Stop, Assess, Breath, Let Go

I have three children ages 5 years and under. I teach them this concept of stopping themselves from “Going To Crazy Town” by stopping their reactionary impulses, assessing the situation, BREATHING, and letting go of any negative emotions. I fully realize and understand that it is oftentimes challenging for small children to live by this tenet – but my goal is to code this into my children at the very beginning of their lives. I have to confess that although it is a guiding principle of mine to live by that same tenet, I also find how easy it can be to live outside of that very principle at times. The trick, I have found, is to always keep the ego in check and reign back reaction and thereby continue from the space of your true self.

I had to employ that very protocol just this past week. I entered the UPS store with the intention to open new business mailbox. Having only opened PO Boxes through the postal service in the past, I was unfamiliar with the requirements for opening a mailbox through private businesses such as UPS. Upon explaining to the gal behind the counter what it was that I was looking for, she informed me that I needed in addition to my valid driver’s license another form of ID such as car registration, passport, utility bill – none of which I had. She also quickly indicated to me that UPS does not accept social security cards, and a few other “normal” forms of ID and that such has been the company policy for years. I have to say that I perceived this gal to have had an almost snide attitude at this point.

I was taken aback initially by such a limiting policy and then noticed that the bewilderment soon after turned into agitation. My agitation was directed both at the gal and to the seemingly asinine policies of the company. However, years of practicing the tenet of living with integrity even when no one is watching assisted me in not making a fool of myself by acting upon my agitation. And come to think of it, that agitation literally snuck up on me – it came out of nowhere. But even though I was fuming inside, my higher self took over and I asked the gal to please write down all the forms of secondary ID that UPS does accept. By asking her to please take the time to write down the list for me, this allowed me to break the agitation cycle by literally halting the sequence and somewhat taking myself out of the situation. To my relief, among the things she listed were student IDs (which crazy enough I still had from law school) and a Costco card! I had both in my purse at the moment! The crisis was averted just as quickly as it threatened to ruin my day. I was in a delicate position in which my choice of behavior/reaction/mindset could have actually realized the day’s ruin. Proudly, I did not let it happen…and for no other reason than the fact that I have compounded my efforts over many seemingly insignificant stand-alone moments in which I trained myself to be kind despite perceived unkindness and unwillingness to help from others.

The moral here is that as easy as it is to slip and find ourselves on our way to “crazy town,” whether it be at work, at home, at school, or even at the UPS store, we can easily just take a quick moment to practice the tenant and just step back and realize that we are all just mere humans – that we are all in this together.


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