Most strong-willed leaders have a temper. It’s the truly great ones who manage to conquer it with the same courage and control with which they deal with all of life’s obstacles.
~Lives of the Stoics, Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman
How well do you handle your temper?
There are a lot of factors that go into our everyday emotions. I know that if I’m not sleeping well, if I’m stressed out, or even if I’m hungry, I’m more likely to have a short fuse when it comes to my frustrations.
Few things get me more frustrated right now than having to tell my children to do something over and over again, and getting completely ignored.
But, the truth is, I don’t get as angry as often or as quickly as I used to. I’d like to say that it’s because I’ve learned to control my temper. And, to a certain extent, I’m sure that’s true. However, it also has a lot to do with my CPAP.
I have sleep apnea. I don’t know how long I had it before I was diagnosed. When I went to the hospital for a sleep study and they had me on a CPAP overnight, I only got 3–4 hours of sleep because it’s hard to sleep with 20-some wires stuck to your body. But that 3–4 hours refreshed me more than any night of sleep that I had in several months.
My first night with my CPAP was the best sleep I had in years. I woke up a new person. I can’t say I have that same energy after 3 years of use, but I definitely feel better than I did before.
All this to say: sleep is important when it comes to controlling your temper.
Sometimes, we get angry simply because we don’t have control over the situation in front of us. To this I say, does getting angry actually help? Not really. It simply trains your brain to get angry whenever these situations pop up again. There has to be a better way. There is a better way.
If we don’t control our anger, we will end up being controlled by our anger. That’s no way to live. Our emotions can serve as good messengers, but we can’t allow them to dictate the direction of our lives. We have to live for something less fickle than how we feel in the moment.