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RJ Dupre column: Disconnecting the panic button

For many years I was not known to be a patient person. I gave into panic, frustration and anger when faced with a crisis or the execution of a project.

I wanted it to be done or resolved, before it ever got started. I would kick and scream, plunge into it without looking and would end up with a lot of "oops moments." Worst of all, it would make those around me jittery and weary of my outbursts. After a while, I discovered that those attitudes were not getting me anywhere and left me dissatisfied and tired.

I learned to sit still, visualize how the project could be accomplished, studied and looked at it from different angles. I would then gather the materials or the thoughts needed for a successful outcome. I took my time. When I ran into difficulties, I calmly walked away, reconsidered my options and returned to the task with a new outlook.

I refused to push the "panic button." I did not end up with a surge of high blood pressure and became willing to work on the solution rather than giving in to the problem. As I keep practicing this new behavior everyday, my life is more peaceful and my successes are sweeter.

Nowadays, I have a hard time dealing with people who get angry right away when there is a job or a situation to be dealt with. When tools start flying in every direction, and offensive words spew out of their mouths, I walk away, stay quiet and remember how others felt when I was that way. I let them have their temper tantrums. After all who wants to watch and listen to a "grown up" act like a spoiled child?

In any task or challenge, all it takes is a little bit of thinking, patience, vision and a lot of faith. No more "panic button," and everything will work out in its own time.