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Chapter 30. Control Your Emotional “Hot-... > Ten Steps for Controlling Emotional ...

Ten Steps for Controlling Emotional “Hot-Buttons”

Following is a list of coping skills for preventive maintenance when your hot-button is activated by someone’s anger or frustration.

  1. Listen attentively without interrupting. Take deep breaths to help you control your physical reactions.

  2. Make a conscious choice about your response. You can get angry, try to solve the problem, or ignore it. If you choose to solve the problem, you prevent it from happening again.

  3. Acknowledge other people’s feelings. Make it okay for them to feel the way they do.

  4. Ask objective questions for clarification. Open-ended questions are useful.

  5. Try to see the other person’s point of view. Agree where you can and feed back what you are hearing.

  6. Stick to the subject. Define your problem and don’t let other issues interfere.

  7. Be patient. Problems don’t always have immediate solutions. Be patient with the other person—and yourself.

  8. Express your point of view. Don’t force proof. Present your evidence without backing the other person into a corner.

  9. Explain why. A reasonable explanation can often take the sting out of an emotional issue.

  10. Work out a “win-win” plan. Make sure your solution is fair and workable for everyone involved.


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