Andy Gets Angry
Book One in the ‘Emotions and Me’ series
by Mike J. Masse
Illustrated by Emily Corbett
GENRE: Children’s, (picture book) Contemporary
Children can develop the ability to respond to their emotions in a healthy way through the practice of mindfulness. Andy Gets Angry is a great introduction for children to learn a fun and simple breath technique to respond to their emotions. The beautifully hand-painted illustrations provide the perfect landscape to tell the story of Andy and his journey in learning the wonderful skill of mindfulness. Share the book with your loved ones, and help us all plant the seed to be present!
Sometimes Andy gets angry when he loses. Sometimes he gets so angry in class when he doesn’t know the answer to a question.
Sometimes Andy gets angry when Bobby takes his toys … or when Sierra won’t stop singing!
Sometimes he gets angry when his parents raise their voices.
Andy doesn’t like being angry, mad, or frustrated – he hates how it makes him feel. Sometimes he feels angry in his face. Sometimes he feels angry in his hands. Other times, he feels angry in his stomach and even in his mind.
Andy later feels bad about some of the things he said or did when he was angry. He felt bad after he yelled at Bobby, and he felt bad after he slammed the door on Sierra… and he felt bad after the one time he told his dad that he didn’t like him anymore. And that didn’t just make Andy angry. It also made him feel sad.
Mike Masse Shares His Experience With Self Compassion
I have found so much power though the practice of self compassion, but it hasn’t been easy. Like most humans I have no problem asking others “how are you doing?”. I ask that question daily to my beloved wife, my kids, my friends, clients and many random strangers “hey, how are you doing today” or “how’s things”. Working in social services for years, and now in the work I do in consulting I’ve become incredibly comfortable in asking a lot of questions, as well as listening. I realized one day that I ask others all the time how they are, but I was missing the most important question “how am I doing?”. When I first posed this question it felt weird, awkward and uncomfortable, so I decided to make the choice to ask myself this question daily, and no matter what the response was, I would listen.
Me: Hey Mike, how ya doing…..
Then I’d move on with my day.
I did this throughout my day, I got into a rhythm and routine with it. What I found was that I was ok with the positive emotions, but when I experienced those negative emotions or thoughts, I wouldn’t treat them the same. I would struggle with holding the sadness, or anger. I would compare my situations to others, and try to erase the sadness with the old “well so and so has it worse then you, so what are you complaining about”. I was trying to negate my experience, by searching for others who I thought were in a more unfortunate situation. One day I thought, what if Dexter or Beau (my sons) came to me and said “Daddy I am sad”. I wouldn’t shoo them away telling them that they have no right to be sad, that their feelings don’t matter because their friend has it way worse then them. I would hold my sons with love, and allow them to be sad for as long as they needed. This is how I now speak to myself, I hold myself with love, as if I am holding my loved ones. There are countless opportunities to hold yourself with love, and compassion in the way we hold our loved ones. I’ll end with a loss I experienced. A couple of years ago my dear friend Scott was diagnosed at 35 with cancer, he was in the ICU for 28 days. The first time I visited him it was very hard on me, to see him with all the tubes laying in bed, motionless. I started to think to myself “oh this is so hard for me” but then old Mike came in with a “you think its hard on you, what about his wife and his kids, it’s way harder on them”. My mind continued to list the reasons why I shouldn’t be as sad as I was. I was healthy, my wife and kids were in good health. BUT, I noticed this familiar judgement pattern, and I thought about holding myself with love, in the same way I would hold my wife if she was in my exact situation. I instantly felt different. I would hold Jenn and let her be sad and that’s what I did. I allowed myself to be sad, and showed compassion to myself. Learning to be kind to myself in the way I am kind to those I love has been a massive life improvement tool for me. Start with “hey, how am I doing?” Or the next time you are sad, hold your self as if you are holding a loved one, it might feel weird at the start, but over time it will shift. Be well and its ok to love yourself.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Mike Masse is a mindfulness consultant and public speaker who specializes in mindfulness-based stress reduction. For over a decade, he has been teaching adults, youth, and children mindfulness skills to help reduce their levels of stress and anxiety. A highly sought-after trainer, Mike facilitates workshops with educators, first responders, health care providers, and others who work in high-stress environments. Mike lives in Stratford, Ontario with his two sons and his wife.
CONNECT WITH AUTHOR MIKE J MASSE
BARNES & NOBLE
Mike J Masse will be awarding $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.a Rafflecopter giveaway