Everyone knows someone who is — or can be the princess of provocation. We must all admit … we can even be one our self at times. We’ve all been in the scenarios — do we give in and passive aggressively rant via a Facebook post or send that cruel, in-the-moment text message that we regret down the road. Ultimately, everyone has that choice to make — to be or not to be a drama queen.
I usually despise conflict and do my best to avoid starting or participating in any fights or other conflict-ridden situations. Unfortunately lately, I’ve surprised myself with how angry and worked up I can make myself simply by focusing on the stories I’ve “told” myself. Fortunately, at this point in time I’ve been able to contain this drama to my head … and my head alone. After lots and lots of sighing and many restless nights, I’ve finally gotten to the point of asking myself, “am I getting worked up for nothing?”
When I really stop and think about it, it’s amazing, as humans — and women — how much we assume, perceive, or think we know! We often dwell on stories or situations that might not even be entirely true — and once we’ve held enough in, we let it out. We steam, we yell, we cry. Only to realize it was a simple misunderstanding or difference in expectations.
In an effort to focus on the brighter side of life and reduce a significant amount of stress from my daily life, I’m determined to do the following — and encourage you to do the same the next time you find yourself dwelling on a stressful scenario or relationship between family, friends, co-workers, etc.
1. Stop & think. Truly spend some time reflecting on the situation at hand. It will give you a chance to cool down and help you establish your real feelings in the matter.
2. Give the benefit of the doubt. Instead of making up my own story or idea as to why he/she said or did something, assume the other party in the conflict had good intent with no intent to harm.
3. Use your big girl words. If I can’t let it go after that, TALK to them in a open and calm fashion. Explain why you are hurt, mad and/or frustrated … without blaming or pointing fingers. Ask for their side of the story and actually LISTEN to them. Key word: listen.
Talking these steps won’t guarantee a solid resolution right away all of the time … but you are definitely headed in the right direction. It’s amazing what solid, successful communication can lead to! If you need more guidance, I’d highly recommend the book, Crucial Conversations, by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan and Switzler. Best of luck!