Occasionally, and unfortunately recurrently, I receive unsettling communiques. As I scan the text, my level head (the piece that can readily dispense advice) knows the appropriate response (it's not deliberate, it's not about you, there may be a workable solution, but even if there's not, it's still not about you). But because of the people and issues involved, logic goes AWOL – every time, leaving me cumbered with a knapsack of hurt and anger.
Until last week.
I read the e-mail. Mind you, I was not perfectly composed, but my level head prevailed: I didn't say or do anything that I really regret. I even handled the situation constructively. It was one of the highlights of my week.
I've always believed that you and I were made “to act, and not be acted upon”. Stomaching this belief can be hard when I feel out of control. But without it, I'm quite certain, there are many instances in which I would have emotionally fled, become a deserter.
There will no doubt be more skirmishes between me and myself. This week though, we won.
What a sense of accomplishment.
Do you believe you are agentic — made to act and not be acted upon?
How has this belief helped you to keep showing up in vexing circumstances?