Agitators and Aggressors

Multiple times a week I have children asking me for high fives, calling me names, and sticking their tongues out at me. I just remind myself that it is part of my job. I have been working at a daycare for the past few months… so I obviously have A LOT of amazing and ridiculous stories! Fortunately for my own sanity, I work with children who are in kindergarten through fifth grade.

I have noticed at my job that I have two types of children that either make my day great, or they make my day terrible! I call them agitators and aggressors. Though I first noticed this trend because of negative instances, I now see the positive signs that could only be exemplified through the actions of a child. So here’s the story. There were some students that were having problems with others at the daycare. Multiple students were usually culpable – one child would “egg on” or pester another child, and the other child would lash out and either pester them back or do something physically to get back at them. It’s a vicious cycle that sometimes seems to “flip-flop” daily.

But without agitators and aggressors there wouldn’t be world changers.

Because agitators and aggressors are the world changers.

Agitators are the type of people that notice when something is wrong. In a kid’s world, they are the person that knows exactly what to say to get under someone’s skin. It is an amazing gift for them to sense and know what bothers people, what is wrong, and how to point it out with a clarity that is sometimes less than friendly. If not nourished correctly, an agitator is a person who will see all the wrong in the world, but will not have hope in it ever getting better. They will get pessimistic to the point of falling into the mundane life of the fold.

Aggressors are the types of people who get “excited” and moved into action. In a kid’s world, they might not know how to get under someone’s skin, but they know how to take care of those who do know how to get under other’s skin. They have the dominant type of personality to control a group or situation. They are the types who pick what game is played at recess and decide who is captain and who gets the ball first. If not nourished correctly, an aggressor is nothing less than a bully. They might live their life climbing over people, but it will be lonely at the top.

Agitators and Aggressors might be born leaders, but they will be lone leaders if they do not properly flourish and harness their gifts.

Like I said, agitators and aggressors are the types of people who change the world. Agitators point out when something is not how it should be or if it can be improved. They are the “big idea” types that know how to point out what is wrong and might know how to fix it, but they don’t have the ability to follow through. They will get distracted and quickly move on to the next task. Aggressors get things done. They might not have noticed what was wrong, but they know every step it would take to bring a task to completion. They are detailed oriented, even sometimes to a fault. But, if they don’t have a “thing” to improve on, they will quickly become stagnant, or they will find something to fix without a proper vision for fixing it.

We need to embrace that mankind is full of agitators and aggressors. We have the ability as potential agitators and aggressors to either make the world better or to make it worse. Let us not use our ingrained abilities and gifts as a way of making our world worse, but see our own potential and use it to make a better tomorrow for everyone.

Are you an agitator or an aggressor or “anything but”?