Turning Up The Heat

By   |   February 28, 2011   |   Relationships

Several weeks ago, I was listening the esteemed minister Joel Osteen, who asked are you a thermostat or a thermometer? He explained that a thermostat changes the environment by bringing the temperature up or down. A thermometer goes up and down as the environment changes.

It’s a good question. I keep my emotions controlled, steady and positive so I considered myself a thermostat. When I wake up in the morning, I set myself at seventy-five and sunny, and plan to stay that way for the rest of day.

Of course, there are some exceptions that affect my setting, like the computer guy at work. When I first started my job, everyone warned me about the computer guy. They told me he was a cold and miserable person. ΓÇ£Try to deal with him as little as possible.ΓÇ¥ The problem is, he is the computer person so at some point, you have to deal with him.

My first encounter with him was everything that I expected it to be, which is unpleasant! He even keeps his office extra cold to encourage people not to stay in there long. He made me uptight for the rest of the day. I had become a thermometer. My sunny seventy-five degree attitude had dropped down to his cold blizzard!

I declared that the next time I dealt with him, I was going to be a thermostat and stay steady and calm with my nerves. I wasn’t going to allow his snide remarks, crummy attitude and freezing office to affect me. Dealing with him was a lot easier, but it still required ten minutes of positive self-talk before I went to him with a question.

Then I remembered from Joel’s message that the thermostat changes the environment. When itΓÇÖs cold outside, it makes it warm inside. I didnΓÇÖt just need to be a steady seventy-five, I needed to make the computer guy warmer.

How do you warm up a cold day? You spread some sunshine! And thatΓÇÖs what I have been trying to do with the computer guy. When I walk into his office, I begin telling him how wonderful he is before I ask him for assistance. IΓÇÖve started going by his office once a day to randomly compliment him.

Are we best friends now? Does he come in my office and tell me how wonderful I am? Has his snide remarks subsided? No, no and no. But he did smile at me the other day, which IΓÇÖd never seen. It was like the GrinchΓÇÖs smile when he stole Christmas, but teeth were involved. And I was so shocked to see teeth as opposed to fangs.

And thatΓÇÖs progress. ItΓÇÖs a slow process for ice to melt — but IΓÇÖm going to keep being his thermostat until his thermometer is a sunny seventy-five.

photo credit: Rawich/

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