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Waiting to explode

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

Like a rubber band stretched to its limit, you feel ready to snap. Don’t.

If you lose your cool in front of others, you may say something you’ll regret later. What’s worse, your credibility and leadership will take a hit. Employees’ perception of you will turn from admiration to pity.

Take these steps to contain your fury:

Delay the onset. Before giving yourself permission to explode, impose a waiting period. Say to yourself, “I’m going to blow up in 30 minutes.” You’ll find that within a few minutes, you’ll compose yourself. Even if you’re still on the verge of a meltdown, your subsequent conversations and activities will distract you.

Run a race. Imagine you’re in a competition with other managers to see who can outlast the others by remaining calm. Think, “Others would crack right now, but I’m still in control.”

Vent in private. If you’re past the point of no return, flee to a solitary place such as a rest room or your car. Or take a walk outside. You want to release your anger where no one can see or hear you.

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