On any given day, we are served an opportunity to get offended. Maybe someone said something that was hurtful or something unexpected happened. It’s a part of life-we will have opportunity to be offended; however, we have the same opportunity to refuse the offense and simply walk away.
Do you remember growing up and hearing the common phrase “take the high road”? It still applies. We can take the high road by not giving in to our flesh and feelings and simply walking away. Of course, it’s not as easy as it sounds.
Just this week, I asked a friend for a favor and received a response I wasn’t expecting. I immediately felt my temperature rising as I began to think “how could she say that”, “what was she thinking”, etc. After a few minutes, I could see I was headed for offense and trouble. At that moment, I switched my thoughts and realized in the grand scheme of life, that little disappointment wasn’t really a huge deal. I could move on and obviously, God had a better plan in that situation.
In coaching, we use a technique of “TTR” to control and discipline our thoughts to produce better reactions & responses in difficult circumstances. Let’s think back to my surprising situation this week. The first “T”–my trigger– was an unexpected answer to a question that I thought would be an easy “yes” and it turned out to be a “no”. The second “T”–my thoughts–were “how could they have said that”, “did they not value me”, “why was their response a no”, etc. The “R” –my reaction– was hurt, surprise, feeling undervalued, and upset. That cycle could have gone even deeper had I not stopped those initial thoughts from going further. Since I made that choice to stop those thoughts, my outcome in the situation turned out positive. I chose to move on, forget about what happened and not rehash with others how I felt. I came to realize that my perspective was probably wrong in taking the response personally. I needed to see it objectively.
Next time you’re facing a possible offense, simply channel your thoughts and discipline your mind to think positively and put the situation in perspective. Life is too short to harbor ill feelings or carry offenses. Take the high road and simply walk away.
~Coletta Jones Patterson
*If you are ready to move forward and want the assistance of a professional coach to guide you, connect with me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You are one step away from fulfillment and success!