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Trevor E. S. Smith | Hurt? Upset? …..Why?

Published:Sunday | July 31, 2016 | 12:00 AMTrevor E. S. Smith

How we process and file incoming information, influences how we relate to others and how we respond to events. Some of the upset and hurt that we experience can be avoided by making one fundamental adjustment.

The critical change that will make a huge difference in our lives is to put yourself in the shoes of others. Before you turn off and think you have been hearing that from childhood, bear with me a little longer.

I am suggesting that you develop the discipline to consistently ponder why the individual did what they did or said what they said before reacting.

Some of us are far too sensitive and touchy. Our first impulse is to take offence, and feel disrespected. In that state of mind, it is difficult to think objectively, and things go downhill from that point.

We all know people with that mentality, and relating to them is like walking on eggs. The challenge is that traces of the mindset that leads to that kind of reaction might be more present in us than we realise.

Pause for a while and reflect on some situations in which you have been upset or experienced hurt. In your reflection, see if any of these factors were present.


1. Focus


Were you focused on yourself and your needs?

When we focus on ourselves to the exclusion of others, it is easy to find things that are not in sync with where we are mentally. Anything that falls outside of our needs prompts internal conflict, which may or may not be expressed.

Suppressed conflict often manifests as anger or hurt.

You can reduce the number of instances in which you are upset by being more mindful that we need to be interdependent. We have to make sacrifices to support each other. Deny self and reduce anger.


2. Pride


We do not like to accept the role of pride in our lives, but we have some explaining to do. Why would we feel disrespected because we were not mentioned by name in a speech and others were?

Why else would Donald Trump throw away the advantage of his convention speech to return to his childish 'tracing' because Ted Cruz did not endorse him?

Why would we take umbrage to the fact that we were not consulted in the decision-making process or invited to the meeting or function?

In those cases, a haughty self-image has got the better of us.

Reduce instances of being angry and upset by accepting that you might be less important in the larger scheme of things than you think. Increase humility and reduce hurt.


3. Low self-esteem


We are not happy accepting that we might have low self-esteem. However, it is an issue for some of us.

People who are lacking in self-confidence tend to attach a negative spin to unfolding events. There is a tendency to think that things are not in their favour. The motive of others is questioned and rarely deemed to be in their best interest.

Hurt and anger linked to this mindset can be reduced by spending considerable time in mental visualising exercises. Picture yourself experiencing positive outcomes. Play mental videos of things going well for you. Time and time again, see people being kind to you and giving you the respect that you deserve.

Above all, know that you are worthy. Increase self-esteem and reduce anger and being upset.

Did you notice that there is no mention of forgiveness? If there is no offence taken, then there is no need for forgiveness.

Are there situations in which there is genuine cause to be angry or to experience hurt? Yes, but I prefer to pass on some opportunities to be upset. It gives me peace of mind and enhances my relationships.

• Trevor E. S. Smith is a behaviour modification coach with the Success with People Academy, home of the Certified Behavioural Coach Award. Email: info@swpacademy.com