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Which is More Powerful: Anger or Compassion?

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In dealing with bullies, I always recommend to educational professionals and parents to use a more humane approach. We must use skill building strategies to help them work their way out of how their bully behavior mirrors their life circumstances.

Even in writing about the most effective ways to remedy bully behavior, I will receive the occasional email response that I will admit, triggers me wanting to "take the bait" to out bully the bully, i.e.:

"Sorry to disappoint you, but the old-school approach is what we use at our school, and it works. We honestly don't have bullying, and that's because all the students know that there's only one "bully" at the school, and that's me. Sounds awful to say it, but it's true. Seriously, we have a number of students enroll with us every year because of bullying at other schools. That's the way it is for us." -a Principal

The opportunity in a pivotal moment like this is to ask, "Which is going to be more powerful: anger or compassion?" - when formulating a response.

Excerpt from Make A Difference with the Power of Connection:

When you add compassion to any equation, consistently and repeatedly, it will bring immediate dramatic improvements.

When you are upset with a child, or an adult, for something disagreeable or harmful they just did, simply ask yourself: "Is what I'm about to say or do going to make it hard or easy to get what is for the greatest good out of this situation?"

To modify any unproductive behavior, we must remember in those most difficult moments that it's not about coming "at" problematic situations, nor is it about avoiding them. It's all about the emotional transformation that compassion offers.

To transform the emotions of an unwanted situation with any child or adult, you must first decide that you are - from this day forward - going to manage your impulse to abandon, avoid, diminish or punish to make your point.

Compassion never means being "walked on" and it never means "giving in" or tolerating harmful behavior.

What compassion afforded me, both as an educator working with challenging children and as a parent of three intelligent, strong-willed children, is that I never needed to use fear-based, hurtful, or shaming methods to get them to behave or do as I asked.

We all soak up compassion like a sponge when it's given to us. For me, compassion is what changes my reactions when I'm at the fork in the road, choosing compassion or judgment.

It's the moment that makes the difference. It's not flag-waving, march on, over-efforting that changes things. It's when something done in the moment, out of compassion, is remembered for all time. It's fleeting. It's there, and then it's not. And the only time you remember it is when you need it.

To people who say, "It's easier said than done," I say: "It's easier when done!"

The gift in compassion is that it frees us from attachment to an outcome. When we are free, we are already making a difference by what we then model and are compelled to do for others.

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To learn more, take 30 minutes, read my book in its entirety and see what a difference a book makes! Click Here to read.


Mary ReynoldsMary Robinson Reynolds, M.S., Educational Psychologist, Author and Producer of the world renowned Internet videos, MakeADifferenceMovie.com and AcknowledgmentMovie.com - both amassing over 10 million views within a few short months of their releases - spent many years as a classroom teacher K-8 and then as a counselor K-12. She parlayed her phenomenal success with youth at-risk into her programs for business leaders, entrepreneurs and managers on how to be energetically effective in leading improvement in their organizations through the power of Team Synergy and MasterMinding. She has written eight books, developed UTrain&Coach programs that anyone can take into their place of work to build organization wide Team Synergy, and has presented to over 20,000 people in two year period in every major city in the U.S. To learn more go to: makeadifference.com

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