Have you ever felt like you have just experienced a “Smack Down”?
You know when someone just verbally, visually, or literally gives you a one two punch that you were not expecting and you go down hard. We go down hard because we are not expecting and our guard is down, we think we are “safe” and then “whammy”! It doesn’t feel good, does it? We usually lay down there in a face plant wondering what just happened, where did that come from? We rise to our knees and think: “WOW…..I didn’t see that coming at all!”
How does a person recover when smacked down?
Do you raise your protective invisible shields?
Do you lash right back without thinking?
Do you run and hide for months on end?
What do you do?
I use to run and hide, later when I grew wiser I lashed right back and pulled on my boxing gloves and sprang into the ring, now I lay down there for an extra minute of two and put on my “I’m not shocked mask” and wonder where the person is coming from and how can I diffuse the situation that is so highly emotionally charged.
Here’s my thinking process on this:
Wow, didn’t see that coming.
What’s behind this lashing out?
What’s happening to make this person feel so insecure that they have to hurt someone else?
How can I be “neutral” in this situation?
What can I say that will shift the negative energy away from them and put them in a “safe space” so that we can talk? (Notice I did not say “resolve”).
I do not cower, nor do I back down. I become a neutral inquisitor as to what brought on that outburst.
I ask up front with no emotion inferred. I might say something like: Wow, there’s a lot of emotion in what you just said. What brought that out?
I do not accept any blame or responsibility if I am pretty sure that I am not the cause of the lashing, but rather the most convenient person who happened to come along with the other person exploded or had the melt down.
I listen more than I talk. This person doesn’t need or want my advise. Instead, I try to be a good listener.
Sometimes the person just needs to vent and vent and vent. Then they feel better.
I always suggest a deep breath and a complete body shake, to shake it off and then a very positive exit about blessings, how beautiful the day is or something along those lines.
What do you do?