When I’ve taught life skills classes, one of the most difficult concepts for people to accept is that no one makes you angry or hurts your feelings. You are always at choice with what how you respond to another person.

You make me so angry!” a parent tells a child. Think about how much power that parent just gave to their child. Anytime, the child wants to push a parent’ s button, the parent just gave the child information on how to do that.

You’re a victim if you think someone can hurt your feelings. Same lack of power, same invitation for the other person to be abusive. Let’s say you tell me, “Your chicken was a little tough tonight.” That’s a fact. Having cooked meals ranging in the thousands, more than one will be “trashable.” Instead of saying, “Well you should try to cook ten thousand meals that please everybody and never does,” say “It wasn’t my best chicken dinner,” and GO ON WITH YOUR LIFE.

Let’s say someone says to me “You’re thoughtless!” First of all what someone else thinks of me is none of my business. If I choose to respond, it is more powerful to tai chi (pull it through) than to rebuff it, “Sometimes I can be thoughtless, mostly I’m not.” AND GO ON WITH YOUR LIFE.

No one makes you angry, you choose to be angry. No one hurts your feelings, you choose to feel hurt. Powerful stuff if you’re brave enough to live it!

Please share with friends and family.

Scott A. McDaniel photo