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  • Writer's pictureJeanne Chamness

Controlling Your Reactions

(We’re being joined by licensed counselor, and owner of Chamness Counseling, Jeanne Chamness. She’s stopped by the studio to help us get better control of our reactions by keeping ourselves in check when struggles hit.)

When you hear bad news, what’s your initial reaction? Do you say the first thing that pops into your head? Or are you likely to stop and think, before you react? Getting bad news or having a misunderstanding in a conversation can cause our brains to go into a frenzy which doesn’t allow much room for thinking. This frenzy is the cause of an overreaction to an event or situation.

In order to better control over over-reactions, it is best to try and create a pause or space within the moment. When you have the time to reflect and to go back and see what the trigger or issue was, it will create that pause needed in order to process the situation better and evaluate the best reaction.

Some triggers for over-reactions can be caused be several different situations:

  • Vulnerability

  • Feeling threatened (physical, social, mental, or emotional)

  • Misunderstood

  • Learned Habit

When you come out of a heated situation in which you overreacted, instead of feeling cringy and thinking about what you shouldn’t have said, apologize. Apologies can repair a relationship from an over-reaction, don’t just leave the situation sitting there without trying to repair the issue.

Managing a reaction can be easier behind the screen of a computer or a phone than in person. If you are in a heated situation with someone face-to-face, it is important to recognize that feeling of ‘being on fire’ and take a deep breath and slow your thinking down. Using the concept of reflective listening can be vital, by letting the other person know you hear them, it can provide you with the time needed to slow down and process the situation.

To watch the full interview, check it out here:

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