I create my world and the climate around me

The following is one of my favorite quotes because it addresses the stress and drama we can feel, especially around those we care for the most. Though it was written hundreds of years ago, it applies to all of us because it is about human nature. Read it all the way through and then I will take it apart, sentence-by-sentence.

"I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration; I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming."

           Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, German author and statesman, 1749-1822

 "I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element”

I only have control over myself.  No one else can live my life for me and no one else can control whether I am happy or sad, productive or destructive. 

“It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather.”

It is my mindset that is the filter of how I interpret my life and affects whether I REACT negatively or RESPOND mindfully and in full choice.

I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration; I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized.”

Who we are and what we do affects all the people around us; our temper, our tone, our body language, our forgiveness, our generosity, and our sense of humor.  How many times have you heard or thought the saying, “When Mom is happy, everyone is happy.”? 

We all know when we have stoked the fires of stress and drama or done something to put the fires out.  Our worst actions occur when we are in Fight or Flight mode, when we have let stress or fatigue or disappointment get the better of us.  It is up to us to choose the mindset we WANT to have, in order to make the affects in the world that we want to make.  Granted, sometimes that is tough, but it only will perpetuate a negative situation if we languish in self-pity.

“If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming."

Directly applied to the way we speak to a 4-year old, you can see how true this is; but what about your brother, co-worker or friend?  If those around us are being less than their best self, and we interact with them as though this is who they are, we can get caught up in messy arguments or try to rescue them from their tribulations.  If we challenge them to be confident, honest, decisive, and filled with heart, we will see them grow.

I challenge you to contemplate how you can live the intention of this quote.  I dare say your life will be better for it.