For the most part, when someone fusses at you or is generally grumpy … it’s really about them and not about you.
No I’m not trying to shift blame or go soft on sin. It’s just something that I’ve seen quite a bit of lately and thought I’d comment on.
I see women being fussed at by family, co-workers, and friends. Typically women take on the responsibility of trying to fix what they are “doing wrong” and “make things better.” The problem is that often the problem has little if anything to do with them.
The kids are tired or bored and they let mom have an earful. The husband has had a bad day at work and suddenly nothing at home satisfies him. Her discouraged coworker blames her for the failed team project or her unhappy mother-in-law gives her the worst wife of the year award.
The blame game is alive and well and doing a great amount of destruction in relationships.
Yes, we all need to grow up and learn to improve how we do life, but most of the fussiness that comes our way is not about what we are doing, not doing, saying, or not saying. It’s about the current condition of the person doing the fussing and our behavior is their excuse for venting their angst.
Do take that into consideration when someone fusses at you. Listen for the legitimate (yes, sometimes there is a real reason), but understand that most of the blow is likely to be about the other person’s current unhappiness.
What to do?
Personally, I find that staying calm and listening takes care of a lot of it. Asking questions can help (most people just need to vent, to be heard), as can finding practical solutions. Most of it requires prayer and sometimes you have to be firm and let them know that their fussiness is unkind and there is nothing you can do.
I guess what I’m trying to say is guard against believing every cranky word that comes your way. Don’t let other people’s bad hair day become your reality. Turn the table with calmness, kindness and thoughtfulness.
First keep the peace within yourself, then you can also bring peace to others. Thomas a Kempis
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