Tuesday, 30 November 2021

Never Just One Thing

 

One of my bad points is that I’m quick to temper.
I know myself very well and understand that the recipient of my ire is often not the main cause of it.
It’s a common phenomenon and one which , when you are in the centre of things , is very hard to see with clarity.
Yesterday I managed fairly well
Fairly
I finished three night shifts only to face just one day off before a long day shift, and when a colleague acted in a self absorbed, needy way I found my temper rising like lava from a volcano .
Luckily I walked away, muttering like Mutley from Dick Dastardly 
Distance and very cold air whistling in from the North over the Goat free Orme, cleared my head with timely pleasure.
My colleague wasn’t the problem
Tiredness, four courses of nausea inducing antibiotics, a cold cottage without a workable fire and elevated blood infection markers were the problem.
I got that all straight in my head in the calming panacea of the wind and within the hour organised to take an annual leave day today, during which I slept 10 hours overnight, only being woken by a wide eyed bulldog pushing slowly down on my windpipe.

An incorrectly viewed slight from a loved one was taken too personally yesterday resulting in a sharp email which wasn’t worthy of me. 
Another upset I managed to mull about during a warm bath and the temper subsided instantly like the bath bomb I treated myself too from the kind goody bag the hospice nurses received last year from a now defunct Debenhams 

When I was mentoring and teaching new Samaritans and nurses I often explored just why people became irritated or angry with you and themselves 
It was always a knotty and complicated discussion.

I follow a Buddhist nun on tiktok
I understand that this sounds a little flaky and indulgent 
It isn’t.
This elderly Australian speaks more sense in 30 seconds than most can share in 30 months .
Pragmatic and calm and sincere
Her calm voice is true mindfulness in days that can be filled by slights and upsets and tiredness and sickness.
Like everyone, I’m a work in process.
Sometimes I can be good at recognising where my “temper” leaches from 
Other times the camouflage is just too thick.
But let us remember……

It’s never just one thing…….

108 comments:

  1. You're hard on yourself John. We all have bad days and regret our actions, even if we can rationalise them. I think we have to be able to say 'sorry' to any recipients of our behaviours if they cause (unintended) offence. We all need a space for calm and mindfulness - however we find it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Work at the hospice has underlined my need for mindfullness above any other place I have ever worked
      There are reasons , many of them for this
      I understand this

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  2. Irritability comes with age. Learning to embrace it without giving a fuck is the lesson x

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    Replies
    1. When appropriate , I think you are right

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  3. Life and stress can affect us all. Good for you for trying not to lash out about it. Hugs!

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  4. The proverbial last straw. We often lash out at the wrong people, and as we do so, we generally know it. Doesn't always stop us though. You've been up to your ears in work, illness, domestic dramas etc. It's no wonder you feel stressed and angry - after all, you're only human! xx

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  5. You are human, an enlightened human. It is not the problems or mistakes in life that matter, it is how we respond to the, how we resolve them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes…I get that
      I think at nearly 60, I’m pretty good at this x

      Delete
  6. self control over temperament is a good thing to learn. most people never learn to do it.

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  7. Take it easy on yourself, my friend. xx

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  8. I have a quick temper as well which brings me no end of grief. I have improved over the years and know my triggers relatively well now, hunger, fatigue, watching vulnerable peole get trampled and other angry people who remind me of my father.

    As you say, we are all works in progress:)

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    Replies
    1. Triggers and understanding them is the key

      Delete
  9. Proper expression of anger is healthy; repression creates illness. As small children, we were shown by our caregivers how to express anger. In the South of the U.S. where I was born, it was impolite and therefore forbidden for little girls to get angry. This creates a landslide of issues for us adult women. Read, "When The Body Says No," by Dr. Gabor Mate to see just how repression of all manner of emotions is making us sick. Louise Hay figured it out (in 1984) and has a lovely book relating the physical manifestations with their mental equals, "You Can Heal Your Life." I think the work isn't control yourself, the work is, what needs to be healed in you?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think everything has to be appropriate
      And measured
      And proportionate

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    2. Had a dear friend point out some inappropriate anger of mine I had yesterday, over a silly messed up Starbucks coffee order! GAH! I wondered what in hell needed to be healed in me about that, and then we figured out what was at the bottom of it was actually absorbing some negative energy of the store! A corporate dude was there, assessing things with clicks on his Ipad, and the staff were terrified of him, we could see it! Their eyes were on him as he was walking all over the store and behind the counter. Energy is powerful. We got the hell out of there. And then I wondered, hmm, how could we have helped those poor souls? Ah. Next time. I love reading your blog, John. You're honest and forthright, which helps me want to be, too. Bless you.

      Delete
  10. Your health is at the root of it all.
    Pirate is growly with a grumbly tooth, and doesn't want to accept that that has been pulling him down for a while.
    With your pattern of work, that pulls you down to start with...

    ReplyDelete
  11. As you say, it's never one thing - like the number thirteen bus. First you wait forever then three arrive in a row.

