Before you get to the point of realizing you have a choice, you will need to decide you have a choice. You have that kind of power. You have the power to choose.
We all make many choices each day. What we eat or drink, whether we go to work, coffee or tea, the way we travel to work.
Something I started telling myself years ago was, “I will not let people drag me out of my happy place.” Little did I know in doing that, I was holding space for myself as well as others. I have learned over the years through observation that often a person who is angry is not necessarily mad at me. I may be the person on the receiving end of the anger, but it really has nothing to do with me. “Shit rolls down hill” Interesting expression and very true. You just never know what a person has experienced in their life or that day before they got to the point of blowing up on you. I think just about everyone can think of a situation they have been in where this has happened. Just let it happen. Listen. Say I’m sorry, maybe.
It all really has to do with energy. Like attracts like. Not to say that me or you are angry, but the person who is angry is looking to drag you into their anger. If you respond or react with anger then you have just been “Energy Vampired”. You allowed someone to drag you into their chaos.
Holding space for someone to just be angry, sad, cry, or quiet does take some practice. I recommend giving it a try a few times and see what happens to the situation. You may feel the energy of the situation change, a shift in how the interaction feels, or the direction change of the conversation. The silence may just be what the other person needs. A compassionate silence, a stillness that envelops both you and the other.
You have a choice to be dragged along with the energy of other people, or you can choose to be in your happy place, the stillness, the silence. The empty space that allows the magic to happen.
Choose to hold space for yourself and others. You will be happy you did, and you will have much more peace in your life after a few opportunities to practice.