Some would describe me as being a passionate person. Ever since I can remember, I have been trying to be a hero.
I was that first grader who would confront the bully who was picking on the “weird” kid. If I heard people gossiping about my friends, I would go straight to the source and confront the situation. I was calm, cool and collected.
However, as I got older and certain circumstances developed, it became more difficult to control my inner “passion.” It's like when you get dumped and fly off the handle when even one member of the male species looks at you the wrong way.
It's difficult to confront people effectively, especially if there is alcohol involved.
For instance, don't try to have rational conversations with your college roommate when, at a party in your apartment, she posts a fake “out of order sign” on her bathroom door, forcing strangers to come into your room and use your bathroom instead.
This happened to me. I lost my sh*t and ripped the paper to shreds right in front of her face. Real mature, I know. Fortunately, I have since honed my confrontational skills.
A sad fact of life is that there will always be ignorant, insensitive and self-centered people. The real mystery is to how to not lose it when someone pisses you off. Here are five strategies to help you calm your fury:
1. Stop And Back Away
Have you ever encountered someone who loses his or her temper, screams at the top of his or her lungs and won't let you get a word in? There is no way this person will get his or her point across effectively.
Plus, you -- or the person to whom he or she is speaking -- will most likely shut down, or worse, fight back in the same manner. This is an ineffective means of communication.
The first step in taming your inner Hulk is to take a moment and think: Is what this person just said really worth expending energy and getting upset over?
If someone upsets you, remove yourself from the situation before you say or do something you might regret.
2. Spend Time Alone
Sometimes, all it takes to calm down is some “me time.” A lot of the time when we are angry, we may really just be hurt. Do something kind for yourself. Go for a run, cry it out, listen to music or call a friend.
Removing yourself from the situation or from the people involved can provide you with clarity regarding your feelings. If you're still upset, move on to the next step.
3. Collect Your Thoughts
If you really want the offending party to hear you out, articulating your thoughts clearly and specifically is effective for making yourself understood and heard.
If people can see a softer side of you and understand why you are hurt, they are more likely to accept responsibility for their actions and thus, apologize.
This is why I often make lists, which can be mental or physical. Boil your feels down into bullet points and figure out what you will say to address it.
Memorize your points so that when it's time for the confrontation, you won't hesitate or forget.
Your demeanor is rational, and people will take what you have to say seriously.
4. Engage In Confrontation And Use “I” Statements
It may seem like common sense, but by using statements like, “I feel disrespected when you have people over without discussing it with me first,” rather than “You are a complete assh*le for inviting people over when I'm not here,” it can make a world of difference.
No one likes to feel accused, and by speaking respectfully, you can prevent a fight before it escalates.
5. Forgive And Move On
If you have said all you need to get off your chest and the other person has genuinely apologized, forgive and move forward.
Yes, this is all circumstantial, as depending on the situation, the most effective way to move on is to forgive, though you might not be able to forget.
Even if the person did something so reprehensible that it is utterly unforgivable, you should still pardon him or her so you don't harbor hatred in your heart.
When you don't forgive, the negativity still holds a power over you. If after everything you tried, the person still sees no error in his or her ways, cut your losses and move on. Maybe it's time to find new friends, a new significant other or a brand new environment.
Your sanity and feelings are vital to your well being. No one is worth bursting an eye vessel or going to jail over. It's natural to feel angry and it's okay to express it, but try these techniques to bring yourself peace.
Photo Courtesy: We Heart It