Stand Up…

Being the bigger person. Most of the time it’s easy to not get your hackles up over someone’s words or actions. Pookey calls it being “the duck”. Not letting things get to you and letting things slide off you like water off a duck’s back. He’s really good at it.  I’m still a duckling struggling with knowing where to put my own two webbed feet in front of me. I can outsource my intolerance to being a fiery redhead, my Gaelic name translates to “sword”, I fight for the underdog  and I’m a dominant personality but really I don’t practice at being still. I’m more of “the hawk” type. Vigilant. Defender. Assertive. Here’s one example were Pookey gives my life some balance. His sage words on forget about it and move on bring perspective. Being “the duck” has it’s perks as I discussed yesterday in this blog. You feel better and in many cases it makes you a likable nice person. However, when is it good to be “the hawk”; to stand up and make a stand? Seems an obvious answer, right? Not so, even in the most obvious scenarios people stay “the duck”. Why let someone else’s situation effect my life? Move on. Insist that reaching out has no impact on our lives. Or is that so? Like everything in life there is  balance. It’s a lifetime of achievement to get and maintain equilibrium. No question we have a place for both the duck and hawk  in our lives. Most people ignore the concept of balance until life teaches you some humility and compassion.  A simple but strong example of the duck vs the hawk mentality; your car breaks down and stalls near a busy intersection. You are the only one in the car and traffic is flying past you. Even better you forgot your cell phone. It’s cold and pouring rain. Your late for an important meeting. Even with your flashers on count how many people fly past you. Easy guess – almost all. It’s a lonely feeling being ignored by all “the ducks” rapidly swimming past you. Safety reasons aside – How grateful are you when “the hawk” stops and offers you assistance? Do you remember that moment of someone taking a stand to help you? Now let’s talk about everyday conversations. How many times do you hear someone else wrongly putting blame towards a place or person? Blatantly ignoring their own lack of whatever it is regarding the conversation. Do you call them on it? Do you play “the duck” and nod your head in agreement. Or do you assert yourself  as “the hawk” and set things straight? No doubt it’s a personal choice of checks and balances. Make that call by being vigilant in your interactions. Even a duck will snap at you if you cross it.

Need some advice on how to stand up for yourself or others? One, limit your body language.  Stand still and look the person in the eyes. Let them say their side uninterrupted and then demand the same in return. Second, say your peace using active first person words, like, “I disagree” or “I think”. Avoid passive tones. Third, speak in a steady and controlled tone. Don’t raise your voice. Lastly, don’t be bullied on your stand. Reassert your reasons, offer up solutions and then conclude the conversation. It’s okay to agree to disagree. Be internally proud of taking a stand but never voice it out loud in a conversation.

Hugs & wishes,

Brenda

~~Think like a man of action, act like a man of thought.  ~~

Henri Louis Bergson

Advertisements

Brenda and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day…

I can sense a bad day from the moment I open my eyes. Usually I’m awaked way too early up by some disturbance. Such as today my inside/outside house cat decides to come home at 4am. He picks at the window screen in our bedroom; plucking the screen apart like a gorilla playing a harp. Half awake I curse at my slumbering husband next to me. And at why I didn’t have the frame replaced last year with pet proof screening. I stumble out of bed to let the little teenager in. Tripping over my own clothes and shoes from the night before to get there. Oscar, the cat, happy to see me entangles himself around my legs as I head back to bed. Almost tripping me in the dark. Once cocooned back in my comforter I drift back to sleep only to have my alarm clock bellow out its bugle call to rise and shine. I set the alarm for the wrong time the night before. I’m already hell bent at the day. First words, “Great…this is going to be a bad day.” But what truly defines a bad day. The ultimate one – you don’t wake up. That’s a really bad day. But seriously, a bad day is stuff you wouldn’t wish on anyone. However when we say, “I’m having a bad day” and dwell in it we skip a key point. A current bad result that we are unhappy with doesn’t produce a full 24 hr bad day. It’s a fleeting moment of time. The next minute could turn us around and the day could end just mediocre. A word that scares people internally. But we use fine to describe our day all the time! The ultimate small talk response.  “How are you today?” “I’m fine.”  So how do we change our really-not-so-bad-day around. We use our words. In one or three words ONLY describe why this is a bad day. Possibly to seal the deal you  look at the events leading up to the over labeled bad day. Learn from it.  Then move on. It’s done. New day from that point.  So this am I used my full allotment of three words. Cat is asshole. That made me laugh because really… he’s pretty damn cute. Laughing made my brain’s happy place say, “Good Morning, Sunshine!” Within a few seconds my bad day had turned into one fine day.

Cool way to trick your mood is to change your perspective. Literally. Your brain really likes something new. It craves novelty. Here is where distraction works in your favor. Got something taking you down the bad day path of gloom? Change it up. Go out for a walk, try a new place for lunch, change the height of your chair. (Think I’m crazy? Try it. Messing with your work chair height from all the way down to all the way up. I don’t know why but your brain likes it.) Reset your surroundings and reset your mood.

Hugs & wishes,

Brenda

~~you know its a bad day when your fat pants are tight~~

Bumper sticker