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How to Calm an Angry Coworker

How to Calm an Angry Coworker

Jay Cataldo | Excelle

August 27, 2009

As much as you love your new iPhone, it’s proving to be a big distraction. For instance, you were so caught up with Tweetdeck this week that you neglected to complete an important assignment. You know… the one your boss needed four days ago. Unfortunately, it’s too late to fix the problem which is bad news, because she’s pretty peeved and would like a word. The good news? Umm, no good news. Sorry.

Everybody makes mistakes; it’s human nature. But then again, so is screaming your head off at the person who screwed up. Since we all have our bad days, it’s only as matter of time before you’ll be on the receiving end of somebody’s meltdown. Because of this, it can be useful to know how to calm an irate coworker as quickly and painlessly as possible.

The next time you find yourself absorbing some serious verbal abuse, use these six simple steps to escape the situation with nothing more than a few small lumps on your ego:

Step 1: Breathe, relax and listen

When criticized or belittled, most of us will quickly become defensive. This is a mistake which can not only prolong the verbal tirade, but escalate it even further.

The first thing you should do is listen calmly without saying a word. Take a deep breath, relax your body and listen closely to every accusation and insult hurled your way. Resist the urge to start an argument and just listen.

Step 2: Open up your body

While you’re listening, make sure that your body language isn’t showing signs of defensiveness. Face the person directly, keep your arms down at your sides, relax your facial muscles and maintain gentle eye contact. Remember to keep breathing.

Steps 3 – 6 on the next page →


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  • Photo_user_blank_big

    curtdrex

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    Interesting stuff Jay, I don't know if it's all that emotionally healthy to just sit there and listen to a coworker rant though... But otherwise, good article! Dating Coach - Curt

  • Jay_smaller_max50

    JayCataldo

    about 5 years ago

    30 comments

    You're very welcome. I'm glad you found these tips useful. :)

    -Jay Cataldo
    http://www.relationshipbonding.com

  • A320cfmi_air_china_cockpit_max50

    MsLang107

    over 5 years ago

    38 comments

    I will use these tactics in the future. Thank you Jay!!

  • Jay_smaller_max50

    JayCataldo

    over 5 years ago

    30 comments

    Thank you. :)

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    janetparker

    over 5 years ago

    2 comments

    Great tips! Thanks!

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