Recently, I went on an Angelina Jolie Movie Marathon. She is one of my favorite actresses, and sometimes, I just need that jawbone in my life. My favorite movie of hers is Beyond Borders, but Maleficent is close behind. Nevermind that I love a good epic battle finale: I can relate to Maleficent as a character.

She is hurt and betrayed by someone she trusts, someone she cares about. The fact that this turns into anger and resentment doesn't surprise me. In fact, I would wager that most people react in this way: first you are hurt, and then you lash out.

Of course, most of us don't have magical powers that allow us to throw people through the air. But we do have our words, and sometimes, those can be more painful than being physically harmed.

I know that personally, I have said things that came from a place of hurt, just lashing out at someone because I felt upset. The thing is, though: most of the time, the words we're hurling out aren't aimed at the person who actually hurt us. Instead, they tend to hit innocent bystanders, the people who merely have the misfortune to be nearby.

The key is, I think, addressing the hurt when it happens. It is always acceptable to speak up and say "you hurt me". There is nothing embarrassing or wrong or uncool about acknowleding that you've been hurt, and letting the person who is responsible know.

When you do, it's important to be specific. Tell them exactly what it was they did or said that affected you. That way, you can have an open and honest discussion about the situation, if they are interested. If they aren't interested, at least you took the opportunity to speak your mind, allowing you to make peace with the situation, move on, and not lash out at anyone.

Honesty is, after all, always the best policy.

If that fails: kill 'em with kindness. And maybe look into acquiring a magical dragon.
You know, just in case.