Same Ol’ Stress, A Whole New Attitude

It seems everywhere we turn, we encounter people who are overwhelmed and overworked who are, in turn, curt, over-reactive, or flat-out rude.


Believe it or not, we have a choice about how we respond to these situations.


This is a stress button and a relax button.

Shutterstock, © Stuart Miles

For example, I recently went to a doctor’s office and experienced three consecutive opportunities to transform energy within a period of 45 minutes.


  1. Receptionist: She greeted me with hostility, saying that she just had a screaming match with the patient before me. Rather than react, I chose to ask for her first name and said that I could understand how difficult that must have been for her. She smiled and told me how much she appreciated my punctuality and having my paperwork completed.
  2. Patient coordinator: When I told her why I was there, she confronted me by saying, “That’s not what you said when you called for the appointment!” I asked her how long she worked there and she replied in a harsh tone of voice that she had been there for ten years. My response? “With all that experience, you are probably right.”
  3. Physician’s assistant: She yawned, groaned, then proceeded to fall asleep on top of my paperwork. I told her, “This must be boring. You see this all day.” She perked up and said, “I apologize; it’s not you. I have a sick three-month-old baby and I was up all night.” In the couple minutes that it took me to empathize with her, she became awake, engaging and friendly.


We all have opportunities every day, with every person we meet to take a deep breath and choose to respond to them in a compassionate way.


The choice is yours: To react or to transform.


How have you managed to transform energy in your daily interactions?


Love and Light,


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