Day to day we encounter situations that spark bits of rage or frustration deep within our souls and that hot lava of inconvenience bubbles to the surface and melts our cheery disposition. These occurrences often come in the form of being cut off in traffic, someone’s lack of spatial awareness at the grocery store, the pimple faced teen who forgot your extra “special sauce” in that fast food to-go order you just picked up. These are just a few things that can burst our bubbles. However, it really isn’t the inconvenience itself that is the issue. The truth is, it has more to do with our own egos. Our egos, as it happens, turn out to be the biggest inconvenience of all.
These situations like getting cut off in traffic bother us because our minds are programed to only think about how they affect us. That chunk of brain matter is very seldom concerned with what is going on outside of that moment. We hardly ever stop and think that maybe that person cutting us off is on their way to get to someone they know who is in trouble or perhaps just was rushed to the hospital or that fast food employee may be dealing with a million other small issues in the kitchen and with a group of other customers that your extra cup of sauce just slipped their mind.
We get so wrapped up with the question, “Why is this happening to me,” that we don’t even for a second think, “why is this happening to them?” This issue is a two-way road in a couple ways. While we are so concerned with the audacity that someone wouldn’t care about our needs and feelings we are in fact in the process of not caring about someone else’s needs and feelings. This is the ugly face of ego sticking its tongue out and saying “nanna nanna boo boo” and using a clown face filter on Snapchat just to taunt us.
The other two-way road this situation takes is that the person cutting you off is letting their ego take the wheel and drive (Incubus much?) and cause them to not care about and how their actions affect those around them. Maybe they were just selfish and took their time getting ready to leave and cutting you off helps them get to work on time without the concern that they endanger or inconvenience you. Maybe that employee just couldn’t care less about you getting extra sauce for your chicken strips because after the bag leaves the window, it is no longer their problem. This can very well be an issue, but if you allow your ego to take control then you lose anyway. If you make it take a backseat and forget about any of the whys and the circumstances surrounding the inconvenience, then you can breathe easy and that volcano of frustration will settle and never erupt and burn down that good day you were having, even just a little.