How to Disarm / Calm Down Angry People

If you’re doing anything worthwhile in life, you will encounter angry and negative people along the way. Anger for the most part, manifests itself during times in which we lose control of a situation we desperately want to control. People will get angry with you for altering any plan they’ve laid out in their minds, even if you did not know of your potential interference of those plans.

Your kids may get angry at you for not allowing them to follow-through with their plans to eat that cookie, or meet with their friends on the playground. Your coworkers may get angry at you for altering their plans for a group presentation through the introduction of new information. Finally, your neighbors may get angry at you for planting a tall tree and ruining their plan to maintain a seamless view out of their kitchen window.

Anger from others is thereby often hard to anticipate. People have a myriad of complicated plans laid out inside their minds, and any one of those plans being derailed can result in anger toward you.

Victimize the Angered

The most effective way to mitigate anger from others is to first understand which one of their plans has been derailed – resulting in their expression of anger. You should determine this by inquiring into why they are angry, and make judgments on the validity of the answers which they provide. Most people will shy away from telling you the true reason why they are angry with you. Sometimes they may not even consciously realize the reasons for their anger themselves, so ask questions that will lead you to a plan of theirs gone wrong.

Once you figure out what plan of theirs went wrong, make them feel like the victim of the situation. Angry people tend to calm down when they realize that others recognize their victim-hood. Their anger being validated, not agreed with, is what they ultimately seek, and your ego must be willing to let them have their moment. Something happened to them to make them feel like a victim of a particular situation. They are seeking approval and confirmation of external factors existing which served to influence any perfect plans they had for the worse.

This Does Not Mean You Must Apologize

Apologizing and victimizing are different acts which you should understand the difference of. Your actions may be inherently right in a situation which angers someone around you. Their anger may simply be caused by being surprised rather than being right. In cases such as this, label them a victim of a situation without admitting that you are wrong if you are truly not. If you are, then admit it quickly, if not, then do not falsely apologize.

Acknowledge how the truth may have caused them to be a victim and sympathize with those who are angered over that fact. Label them victims and allow yourself to bring them comfort in admitting that fact. Their anger will slowly begin to morph into understanding of the situation. Their victim-hood will be validated and they will no longer have much to be angry about. If they continue feel anger toward a situation in which they are wrong, only then should you begin explaining the facts of the situation at hand in an emotionless manner.

Book Recommendation:

The Anger Workbook: An Interactive Guide to Anger Management

The Anger Workbook: An Interactive Guide to Anger Management by [Carter, Les, Minirth, Frank]

 

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