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 Post subject: Anger and defining the problem
PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:33 pm 
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Step 0. Sometimes doing HALT can really change the look of the situation. Thus what I'm calling Step 0. Which isn't an actual step. Just a nice little name for how the situation looked before HALT. If I were writing this just for myself I could leave that out. As in, it's not something I need to analyze. But it's something that, in this case, is important to share in order to better illustrate Steps 1 and 2.

I was feeling agitated, hurt, in response to a musician-friend not responding to the Happy Birthday thread I started on the band message board. Had I defined the problem at this point, it would have been something like:

S has not acknowledged our birthday greetings, and I don't like that.

And the solutions coming to mind were, tell him, or let it go and don't tell him.

Step 1. I realized I was angry. Yup, definitely angry. And for a bit I was wondering how to deal with that anger. Hungry, eat something. Tired, take a nap. But anger?

But, I did some thinking about why I was angry. What was behind it. In there was the idea of if I should tell him I'm angry, and I think that got me into thinking why I was angry.

Step 2. I'm angry because he doesn't want (or is unable to have) the same kind of friendship I want. I'm angry that I can't have the friendship with him that I want. That's the real problem. Acknowledging and looking at my anger helped me see that.

Step 3. Okay, so now the possible solutions are looking different.

A. Keep trying.
B. Give up.
C. Accept that I can't have that friendship, and accept the friendship as it is.

Step 4. Well, A... there's a saying about if you keep doing the same thing, you'll keep getting the same results. Not a good choice. B. Too messy. As in, to never see him again would mean giving up a lot more than his friendship. Trust me, quite a messy choice. C. Workable. Not easy, but I think the best choice.

Step 5. Do it. Easier said than done. Sometimes it's easy. Sometimes it's hard.

Actually, I'm realizing, I said two different things. It's the first part that is really what I'm deciding. What I need to do. Accept that I can't have the friendship I want. The 2nd part, accept that friendship as it is, is a starting point. So, accept that the friendship isn't, and won't be, what I wanted; and accept the friendship as it is right now, though allowing room for growth and change.

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 Post subject: Re: Anger and defining the problem
PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 5:11 pm 
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Stop/HALT is the first step! LOL

It is pretty amazing, isn't it, how just looking at HALT (however we use the initials*) can change our perspective on what we think the problem really is. In your example, before beginning The Five Steps with HALT, you thought the problem was external - that S hadn't done something you wanted but by embarking on the Steps, HALT helped you see that it was more of an internal issue - your own expectations and acceptance of two other things.

* I've seen the A in HALT used to describe Angry or Afraid or Apathetic. I'm guessing there are multiple base/core things that could be used for the other components of the acronym as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Anger and defining the problem
PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 5:29 pm 
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I think you misunderstood. Yes, HALT is the first step. "Step 0" is explaining where I was at before doing any of the step one stuff. Yeah, I mentioned HALT while explaining why I was starting my writing before step one. But the doing of HALT is documented under step 1.

Ah, but you understand just fine the important stuff in my post. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Anger and defining the problem
PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2009 6:58 am 
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I like your method, Ellen. Did you do Step 0 retroactively, or pre-halt? Does that question make sense? You said it wasn't necessary to analyze for yourself, but would you recommend others to do this themselves, or just when we're writing on the board (as a kind of back-story)? Thanks for your comments.

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 Post subject: Re: Anger and defining the problem
PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:17 am 
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Practically speaking, I would think it makes sense to define the situation before you use the steps. That way the stage is set and you know where you are coming from. Good idea Ellen!

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 Post subject: Re: Anger and defining the problem
PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:42 am 
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oceanheart wrote:
I like your method, Ellen. Did you do Step 0 retroactively, or pre-halt? Does that question make sense? You said it wasn't necessary to analyze for yourself, but would you recommend others to do this themselves, or just when we're writing on the board (as a kind of back-story)? Thanks for your comments.


Actually, I didn't really consciously think about the steps at all at the start. Not till I was already at step 2. But, the 5 steps was both a good way to look at the process already started, as well as a good way to continue it out.

As for your question, I'm not certain what you mean.

If you mean do I suggest people consciously look at where they are at before doing HALT, no. I didn't do that and I don't see a reason for others to do that. You're already there. There's no need to do anything.

If you mean do I suggest people write down where they are at before doing HALT. I didn't do that. I see no reason others need to.

If you mean do I suggest someone write down, after they've done HALT (or even the whole 5 steps), where they were before doing HALT. I don't think it's necessary. If it's helpful for looking at the process, or sharing with others, write it down. If not, no reason to.

Maybe I should have just said "Before" instead. Yeah, that might have been a clearer label. :)

Define the problem is step 2, and I don't see a reason to do any version of that before step 1. I really don't. No need to do it twice.

But, when talking about doing the 5 steps, I do find it makes sense to tell others where I was when I started

I think it's useful as a retroactive thing. Start with HALT, then define the problem, and only then (either before or after doing the last 3 steps) look back and see the difference before and after.

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