I was talking with my coach this morning and I talked about emotions -- kind of road rage but bigger. When I perceive disrespect, I react. Most of the time, my reaction is not appropriate. Sometimes it’s an angry voice in my head, sometimes I say something stupid and then I feel bad. When I “perceive disrespect” is when I usually react. I don’t think, in general, people mean to be disrespectful.* This is Iowa, people are nice.
So “Steve’s road rage”. Maybe I have a hair trigger and am set off easily? (I’m self diagnosing.) Have you ever had someone in your life where no matter what you say … or what they say, it just sets you off? I don’t think that’s healthy. Sometimes no matter how many times you go over something and try and say it just right, it’ll make “that” person mad. You can’t win. Sometimes all you can do is step back and give them space.
I don’t have solutions for anyone else except for myself. I’m going to try to step back and stop reacting quickly and aggressively. I’m going to try and keep in mind that everyone is trying to live life as good as they can and if they come across negative or angry -- it’s probably something other than what I said. Infuse grace and love into every possible situation.
*My friend Jana who was a motivational speaker would say of road rage that the person you just screamed at (or gave a gesture to) for speeding might be on their way to the ER or worse. You usually don’t know the whole story.
**not related to anything, but I’m thinking I should start wearing bowties.