My coach always says “the person with the biggest hard on wins,” which I always thought sounded terribly crude. Coming from me, that probably sounds absurd as we’re talking someone who can crack fifty sex jokes a minute on this blog, without raising an eyebrow. Still, I think it sounds crude. Yet, last week I started repeating this phrase to myself till I was going dizzy. Why? Because it’s true. The penny finally hit the slot.
What my coach really means is that whoever vibrates on the highest frequency, or has the most energy, wins.
Have you ever met energy vampires? You’re most likely the worst energy vampire you’ll ever meet as your own energy affect you more than anyone else’s, but there are people close to us that affect us a lot as well. The boy I raise is one of them for me, as he has behavioral issue and last week I was beside myself. I know what to do to handle him — I read The Kazdin Method for Parenting years ago and in short, you use a ton of energy to make everything you are about to do sound amazing and you encourage the kid for everything well-done. Bad behavior you say no to once, firmly, then ignore. You don’t engage. You don’t get angry. You are a loving storm wind of enthusiasm.
It’s just, I’m not always feeling like a loving storm wind of enthusiasm; sometimes I’d just like to say “Come sit down and have dinner,” without having to do funny voices, talk about how fantastic the meal is going to be, or perform a musical show for entertainment purposes. I want to be able to raise my voice when I’m annoyed about something without having to end up with a one hour, or day long tantrum because of it. But I know the moment I lower my energy, I’ve lost.
I sometimes forget to be this person. There are times when things are going well and it’s not needed and I slip into being a regular mom who gets grumpy when a child purposefully destroys a nice moment by doing something utterly ridiculous, or dangerous, like playing with buttons in my car. There are also times when I’m simply tired and think I can get away with being tired and, sometimes, grumpy. But the grumpier I get, thinking “he should just understand” the worse the situation gets.
For people who have never encountered these kind of issues, it often sounds foreign when you explain. They tell you the child needs discipline, or love, and think they’ll react like any other child. They don’t. You can’t just use logic and say it isn’t a good idea to do whatever it is they are doing and punish them for it. It doesn’t work. It just creates more havoc. For them the destructive behavior is a weapon. They use that weapon for a reason. Maybe it’s to get attention. Maybe it’s their only way of feeling in control. Maybe it’s their way of keeping people away, as they’ve been hurt a lot. Maybe they have come to hate themselves and want to continue down that path. Whatever it is, they use anger as a weapon to get what they want. You have to disarm them. And you disarm them by bringing a completely different kind of energy to the table.
When I was beside myself last week as PMS set in, the babysitter cancelled and I was stuck with a toddler, an angry eleven-year old and his easily aggravated sister, a messy house and an intense need to work, I thought I’d break. I wanted to lock myself into the bathroom and cry. I wanted to hurl all the pain my kid ever caused me right back at him. All the hurt I felt at being on the receiving end of his anger for years. I wanted to take the pain he was throwing me and shove it in his face. I was so tired of not ever being able to come home and relax, I thought I’d snap.
I felt life was unfair and I was a victim of circumstance. I was angry about a gazillion different things that I felt were stacked against me and had been issues over the years. I wanted to hide inside a hug, or a bottle of wine. Or better yet: inside a hug in a bottle of wine. I wanted an energy to counteract my kid’s. I wished I was in London so I had more friends to turn to. I wished I had a boyfriend. I wished I had unlimited funds for nannies, therapists, schools and babysitters. I wished for a million things. And I felt lonely and helpless and sad and had no idea how to get through till evening, much less however long until the kid has everything he needs to change his behavior — from schools to therapists.
This is when I pulled myself up by the ears and told myself the person with the biggest hard on wins. I needed a different energy to counteract it all. I needed to be a positive whirlwind stronger than my kid’s anger and pain and strong enough to look after two more kids and work. I needed to be superhuman, pretty much. I needed energy super powers
Normally energy control does not involve dealing with people with severe behavioral problems. Normally it involves the thoughts you have around different situations. Habitual thoughts that drain your own energy. You go into a situation with the wrong energy to achieve what you want to achieve. Like thinking you want to be with someone but suck at relationships, or want a raise but suck at negotiating, or want a job but are terrified of interviews. When it comes to other people, normally it involves a grumpy boss, a tricky client, or a boyfriend who you want to reprimand for something, but instead of reprimanding should encourage to do something different. Because encouragement works. Positive re-enforcement. The Kazdin Method of Parenting. The biggest hard on. Call it what you like. It works.
Usually with every negative event that occurs and every negative action (or what we perceive as negative) a person takes against us, we lose a little bit of our mojo and our natural instinct is to punish. Soon we are caught up in whatever energy we were handed, instead of choosing our own energy.
You cannot solve a problem with the same thinking that created it.
The thing is, this isn’t just about problems. You have a lot of power. A lot. Your energy alone can transform not just yourself, but others. How you meet people every day affects them. Now, everyone has the option of choosing their own energy, but as my story hopefully conveys, it takes effort to do that. When you are met with a smile everywhere you go, you don’t need the same amount of effort to stay in a good space.
Everybody’s candle burns out at some point. Mine burnt out last week. I’ve struggled to re-ignite it and keep the flame going ever since. Last night I messaged my coach saying I know what to do. I know I’m not a victim. I know I can win this situation. I know if I can win this, I can win many other situations, because I will become a master at managing my own energy. I know it will take time to put functional structures, such as nannies in place, but that I can do it. I also know I need a hug. Because I’m struggling really hard right now to keep my energy up. And it certainly didn’t get better when the little one woke up at 5am and weed all over my bed. It’s an add on effect.
Shit happens. We all have our flame start flickering at some point. It might even go out, as we enter the dark side. As we give up on achieving what we truly want to achieve in a situation. Remember that you can re-ignite it. Also remember to ask for help to do so — hugs are awesome things (just don’t ask me how to ask for a hugs as I’m still working out how to do that myself — such as putting myself in the energy to receive them…).
You are a match and people are waiting to be lit up by your energy, just as you are a candle waiting to be lit up by your own flame and those of others.
Image source: https://za.pinterest.com/CarnavalDuDesir/naughty-and-nice/