Who Are You Under Pressure?

Who are you when the heat is on? When you feel like you’re at your wit’s end and you just can’t take one more step, where do you go? What do you do in that moment when who you are is all you have left? Who are you under pressure?

The best of us finds a way to put themselves in the zone, in the now, centering their conscious and gathering their strength to rise above the panic of the situation at hand and carefully, calmly, and methodically take the steps necessary to move through the most difficult or challenging circumstances.

For the rest of us, it seems impossible to fathom that we might be able to possess the ability to summon such resolve in the heat of the moment. How could you hope to call forth such superhuman ability?

Unless you are born with the natural ability to have an unshakable resolve and an iron will, you are a mere mortal and the skill is one that can be learned if you’re so inclined.

Masters of resolve discover a way to find a sacred space within. In this space, you are one with everything, in perfect harmony with life, and you know that anything you face, any situation or circumstance is utterly divine, possibly unpleasant, but necessary for achieving your highest and best.

Being able to place your holistic self (mind, body, and soul) into “the now” separating yourself from the demons of the past and the specters of the future help attune you to the present moment, enabling you to focus on the intricate details at hand.

In this space, you have the awareness that everything is connected and perfect and you know that everything happens at the right time. You know that everything has led to this moment and that nothing you do will be wrong.

If you’ve self-centered, have a clear mind and approach this with your own divinity intact, you can rely on your higher guidance system knowing you will do what is right for you. There will be no need for you to justify your words or actions because when you do the right thing for you, guided by your higher self, you automatically do the right thing for those whom you care most deeply for, even if it doesn’t look like it at the time.

Relax, and from a place of peace and harmony, approach this with love and joy, honoring all the players and participants. There are no good guys, no bad guys, only people just like you and me, who are doing the best they can with what they have.

Approach this challenge without contempt, judgment, anger, or malice, as these are representations of varying frequencies of fear which will only introduce more difficulty and pain into the process and fallout from this affair.

When you approach any situation with only love, there can be no fear, and love will prevail.

The next time you face a challenge think about creating or finding a sacred space from which to launch your love approach. Not doing so will have you facing from a place of inadequacy or helplessness, which only leads to anxiety, depression, and fear.

You got this, and you would never be faced with a challenge that you are not pre-equipped to handle.

Dr Jekyll Mr Hyde Safety

Ever wonder why someone who could be perfectly nice, even-tempered, supportive, polite and friendly can suddenly turn into a hot mess of dysfunction, discontent, hateful, or downright mean? Before you start jumping to conclusions about Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD), or Bipolar Disorder, consider this person may be practicing a form of self-preservation, a sort of Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde safety net, or precautionary forcefield.

People will do the darndest things to protect themselves when they feel threatened or are triggered, and it’s nearly impossible to know what’s going on inside someone’s head. People carry with them a lifetime of experiences, some of which can be quite frightening or painful, and the human psyches will do just about anything to avoid the risk of suffering due to the reinjury of an unhealed emotional wound.

This is a very base survival instinct at work, which if viewed without judgment, would be impossible not to empathetically understand from a compassionate point of view, rather than picking up stones to hurl them, retaliate, punish, or stomp out someone who is simply trying to make it through life in the best way that they possibly can.

To you, looking at the surface condition, you might witness someone with whom you’ve had a particularly peaceful and close relationship, suddenly experience a dramatic change in character, and might become quite abrasive, mean, and/or nasty. Naturally, you recoil because you’ve been surprised by the sudden change in character, but wait, and consider what might be going on behind the scenes before you accuse or defend yourself.

We all have different skill sets and respond to threats differently based on our experience. Some people who have suffered trauma, abuse, have low self-esteem, or have not learned high performance coping skills may have fewer tools available to them to reach for when they are triggered and may act out inappropriately to isolate themselves from a perceived threat… and they may not be very nice about it. You might even think they are being rude or mean.

Some people with low self-esteem will strike out at well-intended friends, or people who are getting close to them, as a way to protect themselves from being hurt. They have a sense of safety and security in being isolated and threatened by being too close to someone, or vulnerable. For them, it is better to be safe, by pushing people away, than sorry (potentially exposing themselves to potential pain).

