“It is wise to direct your anger towards problems – not people; to focus your energies on answers – not excuses”.  William Ward

Human beings tend to prefer the path of least resistance even when it doesn’t truly serve us to take it.  That’s why we become angry and blame others, instead taking responsibility for addressing the root problem.  It’s also why we favor excuses over solutions.  Being honest with ourselves about the fact that we do this and that it’s unproductive for anything other than delaying our need to address issues is the key to making progress.

I have learned to condition myself to catch those instances when I am upset with someone and to think about the fact that I am allowing them to negatively affect me by giving them my attention even if it’s anger.  This makes it easier for me to re-direct that energy towards something more productive.  I follow the same process when it comes to fixing problems versus rationalizing all the reasons I would have for throwing in the towel.  That’s what we do when we make excuses.

I am by no means perfect at implementing this philosophy, but at least I am conscious of what I’m doing to myself when I stray from it.  One of  things I like about this approach is that it is empowering to think that I control the outcome to the maximum extent possible and that I’m not subject to the various directions the winds blow.