I Annoy Me… period.
I spent time with a very close friend this weekend. The kind of friend you can have an honest conversation with and hold nothing back.
They were really in a ratty mood. When we drove somewhere they were criticising lots of other drivers. Everything was ‘annoying’.
It was as much as I could do to stop myself from bursting out laughing – it was so funny.
Why was it so funny? Well, because nothing was that serious – they were just in a ‘mood’.
Of course, if I had laughed, that really would have annoyed them!
A Perfect Day
A few weeks ago I had a ‘Perfect Day’. I got to see Peter Gabriel, my favourite artiste, playing my favourite Album (“So”), with my all-time favourite Bass-Player – Tony Levin, with two of my three beloved sons. Hey, the bar even had my favourite beer (Blue Moon). To be honest, if anything minor had gone wrong that day, I would have shrugged it off as insignificant compared with the overwhelming joy of the day.
Compared with what?
The contrasting events got me thinking. It was so easy to see that my friend was working themselves up over ‘nothing’. With the detachment I had, this was so obvious. And yet, as they pointed out to me, I was “…a fine one to talk!” That’s because I am often annoyed – especially at discourteous driving!!!
I can choose peace…
Unfortunately I know enough about psychology now to realise that nothing can annoy me! It’s what I do with the stimuli in my head that provokes either the response of peace or the annoyed reaction. When we’ve had our fill of irritations in a day, we begin to assign more meaning to annoying events than perhaps we should. After all, is that driver cutting in ahead without using their indicator really trying to annoy me personally? No, of course not!
As a result of our ratty road-trip, I came up with four acronyms to summarise my lessons learned:
• YAM = You Annoy Me!
• TRAM = That Really Annoys Me!
• I AM = I Annoy Me
• NAM = Nothing Annoys Me
It’s a bit of an evolutionary journey. First I thought other people annoyed me. But that’s not true.
Then I had the sense to realise that people are more than their behaviours. To go for the ball, not the player.
Breakthrough came when I realised I was the one annoying me!!!
Then finally, I realise that I can get to a point where nothing annoys me…
…am I there yet? No.
And you know what?
That Really Annoys Me!!!!