To be calm is not to feel nothing. It is to be more present to oneself, show a serene state of mind, feel good, in your head and in your skin. If this is no longer the case, this is first manifested by physical symptoms: accelerated heart rate, blood flow, tightness in the throat, knotted stomach, jerky breathing. Anger, anxiety, panic rise, and all negative emotions flow into your thoughtsfueling rumination.
Don’t react right away if you feel implosion threatening. First drop the tension: breathe hard 4 or 5 times; drink a glass of water and/or splash your face with water to bring your body temperature down. In a situation where you know you won’t be able to “escape”, a heated discussion with your boss for example, try to set aside some quiet time before the interview. If you feel your nerves in a ball, express your emotion by saying “I am surprised by what you are telling me” based on facts, or even ask to postpone the end of the discussion.
Isolation to get moving, or the ability to keep calm in stressful situations
If you feel negative emotions rising, such as fear or anger, change rooms to take a step back, both literally and figuratively, from the situation. Take a little air, breathe deeply, walk a little. This can help you change your psychological state, fight against your loss of calm and therefore reassure you to reason better. “Regular abdominal breathing and cardiac coherence exercises also help you learn to calm down quickly”, and therefore reduce bad moods, explains Yvan Paquet, researcher.
Another tip in such circumstances is to try to focus on something else: clinical psychologist Johanna Rozenblum suggests, for example,experience self-hypnosis : “Begin an inner journey to a destination that you know well and that has already provided you with well-being. Activate your senses, feel the smells, the luminosity, the softness of skin or the sound of a voice. If necessary, put all this in writing so that you can remember it better and dive back more easily next time into this inner journey”. This technique makes it possible to relive the happy emotionto take a step back and stay calm in the face of the negative emotion you were feeling, and to better analyze the situation.
Accept to feel your emotion, the trick to keep calm
While it’s best to postpone your behavioral response when you feel your nerves giving way, instead welcome the emotion that’s causing that reaction. A suppressed negative emotion only amplifies, grow, blocking you in a situation that does not suit you. “Ask yourself what information this anger or fear is conveying to you. Analyze what is going on inside you,” advises Yvan Paquet. For our experts, carrying out a physical activity or even practicing mindfulness meditation are good methods of acceptance and deepening of self-knowledge. Schedule regular appointments in your calendar for this!
How do we stay calm when someone upsets us? The response in writing
This is advice that is regularly given in this section, but writing, keeping a diary is a great way to vent your frustrations, and sometimes to evacuate them. It’s also a way to better visualize what puts you off, and to put in place tools to learn how to better manage your emotions. Generally, this will help you take a step back from the problematic situation and better manage it in the future.