Cheryl's Blog

Week 17 – Here’s what not to do when your buttons get pushed.


On May 16th and 17th, Reid Tracy and I will be hosting our annual coaching intensive called The Next Step in Boston, MA. The first day is for authors/speakers and the second is for business owners.  During these events we spend all day with twelve people who are ready to expand the audience for their work and are in need of strategic advice and direction.

If you’d like a fresh perspective, experienced guidance, a supportive professional community, and great resources that could help elevate your success, visit my schedule page for a link to more details for each group.  You’ll find it here.

Have a peaceful week!


Have a great week!



p.s. – Need a little Divine Direction? Use the “Touch of Grace” button on our homepage here.

Topic of the Week

This week I’m publishing a blog from last year (although I’ve added a bit) while I enjoy the holiday.  It’s a message worth repeating…

Here’s what not to do when 
your buttons get pushed.

Last week my husband Michael saved my ass.  He happened to walk by my office while I was pounding away at my computer’s keyboard, crafting an email to someone who pushed my buttons.

“What are you doing?” he asked in a casual tone.

“I’m upset about an email and I’m writing back to set the person straight,” I replied.

“Are you sure you really want to do that?” Michael asked.

I looked up at him and for a split second I considered arguing my case.  Then I got up and joined him in the kitchen.

My husband is a patient, levelheaded guy who’s prone to giving others the benefit of the doubt.  It’s one of the many things I admire about him (although it drives me crazy sometimes).

Over the years I’ve learned a lot about restraint from watching how Michael responds to problems.  When his buttons get pushed, he often retreats, takes his time to consider the situation, and comes back, able to see both sides of the disagreement.

I, on the other hand, can be a bit passionate and reactive.

As I stood in the kitchen sharing the details about the email, I could feel myself settling down.  Within a couple of minutes I knew Michael was right.  Restraining myself was a smart thing to do.  And, by the time we finished our conversation, it was clear that my reaction had nothing to do with the other person and everything to do with me.

When we act while feeling angry or upset, there’s a good chance we’ll just escalate a negative situation.  After all, the energy we bring to an encounter with another person invites similar energy in return.

You might want to read that last line again.

I should probably tattoo it on the inside of my eyelids, too #x1F600;.

Reacting out of anger doesn’t serve anyone and rarely is there a sound argument for responding immediately when something sets you off.

Better to step back and wait because you just never know what’s happening behind the scenes.

In any given situation when buttons get pushed, there’s a good chance that 75% of the reaction on both sides has nothing to do with present day circumstances.  Instead, the intensity is a good indication that old wounds have just been reopened.


Life moves so quickly.  I don’t know about you, but my nervous system has changed quite a bit over the years.  Technology has trained my body to react and respond in lightening fast ways.

Thanks to Michael I’ve learned to take a deep breath (or three) the moment I feel a rush of energy that prompts me to respond right away.

Instead, I ask myself a few questions first:

Am I in my right mind?

Do I want to be met by the energy I’m offering right now?

Who can I talk with before I respond?

Life is hectic and overwhelming and busy for us all.  The pace of society has trained us to react.

But reacting doesn’t invite love.

Love does.


Take Action Challenge

This video from Denise is the perfect example of why we can’t take our encounters with others at face value.  Please watch it here.  (And if you know someone who works in healthcare, please share it, too)  Thanks, Denise!

Life Makeover For The Year 2014 (sm) is written and produced by Cheryl Richardson. If you have any questions or comments, or for reprint permission of this newsletter, please

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