Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Archive for March 6th, 2012

The Guiltier They Are The Louder They Yell

Posted by terrepruitt on March 6, 2012

Have you ever been in a situation where the reaction of the person you are dealing with is completely odd?  Before I became a Nia Student and teacher I worked in the mortgage industry.  I started when I was 15 going on 16.  I learned a lot working with Mortgage Brokers, Real Estate Brokers, Lenders, Title Officers, Escrow Officers, County Recorders, borrowers, appraisers . . . . and the list goes on.  One thing I learned early on was from a broker.  While I don’t remember the exact situation (what it was he did not do), I do remember the utter perplexity I felt then the moment of absolute clarity.  I have what I learned and easily applied it to many, many, many, many, many situations throughout my life.  Sometimes it actually helps because I can work with the knowledge, sometimes it doesn’t help because it doesn’t matter that I know what is going on, the person is just going to be the way they are no matter what.  Sometimes there is no defusing certain situations or people.  The lesson I learned was actually about behavior.  I observed that people tend to get over the top angry and blow things out of proportion when they are at fault.  The situation I vaguely remember was that I could not do something for the broker because he had not supplied me with what I needed in order to do it.  He was angry and his huge outburst completely flabbergasted me because it was not my fault, it was out of my control, in fact. . .. . and then I saw it clearly . . . .it was his fault and he knew it.

People tend to get more upset when they are the one at fault.  Even when they are the one at fault they project the anger on the person they are dealing with and more often than not the situation goes down hill from there.  Sometimes, as I mentioned, when you know what is happening, when you recognize that the person displaying the anger [(edited, added 02.20.13) is angry at themselves], sometimes you can defuse the situation.  You can somehow let them know that it is ok they made a mistake and work to fix the situation.  But sometimes that doesn’t work.  Sometimes people just want to be angry.  Or sometimes maybe it is that they have had such a bad day they almost can’t help but be angry.  Or sometimes when the situation involves another person they can’t let go of their anger.  If say, whatever it is they did in the situation affected their child or their spouse (or whomever), sometimes this is when they can’t let go . . . and I believe it is because of the guilt of their error.

In some situations it is impossible to help relieve the person’s guilt because you might not even recognize they are feeling guilty.  You might not recognize that they feel bad for the situation they have created.  It could be that it is not really a big deal to you and it can be easily fixed so when the person displays anger towards you, you might be shocked and not be able to work with it.

This reminds me a little of listening with love, but this is more listening with understanding.  Of course, as I mentioned if you don’t have a sense of any wrong doing then it is difficult to understand why someone might feel guilty and then that could be where the listening with love comes in, right?  “I have no idea what is troubling this person so that they are so angry, but I will listen with love because there has been no indication that I should do otherwise.”  🙂

With all the different ways to listen; the “not assuming” and the “understanding what someone is going through”, to the just “listen with love” sometimes communicating can be a challenge.  We should keep trying, keeping talking, keep listening, even through someone else’s guilt.

Have you experienced what I am talking about?  Have you seen or been at the brunt of someone’s anger because they were the one at fault?  What did you do?

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