Andy has always said that his dad, whom I never had the privilege of meeting, was a fairly mild-mannered easy-going guy. Respected and well-liked in his rural community, a boys’ baseball coach, and a church-goer – seems he had a friendly word for everyone. Even when riled, he wasn’t a man to easily lose control of his temper. Like everyone, he did have one, he just usually kept it pretty well under.
From listening to the family telling stories of yesteryear, there were two things in life that made that man lose his grip; one was cows and pigs that refused to cooperate when they were being loaded into the chute. And the other that lit his fuse? Hitting his thumb with a badly-aimed hammer blow.
From what I understand, a stubborn Bossy The Cow or Pearl The Pig could suddenly become the recipient of very imaginative names not normally given to four-legged animals. And on fence-building days? The air on their farm would take on a whole new shade of blue when his dad splattered his thumb at that task. Then his kids would spend the next half-hour searching for his hammer. Eventually finding it in the neighbor’s pasture.
Sound kinda familiar? You may not be a hammer-wielding farmer with bad aim and five kids snickering when you miss. And you may not be the proud owner of panicked pigs and cows that suddenly have their own ideas when it comes to being loaded up and taken to the slaughter house.
But. Probably you are the owner of a temper. Whether it reminds people of instantly combustible Fire From Hell Itself, or slow simmering Volcanic Lava, you most likely own one. Seems to be part of being a human being. I have never met anyone yet who absolutely never has a flareup of that ‘thing’ inside of us, that attitude that lets those around us know we are not a happy camper.
But maybe, you actually are known worldwide as Calm Calvin or Sweetheart Sara. You are one of those rare species who never shows any anger or disgust, and never disagrees with anyone. Then I would venture to guess you may privately deal with things like tension headaches, upset stomach, sudden diarrhea, or stomach ulcers. Not a good trade-off.
Better plan? Learn to express your displeasure, (without a missing hammer) listen to the opposing opinion if there is any, create a workable solution, ask and give forgiveness when needed, and then move on.
Life is way-y-y-y-y-y too hard to spend your time holding your emotions in so tightly that you become ill. You will eventually find yourself spending a portion of your time dealing with that illness, instead of just simply living openly and honestly. Learn to feel it, express it, and deal with it.
But just remember, everyone else is dealing with difficult emotions and situations too. Let’s cut each other some slack.
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