Three Key Thoughts that can Defuse Anger Quickly
Sometimes it is hard to remember all the tips and remedies for defusing anger. When you experience a situation with someone that results in feeling upset, the following three principles are basic to dispelling and/or preventing anger from arising.
1. Think: This situation is not meant personally against me. This person is having a bad day. I have had bad days and know that I do not always put my best foot forward under those circumstances. I must find out more so I will ask the person disarming questions (if possible) about how his/her day is going. I call this the “Not -Personal Principle.”
2. The Golden Rule applies: Am I treating this person as I would like him/her to treat me? (Irrespective of how I think they are treating me). I call this the “Respect Principle.”
3. Ask yourself: Do I need to fight this battle now? At all? If not, I should take a break and tell this person that I will get back to him/her later (specific time) when I am able to think more rationally and I respectfully hope that he/she will do the same. I call this the “Another Time Principle.”
In the meantime one can review other ways of problem-solving or dispute resolution which may eliminate the problem altogether in the long-run.
Author: Michael L. Hecht, MA, MFT
October 4, 2011