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Try saying a mantra

Come up with a phrase that you can repeat to yourself to remind you to stay calm.

Some examples: “This isn’t about me,” “This will pass,” or “This is about the business.”

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It’s hard not to get worked up emotionally when you’re in a tense conversation: a disagreement can feel like a threat.

But if your body goes into “fight or flight” mode,  you may lose access to the part of your brain responsible for rational thinking.

When you start noticing yourself getting tense, try to focus on breathing (on feeling the air coming in and out of your lungs).

This will take your attention off the physical signs of panic and keep you centered.

Sitting still when you’re having a difficult conversation can make the emotions build up rather than dissipate. 

Standing up and walking around helps to activate the thinking part of your brain.

To distance yourself from the feeling, label it.

This allows you to see your thoughts and feelings for what they are, and not bury them or let them explode.

The more time you give yourself to process your emotions, the less intense they are likely to be.

Excuse yourself for a moment: get a cup of coffee or a glass of water, go to the bathroom or take a stroll. Don't give the impression that you are desperately trying to escape.

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Deep, controlled breathing

It involves filling the lungs to the max and goes by various names like belly or diaphragmatic breathing.

It has been linked to improved cognitive performance, lower stress levels, and lower blood pressure.

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IDEAS

Validate your emotions
  1. Label the emotion. When you notice yourself feeling badly emotionally, simply describe what the emotion is that you’re feeling (sad, anxious, frustrated, etc.).
  2. Acknowledge the discomfort. Acknowledge that it’s okay to feel that way even emotionally if it feels uncomfortable or painful.
  3. Accept the emotion. Accept that the emotion is with you and that you can still proceed with life despite having that emotion.
  • As the conversation comes to a close take the time to reflect back on what you've discussed, the next steps to be taken, and if there's anything left each party wants to say to the other.
  • Remember to ask the most important thing before closing the conversation and that is "What has changed for you as a result of this conversation?"
  • Lastly, express gratitude towards the other person regardless of what may.