"And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them." Romans 8:28

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Anger Management

An important component of handling anger is to learn to reinterpret events.  This book was one I bought for someone who is very important to me.  He is attending college and I help him out with book money.  But, after the class I want some of my money back.  So I ask that the books be sold back unless there is a future use.

This is one that didn't get sold back.  In fact there are a lot of them that haven't been sold back, and not because they are going to be useful later.  I see these books and in my mind I hear the sound of cash registers.  It is a trigger for me.  One thing I can do is get mad about this and other books that were bought and then not sold back.  I can get nasty and complain about the money...blah...blah...blah...or threaten not to buy anymore in the future....which is a lie because I will anyway.  By the way, the time has passed when the books can be sold back.  The window of opportunity has passed.

But, another option is to reinterpret the event....meaning to do some brainstorming about some other options, rather than to get angry.  In order to reinterpret I have to have some thinking time.  That means I can't just say something right away when I see this book laying on top of a pile of other books that also weren't sold.

During that think time, if I can be a creative thinker and come up with some other options, my angry behavior might not get the best of me.  For example, I might pick the book up and take a look at it.  I like books.  I read all kinds of them.  I did pick it up and I did decide to read it.  I adopted the book and it became part of my massive collection.  Problem solved.  No angry behavior.

But, let's just say the book doesn't call out to me.  Like this next one.  Thanks, but no thanks.  Been there. Done that.  So I have to slow down again and think.  Being angry will not make anything better.  The deed is done.  We own this book.
 Or do we?  Because I am not reacting, I am coming up with an idea...Craig's List!!!  Aha, it worked.  I sold the book for half of what was paid, and I get the money.  Sweet. 

Of course, it isn't always so easy.  But, why not slow down and see what solutions may be out there?  Why think that the only way to handle it is to blow my stack?  Maybe before I do that, I can think of a million other ways to handle it.  Maybe...just maybe.

Coming this January at Desert Streams, Anger Management classes, Tuesdays mornings, 10:00 a.m.  Contact me for more information.