15. July 2017 Sam Ryter

How to deal with people who upset you (4min read)

I experience love towards the ones who upset me.
Compassion towards the ones who make me angry.
Gratitude for the one who leads me to my own edges.

Because the war is rarely fought on the outside.

Here was little Sam, 11 years old, engaged in a fight. Angry. Sad. Hurt.
Trying everything to fight the pain away.

Someone had upset him.

The little boy who got upset

While playing football, another boy accidentally kicked the ball directly to his right hand… The sandwich in his hand fell to the ground. And Sam took this very personally.

He felt attacked. And with his sandwich, his pride fell into pieces.

Engaging in fights was the way, I could release my anger, my deep pain, my insecurity. Thinking it would ‘restore’ my worth… Later on I realised that this was a fight I couldn’t win in the longrun.

In the past I couldn’t imagine to feel love for something that so deeply upsets me. How could I? There was no obvious reason.

I didn’t change. But my view changed when I realised that I was fighting myself and no one else.

I’m for peace. And war itself won’t give me what I deeply want.

Whenever someone upsets me…

…it’s never really about the other person. It’s about me. And I have the chance to uncover some shadows.

Every human being wants to be happy. And every one of us tries his best to be so.

Sometimes we seek it at places that others don’t understand. Sometimes people are confused in seeking what they can’t find on the outside. We cross boundaries. And our own boundaries are crossed by others.

I’m upset. And it’s one of the greatest gifts I’m receiving from life.

We have the choice to take others actions personally. We can go to war. We can fight and attack back and put the responsibility to something or someone else. We have the choice to suffer by being the victim and clicking the replay button over and over again while watching the war movie.

But you’re not the victim. But the student.

And the teacher leads and guides us, if we dare to listen and have an open mind.

I’m on my edge. I feel emotional pain.

And what if pain is neither bad or good. It’s just pain. It’s neutral.

What if there are no negative emotions. But just emotions.

I have the choice to attach a story to those emotions. And the stories will make me suffer.

But life has it’s ups and downs. They come and go. We sometimes have big reasons to be low or high, sometimes we have small or even no reasons.

The question is can I embrace and learn from what life shows me? Or am I going to fight against something that doesn’t need to be fought?

Life is a teacher. And we can listen and learn. Or not. One thing we can be sure: It will teach us the same lessons until we learn it.

I believe in love.

And what if there’s beauty in everything.

Even in people that upset you.

Even in people that make you angry.

Because ultimately they have a message for you.

By triggering you, they show you your shadows. They actually give you a gift.

Not fighting but forgiveness is what strength is.

Forgiveness is what brings what we deeply want.

We can be victims of life. Life happens to us.

Or we can change the viewpoint. Life happens for us.

And even that little Sam fighting in the dirt on the schoolyard once learned his lesson. After countless of fights he learned the lesson and found peace in accepting and forgiving.

I experience love towards the ones who upset me.
Compassion towards the ones who make me angry.
Gratitude for the one who leads me to my own edges.

That’s the way of the peaceful warrior.

I am not against war. I am for peace. We don’t need to fight the war. What we need is more examples of peace.

Because the war isn’t fought on the outside.

What I don’t like in others, is what I reject in myself. Life is a mirror that shows the beautiful truth.

Step back. Slow down. Breathe.

Life is never against you. Can you see the beauty?


Were you upset recently?

What happened the last time you were upset by someone? What did you learn about yourself? Post it below in the comments!

Photo by Cristian Garibay on Unsplash

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Sam Ryter

Sam Ryter is an author and professional coach. He helps people to create deeper and more fulfilling relationships with others, the world and themselves.