One day I remember having had to break up a fight between two boys with some of my co-workers. As is usually the case after a fight we would take the offending parties to separate rooms where they could cool down and become “safe” again. Due to California law, we weren’t able to lock these rooms, so one of the staff had to hold the door shut from the outside and watch through a window to make sure that the boy was being safe toward himself. Many times while this procedure took place, the offending boy would still be “fired up” from his fight and would take it out on staff verbally. It also wasn’t unusual for a troubled teen to spit on the window or try to urinate underneath the small crack at the base of the door to try and get some on us. Well after this one particular fight between two teens, the one that I was watching was just letting me have it with all kinds of offensive swear words and threats. Now I knew that what he was saying about me wasn’t true and that he was just basically mad at himself for getting into that situation, but when you are getting barraged with negativity, it’s hard to not let some of it slip into your consciousness. After a while I was getting really worn out from listening to his angry rants and threats. So to counter what was happening, I decided to come up with a mantra then and there that I continue to use to this day. I began to say to myself, “I am love, I spread love and I am surrounded by love.” I just kept repeating it over and over in my head. It was amazing how it began to help me almost immediately. And after a few minutes you know what? The young man began to relax as well. Whether or not it was coincidence or he actually felt my energy change, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that I was able to find comfort, love and relaxation during a very stressful experience.