They said something and you reacted. Now you’re heated and it shows. You’re replaying the moment. Each time you recall it, you get angrier. Regardless of who or what you feel conflicted about, the emotions you’re having do not feel good. If left unchecked, your mind can convince you to make decisions that are not in your best interest. Let’s pause. There are mindful ways to peacefully address the situation.
The brain needs oxygen to flourish. We can hold our breath when stressed and not realize it. Deep breathing regulates the nervous system by easing the flow of stress hormones and slowing down your pulse. When you’re upset, there is a flood of chemical messengers pumping through your veins. However, this innate response to threats won’t help you think clearly when what is bothering you is not a physical threat to your safety. Take a few moments to breathe deeply from your diaphragm.
Step away. Physically if possible and mentally take your focus off the emotion. Step outside for fresh air, maybe go for a quick walk. Check-in with yourself. Did it hit a nerve because you see a truth that you’ve been avoiding? This is a good time to look at the underlying causes of default reactions.
See where your mind can soften around viewing things from the other person’s perspective. No one wins in the Blame Game. However, there is an opportunity to own our part in what we experience. There is a choice to respond vs. react.
Differences in communication styles can come across as blatant disrespect. When it’s time to address a situation, try saying, “When you said (xyz), it sounded like you were saying (abc).” The other person now has an opportunity to correct any misconceptions. Listen with the intent to understand. Don’t just wait for your turn to talk. Also, give the change time. Discern when and if the conversation needs to be revisited.
Forgive and move forward peacefully
Forgiveness for others comes easier when you can offer it to yourself first. The same goes for compassion. Remember, most people have a lot on their plates right now. It’s ok that you got upset. It’s not cool to hold on to the anger and frustration. Viewing your pain points with a mindful gaze helps you establish healthy boundaries. Having a better understanding of each person’s needs sets the tone for better communication in the future.
Be aware of the feedback loop you play
Every time you have to talk to this person, you just know they are going to say something annoying. That’s a feedback loop. You’ve taught your mind to view any interaction with them as unpleasant. Don’t rely on the other person’s behaviors to break this cycle for you. This is where mindfulness, forgiveness, and compassion align to help make future conversations less stressful.
It's important to note that despite our best efforts, some situations won't change much if at all. There may also be conversations that require mediation. Facing challenges by standing in your power helps support your well-being. Strive to keep your peace while interacting with the unpleasant parts.
We circle back to certain topics because, hello wholeness. The goal is always to come back to center. If your mindfulness toolkit needs supplies, we got you. Explore deeper ways to connect with You (here).