It was not a good morning today. As per usual, I woke up with just enough time to get myself dressed and do my basic hygiene routine before shooting out the door to work. It started out pretty well, but it didn’t last very long. For personal reasons, my morning routine has been somewhat altered for the next couple of months, and while that by itself isn’t that big of a deal, this morning simply seemed to be conspiring against me.
The problems didn’t actually start until after I had completed the additional part of my commute into work. I got caught by a light I normally don’t spend much time at, and then traffic was just extra slow this morning. Impatience is one of the more powerful personality traits in my makeup, so I was already starting to get annoyed. Then as I was exiting the freeway to the surface streets outside my job, someone decided that I didn’t deserve any space to drive on the road and thought it was fine to try to occupy the portion of the road where my car was situated. That’s just a fancy way of saying that they tried to run me off the road.
I was so livid, and then of course I get caught by the light where I turn left to go into my job. Everyone at work agrees that the light is probably the most ridiculous light in the city because it has a ridiculous traffic pattern that breaks things up into more steps than your standard intersection. As usual, I got caught at the beginning of the cycle, so instead of only being five minutes late I ended up being ten. If you’ve read my blog in the past, you’ll understand why being late is something that really doesn’t sit well with me, and every second sitting at the light fuming over being late just made the morning all the more infuriating.
One of my basic tasks when coming in on the first day of the week is to complete a basic cleanup of the office. In the top five of the most irritating things about my job is definitely that we have one bathroom to service not only the people in the office, but also the field workers that come and go throughout the day. This causes a lot of angst amongst the staff in general, but it is worse for me because I have a physical condition that forces me to be in the bathroom a lot. It’s incredibly frustrating when you need to use the restroom but have to wait on two or three people.
The reason I bring this up is that one of the things I try to beat in the morning is getting into the bathroom for cleaning before other people decide they want to get into it. As you might expect from a morning like this, as I was getting into work and getting ready to start cleaning, someone was in the bathroom. This wouldn’t normally be a problem except that the supplies I needed were in the bathroom, which meant I couldn’t get started at all. So in the end it was multiple delays and a near miss accident that comprised a morning full of frustration.
My natural reaction to things like this is to lose my temper and start shouting and screaming. Of course, in my private time I go ahead and do this because it releases the tension and allows me to vent my frustrations. Unfortunately, when it happens on my way in to work I’m not really able to deal with it in the way that is best for me. I end up having to bottle it up inside and just hold it in until it dissipates over time. This isn’t particularly good for me as it prolongs the amount of time that I’m stressed out.
As a professional and former Marine, I have the discipline to do this, but I prefer to be able to just get it all out as soon as possible. Perhaps that’s part of my impatience, but it’s just the way I work. Part of this post is getting it out in some kind of way since I don’t have the ability to put it out into the world the way I’d like to. Writing isn’t nearly as satisfying as shouting, but it is what it is. At least I have some way of getting myself back to a better frame of mind.
What do you think about dealing with problems? Do you get frustrated, or are you able to take it calmly? Is your life made more difficult by an inability to respond well to unfolding events, or are you “cool as a cucumber”? We all have things we end up dealing with, and the way we respond to them is unique to each of us. There is no wrong way to handle these kinds of things so long as it doesn’t adversely affect those around you. Never be afraid to be you.
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