Others try to manufacture a safe environment around themselves wherein they can safely navigate their lives by maintaining a high degree of control. They have strict guidelines that participants in their life can safely move about within. Step outside the boundaries they have set and expect to be ejected. Depending on the skills they have accumulated at the time, your expulsion may be unglamorous and hurtful. Nonetheless, this person is doing the best they can to preserve their sanity while maneuvering his or her way through life.

Fear is the predominant motivator of these incongruent outbursts. If you are afraid of losing your life, you are likely to act in ways that are not normal for you in an effort to prolong life. The same is true for some people who are afraid to lose their reputation, love, connections, finances, sanity, safety, or security.

Such a person might strike out at you when they are feeling vulnerable or threatened by name-calling, devaluing you, raising their voice, threatening, or right-out total rejection of you. They may try to blame you for anything they might be feeling, falsely accuse you, or even use their influence to discredit or demonize you.

Such a person will feel better not having you amidst his or her presence and not feel much guilt for getting you out of their life, either momentarily, or permanently. To soothe themselves, they will often huddle people around themselves, polarizing them against you, to justify and make sense of their outburst.

Again, do not take it personally. This person is in pain, and they are doing the best they can with what they have, even if they appear to be acting out in a Mr. Hyde fit of rage. Just because they are acting mean doesn’t mean they are a bad person.

Have compassion and empathy for such a person who is trying to make it through this life carrying such heavy weight of burden from their past, anguish, and pain.

May God bless them, and hopefully, they find better ways to live a better life. If not, they are not wrong or broken for doing the best they can with what they have. They are perfect, and we love them just the way they are.

I’m Pissed Off!

You’ve been abused, neglected, or disrespected, you’ve had about all you could take. If asked how you feel, you might grit your teeth and express, “I’m pissed off!” if you were able to practice some restraint. You might like to express yourself with other superlatives, but nonetheless, you’re mad, and rightfully so.

Someone has hurt you. Maybe they did not slash you with a machete or shoot you with a gun, but the pain is just as real, possibly worse, because a physical wound could be treated at the hospital and you could return to normal physical operation with nothing more than a scar to remind you of the initial wound, while emotional wounds of those who have hurt you remain and can persist for much longer.

How you respond to being pissed off for being hurt or suffering some injustice has a huge impact on the quality of life you experience along your life’s journey. If you harbor bitterness and resentment, you will experience premature aging, advanced illness, and a shorter lifespan. There is also evidence which suggests if you entertain thoughts of being victimized by someone or something, you will attract more victimization, thereby increasing the damage done by just thinking about former transgressions.

If you are in the frame of mind of feeling or saying,

“I’m pissed off!”

At someone or about something, you’re inviting more reasons to be pissed off.

Do you like the feeling of being pissed off? (Most people do not) and there’s good reason, because if you’re pissed, or have bitterness or resentment in your heart, your body is actually suffering deterioration. Your otherwise healthy state of being, both physically and emotionally, is breaking down. Your immune system declines making your more subject to illness and disease and your state of mind becomes fragile, leading to anger, outrage, sadness, or depression.

What Can You Do When You’re Pissed Off?

So, what can you do when you’re apt to shout out, “I’m pissed off!”

You basically have two options in general. You can be part of the problem and fight back, or you can be part of the solution, practicing tolerance and let it go. Revenge and tolerance are on opposite ends of the spectrum.

Fight Back

The emotional stance of fighting back can be performed either by launching a counter-attack of any kind in the real world, in your mind, or by adding to the energetic momentum by focusing on the cause of your angst, or the negative results of it. Whether you’re fighting back in the real world, or just in your mind, the psychological and physiological deterioration is the price you pay for entertaining the idea or engaging in a battle over the even that pissed you off.

While holding it in may help you to save face in the real world, far more damage is done to your body, mind, and spirit in the process of burying the emotions inside. Doing so will literally decrease your quality of life and lead you to an early grave, but you will be more respected in the community for your ability to handle whatever life throws at you.

