My tiny tennies stood motionless in the grass as I faced a mass of boys exiting my house. There he was. Laughing amongst my big brothers and their friends. Then our eyes met. And he stuck his tongue out at me.
Man, I hated that kid.
Childhood memories aside, in the adult world actions still hurt. Words sting. And even those of us who know better—who know others’ words and actions should not affect our own emotions—fall prey to the damage of others’ daggers.
Let’s face it. Some people are uplifted when tearing others down.
This conundrum presents two questions: (1) Are they really uplifted by doing so? And furthermore, (2) How do we prevent the pain?
Let’s consider the deliverers of hurtful words/actions for a moment…
My guess? They are either (a) hurting so profoundly themselves that exhibiting aggression is an ineffective temporary relief, or (b) they’re so deep within their own turmoil that reactive effects of their actions whirl by unnoticed.
So really, are they uplifted?The short answer is not at all.
Instead of wasting energies searching the ‘why’ and ‘how’ could he/she say/do that, send quiet well wishes for that person or say a prayer for him/her. Defend yourself if really necessary, otherwise, less is more. Why fan flames from weak sparks?
Yes, contrary to instinctive defensive reactions, instead, react with quiet love—life’s most powerful antidote. Remember, they’re not uplifted; they’re drowning in dysfunction.
(2) How do we prevent verbal zingers from stinging?
First, regardless of how positive our inner selves may shine and no matter how Teflon-coated we maintain our emotional health and well-being, when layers are peeled, we are, indeed, still human. Words hurt. Actions sting.
The best reaction to what rips at our inner strength? Feel it.Take a little time (with emphasis on ‘little’—set a timer if need be); review what happened. Understand either their internal self-dissatisfaction or own your shortcoming. This makes forgiveness easier. But above all, remember we control the resultof our emotions—that is, our behavior.
Feel it. Forgive it. Let it go. And never allow others the power to change our behaviors. Think about that.
So, wanna’ stick out your tongue at me? Go for it. You’re the one with your tongue hanging out; I’ll simply be smilin’ back and quietly wishing you more happiness.