By Mel Sin for Yahoo! Southeast Asia | Sat, 4 May 2013
There are days when you feel your buttons are being pushed way too hard. But the last thing you want to do is detonate in bad language and angry gestures! So here you go – our tips on how you can keep cool in various situations and come out of it smiling (even if you were boiling inside to begin with!).
How to keep cool… with your kids
One for the moms: Like it or not, but kids can have a knack for bringing out the worst in adults. And it may seem easier to just give up and throw in the towel when dealing with a difficult child, or lose your temper, which isn’t exactly ideal.
So how do you keep your cool when your temper is red hot? Try this: Look at the situation in perspective. Your child may have a reason for lashing out or could be having an off day, which is completely normal as we are all entitled. So instead of being angry, take a breather and know that your child doesn’t intend to drive you crazy; he or she just needs a little more attention than before.
The other thing that works? Get goofy! Nothing works like being silly. This provides a great distraction and soon everyone–kid and you included–will forget why you’re angry in the first place. Sing a silly song, dance crazily, or just have a tickle fest. It works all the time.
How to keep your cool… with annoying colleagues
We all have them–annoying colleagues who just say the wrong thing and do the darnest thing to get on our nerves. From not meeting their end of the bargain to simply not knowing when to shut up, we don’t blame you if there are days when you feel like using the tape to seal your colleague’s mouth shut.
Wait, let go of that masking tape and opt out of violence instead. You don’t want to blow up and be known as the “Crazy One” at work. First things first, to remain calm and to keep your composed professional self–breathe. While your first instinct may be to snap back at your colleague, you’re better off stepping back and taking a deep breath instead. This buys you time to stop you from saying something you will regret. If you must, vent to a friend (someone completely out of your working zone) over a cup of coffee. Just being able to let it all out can do wonders to your mood.
Still annoyed? Find your happy place. Whether it is a few minutes on your favorite website or moving on to the next level on Candy Crush, taking time out will distract you from what’s bothering you in the first place, lets you ease your stress, and help you get back to work in a better mood.
How to keep your cool… when fighting with your partner
You’re both raising your voices and tempers are rising. But before that fight with your boyfriend or your husband turns into an all-out argument where you’ll both regret the things that come out from your mouth, try this.
In the article Fighting Happily Ever After by Elizabeth Bernstein from online.wsj.com, Dr. Howard Markman, professor of psychology at the University of Denver as well as co-author of Fighting for Your Marriage, calls it the “speaker-listener technique”. In this technique, Bernstein explains that Dr. Howard suggests “couples who have adisagreement should call a couple’s meeting, set a time limit of 15 minutes, and discuss the issue at hand. He even suggests flipping a coin to see who gets to speak first.”
After stating your piece, you should then give your partner the chance to speak, explaining one’s position. “A lot of times, all you need is to be listened to,” says Dr. Markman. Through this exercise, the resolution will then become obvious, says the good doctor. If not? It’s time to schedule another meeting.
Remember the few golden rules of fighting: don’t make it personal, stop trying to win all the time, and make sure to listen. You’ll soon realize that the argument was for nothing.