    Yes, the famous drop of water that makes the bucket overflow.

    Take heart that you recognize that you are quick to fly off the handle. There are two types of the hot tempered - those who recognize it for what it is and have the ability and insight to apologize/make amends for any "damage" done in the heat of the moment. And then there are those elephants in the china shop who present you with a bill for all that THEY broke (metaphorically speaking).

    Buddhists (monk or not), John: There is nothing "flaky" about those who take their teachings on board. Takes a lot of discipline to put what they have to offer into practice. Practice not so much making perfect but a real difference. Not least the breathing.

    U

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I understand myself very well ,
      At nearly 60
      I should do

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    2. Well said Ursula. A timely and sincere apology heals many wounds. I hope you get well soon John. Your job is hard enough to do when healthy xx

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    3. As a 66 year old, I am sadly realising that I seem to be learning the best way to approach things, and how to put it into practice, only in time to be ready to die. Still, better to learn eventually than not at all, I suppose.

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    4. We all can due at any time, best to be prepared x

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    5. "due"? Remember to ask me to proof read that book if you ever write it.

      Delete
  12. Not in the least flaky...

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  13. I escape from anyone when they get angry as when I try to help and find out why they are angry they then get furious-Seems they need to be left alone for a while-I see the steam coming out their nostrils-if I get stressed my head hurts and my legs wobble so I can't really dwell on stuff-Earlier today I assisted a young woman standing shaking by her badly parked car near a junction-her baby inside too-she was traumatised by an angry woman driver gesturing at her and shouting abuse because she was apparently too slow which caused her to skid-she was safe but visibly trembling badly-a young man in his car then followed the irrate person in his car-who knows what happened next-butterfly effect or deck of cards x(a nice farmer with his trailer stopped too)x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Letting the kettle steam dry is one way of coping xx a good one

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  14. Glad you took a day off to rest. You definitely needed it! Take care of yourself, John. XX

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    Replies
    1. I’ve had a nice day and have just returned from choir

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  15. Okay, so what in hell is a bath bomb? Does the tub explode?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. https://www.lush.com/uk/en/c/bath-bombs?gclid=Cj0KCQiAtJeNBhCVARIsANJUJ2E4jr41lJrnupBZfrB4kKLOneBejLY8AtrEzhzwCpZnhu93WQTaUL4aAqpSEALw_wcB

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    2. I am left wondering where John puts his, I think I prefer not to wonder.

      Delete
  16. I dare not try a bath bomb-I think it dissolves slowly in a bathtub of hot water and as you place yourself carefully in to relax it Fizzes up your bottom-too much excitement for me x

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  17. A lot of food for thought here John - shall try mulling it over.

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  18. Anonymous3:04 pm

    Arnt you so Fucking pious?

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    Replies
    1. Tsk, tsk, anon. Maybe you should try to figure out where YOUR anger is coming from.

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    2. To answer the question posed by Anon… “no”

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    3. Anonymous5:32 pm

      Saint John of fucking Wales.

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    4. That's lovely x

      Delete
    5. Anonymous I agree John is saintly. For many, many reasons.

      Delete
    6. "Saint John of Fucking Wales" sounds like a fine title to me. I think you should embrace it Saint John! The "Fucking" word just adds an extra special touch that no other Saint can boast of. Now I wonder, if I pray devoutly to Saint Fucking John of Wales will he cure the unpleasant, albeit minor, fungus of my left big toe?

      Delete
    7. Sorry, "Saint John of Fucking Wales", I should've said, having got my John and my Fucking mixed up at the end of my earlier comment, which might be a serious error.

      Delete
    8. Hahaha! I'm chortling here. Thanks for the laugh.

      Jo in Auckland

      Delete
  19. Not pious, anon. Honest

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  20. Just have some chocolate, or fudge, or if circumstances allow, a Guinness.

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  21. I'm glad you're resting up. I've always found you to be very self-aware but we all have days when too many things pile up and the self-awareness takes its sweet time coming. I hope your health improves soon. Feeling rotten sucks.

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    Replies
    1. I hope so too..it’s somewhat tiring

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  22. My friend the retired psychiatrist taught that anger is always a masking emotion that tries to cover the true deep feeling that is the real problem. I've learned to look closely at myself when I find anger surfacing, as you have done, to learn what the problem is and find a more constructive way to defuse it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anger is the easiest emotion to mobilise
      That’s why it is so common in grief, and PTSD

      Delete
  23. Barbara Anne4:03 pm

    Brilliant to realize you needed a day off after those long nights and getting stuck with a day shift just 24 hours after leaving that last night shift. And then there's the ongoing antibiotics and underlying germs making you feel off kilter. No wonder you were at the end of your patience but your remedy was perfect.
    I'm just off the phone (an hour on hold with an inane tortuous "tune" restarting about ever 60 seconds. When a human finally picked up (glory be!), after I gave her the account number and my name address, she wanted a PIN. What?? It all pivoted on a PIN number thanks to some IT person who must think PINs are the be all and end all. Creative soul that Ivy was, she worked a way around the PIN problem, asked my last payment amount, asked what numbers I'd choose for a PIN, and got the account closed which was my aim. Bless Ivy!
    We're all works in process, John, so your in good company.
    Enjoy the day - or what's left of it given your time zone.

