Finding a way to stop a bad habit isn’t always easy. It sometimes takes an ah-ha moment to change your mindset that in turn changes your behaviour instantly.
I recently experienced such an ah-ha moment. My habit was all about the high cost of energy in getting angry and frustrated at situations outside of my control. No matter what I tried, said or did, the situation kept getting worse and I kept getting angrier. I was wasting valuable energy I knew I needed for other aspects of my life, including my children and my health.
It had gotten so bad that I had even created a vicious cycle where the angrier I got, the more trouble I had keeping the children under control which made the situation even worse. My health was getting affected and my overall lack of energy translated into major fatigue. Needless to say, my budget needed balancing PRONTO!
One day, as I was complaining to someone I will call a very wise woman, she stopped me cold by saying STOP BITCHING! She caught my attention. I had no clue where she was going with that!! I needed to know why she would have said something so harsh!!
She told me to pretend I’m a duck. Okay… and… (what kind of quack is she??)
A duck’s feathers let the water slide off, as I should let outside sources of frustration and anger slide off me.
- walk away, not pay attention (if someone tells you off, turn around and leave, keep your cool, your dignity and your energy)
- take a deep breath and let it pass (when the situation is simply stupid, let it go, it’s not worth wasting energy over it)
- calmly ask why (send the ball in the other court, refuse to lose energy over something that isn’t your responsibility)
- find a solution to eliminate the situation altogether (the situation not the person!!)
and if I am angry or frustrated at myself, then I alone have the responsibility and control to work on the situation. There is no need to waste energy on this. It is much better and smarter to use that energy productively in finding solutions. Learning and growing will be a good use of existing energy and source of renewed energy in the future.
This revelation alone made a world of difference in my life, helping me find the balance I had lost, allowing me to regain control of my energy budget. Anger and frustrations had stuck by me through my struggles and into my challenges, yet they weren’t good companions. Today they slide off me as I quack like a duck!