Anger Leaves a Scar

“There once was a little boy who had a very bad temper. His father decided to hand him a bag of nails and said that every time the boy lost his temper, he had to hammer a nail into the fence.

On the first day, the boy hammered 37 nails into that fence.

The boy gradually began to control his temper over the next few weeks, and the number of nails he was hammering into the fence slowly decreased. He discovered it was easier to control his temper than to hammer those nails into the fence.

Finally, the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father the news and the father suggested that the boy should now pull out a nail every day he kept his temper under control.

The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone. The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence.

‘You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a scar just like this one. 

You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won’t matter how many times you say I’m sorry, the wound is still there.”

Losing your temper is failure

It doesn’t matter how successful you are if you have a temper and you lose it from time to time you are failing. When you lose your temper you lose control and when you do this you are leaving scars on those who are on the receiving end.

No matter how much you apologise when you have calmed down, the damage has been done and even after time the scar is still there. These little scars build up over time and are reminders of those emotional outbursts.

You can’t take it back

Be aware of this if you sometimes lose your temper, there are no winners when tempers are lost. Things get out of control and things are said which are often regretted later but they can’t be taken back.

There is always a better way to solve differences than losing your temper. By staying calm and rational there is always a better outcome. Those of you who have read the ‘Chimp Paradox’ by Dr Steve Peters will recognise that the Chimp is responsible for us losing our tempers.

A great time in Glasgow

This week I had the pleasure of delivering my Mental Resilience Masterclass to the HR staff of Education Scotland in Glasgow on behalf of Live and Learn. It was a wonderful day they were an excellent team with great interaction and fabulous feedback.

This coming week I have three Masterclasses to deliver which I am really looking forward to. There is something special when I see the impact of my Masterclasses on the staff attending the sessions. I am humbled to be in such a wonderful position at the age of 66 and I am just warming up!

Thoughts for the week.

  1. Do you ever lose your temper?
  2. If you do, then I challenge you to start controlling it.
  3. Being aware of the damage you are causing will help you do this.
  4. This week catch yourself just before you are about to lose your temper and see if you can stop yourself going down the usual path.
  5. Even one occasion when you don’t lose your temper is a success.

Well that’s it for this week have a wonderful weekend and keep Believing.

Warm regards


Off the Wall – How to Develop World Class Mental Resilience available HERE (Special offer. Put in code 10POUND when prompted to receive a signed copy for £10 including postage and packing – UK only

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