The other day Joe (my boyfriend) and I were challenged by a fellow driver over who had the right to park in a parking space… that we parked in. He really triggered us. Implied that we were being racist and just was really unreasonable.

Our first reaction was to engage with his angry confrontation and let him know what WE think of the situation. To convince him that WE were right and he was wrong.

But we didn’t do any of that. We walked away. Why? Because whatever is going on in this man’s life is spilling out on us… and it has nothing to do with us. I decided at that moment to instead of think of this man as a jerk… to think of him as a single Dad who had a hard and stressful day. I was no longer angry and let him have his story of us. It’s only HIS story… not ours.

How was I able to do this? Because I am reminded of an emotional time in my life where I was unreasonable… watch this video to learn my story…

Treat people as if they have a tragedy going on in their life. Maybe they do. Maybe they don’t. But, for me, when I think of people in this way, I’m able to remove myself from an angry situation. I’m able to easily stop the negative energy from going any further. This doesn’t mean you become a door mat. This means you’ve empowered yourself to choose how to handle the situation and to not let negative emotion control you. To not give the “attacker” power. When you don’t feed the negative energy… it weakens… and eventually goes away.

Have you had an encounter where you let your emotions get the best of you? Have you had the opportunity to nullify a situation? Share in the comments below.

Life rules. Don’t let it rule you.

Jen Thoden