The other day the internet went down at the co working space that I work at. At the time, I allowed it to piss me off. I was mid flow in a great call and the internet went down and it threw everything off.
It’s a perfectly justified reason to get pissed off and angry. No one would blame you for getting frustrated that the internet went out during an important call.
But just as quickly as I noticed myself get angry and creating a story to rationalise and justify my anger, I caught myself and realised, “I don’t have to take the bait”.
Just because there’s a reason to get angry doesn’t mean I have to take it. I can decide to not allow it to affect me and keep smiling on through the road bumps of the day. I have a limited amount of fucks to give, and I don’t want to give one of my fucks away to this petty bullshit.
Our day to day lives will constantly present us with small reasons to get frustrated, lose our cool, or disrupt our peace of mind. I call these “the low hanging fruits of frustration”. The things that are easy to get pissed off about. Traffic, bad weather, work situations, food, phone, internet and other petty shit that shouldn’t actually get you pissed off at all. The easy excuses to say that you’re in a bad mood and not feeling quite right.
Just because there’s a reason to be angry doesn’t mean you have to take the bait and put yourself in a bad mood. You can decide not to let the frustration of the day get in your way. Decide not to give away your peace of mind to the thing that is trying to grab your attention. The frustration/anger/worry/etc is a conscious choice and decision you are making and indulging in.
I often feel like I’m in a video game. I start my day and imagine that the universe is going to throw little tests at me throughout the day. Dangle little delicious fruits of frustration in my path that seem oh so easy to pick and eat. Small situations that will try to get a reaction out of me. Try to knock me off kilter in some way shape or form. It’s my job to remain alert, remain attentive, and not allow those things to knock me off my game. To walk through the situations of life with a fly swatter, swiping away at the troubles of the day, or dodging them like a running back breaking through tackles. Walking through the myriad of fruits and simply declining them one after another no matter how much the smell makes me want to react.
There are always going to be reasons to get pissed off. Easy narratives to tell ourselves about why we are justified in being angry/upset/worried/frustrated whatever it may be. Simple stories that let us take the path of lazy thinking and allow ourselves to succumb to external circumstances influencing our internal world.
Fuck that. I say we don’t take the bait. I say we become unfuckwithable, where we don’t bite at the easy reasons. To walk the higher path and choose our battles wisely.
So if something comes up that makes you lose your cool, ask yourself, is it really worth it to take the bait? Can I instead flip this into a positive somehow? Become grateful for the situation and opportunity to learn? Can I consciously choose to remain in a state of cool?
Don’t take the bait and bite at the low hanging fruits of frustration 😉