In this respect, it’s healthier to have expressive emotional outbursts or to launch revenge-fueled counter-attacks, but depending on your definition of integrity or dignity, this may not be the best approach to promote a better world, for retaliation only makes whatever your fighting against more powerful.

You don’t want to become a generator of negative energy. If you want to take a stand against something, do not oppose it, instead support and turn your attention toward a positive solution.

It may be wiser to consider a bit of,

Tolerance

From the perspective of tolerance, you see things from a different point of view. You imagine what it must be like to walk a mile, or live a life, in someone else’s shoes. From this compassionate and loving viewpoint, you can understand and see that most injustices are neither malicious or fueled by any intention to harm you or make you feel bad in any way. More the most part, people are just trying to get through life the best they can with what they have.

You could forgive your transgressor, but that establishes you as a victim. A higher resonating vibration is not to need to establish yourself as a victim requiring recompense or forgiveness but to disempower the whole affair by realizing there was never an intent to harm you. You realize that had you been that person, living their life in their shoes, at that moment in time, you would have done the same thing. You know this is true because you witnessed it.

Now you can have compassion for that person (being careful not to self-righteously judge or demean) understanding that we are all just doing the best we can with what we have,

The practice of tolerance is the moral high road, and it does not come easily because we are trained from birth to practice separation and opposition, whereas tolerance promotes unity and harmony. Tolerance takes practice, but the benefits are more of the qualities in life that you desire.

More love, happiness, wellness, peace of mind, longevity…

Then there are the cases of malicious intent to deceive or harm you directly, these are really quite rare and might be associated with someone who is potentially a psychopath or sociopath, but that’s a different story.

What approach are you likely to take the next time you feel like shouting, “I’m pissed off?”

Angry Much?

Every once and a while, you are likely to lose your grip, allow anger to overtake you and lead you into an emotional display that, depending on how you handle it, could have negative or positive ramifications.

While it’s easy to give in to your emotions when they well up inside of you, there are other alternatives that can give you control of anger, or any other emotions if you are proactive and inclined to do the work necessary to make yourself the master of your emotions.

People are always their weakest when they are angry.

Knowing what anger is, and what causes it to rise up inside you, is a good place to start when trying to tame this wildcat.

Anger is a fear-based negative emotion fueled by the stress hormone, “cortisol,” that could be triggered by nearly anything, such as, pressure from school or work, unexpected change, challenging life circumstances, feeling as though you’re being attacked (or lorded over) by other people, as well as underlying fears like feeling threatened, perception of impending pain, jealousy, disappointment, low self-esteem, fear of failure, or loss.

Giving in to the emotion of anger can actually have a detrimental effect on your physical, psychological and spiritual health. When you are enveloped by anger, your heart rate speeds up, blood pressure builds, stress hormones are released en masse which creates a toxic cocktail for your body and its associated systems.

Think early physiological deterioration, aging, and failing organ function, memory loss, acute minor motor skills, reaction time, just to name a few.

Getting a handle on your anger is one of the best ways to look younger, increase your quality of life and longevity.

Keeping a list handy where you can note when you are triggered to feel anger and what caused the emotion to make you start to feel angry would help to get an idea of when you might be most susceptible to a potentially volatile outburst.

When you’re experiencing a calm state of mind, and are willing to set aside a few minutes to do so, make a list of things that you can think of that make you angry.

To give you an idea, here’s a copy of a client’s list (used by permission):

• When I get an automated computer voice and a long list of numbered options when I call a business for assistance
• Dealing with impatient customers at work
• Having to deal with my mother-in-law (she doesn’t like me much)
• Crazy drivers on the highway during my commute
• Checking my stock values and finding they’ve decreased again

Here are some ideas that help keep the wild beast at bay when you’re feeling like your bubble of calm is about to burst

Chill out; literally. Grabbing something cold and refreshing, like a frozen drink (or a drink with a lot of ice), a slushee, shaved ice or ice cream can hit the spot, and the temperature jolt to your system can have a calming effect, reducing your potential angry outburst.

