Posts Tagged ‘ranting’

When you let their mood affect you

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018

David’s first waking thought every weekday morning was to wonder what sort of mood his boss would in and how much conflict he'd have to deal with that day. On the train in to work, his mind would whir with all the previous few days' interactions with his boss, hunting for clues as to the atmosphere in the office and preparing for the worst.

For when his boss was in a bad mood, it affected David’s whole day, so he spent a great deal of time thinking about how he could ensure he didn't provoke him, but ended up feeling defensive and edgy whenever they had a meeting. David would hide these feelings behind a well-practised smile when he was at work, only letting his guard down when he got home, where he often found himself taking out his frustrations on his wife and kids.

When David attended a recent War to Peace® workshop, he realised that his moods had been tethered to his boss's and he had been blaming his boss for his own edginess; he had been trying to appease his boss instead of working on the thing he did have control over – himself.

Control the Controllables

We may never know why someone is moody and our attempts to appease them can in fact escalate their mood. David had been angry because he felt that it was unprofessional for his boss to be so erratic. However, he came to realise that it was far easier to look at his own mood than to attempt change his boss's.

Think about the weather. Whilst you might prefer the sun to shine warmly from a clear blue sky, sometimes it’s cloudy or rainy instead. Of course there is no way of controlling the weather, so if it looks inclement, you take precautions such as carrying an umbrella or wearing an extra layer or two. It might be disappointing if an outdoor event you had planned is rained off, but you find something else to do indoors.

In other words, you control the controllables.

So, whilst his boss’s moods might not be what David would want to encounter, he doesn't need to take them on board.  Today, David is finding being at work much easier, having experienced how to choose his own mood in several ways at the War to Peace® workshop. His boss continues to be erratic, but David puts up his metaphorical umbrella and carries on with his day and no longer allows it to affect him. His family are feeling the benefits too!

Over to you

  1. The next time you feel at the mercy of someone else’s mood, stop and focus your attention on what is within your control.
  2. Notice the thoughts you are having about your day and the people around you. The mood you are in is a great indicator of whether there is too much noise and chatter in your head. Simply noticing your thoughts allows them to pass.
  3. Notice how your body feels and check in with what it needs. All the wisdom you ever need is inside you; you simply need to get better at acknowledging its presence.
  4. What you are thinking, feeling, saying and doing is always within your control - what everyone else is doing is not. Where do you want to focus your energy and attention today?

Do you know someone who could benefit from War to Peace®?

If you know someone who would benefit from learning how to control the controllables in their interactions with their colleagues, family or friends,  our next open-access War to Peace® workshop is in London this Friday 5 October (just 3 spaces left). To book a space, click here.

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©Halcyon Global 2018

What is being ‘professional’ costing you?

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018

In Nina's new management role, she quickly earned a reputation for being calm and 'professional'. You see Nina had long ago learned to suppress her real self at work because the real Nina is colourful and loud, and she commands attention by simply walking into the room.

Nina learned the hard way as a child that expressing her emotion would invite conflict from her peers and her family. So she quickly learned to bite her tongue when she was aggrieved. So 'calm and professional' Nina puts on her mask as she steps into the office each day and regularly experiences anger rising up in her throat whenever her needs are overlooked or her ideas are stolen, but each time she swallows it down, often finding herself suffering from throat infections, especially when she takes time out for a holiday.

After years of practice, Nina had begun to notice that her mask was no longer reserved just for work. Despite being a natural people person, she revealed that if she ever felt hurt or upset, she would avoid social situations for fear of accidentally letting her true feelings slip, or otherwise she would have to put on the mask again, which left her feeling exhausted. After years of this behaviour, Nina recognised that she had become defensive, angry and suspicious of others and found her way to a War to Peace® workshop.

During a conversation about the ‘Unlucky 7’ signs of being in conflict, Nina's ears pricked up when she heard that one of the signs is ‘I gather allies and evidence to prove that I am right.’ She realised that this is exactly what she did at school when she felt she had been wronged. She would tell her friends what had happened, they would take ‘sides’ with her and invariably, a small disagreement would escalate into a row which would last for weeks between factions of classmates.

Nina was also relieved to learn that she wasn't the only one who gathers evidence to prove she is right about the people she is in conflict with and she shared that, as an adult, her reaction is to sit and wallow in her 'rightness', leaving her mind whirring with all the things she wished she said when the conflict first arose. At the War to Peace® workshop she experienced a completely new way of dealing with this and vowed to come up with her own version that would help her release upset, instead of holding it in or gathering evidence and allies as she had done in the past.

Four months later, we heard from a very relaxed and much more outgoing Nina, who shared that she had made an agreement with a highly trusted friend to be each other’s 'occasional rant partner’. The simple rules were that one could phone the other and ask permission to rant. The other person would make sure they were out of earshot of anyone else and then the caller had three minutes to shout, swear, scream and, well, rant about something that had upset them. The rant partner would listen, not interrupt and would let them know that their rant had been heard. Crucially, the rant was never mentioned again or brought up in conversation in the future (it would be so easy to become an ally after all). The rant was treated purely as a vent and its contents were not given importance.

Nina told us that it felt as though the large, familiar lump had finally cleared from her throat. Whenever she got angry and ranted, she didn’t feel the need to gather allies or to wallow in the evidence that she was ‘right’. She felt seen by her friend, was able to let it go, and then was far better equipped to objectively assess the situations that had caused the rage. And she would witness her friend too, so instead of being the moaning partners and allies they had once been to each other, they were supporting each other in a far more helpful way. Nina has also given us permission to share that after many years of singledom, she is now dating - and has been leaving her mask at home!

Over to you

When do you find yourself wearing a mask? Could you benefit from having a rant partner instead of an ally? Identify someone today who could fulfil that role for you.

Do you know someone who could benefit from War to Peace®?

If you know someone who would benefit from this work, our next open-access War to Peace® workshop is on 5 October and we have just nine spaces left. To book your place, click here.

P.S. Pass it on!

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What is being 'professional' costing you? @halcyonglobal

 

 

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photo credit:Blue_Cutler

©Halcyon Global 2018