The strong negative emotions of anger and fear are so powerful that they trigger our fight flight response. This trigger literally cuts off access to the ‘frontal lobe’ part of our brain, responsible for rational thought.
With access to rational thought denied, we rely on instinct which expresses unconscious, pre-recorded, autopilot, mostly irrational responses…
These are the words we regret having said later.
3 Top Tips to help in these situations
1. Take 5 x Deep Breaths
Count 1- 5 on in-breath & 5-1 on out breath.
Conscious breathing and counting help regain access to rational thought.
2. Try not to judge.
Instead aim to understand the other person’s perspective. Be inquisitive and ask more questions to clarify the situation.
This can take the steam out of an argument before it really gets started.
3. Remove yourself from the situation.
Space allows everyone time to calm down, relax and think rationally again.
Write down the issues. Come back to the situation later, maybe through a different medium.
So to recap…
1. Breath and count – up & down
2. Don’t judge – ask questions, see different perspectives
3.If the above fails… Remove yourself calmly.