This question may change your life.

I consume a lot of true crime (for fun), and I listen to people’s stories (for a living) so I feel somewhat qualified to make the assertion that:

  1. Humans are complex, complicated beings.
  2. We don’t always understand the feelings, sensations, emotions, thoughts we are having.

So, considering the above statements, the life changing question I want to pose to you is this: Are you really upset (mad, irritated) about what you think you are upset about?

Recently, I watched a video of a woman who didn’t receive ketchup in the fast food drive thru line she had just ordered food from. So, naturally, she got out of her car, walked into the kitchen and began beating the living shit out of the line cook. Reasonable behavior. What if she had taken just a mindful pause and asked herself this lifechangingquestion? I, for one, would have been spared three minutes of that unadulterated id action, but more importantly, that low paid- doesn’t deserve -your trauma- worker would have had a better day.

Perhaps you can’t relate with this level of insanity and think you’re so much more self-aware. Well, I hope so. But also, how much more aware are you (I)? I get reallllly worked up in (unbearable! LA!) traffic every day. A few weeks ago I was late and the receptionist at my eye appointment told me I would have to wait since they let someone else go first. I responded with a (hot!) retort, “about how long, an hour, because I’m not…” It was like 5 mins, which wasn’t her problem (or fault) whats so ever. The point is, I too displace my frustrations elsewhere.

So, what’s under this iceburg that you (I) can’t see?

Sometimes its super simple: skipped brekky, need a bit more exercise to settle down that angsty energy, not getting enough down time, need a little more fun on the weekends etc.

Other times, (and likely the case for the ketchup bully) it’s more complicated, like unresolved trauma, incongruent lifestyle with our values, undiagnosed physical/ mental disorders, triggers etc.

So, next time, before you send that scathing email to your insurance company, or post that nastyyyyy political rant on your social medz, stop for a moment, a brief moment in your life and check in. Notice your sensations, blood sugar, righteous indignation, bruised ego and ask yourself, is what I’m so worked up about, really what I’m feeling?

The world thanks you.