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Sunday
Apr022017

Why Noticing Red Ears Can Help You Manage Work-Related Frustration And Anger More Effectively

My previous blog focused on personal triggers – things that set us off and can sometimes result in our saying or doing things we wish we hadn’t.  

“It’s like an out-of-body experience where I’m watching my temper go from 0 to 60 in a split second and I can't do anything about it.”

Sound familiar?

My last blog also discussed how awareness of our personal triggers is the first step for positive behavior change. In other words, what are the circumstances and specific events that set us off?

When working with clients who want to better manage their frustration or anger, I ask them to identify exactly where in their body they experience tension before they react and “go off.”  

“My ears turn bright red and begin to burn.”

“I unconsciously draw my shoulders upwards and clench my fists.”

“My breathing becomes shallow, my gut feels like it has steel bands around it.” 

And there are many more. 

Skeptics take note.

A CEO once asked me: "What does this touchy-feely stuff have to do with managing my anger?" 

Well, actually, a lot.

Best selling author Daniel Goleman introduced the concept of an Amygdala hijack, when the amygdala -- an almond-sized region of the brain responsible for the expression of fear and pleasure -- is activated and overrides the frontal lobe or brain region responsible for executive function. 

Most people have one or two seconds from the moment they've been triggered to when their amygdala takes their brain hostage. But, if you're aware of being triggered, you can actually disrupt that stimulus-response connection and have a different outcome. And that's what I call a circuit breaker.

Circuit breakers are tactics and strategies that disrupt the normal expression of a negative response and give you an opportunity for a reset.

Look for my next blog where I’ll share three effective circuit breakers that my clients have used with great success.

How you can develop greater self-awareness.

Since behavior change begins with awareness, why not get a jumpstart and start to identify the location in your body where you hold tension. Some of my clients find keeping a notebook or journal helpful in this process. At first, this may be awkward or difficult, but in the end, it's well worth the effort.

 

 

Best,

Andy

Look for my next blog-  Circuit Breakers – 3 Effective Techniques for Managing Your Anger or Frustration at the Office”

Andy Satter
Founder | CEO
Andrew Satter & Associates, Inc.
(845) 256-0995 (direct)
andysatter@satterassoc.com  

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