Manage anger signals and respond effectively

Chapter 5 p.9


I Ask

Angry? Me? No! I never get angry, at least I never show it, especially not with customers and colleagues.

Is there anything wrong with that?


I Answer

The issue is not whether you show anger or not, but whether you know how to deal effectively with anger signals. The inability to do so often leads to destructive behavioral patterns and can easily let you end up in a guilt cycle.

What is needed, in Mike Matulovich’s terms, is real Elephant behavior in dealing with anger.

The diagram below contrasts the way in which the Elephant, the Ostrich and the Rhinoceros deal with anger.


Four guidelines to manage anger and respond effectively:

  1. Address the problem.
    • Ask questions in order to obtain information to solve the problem.
    • Re-frame: What else could it mean?
  2. Dissociate from criticism and use a SMART action plan to solve the problem.
  3. Ask yourself what you can learn from this situation.
  4. Then let it go and forgive yourself

I Advise

Sounds to me as if some emotional awareness would serve you well in dealing with your anger.

Also remember the Issue Resolution model.