Has this ever happened to you as a child? Your mum is furiously shouting at you, and then the phone rings. And within a few seconds she composes herself and answers with the sweetest tone to the person on the other side.
It’s funny as an adult. But more than that, it’s quite interesting. Because if you’d (dare) ask your mum right before the phone rang, she’d probably say she was blind with rage, that’s why she was allowing herself to lose her composure and shout.
And yet as soon as she had to, she switched to polite and calm.
So some part of her must’ve been calm, or able to be calm this whole time.
I’ve recently tried to apply this kind of thinking to my own emotions, especially the negative ones. I can feel I’m blindly sad, hurt, or angry. And yet, I can imagine how if my landlord suddenly knocked on the door I’d appear chirpy and polite.
And so why don’t I treat my own self a bit more in that way? That’s not to say I bury or ignore my emotions all the time, but whenever they seem all-consuming, I think of my mum answering the phone mid-argument. It’s not the whole of my that feels bad, it’s part of me that feels strongly so. And I can, to some extent, step aside and be OK. Until it eventually fades, sorts itself out, or I can reframe and properly understand what is going on.
Wishing you a great week,