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How Sustained Anger Becomes a Virus

The other day, I was walking at the park across the street from where I live. It’s a beautiful park that is surrounded by birds of paradise, has lots of shade trees, and a giant fountain in the center. On this particular day, I heard a woman yelling and I turned to see what was causing the commotion. Apparently, one of the gardeners was watering the flowers hanging from a street post above her car and she and her husband were sitting in their car with the windows open. This woman had gotten out of the car and was in this poor gardener’s face, yelling, “don’t you EVER do that again! I am an original home owner in this area! You KNEW my window was open and you got me wet on purpose! How COULD you?!” Then she got into her car, and her husband, quietly sitting in the driver’s seat, hastily drove away. I stood there, looking at the gardener, stunned. I walked over to the man and told him how sorry I was for her outburst. He said, “no speak English.” Ha! Lucky for him!

As an observer, my interpretation was that this man was just going about his business. His focus was on his current task of watering the flowers. It was clearly an unfortunate accident.

But this woman believed in her heart that this man deliberately sprayed water into her car. I imagined her griping to her husband and anyone else who would listen the rest of the day about the conniving gardener at San Elijo Town Square Park who had nothing better to do than spray water inside of her vehicle.

Perhaps she was just having a bad day, or perhaps these angry outbursts are common for her. Whichever the case, in this particular moment, this woman was viewing her world through a very limited, and angry, lens.

Energy Leadership™

The term Energy Leadership™ was coined by Bruce D. Schneider, the founder of iPEC Coaching, my coaching certification program. Energy Leadership is based on seven levels of energy with Level 1 and Level 2 being the lowest, or catabolic energy, and Levels 3-7 being positive, anabolic energy. The woman that I met at the park that day was displaying Level 2 energy – angry, blaming, suspicious, resentful energy.

The seven levels of energy are tools that we can use to generate awareness of what kind of energy we display throughout our day. When we understand how we are showing up in the world, we can better understand how others perceive us and what we are creating in our lives.

Let’s look at the incident at the park as an example. The gardener is not thinking one iota about this woman, her husband, or her car. He is watering the flowers. The woman, however, because of her Level 2 energy, only has the ability to see through her very limited lens. Her perception is that this man is deliberately out to get her. Perhaps she has been hurt in the past, and therefore, her brain triggers that it’s happening again. Instead of widening her perception to a higher level of energy, where she can see that there are many more possibilities, she can only see one. She doesn’t even know that she has the option of seeing this situation differently.

Think of all of the people you know in your life who have tendencies towards negativity, either a “poor me” or angry attitude. Think of how that energy impacts their work life, social life, and family life. Do they continually encounter the same types of situations? Sure they do! As the saying goes, you see what you look for. They are creating the negative experiences around them to match their negative energetic vibration.

I will be writing more about Energy Leadership in subsequent blogs (and you can always find out more or sign up for an Energy Leadership Index Assessment to see what energy you are exhibiting by clicking here.

But the point that is important right now is this: our unhappiness, anger, resentment, guilt, sadness, doesn't only affect us. It affects everyone we come into contact with. Level 1 and Level 2 energy spreads to everyone we meet like a virus.

The past presidential election revealed how this virus of catabolic energy is contaminating a large population of the United States. There are millions of people that feel marginalized, ignored, resentful and fearful. Donald Trump exploited their negativity by giving them a plethora of groups (immigrants, refugees, etc.) to blame for taking what is ‘rightfully theirs’ and threatening their safety. Trump pointed the finger at ‘the other,’ creating more suspicion, hatred, and separation. Because Trump’s message reflected the anger these people feel within, he was able to secure the presidential seat and set about his extremely catabolic agenda.

This is precisely why it is imperative that each and every one of us do what we can to raise our energy and consciousness level. We each have the power to make different choices throughout our day. We can choose how we respond to situations instead of unconsciously and mindlessly reacting to them.

If you happen to be sitting in your car with the window open, and a gardener starts to water plants hanging above you, you may feel triggered and want to get out and yell and scream. But when you are conscious of your energy, you are empowered to stop and make another choice. In a split second, you can tell yourself that he probably doesn’t know your window is open. You can wave or knock on the window or get out and let him know that you’re there. He will apologize and you both will go your merry way. Both of your days will be more positive because of this one choice.

There are many opportunities throughout the day to behave in a conscious manner that is rooted in love and compassion for ourselves and others instead of anger and fear. Today, I challenge you to be aware of your energy levels and see if you can ACT consciously instead of REACT unconsciously.

Love and Light,


P.S. If you’d like to find out more about how your energy is impacting your life, contact me today!

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