Take an exhilarating break by taking a walk, or a hike (subject to time and available access). This helps take care of your body, while cortisol (the stress hormone) subsides and is overrun by happy and healthy hormones, such as endorphins, endocannabinoids, dopamine, and serotonin.

If you’re in a private place, you can always crank up the tunes, dance to the music, or sing along as best you can to your favorite song(s).

Write a letter. You don’t have to send it, just write out your emotions, how this person, place or thing made you feel angry. If you’re keeping an anger diary, be sure to leave space for something good that happened today, also.

Do things differently. If you’re exposed to an activity regularly during your day which set off your anger response, alter your routine so as to avoid that particular trigger (like taking an alternative route to and from work, etc.).

These are just a few ideas to get you started on taking charge of your anger, placing you in the driver’s seat of your emotional storage facility.

Knowing what sets you off, and having some tools to interrupt your pattern can move you quickly toward a healthy, happier life, shaving years off your appearance and supporting your long and more satisfying life.

Out of Control Fighting in Relationships

I know, you’re committed to this relationship, you love your partner but occasionally things get insanely out of control and the whole thing gets crazy and you can’t seem to help yourself in that moment.

What happens is your caveman or cavewoman danger chemistry is activated, you feel like you’re going to be some dinosaur’s lunch, and you’re fighting for your life. In that moment you’re out of control and incapable of rational thought because your amygdala has taken control and your rational mind is shut down.

This is actually an incredible opportunity to uncover buried treasure hiding beneath the surface, but we’ll address that later. For the moment, let’s just get you through this panic and irrational conflict, so that it doesn’t do more harm to the relationship than good.

First off, realize that if your partner is sounding off, like this, there’s something extremely ancient and sacred taking place and honor it and respect it. Understand that through this process which can look like outrage, your partner is trying to communicate something of importance to you.

The last thing you want to do is to take it personally, or get riled up yourself. If one of you is out of control, there is hope, if both of you are out of control, the relationship will suffer damages that may be irreparable. If you can, try not to lose your control, and if you feel like you’re about to lose your cool,

Stop It

Call a timeout. Of course, you both have to understand and agree to invite the timeout process into your relationship in advance and you have agreed that when one or the other initiates a timeout, you both agree to stop talking for a period of time, no more than 20 minutes.

Center

Those precious moments need not be wasted, take the time to center yourself. There are many methods to center one’s self. If you don’t have a method, you might consider this technique used on trauma patients. Imagine a copper cord that goes from the center of the top of your head, through your body to the center of your stomach. Then focus your attention as a small soothing electrical charge moving all the way up and down the copper cord. A few minutes of this and you’re centered.

Review

Collect your thoughts about what you want to communicate and try to think of the best way to present it to your partner. It’s helpful to have something to write with.

Chemical Process

Your brain has released a chemical cocktail that has put you into a state of panic. These chemicals are still moving throughout your nervous system, but their effects are dwindling during the break. About 15 minutes, or less is all it takes to return your body’s chemistry to a more normal state, without further stimuli.

Re-engage

After you have centered and gathered your thoughts you are ready to resume your attempt to communicate. If you were the one charged with unbridled emotion, you can return to that state if you feel it necessary to get out your pent-up feelings, frustrations or pain.

You’re in Good Hands

Your partner has your back. He or she has agreed to partner with you in this process to provide a safe and secure environment for you to express yourself and he or she will do everything he can to correctly understand what it is you’re trying to say.

Expect to be asked questions for clarification, and reiterate or rephrase your ideas so that your partner can correctly comprehend what it is your trying to say concisely.

If You’re Both Out of Control

If you’re both out of control, this is very unfortunate. Whomever has the first moment of clarity or consciousness must find the wherewithal to call for a timeout to stop the danger ahead which is waiting when both of you are out of control.

And you might have to take turns, following one’s rage, after clarity of the subject matter is clearly understood, the other partner may need to have a go at it. Now it’s your turn to hold the sacred space for your partner to freely express him or herself.

