Background: Watching my son play Angry Birds and I recall the reason why the birds fight so hard and I think about how we should be tenacious about protecting and taking back those things that are under our charge.
The back story behind the pigs and birds is that the pigs stole the eggs of the birds. Hence, angry birds. Don’t we get angry when something is taken from us. We retaliate, sometimes hurting our target and innocent bystanders. Let’s take poor service at a restaurant for example. You give your server several opportunities throughout your meal to rectify bad service, but when the check comes they haven’t redeemed themselves. Sometimes it warrants a request for the manager to vent about your bad experience. Or an even touchier situation, your child gets in trouble at school and you get called in. I’ve heard of parents cussing out teachers, principals and anyone else with ears at a school, but I know that’s not any of us.
Knowing when to fight and what weapons to use is a skill in itself. We can’t use the same weapons for every fight. Some weapons (words, tactics, actions) are lethal while others simply stun a person. Our relationships are vital to our very existence, and any permanent damage done to them will ultimately shortchange us. Technically, our weapons should never be used against people but more so systems, routines, and patterns. The way people act towards you is never an impulsive decision. There is a cause for every effect. And I truly believe that there is goodness, or was goodness in every man. But some causes leave effects that scar and dismember, leaving people to act out in ways that hurt others.
So when, how and with what do we retaliate to these people who are used to steal, kill and destroy? Of course one of our favorite P31 moves, when she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness. Now, in no way is this a passive move. Using wisdom to give instruction that is meant to correct a situation requires skill. Instructions that use no wisdom sound like this, “Go jump off a bridge you old fool”, or “I’m going to kill you”, or “You’ll never work in this town again”. Although they may not sound like instructions, think of who you serve and think of your adversary. Instructions given with wisdom may sound like this, “How I was dealt with in this situation, was wrong, expect to hear from my lawyer”, or “Ok, I see you. I know I can’t have this kind of conversation with you. Please don’t share any more of my information.” Some action examples may include separating yourself or limiting contact with people that you know are capable of stealing, killing or destroying anything that is yours. Changing the places you frequent is a definite sign that you will no longer be victimized.
Angry birds is a great game to play, on your phone. Throwing blows in real life that cause damage to people, doesn’t solve the real problem, but using wisdom and giving feedback that can change the root cause is always more effective. And you don’t hurt yourself in the process.