I saw it this week. I witnessed someone doing their very best come under fire from someone.
The details aren’t important. It could have been anyone upset about anything. It was the response that made an impact on me.
I was witness to someone who, when confronted with anger, responded with kindness and understanding. She was able to empathize and de-escalate a situation that could’ve gotten ugly. It was a remarkable show of grace.
There were lessons I will carry with me.
Pause. I am someone who likes to get things off my plate as quickly as possible. When I was teaching, if a parent reached out to me, I would call them back during passing period.
Pause. Our initial reaction when confronted with anger is likely not our best reaction. Time is our friend…not so much time that the person thinks you are ignoring the issue, but enough time to allow you to calm down.
Empathize when possible. Many times people just need to be heard, and if they can be understood, even better.
Own any issues you should.
Do not own any issues that are not yours to own.
Apologize when appropriate.
Respond with kindness. This one is the hardest. Showing kindness when confronted with anger is hard.
Grace under fire.
In our day to day interactions with people, there be a million low level confrontations. Grace and kindness go a long way towards making the world a happier place.