I’ve been happily married for 18 years and we both hate Valentines Day. Shouldn’t every day be spent caring about your loved one? And how about the other people in your life – even the good, bad and ugly? Why just one day? Does that mean you can be a jerk or a toxic person the rest of the time?
This had not been a focus of mine, until I received a call from the New York Times reporter, Lisa Belkin a couple years ago. She interviewed me for a Styles section article titled, It’s not the job I despise, it’s you. To view the article click here.
Valentines day is to celebrate with loved ones and to focus on the spirit of good for all. Here is my challenge: when someone is rude, offensive or disrespectful to you, let your behavior be triggered by a different set of rules. Instead of “getting back” at the other person, quickly find two people to thank, recognize or verbally applaud.
The three reasons cupid has a dark side: (And maybe you?)
- We get sucked into other people bad behavior
- We are too lazy to change our old knee jerk behaviors
- It is easier to walk away than to take a different approach
I believe if we challenge ourselves to shift the normal response from mirroring the poor behavior of the person who set us off, to the behavior we would like to receive, we can change our environment, our attitude and certainly our outcomes.
The spirit of good continues as valentines are sent with sentimental verses, kind words and heartfelt greetings. Stop now and send a greeting of caring to someone who could use a little ‘love’ and step away from cupid’s dark side.