They say you should treat rudeness with kindness or some such notion. I believe more in instant karma. I also believe in standing up to bullies.
The guy in the suit babbled away on his mobile about “securities plays” in a loud voice hoping to impress everyone around him, rushing ahead of me to get in the checkout queue. As the checkout lady started bagging his items, she put the “next order” divider after his groceries and that was my signal to put things on the conveyor. One problem, he was so engrossed in his inane conversation he would not move down towards the bag area and kept his hand on my side of the divider as if to say “I am not ready to give up this space yet”. As I said above, I am not good at suffering fools, so I started emptying my cart over, around, and ON TOP OF HIS HAND, while he stood there with an angry look on his face. I just smiled and unloaded all my items on the conveyor, mostly ignoring him.
He finally got off the phone, looked at me and said loudly, “what’s YOU’RE problem?” I calmly looked him in the eye and said “I have none except people around me that are so caught up in their inane phone conversations, they have no clue what’s going on around them. And this store is not YOUR ‘territory’, it is meant to be shared by everyone”. He had nothing to say except a few profanities, and as he walked out the door he gave me the one-fingered salute. I smiled and waved. As a martial artist, I am aware of what can happen in fights so very rarely go down that path.
I thought everything was okay until minutes later I got on my exercise bike for my daily afternoon ride. I usually start slow at about 100 heartbeats per minute and work my way up through interval training to about 140 beats. Imagine my surprise when I got on the bike and my monitor showed 135 beats per minute! Could that incident in the store have done that to me? I knew it did.
My training in yoga and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has given me some insights on breathing. Immediately I concentrated on taking deep breaths from the abdomen, filling it up, then breathing out very slowly. I also focused on turning my thoughts on what I was having for dinner. I did this for about a couple of minutes and was glad to see the monitor register 110 beats even as I increased the pace on the bike.
The moral: control your temper, breathe, breathe, and breathe…..Also, don’t give in to rude people or bullies. They must learn that what comes around goes around, sometimes immediately.
“The most important thing is not victory, the most important thing is not getting defeated”. Rickson Gracie