Have you ever had a run in with a porcupine? I have and it wasn’t very pretty. At one time or another we all have to deal with difficult people. You know the type? They take opportunities to dig or stab or criticize, often followed by a laugh thinking that is helps their toxic medicine go down easier. We can leave these encounters feeling agitated and confused “What on earth was that about?” If your objective in life is to become your healthiest and best self it’s a good idea to have tools ready to deal with toxic people who we will fondly refer to as porcupines.
The fantastic news is that when dealing with porcupines you are not defenseless!
The Power of Your Imagination to the Rescue!
The moment you realize you are having an encounter with a porcupine or with someone having a porcupine moment you can imagine your precious self-worth being protected in a very special box as fancy or as plain as you wish. You can place your box in a castle treasury and “when the alarm sounds, all of the safe doors automatically close. Huge impenetrable solid steel doors, two feet thick, close off every window, door, or exit. Like the precious Mona Lisa, a treasure beyond price, your self-worth, is protected. It is safe. Now you can venture outside, because your treasured self-worth is safe within the vault”, says John Lund. The person who holds the key to your self-esteem is you. Do not hand it over to anyone, especially someone who is not being their highest and best self! Why would you do that?
Ask yourself “How would I counsel my child in this exact circumstance?”
We tend to give our best counsel to those we love and by imagining that our real or imagined child has just experienced this exact situation it heightens our ability to be objective and wise. What is your councel for your child? Fantastic, now follow that!
You have the ability to protect yourself much like a King or Queen protected by a moat surrounding your blissful castle
As always, the first place to start is by looking in the mirror. Focus on myself again? I know, sometimes this truth can stink! But that doesn’t change the fact that we need to self reflect. You’ve heard this many times before, rather than trying to change others you need to shift the focus from pleasing the porcupine to pleasing yourself and staying calm and healthy. Answering these questions honestly is a great place to start. The better you take care of your royal self the more resilient you are and the less prickly other people come across and, the less prickly people you have to put up with. Funny how this works!
- Am I being a healthy mind coach? Am I spotting my thoughts to attract into my life what I do want rather than what I don’t want?
- Am I getting enough sleep? Neuroscientists recommend a minimum of 7-8 hours for both men and women
- Am I exercising a minimum of 20 minutes a day 5 days a week? It is important for all adults to get 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise at least 5 days a week and to enjoy strength and flexibility exercises twice a week.
- Am I eating three nourishing meals a day?
- Am I drinking enough water? Experts recommend ½ our body weight in ounces up to 100 oz a day
- Am I spending enough time alone and with God every day? The recommendation is a minimum of 10 minutes a day praying, meditating, reading scripture/inspiring messages, journaling etc. In a nutshell “thinking higher and bigger”.
- Am I willing to commit to do these things 90% of the time to become my healthiest and best self?
Build a protective moat by taking care of yourself!
All of the tools, solutions and knowledge in the world are really of no value until you commit to becoming your healthiest and best self and allow that to reign supreme as the governing value of your life. As your desire to become your highest and best self increases you have even greater self -love and self-respect. You protect your self-worth without handing the key over to anyone and you strengthen the moat around your castle. Choose to not empower others to devalue you. Choose to empower yourself!
The unfortunate reality is that some people realize that they have married a porcupine or given birth to one as John Lund puts it, author of one of my most favorite books ever “How to Hug A Porcupine” should be in every home! If you need to learn even more about the protective armor needed when dealing with porcupines this is the book for you.