Getting into a heated argument can result in various endings. Both people involved in the feud can bring out other negativities, or they could end it on a good note. The latter is always the better conclusion, but sometimes it’s inevitable that things could get worse. This happens when those involved can’t control their temper, and they end up saying hurtful sentiments. When a person gets all riled up, those negative emotions will spill, causing more pain to the other party. It’s a bad picture and definitely not great for one’s wellness.
Your temper shouldn’t get the best of you. The situation won’t be resolved if everyone is close-minded and emotionally clouded. Controlling those negative emotions can be accomplished through various techniques. These are methods you can apply to advocate for peace and be more emotionally mature. Realistic_Lie requested answers to this question on Reddit’s LifeProTip section: “How to remain calm during an argument? I tend to lose my temper so badly I have a physical response to it (increased heart rate, etc.).”
A lot of Redditors shared their secret on temper management. A few of those tips are listed below.
Focus on The Why
DivvySUCKS posted a lengthy answer to OP’s inquiry, and the comment really made sense. The point of his method is that you have to think of why the other party is acting in a particular way. Analyze the root cause of their reaction — what pushed them to start an argument with you? “If you assume they have negative intentions, you’re going to be quick to get angry. For example, if my wife gives me a hard time because the house is a mess, my first reaction is to be defensive. If I take a second to think about it, I might recognize that she’s had a stressful day at work, so it’s not just about the dirty house.”
He shared that he learned the method through a course about marriage and relationships. Husbands and wives often get into an argument that is not good for a household. The comment reached 11k upvotes, and DivvySUCKS provided the link to the course he took on the edited part of his comment.
Respond Rather than React
Do not let your emotions always have their way. If you do, you’ll have a challenging time having a clear mind, which you need to properly assess the problem. “Learning how to respond instead of reacting is a critical life skill. Try practising a deep breath (or many), take a walk or quick time out, and ask yourself if this is going to matter in five years. If the answer is no, you will immediately feel calmer. Reacting is more a reflex and emotion, whilst responding is more rational and considered,” universechild9 wrote.
Mastering the skill might take a long time, but consistency will lead you there. Some Redditors agreed with this technique and explained how it worked on them. “Taking a step back and looking at the bigger picture widens our perspective of things,” keegman907 said.
Breathe In and Breathe Out
Letting air in and out of your body cools you down — helping you think before you react. Indigo_Sunset advised, “As a start, practice your breathing. Specifically, extend your exhales to be longer in duration (rather than volume) than your inhales. A good way to do this is while spending a few minutes meditating in the morning or evening. It’ll be hard to remember to breathe like this in the moment, so a bit of practice goes a long way in feeling what this does to relax the body.”
Breathing exercises don’t just help with temper management but also in handling stress whenever you’re overwhelmed. Meditation can be confusing, but it’s the first step toward a better version of yourself. “This is the first step towards any other step. It’s hard to control your temper and attitude of you can’t control your breathing,” chillaxinbball wrote.
Emadoge suggested, “Counting. Count anything around you, like the number of windows you see or a quick math problem. You can also say the alphabet in your head. It helps trick your brain from being emotional to more rational.” It’s a recommendable way to distract yourself and cool your head before throwing harmful attacks on the person you are arguing with.
Count until you feel less hot-headed before you regret the words you were about to say. It gives you time to think and look at the situation in a brighter light. Combine counting and breathing to make the technique more effective. Let your clouded judgments vanish while you’re doing those methods.
Controlling your emotions, especially your temper, takes a lot of hard work. You cannot achieve that overnight, but your determination to change your ways is enough to lead you down that path. Quarrels are best resolved when the other is rational and has the emotional capacity to respond well. Self-awareness is also vital to properly managing your temper. For this reason, self-assessment should be done when someone points it out to you.
Being hot-headed shouldn’t be a personality; if this is a problem you have, you need to improve. Disputes don’t always have to be a war of words. If you fail to control your temper, it might lead to violence, which will only worsen the situation. Read the discussion below OP’s LPT request for more temper management tips. Many Redditors also shared links and professional advice that could help with your journey to self-improvement.