Theme: Interpersonal Relationship – Why Other People Irritate Us
“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” Carl Gustav Jung
eLearn Module: Interpersonal Relationship Module
As a counsellor, I am seeing loads of stressed out students these days which is completely normal given the time of year in the academic calendar. So, if you are irritated you are normal! Everything seems to have a due date that is NOW! Ugh! With stress in the academic air, people are much more irritated than normal. But…there is a more productive way to approach this time of year. This is one of the secrets of successful students; learning to use their emotional reactions as information for change, or to implement a well used strategy, rather than just reacting.
The presence of people in your life, whether it is a classmate, family, friends or even professors, all provide valuable information about you as a person and student by simply being in your life and you reacting to their presence.
Use this information from your interpersonal reactions to learn more about yourself!
Today…Start Exploring Your Irritation…
1. Next time you interact with someone, notice how you are feeling physically (e.g. knot in your stomach, muscle tension, rigid posture, aggressive stance, inner shaking) and emotionally (e.g. anxious, upset, irritated, annoyed, jealous, impatient).
2. Ask yourself what you can learn from this person; what is he or she doing that upsets me?Apply that information to yourself and ask, “How am I similar to that?”
3. Observe yourself in different situations or ask someone you trust if you don’t readily see it.
4. Sometimes, after you have analyzed the emotional impact, you may find that you simply need better boundaries with this person (come see a counsellor here at Mohawk to help you with establishing healthy interpersonal boundaries that contribute to your success)
Often, realizing that we may do the same thing as another person helps us de-escalate our irritation and replace it with understanding. Living with a lower irritation level can have such beneficial side effects such as lowering the amount of times you feel overwhelmed and incapable of coping with your academic load.
Remember to sign up for the eLearn modules by clicking on the SELF REGISTRATION link on your eLearn home page. Take the Interpersonal Relationshipfrom the eLearn Module under the same name and check out the rest of the module because I have more hints, tips and tricks that can help you stretch and grow in the area of Reality Testing. Come on! Join me in this “become the best version of “you” journey!
Heather Drummond, M.Ed. (Counselling Psychology)
Success Coach @ Mohawk College