I was having a morning today. I was frustrated. I felt disrespected. I was angry and vengeful. Then I read my “Happiness Project” email.

I’d unsubscribed a while ago and just re-upped yesterday.  Fortuitous timing. Today Gretchen interviewed Bob Sutton about work and happiness.  Midway through, this comment jumped out at me:

Whenever I start feeling too earnest or too self-important, I get dumber, more difficult, and altogether unpleasant.

And I thought, “Oh. Hello.”

Then Gretchen asked if he has a happiness mantra or motto to help get through those moments.  Wow, did he. And boy, did they really smack me in the face.

Think about how others around you feel, not how you feel or what you want.

Focus doing the best you can, not on doing better than others.

Be Yourself, but keep your inner jerk in check.

Oh this morning, it was All. About. Me. What people were doing to Me.

Reading this, I realized that a missed deadline is not really about Me. That odds are, they didn’t do it just to rile me up. That their actions really aren’t about me. And that I was being a total Jerk.

So, I backed myself up from the ledge and wrote these three mantras down. Over and over. Then I stuck them to my monitor as a reminder.

Because today’s behavior? Not who I want to be as I work to live a Life Worthy.