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10/27/11

Overcoming a Bad Mood

I am rarely in a bad mood. Unfortunately, I went there this past week. In reflection I see that things went downhill based on my mood. Small irritants normally overlooked became fuel for complaints. Instead of whispering a prayer for compassion, I leaned toward condemnation. Here is my thought process for reframing the situation.

I cannot read another person’s mind. No matter how much I may think I know where someone is coming from, or where she is going, the only thing I have to go on is the information given. I do not know his intentions nor do I know the hopeful outcome. Assumptions divide; it turns the issues into you against me (ass/u/me). And like the proverbial donkey, assuming makes one stubborn.

Choose to not take it personally. How we interpret an event is always within our control. Seeing the disagreement as a personal attack makes one defensive. As in football, to defend one’s position takes the form of offensive. In relationships, it is a mark of maturity to allow a point through to its intended goal.

Determine locus of control. The key is to work on what you can control. It is difficult if not impossible to respond civilly if you are mentally or verbally calling him a jerk. Choose to see the value in the offender. Choose to address the issue not attack her rotten personality.

Become emotionally honest. Do not use a negative situation as a means to deny reality. Get candid with you if you were passive rather than complain about the aggressive of another. Get impatient with you for trying to push your truth on a non-taker rather than degrading him. It takes stamina to deal with hurtles and to develop character through them.

Truth is, everything has a pro and a con. It is easy to become negative. It is unproblematic to see the worst in the situation, self and others. This sets one up as an unwitting victim rather than a victor. It takes courage to sort through the bad and find good. It takes honesty to face the difficult and overcome.

Do not allow circumstances to beat you down. Have faith and trust God, you and others. Self pity is incapable of being comforted because it is its own satisfaction. Change comes through genuine sorrow over wrongs done, including the display of a judgmental attitude.


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