Thursday, January 11, 2018

We All Need To Vent

Some days are just full of frustrations.  Trials and tribulations, as the old folks might say. From the time you wake up, everything seems to go wrong.  Your alarm doesn't wake you because you forgot to turn it on. The coffee maker dies after depositing a viscous, bad smelling, barely-liquid into your cup.  You run out of gas on the way to work, because the fuel gauge is broken.  The report you have been working on for the past three days mysteriously vanishes when you hit 'print'.  The teacher who was supposed to complete a rating scale 'forgot'.  You sit on a chair before realizing that it contains a liquid, and your white pants are ruined.  Not that I would EVER wear white pants, for fear of a sea captain named Ahab. But if this did happen to me, I would find it completely necessary to just take the rest of the day off. Maybe the week.

Frustration happens. Most of us blow everything off, and move along.  We'd go nuts if we didn't. And it makes sense to let things go, especially in today's  It certainly isn't professional to throw yourself on the ground and have a grand fit, although it sounds very fun.  But some days you just can't blow things off, and they pile up.  An explosion is imminent.
Bless whoever made this comedy gold.

When I get that frustrated, I have to vent. I need to mutter a few choice curse words under my breath, or visualize the Hand of God coming down from the heavens and smiting the object of my frustration. Occasionally, I will need to distract myself with chocolate. A little of this, and then I take a deep breath, refocus, and get back to work.  Problem solved.

That is for minor irritations.  Major irritations require a human touch for venting, to regain balance. We have to talk it all out of our system, and we need someone else's ears. There is no other way to get rid of all the emotions that are building up inside you.  Bad things happen when you keep things bottled up inside. 

This is a big favor to ask of another person, of course. I suppose that you can pay someone to listen to you, but that can get expensive.  You can try to vent to a complete stranger, or your spouse, but it's never the same.  It's also the reason that I can't go back to a particular Burger King in San Marcos.

Thankfully, most of us have a friend or two who will listen while we complain or whine about the unfairness or inconsideration of whatever is causing us annoyance. Trust has already been established, and the rules laid out.  These rare souls don't tell you how to fix the problem, or what you "should" have done.  No, they're cheering your rant on, encouraging you with just the right comments("NO WAY!", "She did NOT!")  to keep you going until the anger is spent.  Then come the tissues, the hugs, laughter.  And the snacks!  The storm has passed.  This is the magic of a good friendship.

It is important to cherish these particular friends, and not overtax their ears with constant complaining.  Reciprocity is so important.  Your friends may call you on occasion and want to vent and to neglect them would demonstrate poor manners and a definite lack of consideration. Just as they listened to you vent, you should listen to them.  Otherwise your magical friend will probably find herself venting to another, and her frustration will be with you!

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