Conscious Awareness? A True Confession

“You cannot change what people say, think, or do.  But you can change the way you react to it.”

~ Corina Kinsmore; Entrepreneur, Marketing Professional, Personal Development and Success Education Mentor, Lifestyle Coach; Victoria, Australia

I preach planning and measuring your words before saying them. I suggest people attempt to be mindful, purposeful, consciously aware. I suggest people practice situations that have led to undesirable behavior in case it happens again.

Oh, if only I’d practiced what I preach for yesterday.

Will you read through this and let me know what you would suggest?

I walked into a room to do a volunteer task I perform monthly.  The woman with whom I normally work is a joy; smart, funny, organized, patient and flexible!  She was out of town and I’d been asked to sit in with someone who used to do her job.

From the moment I entered, everything felt wrong.  The person who used to do her job seemed agitated and possibly, disapproving of me.  Now, I can’t tell you it was all the fault of the other.  I merely know it seemed I was acting off of a VERY old script that culminating in the other screaming at me.

I came home in a total emotional shamble.  Worse, I don’t know this person well enough to know what to do.  I talked to my dear husband, Steve.  I cried.  I said I should apologize for my behavior (not believing I was the total cause, but believing that adults who feel disquieted by their actions feel better after expressing it).  Steve said “forget about it”.

I did write an email of apology for my behavior and explained what had set me off.

And this morning, reading Corina’s statement, I find myself thinking I need to be more mindful of situations that make the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. Trying to look forward (instead of dwelling on the guilt), I’m planning what to do if I ever find myself in such a situation again.  In Social Work school, I was taught that classical problem solving calls for flushing out all solutions.

  • be honest and state my discomfort
  • sit quietly and do my task, praying/repeating mantra until the task is complete
  • excuse myself earlier or find a way to break the tension earlier -send the link to this blog to the person
  • consider anxiety medication or treatment, go back into therapy
  • move to another country

I know I’m only human –  weak and flawed – not one to attempt perfection, but only to strive to be a bit better.

The first three ‘solutions’ seem as if they’d sit best with me, but what do you think?  I’d love your thoughts!  Please comment on this one!

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3 Responses to Conscious Awareness? A True Confession

  1. Each person born is given the same two assignments: living and communing with others. Popular though academia makes being “right”, being kind serves us far better when our goals are thriving and connecting optimally with others – critical not to exclude ourselves! We all attend the same school, we are all learning, those courageous enough to keep challenging themselves end up with a few more bruises. Hugs to you this day Melissa for your kindness, courage, and candor – great ingredients for success in our mandatory curriculum!

      • Your one and two are lovely Melissa, as is Corina’s quote. Trust your attraction. Just as plants need not be instructed to grow, so too are human beings hardwired with a divine inner GPS. We all experience being ill at ease, and mental conflict, when our actions are not in alignment with that which best serves ourself and others. Acknowledging our discomfort is critical as it motivates us to seek an alternate path.

        Also essential is sitting quietly and listening. When you do so, ask your inner GPS what action meets the criteria of being kind both to yourself and others, then be silent and confident of a reply. You will recognize advice from your GPS when calm and inner mental peace are restored. Treat all conflicting thoughts which attempt to intervene as you would an exhausted child, hug them and put them down for a nap!

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