By: Karen Hood-Caddy
I heard a lovely parable the other day about anger and hurt that I want to share with you. Here it is:
Will, a nine-year-old, had turned into an angry young many after her father abandoned his mom. Sometimes he would lash out at others with hurtful words. He once told his mom, “I see why Dad left you!”
Unable to cope with his cruel outbursts, the mom sent Will to his grandparents. His grandfather’s strategy to help Will learn self-control was to make him pound a two-inch-long nail into a four-by-four board every time he said a mean thing. For a small boy, this was a major task, but he couldn’t return until the nail was all the way in.
After about ten trips to the garage, Will began to be more cautious about his words. Eventually, he even apologized for all the bad things he’d said.
That’s when his grandmother came in. She made him bring in the board filled with nails and told him to pull them all out. This was even harder than pounding them in, but after a huge struggle, he did it.
This grandmother knew something important and that’s this: words can bash holes in people and even if you apologize, those holes can remain.
Here are some tips for NOT saying something hurtful when other parts of you DO want to say something:
- Acknowledge the PART that wants to speak: Say, “Even though a part of me wants to say something mean right now, I’m going to walk away.” You can even say this aloud.
- Go and write the mean thing down. That gets it out, but on to a piece of paper. Then, rip up that paper and put in the garbage.
- Press your feet into the ground. I know, it sounds strange, but anger and hurt are both just energy and you can send that energy out of your body through your feet. Stomp around. Press it into the ground. The earth will take it away.
- Resolve to be someone who doesn’t cause hurt. Set it as a core value. Not necessarily because it’s kinder for others, but because it’s kinder to YOU!!! Once you’ve made a commitment to this, it’s easier to do it because you’ve set it as an internal value. When tempted, you can say to yourself, “As tempting as it might be to do or say something mean here, this isn’t who I am. I am committed to being non-harmful.”
- Utilize an outside resource. Sometimes our feelings are just too big for us. Too powerful. When this is the case, go to YouTube.com, and put ‘EFT for hurt’ or ‘EFT for anger’ in the search box and it will give you hundreds of live practitioners who will lead you through an Emotional Freedom protocol that will lessen your uncomfortable feelings considerably.
Take on your feelings and change them. That’s what’s going to make you feel powerful!