How to avoid an outburst at work in 3 steps
The workplace is a place where you’re given daily many «opportunities» to have plenty of outbursts. Sometimes things don’t go as planned, your team members don’t seem to get exactly what needs to be done, although you have discussed it over and over again, that peer just can’t stop challenging you in every chance and questioning everything you say and, as if these were not enough, there’s this demanding client asking for things to be ready yesterday in a last-minute notice.
And although the above-mentioned situations make your life at work a living hell, I know that you will agree with me that, on the other hand, this is actually how it normally goes in most workplaces. So, as you can’t really stop all those situations from happening, what you can do is finding the best way to handle them, starting from controlling your outbursts, as they don’t actually help you solve anything, but, on the contrary, they contribute in losing control of the situation.
Thus, here’s how you can avoid an outburst in 3 steps:
- Focus on your breath. When we’re about to get angry, we start breathing fast and shallow. To stop that take conscious control of your breath and start breathing slowly and deeply. Inhale by counting to 8, then hold by counting to 4 and exhale by counting to 8. Continue this till you feel your heartbeat has fallen to normal rhythm.
- Delay your response time. If you feel that you are about to lose your temper and act impulsively, give yourself time to respond. Remind yourself that you don’t have to react immediately, but to respond consciously. Take some seconds or minutes in order to distant yourself from the issue.
- Focus on the solution, not on what triggered you to outburst. Now that you’ve returned to a calm state, shift your focus from what triggered you to get angry into the situation that needs to be handled. If you want, you can write down the trigger in order to come back to it later and learn something about yourself and how you can develop by being aware of it. For the time being, focus on what needs to be done and what behavior of yours would be more effective and professional to succeed in handling it in the best way.
Make it a habit to follow those 3 steps every time you’re about to have an outburst and see yourself becoming a confident and calm professional, who has under control every situation, no matter how challenging it is.