Assumptions can really make you mess up!
This is said from experience.
It is easy, when we don’t have all the information, to start assuming the worst…about people and about situations.
However, if we just dug a little deeper, asked a few more questions, maybe take a ‘glass half full’ approach, then we might just find out that all the worry we expended over a ‘situation’ may not have even been necessary.
It’s so interesting how we operate when in worry and fear.
Assumptions can lead to us ‘acting out’ because we assumed the worst, towards other people….when maybe they actually deserved the benefit of the doubt.
A lot of the time we take things out on those we are closest to, just happened to ‘be there’ when it all went wrong.
I see this with my kids. When they are upset, they will give a punch or shout at whomever happens to be near, just because they are frustrated.
Adults do this too….haven’t you? I have at times in my life….(thankfully they are few and far between).
Worse yet, ‘acting out’ can really mess up what would have otherwise been a wonderful relationship and leave the other party feeling really unappreciated, because they really didn’t deserve your outburst.
Part of growing up is learning how to handle our emotions, without letting them control us.
First, recognising them and saying….ahhh, I remember you….it’s been a while but, there you are. You are not wrong…you just ‘are’….and it’s perfectly normal and ok that you arrived at this time…ie. acknowledge the emotion and let it be ok.
For the reasons I mentioned above, it is so incredibly important we give ourselves time to ‘process things’ before ‘acting out’ by following this little ritual:
- Rather than reacting immediately….you could just say, “I need some time to process this, or think this through, I will get back to you” …..and then remove yourself from this person and or situation, where possible (if stuck in your home…go to another room).
- Soothe ourselves gently, like you would a small child.
- Try and remember a time when you felt the way they obviously do….so put yourself in their shoes if you can (the point being, that we have all acted this way sometimes)
- Then….learn to distract ourselves with things that make us feel better….
- Then….ask ourselves empowered questions like…’what if it all works out’?
Normally, giving yourself and the other person time to calm down is all that is needed to resolve this situation anyway.
Once you have been through this process, we recommend you come back to that person and ask them to ‘as calmly as possible’ state how they are feeling now……
…. letting them know that you can appreciate where they are coming from and/or why they felt that way.
Then, try and be as open to hearing their point of view, in a calm manner, as you can manage, whilst being ready to state how you feel about it (by doing your best to help them put themselves in your shoes for a while).
…..or just stick to the facts (which works very well in business situations).
And, if you are on the receiving end of someone’s emotions, it is wise to remember this phrase…NAM.
This stands for ‘Not About Me’.
Most of the time others are just ‘acting out’ because they feel unsafe or upset….and a lot of the time, it has absolutely nothing to do with you….even if they say it does. 😉
I think we have all learned from the worldwide ‘Covid 19’ situation, not to take good situations or good people for granted.
However, disruptions like these can cause us to ‘take another look’ at what is happening right in front of us….and decide who we wish to be in the face of it.
Which, sometimes needs to happen so that we can truly realise what is, in fact, most important to us…..and REMEMBER to treat it that way.
The right amount of pressure is required to turn graphite into a diamond. Under pressure situations, we find out what we are made of.
Relationships can strengthen, businesses can change directions, parents and communities can come together to solve issues that may otherwise not have been solved, and children can learn things they would never otherwise have learned about the people closest to them (I am reflecting on the current home schooling situation in particular)!
For those who are serving on the front line, like medical staff and military, I honour you.
For those who not well or who have family members who are not, I send you faith and love. Hang in there.
For those who are feeling low due to your circumstances, I commend you for continuing on, and remind you that every situation is temporary.
For those who are bonding even more with those most important to us, in business and life.…good on you for using the time wisely.
We are all feeling so many emotions right now…..but REMEMBER, assumptions can make us think that situations are much worse than they really are.
You just never know what is around the corner.
It we are going to assume anything, let's assume it is going to be ok....and you are going to be ok.
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