No war in anger was ever won. ―Selena Gomez
When asked how he seems to always treat everyone right, a Ph.D. business professor shared a few insights. “Everyone sees the world in a different way. You weren’t born to click with everyone. It is quite hard to remember this, but everyone just wants to be nice on the inside. It is quite difficult to grasp, but even the person you hate the most is loved by someone else in this world.”
Theories are theories. Pieces of Advice are pieces of advice. Feelings are feelings. When we are angry, we forget all of these words. We couldn’t help but spill poison from our mouth. We couldn’t help but shout an ugly pool of wrath. We couldn’t help but burn what we have built to the ground. Just like that, we watch ourselves die in the blame we create. Just like that, we watch ourselves drag someone else into our flame.
The more we suppress our waves of anger, the crazier it becomes. It’s like the fire is trying to find a way to escape no matter how many battles it has to go through or how much energy it drains. More often than not, you are most likely going to burn yourself through the process of vanquishing your fire.
You don’t have to attack your fire. It doesn’t really have to completely vanish. You probably have a big problem if you cannot feel anything at all. The key is not to kill; the key is to acknowledge. It is in human nature that we are unhappy when things do not go our ways. What is the point of living if everything goes our ways? Are you not brave enough to face your anger? If so, you might be afraid of yourself.
You do not have to swim in your own rage. You do not have to throw things at the walls, feeling satisfied because you break something instead of fathoming your own problems. You do not have to stab yourself for the mistakes of the world. Sit still and say to yourself “I am angry”. Then breathe slowly. Fill your lungs with air and positivity. See? You’re still alive. That, alone, means your possibilities are still infinite. Given a choice between agony and peace, why wouldn’t you choose the latter?
You probably think you cannot meditate or whatsoever at the moment of an argument. You are probably afraid that everything is your fault when you don’t fight back. You might think it means that you accept the accusations against you. Then you start saying all the things you don’t mean, hoping to shield yourself from the guilt. Before you know it, you create bullet holes which cannot be healed by mere bandages.
The things somebody else says would not hurt as much if you do not agree. If you let bad things slide through you as if you were Casper the Friendly Ghost, you probably manage to decrease your level of pain. People might think you are mean for ignoring them. They might think you are emotionless robots who do not have a big enough heart to care. We don’t have to fight back to show we care. Love means we grant our loved ones the power to hurt us. If they do not use the power wisely, it defines them. Not us.
Remember that, at the end of the day, we do not want to blur out ourselves because of their definition. You should not let those words devastate you or your pride. You should not develop eternal insecurities for the sake of others’ future regret. Words hurt. They do. They bleed through. But it never does you any good to slash them back. People are only able to give as much love to you as they give to themselves.
Martin Luther once said that “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that”. When the fire arrives, greet it with love. Don’t suppress that part of yours, even if you hate it. Accept it. Cherish it. Breathe through it, knowing you win. You win because you do not add more fire. You win because you do not keep burning yourself. When the fire arrives, greet it with care. It doesn’t matter what people say. They will remember the good side of you. Do you want to be remembered for the things you regret having said? Or do you want to be remembered for you?
When the fire arrives, keep calm. No reason to crash that vase on your table. No use to tear apart their title. Love means we grant our loved ones the power to hurt us. But it also means they grant us the power to hurt them. Use that power wisely. Because it defines us.
© VITAK CHEAV