    Hugs!

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    Replies
    1. Babs I went to choir tonight
      It was the best medicine EVER

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    2. Barbara Anne11:16 pm

      I'm so glad you could go to choir and I read that African songs were sung. What could be better?

      Hugs!

      Delete
  24. Glad you took the cold mind clearing walk. Manly of you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can be quite butch when I want to be

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  25. Ill health puts everyone in a foul mood. When I'm feeling miserable I quietly murmur the quote, "This too will pass". It's a reminder to me that things will get better...they always do.

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    Replies
    1. That famous quote from MY BEST FRIENDS WEDDING

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Abqut8p-FZw

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  26. Years ago I read that bubble bath was suspect in urinary infections. Maybe true, maybe not, just a thought.

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  27. Walking away is often the healthiest solution. Not always possible, but I'm glad it worked for you this time.

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  28. veg artist6:14 pm

    We are all a work in progress. (Having great trouble leaving comments. Have you put spam filters on?)

    ReplyDelete
  29. A nurse said to me recently"people underestimate how rotten a UTI can make you feel". I agree, and you gave had a lot lately.

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  30. "I follow a Buddhist monk on tiktok I understand that this sounds a little flaky and indulgent..." To me it actually sounds like one of your more sensible statements; but where can we hear from this monk? Link please?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tiktok …search for
      @robinacourtin
      She’s actually a nun

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    2. John.. if you don't "Do" Tiktok can you still search for @robinacourtin ???

      Jo in Auckland

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    3. JO she has a YouTube channel too, just search for Robina Courtin :)

      Delete
  31. I find I'm usually very grumpy and naggy when I am tired. A good sleep is a good start to getting over this for me.

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  32. I seldom get too upset anymore. Only thing that surely can rile me up is calling a help desk.

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  33. I used to be lightning quick to anger. I’ve someone managed to overcome it... mostly. The most important thing for me to master was to delay my response to what I thought was angering me and to never immediately, angrily respond to email. At worst, I write it and save it for later. And that means it never gets sent in its initial form. Good for you for walking away. Things to do today: Breathe in. Breathe out. Repeat. Hope you’re feeling much better physically and emotionally.

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    Replies
    1. There’s a lot to be said for taking a big breath

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  34. Sometimes things are just too much. x

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  35. Blood infection markers is a little worrying. Keep us posted. Essentially good people can be pushed too far much to the surprise of those around them.

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    Replies
    1. I’m in the system ..don’t worry x

      Delete
  36. Man goes to a psychotherapist with anger problems. Doctor asks him to describe them.

    "Well, I just fly off the handle at the slightest thing. I cannot seem to stop myself from getting into a rage from the most innocuous of comments".

    Doctor: "Tell me about it."

    "I JUST FUCKING DID, DIDN'T I???!!!"

    ReplyDelete
  37. Sometimes when nursing, you need to remember to look after yourself as well.
    I.e. 48 hour break after night shifts. Nice hot baths, restful nights sleep. You have been ill, you still are!
    Look after yourself, you dork.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I’ve been given a couple of lectures today
      Point taken xx

      Delete
  38. The few times I’ve lost my temper there’s one that I’m deeply ashamed about, at work after weeks of preparing for an inspection from the big bosses I was running around like the proverbial fly, with less than an hour before they arrived I was called down to the shop floor saying there was a phone call, now this was only 2 floors but with numerous digital combination locks, when I got down to take it it was nothing just nothing and the nicest sweetest person ever got the brunt of my temper, even as I was shouting at her my brain was telling me to shut up, I’ll never forget the look on her face it was as though I’d kicked a puppy around the room, I apologised many times but it still haunts me ..

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for sharing that
      You articulate the feelings so well xx
      We are all too hard on ourselves

      Delete
  39. These things happen and we've all put ourselves out there in not the best light. It's just another day in the in the life... Remember, we all fall from our pedestals on occasion.

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  40. I need a mentor like you!
    Great self awareness and good mitigating. You deserve a day off

    ReplyDelete
  41. The is a line in a Russian fairy tale, "the morning is always wiser than the evening" I say that to myself sometimes when i want to react immediately.

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  42. Therapy has really helped me temper my temper. :)

    I sometimes cringe when I think about the ways I have reacted to loved ones in the past. Even when I get angry now, I don't react how I used to and I sometimes cannot believe how intense I would get.

    I am grateful I have been able to learn, even in my 50's, that change is possible. Forgiving and being gentle to myself has been helpful as well.

    Be kind to you.

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  43. I love the fact that the Dharma has moved on to TikTok! Old meets new!

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    Replies
    1. BTW, in Zen our "beginningless greed, anger and ignorance" is mentioned in some regularly chanted verses -- part of the human condition.

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  44. What is the name of the Nun you follow? Thank you.

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