Rules of Engagement

You agree to following the rules to the best of your ability and they are

1. Don’t take it personally

Your partner must have the safe space respected and protected by you to express him or herself in any way necessary. Try not to take it personally, even if some disrespect might be directed to you.

2. Seek to understand

Separate any rage from the value of the message being communicated. While your partner may be over-reacting due to raging chemistry as he or she is in fight or flight mode, keep this in mind as you listen and ask for clarity.

3. No threats

Agree in advance that respecting and protecting the sacred space for your partner’s expression means that at no time will either partner threaten the relationship. Avoid using statements like, “if you keep saying that, I’m out’a here.” Don’t start throwing around statements inferring that either one of you will be bailing out, compromising or ending the relationship prematurely. If you are married, using the D-word (divorce) is strictly verboten and you are to refrain from accusing your partner of wanting to end the relationship when no such statement has been made.

Threatening the relationship will only threaten the relationship and is will cause mistrust and promote personal withdrawal and separation.

Honor the Relationship

Even when the going gets tough, and things get out of hand, you know you are together, committed and in a loving, supported environment, if you and your partner can approach potential out of control conflict in this manner.

You got this.

How to Keep from Getting So Pissed Off

I don’t care who you are, every once a while you find yourself running off the rails and getting pissed off by someone or over something… Aargh!

Can’t help it, in life, shit happens, and sometimes we lose our otherwise sense of cool and let ourselves get pissed off, even to the point of losing it.

Beware when you start to feel like shouting, “I’m pissed off!”

Anger is a negative emotion based on fear, which is the gateway to lower emotional vibrations of sadness, guilt, frustration unhappiness and helplessness.

If what you want is to achieve happiness in this life, you’re going to have to learn to recognize anger when it rears its ugly head and lop it off before it makes you look the fool and starts to drag you down.

Identifying when your emotions or anger start to build within you, catch yourself and ask,

Am I angry at someone else? Or alternatively, Am I angry at myself?

Analyze yourself and determine what it is that makes you feel angry, this will help you to pinpoint what it is that’s getting your goat.

The better you get at controlling your anger, the easier it gets to get along in life without the unnecessary distraction of unbridled anger running amok.

The better you get at getting a grip, the closer the happiness is that you seek.

Try this:

When you feel anger welling up inside you, allow yourself to go limp, as if all the life just drained out of you and from this slumped, deflated position, breathe into and out of your diaphragm allowing your inner soul to reinflate with love. You will find this an effective way of disarming anger before it gets ahold of you.

Imagine yourself stepping outside your body and looking at you and asking you, “Do you think displaying anger in this moment is going to get you what you want?” Will it affect or change anything for the better of give you what you want to be angry? If not, let it go. Public displays of anger are unbecoming and are not likely to serve you in any plausibly positive light or lead to a good outcome.

Anger is a stressor which breaks down your immune system, promotes advances aging and physiological deterioration. Is that what you want? Create a stress-free zone in your mind, a place you can go where you feel perfectly calm, safe and secure. Go to this place which is safely secure in your mind, when you feel like anger is getting the best of you.

If the object of your anger is something someone else is doing, try to imagine yourself, if you were that person doing that thing… Would you be as pissed off if it was you? Might you be able to imagine why that person might feel led to do what they’re doing that’s pissing you off?

When it comes down to it, your anger is all about you, no one else but you. You are the one who decides whether your anger gets the best of you, or not. You choose whether to get pissed or let it go. It’s all on you.

For some people, reciting a positive affirmation in the moment that you are facing anger building up inside you can prevent you from compromising your otherwise healthy state of mind. Affirmations, such as, “I am calm and relaxed.” Or, “Anger is not going to have its way with me,” “Take it easy,” and/or, “Let it go,” are all good examples. Fina a mantra you can initiate at the moment, you need to get a grip.

My grandmother always used to tell me to count to ten before letting anger get the best of me, and I’ll be damned if this didn’t turn out to be an effective deterrent to making a fool of myself by letting rage possess my state of mind. The simple process of focusing on the numbers and seeing them in your mind’s eye as you are counting to ten can allow you to not lose control and see things from a more logical perspective.