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Believable Reasons for Staying Cool

Harry Mills, Ph.D.

Even if you are justified in feeling angry about a situation, it is not okay to simply attack the target of your anger. There are too many ways that you can and will be punished for inappropriate and unrestrained angry expression. In today's terrorized world, violent outbursts and threats are simply not well tolerated. If you physically attack someone there is a good chance you could be brought up on charges and arrested. If you attack your boss, a co-worker or a customer, there is a good chance you will lose your job. If you attack your child, you may very well find that child removed from your custody. Even if you don't lose custody, you will have at the very least taught your child that it is acceptable to behave violently towards children (which it is not). If you attack friends and family, you seriously reduce the chances that they will want to help you in the future when you might need their support.

It is a good idea for you to develop a list of personal reasons why you want to stay calm and cool in certain situations, and to read over these reasons frequently so that they stay fixed and clear in your mind. The reasons you generate should be informed by the realistic consequences that might befall you should you allow yourself to get out of control. The following example reasons might serve to get you started:

  • I need to stay calm so I will not lose my job.
  • I need to stay calm so my children can learn that it is not good to act violently.
  • I need to stay cool so I do not end up in the hospital or in jail.
  • I need to stay calm so that my spouse will not divorce me.
  • I need to stay calm so I will not break things or knock holes in the wall, either of which will take money and time to repair
  • I need to stay calm so I will not alienate a close friend.