Our Moral Compass: Know When To Say When

“We have to say it’s ok to be angry. It’s not all right to be violent.”

-Maxine Waters

     Emotions play an integral part of anyone who is living and breathing. As the official definition of emotions reads it is a natural instinctive state of mind deriving from one’s circumstances, mood, or relationships with others. We see this in insects, reptiles and mammals. We as humans are looked upon as the ones that should be the best at not only regulating those emotions but also deciding which emotions are the best to display at a given moment and what actions may or may not result because of it. U.S. Representative Maxine Waters reminds us in today’s quote that it is ok to be angry but not to be violent.

When looking at breaking down that definition of emotions that I gave earlier, emotions are natural instincts that we all possess. There will be times that certain emotions, no matter how much mindfulness and mental training/mindfulness exercises we partake in, that we may give into emotions like anger or sadness even when we do our best to avoid them. For most, it is better to express those emotions early on and not try keeping them pent up inside. There is only so much one can take and over time it can reach a point where they must release those emotions which may damage the relationships you have with others depending on what that specific emotion is like anger. This can negatively affect your self management and relationship skills with others and yourself.

Anger is a natural emotion but it is up to us to be able to use certain strategies to address it and better yet control it before it turns to violence. Violence only leads to chaos. It leads to a loss of self and unnecessary suffering. The results of it can never be undone and I can guarantee will only make the situation worse. Remember as I have said in earlier blogs that the situation will be always be the situation but it is how we respond to them that is key. How we respond is our decision. It also our decision if that response is just to express our anger in a controlled and calm state stopping there or we take to a level that includes violence. Before it even gets to this here are 10 tips from the Mayo Clinic of how to help tame our anger. Again it is your decision to make that effort to use these strategies before crossing a line that once you cross you will never be able to go back:

1. Think before you speak

2. Once you’re calm, express your anger

3. Get some exercise

4. Take a timeout

5. Identify possible solutions

6. Stick with ‘I’ statements

7. Don’t hold a grudge

8. Use humor to release tension

9. Practice relaxation skills

10. Know when to seek help

Again these are ways to help us tame that anger and are 10 decisions that you have control over in making before letting that anger get the best of you. You can decide to do all of them, one of them or none of them. The choice is yours. I’ll I can hope for is the choice you make is a responsible, safe and smart one.

What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards developing your responsible decision making skills?

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