“Temper, temper. I wouldn’t dream of challenging you.”

My favorite movie growing up was Lion King. I couldn’t watch the part where Mufasa died. I’d literally fast forward or I’d cry. To this day I could recite the movie and sing all the songs. I also drop some lines in real life conversation if needed. That’s, you know, my thing. I could relate to all the characters. With Scar, it was my temper.

I grew up with a really bad temper. I could remember smacking my brother across the back with a pool stick because he called me a not so nice thing. He shouldn’t have called me that but I 2031% shouldn’t have resorted to violence. I’d blame it on my family’s generationals because both sides have pretty bad tempers. But, when it’s all said and done, my temper is my issue. Not my family’s. Not my friends’. Mine.

Today, I got pissy. Almost immediately which was frustrating in and of itself because for the last 16 years I’ve worked pretty damn hard in learning how to control my temper and taking a step back. So, in hopes to ingrain it a little more for me – and maybe help someone else out there – here is my manuscript when I’m seeing red:

  1. Don’t tell myself to calm down.

    You know the worst thing you can ever tell someone who needs to calm down is to calm down? **ahem, husband** You tell me to calm down it won’t look pretty. When I tell myself to calm down it has the same effect. Here is an internal convo I’ll have when I tell myself to chill the heck out…

    “Pearl, yo, just chill out.”
    “No! No! Why do I have to chill out!? They’re the idiots!”
    “Don’t tell me to breathe! Don’t tell me what to do!”
    “You gonna chill yet?”
    “They started it!”

    Yes, I know. Super classy. Super adult like.

    Instead, I tell myself, “No one puts baby in the corner except herself.” And I literally retreat somewhere. Anywhere. My room. My car. My closet. My shower. My closest Target (although people with Target-itis should do this). I’ll try to put myself in the corner because if I’m angry I’ll either cry like an absolute fool in front of you or I’ll say things I shouldn’t. Neither are preferable.

  2. Grab a pen and paper or my laptop.

    I’m a writer after all. I have a pen and paper with me most days. I keep one in the car too. I have a gazillion drafts on my blogs that will never get published but they help me relieve the steam. I usually go back later and delete them or I turn them into a lesson that I post. But, I make sure that I have something that allows me to tangibly write my feels.

  3. I remember that anger requires an apology.

    Y’all, if there is one thing I absolutely hate to do is apologize when I am wrong. Now, I’m not saying I won’t do it. I will. But, if I don’t have to don’t expect me to. Sure, I’m one of those people during our daily lives I’m like, “Oops, sorry I brushed past you and upended a single strand of hair!” Those kinds of sorries are more to be kind to the passer byers – even if that particular sentence oozed with sarcasm. Basically, for the most part, I’ve learned to shut my big ol’ mouth simply because I don’t want to say I’m sorry.

  4. Get the violence out.

    And, no, you crazies, I don’t mean go beat someone up or do something really unkind to yourself. I’ve always wanted a home gym. While mine is “under construction” it’s still usable. I use my treadmill and punching bag to get out the violence. I run when my brain is going 576 miles per hour and I need to get through those thoughts. I go for a boxing workout when I’m about to cry and need to divert the anger/energy away from my eyes. Not only am I getting my heart rate to go for an adventure in a healthier way, I’m also getting out all the toxins in my body to make room for more.

  5. Eat cake.

    Or pie. Or ice cream. Or a bowl of popcorn and a really good wine in front of your tv or computer binge watching your favorite show they no longer have running. You know, whatever you want. You gotta replace the toxins that you killed off when you were violent. IJS.

    For real though, go fancy yourself with a comfort food. Don’t go nuts and put yourself into a diabetic coma. Just something to help calm you down. You’re on a diet? Since I can’t say what I really want to say I’ll say this…there are diet friendly yummies available! Don’t believe me, I dare you pinterest it! They have everything from Paleo, to Atkins, to Ketos, to THM. Just, for a little tiny bit, let yourself be.

There you go, my manuscript. You’re welcome. And, all of it I’m serious about to. Yes, I’m trying to be painfully funny and sarcastic but I really do it all. I put myself in the corner. I write (hello, this is a lesson post!), I refused to respond because there ain’t no way this person is getting a sorry out of me, I went for a walk since I’m not at home, and I bought me some ice cream. I can tell you 100% that I’m not angry. Annoyed, yes. But, I can live with annoyed. I don’t do stupid stuff when I’m annoyed. So, it works. xoxo