I am not so good natured or thick skinned that I never feel snubbed or insulted, but the older I get, the less I choose to feel that way. I express surprise, dismay and maybe even anger to hubby or trusted close friends who know me well enough to recognize I am venting and usually letting go at the same time. If a close friend or relative does or says something hurtful, of course I feel that and it is worse than if a stranger does the same. We have expectations that those who are close to us value and protect our relationship and feelings.
Those instances are vastly different from the person who cuts you off in traffic. Did they truly intend to be a jerk? Did they simply not realize what they were doing and are to make eye contact and mouth an apology? How did you react? Did you hit your horn, say something out loud or shake your head in wonder or disgust? I've done all of those things. I think those are normal reactions at that moment.
Haven't you known someone who carries that as a personal attack throughout the day, ready to tell anyone who will listen about the jerk who ruined their day? With each retelling of the event, the intensity of the attack grows. That jerk could have caused a collision! Could have made them late for work! Could have killed them! Yes, all of that could have happened, but didn't. Let it go. Breathe. Be glad you were paying attention and prevented any harm. Whether that person was a jerk or just made a bad move, will this matter two hours or ten years from now? You can spend your day growling about that stupid driver but chances are, no matter what their motivation was, they have gotten on with their life and your mutterings aren't hurting them one bit. You are the one suffering because you are keeping the turmoil brewing.
A homeowner on our street was awakened by conversation and laughter of her neighbors across the street. Did she go over, call out the window or call them on the phone and say "hey guys, could you lower your voices a little? I'm trying to sleep and sound is really carrying tonight"? No she didn't. She didn't call the police to make a complaint either. This wasn't a party, just a few couples talking outside on a hot night in suburbia. What she did was go on Facebook the next morning and write paragraphs about what jerks her neighbors are and ended with the line that they should shut the f--k up. Wasn't that classy? It didn't quiet the neighbors who had no idea their voices were bothering her. To be that upset the next day and to express herself as she did doesn't show a fundamentally happy person, or one with any tolerance and most of all, one who doesn't handle a situation in a mature manner.
Comedian Ron White, part of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, uses the tag line "You can't fix stupid". While I don't advise saying this to someone's face, sometimes you have accept this as true with people who repeatedly react inappropriately. Often you can choose to avoid them. If they are relatives or coworkers and therefore unavoidable, you need to remind yourself that who they are, what they do, and how think act does not define you.
Choose to smile and laugh a little.You'll feel better.
But if someone is really ticking you off, I could show you how to mold their likenesses in chocolate so that you can bite their head off. If that act of aggression doesn't help, the chocolate consumption surely will.