would have his document to him within half an hour.
Following that he called me back to thank me profusely and everyone was all happy and what needed to be done was done and dusted.
A situation which could have spiraled into a nasty fight, leaving everyone upset and offended, was calmed and sorted out and put to bed.
I have to say, this is something that has taken me years to be in total control over, my reactions in situations similar to this. I will also say that even now I sometimes lose it and blow a fuse. I always joke about having an Irish temper. I noticed very young that I had a temper when I hit a boy who pushed my cousin, or threw a boy off his bike who came to beat my little brother up. But I have to say thought the trigger is definitely attacking someone I love in the most extreme of cases, I have mastered the art of controlling my temper most of the time and in most situations. This did not come over night at all, it took years of practice and being conscious of my thoughts when a volatile situation presents itself. Being mindful of my thoughts before they become actions. Before I react on a thought I recognise it and then I am able to act the way that I choose to. Of course, I am the first to admit that I have lost my cool from time to time, but I have to say, I truly have come a very long way and I look forward to changing in other areas. Be mindful in all that you do and you will not only get the best out of life but you will feel great too.
Start small, start with the person who skips a red robot, or the person who pushes in front of you at the supermarket. The only thing you are in control of is your reaction to a situation and you can either make it or break it. So, I say MAKE IT! Make your mark and remember to have fun while doing it.
Be someone that people have nice things to say about. 🙂