Discussion Topic

Upset Over Everything

Posted on 10/08/13, 09:56 am
It seems like I get so angry and upset over everyday problems. My vet may have lost my cat's records and the receptionist didn't seem to care and was rude to me. My heart is still racing from the phone conversation (happened an hour ago) and I'm shaking with anger. I'm not so angry about the mishap as the lack of concern and outright rudeness. I've had to deal with rude people a lot lately and I'm left upset for weeks or even months over every incident. Most people would shrug these things off but I replay them over and over. Does anybody else have this problem? Any suggestions for how to cope?
Showing 8 Replies
  • Reply #1 10/08/13  2:06pm
    Shedding negative emotions, seven steps to healthy anger release:
    1. Recognize the anger you are feeling. That may sound simple enough, but in all too many cases it's the biggest obstacle we face.
    2. Decide what made you angry. Ask yourself the very important question: Is this worth getting angry over? A small annoyance that's got you angry-as it is in the majority of angry episodes- forget it. If you can't forget it, then perhaps the source of your anger goes beyond this simple incident. Ferret out the underlying cause of your hostility. Bring your feelings to the surface and deal with them.
    3. Count to ten. Or practice some form of mental relaxation. Calm down first, then discuss the conflict rationally.
    4. Give the "provoker" the benefit of the doubt. In stead of inflaming your anger by feeding yourself such thoughts as , "Who does he think he is for treating me in this underhanded way!" suggest to yourself that perhaps this person is having a bad day. Come up with a reasonable justification for the behavior- something that you can understand and relate to.
    5. Make your grievance known without attacking the other person. Register your complaints using "I" instead of "you." Instead of saying, You're acting unfairly and you're wrong, " it's far more effective to say, "I feel hurt. What you're doing doesn't take my needs into account.
    6. Listen. Another tough technique to master. Listen hard. and Understand. This is the key step in resolving the conflict. And resolving the conflict is, after all , the key to safely diffusing your anger.
    7. Forgive. 'When you forgive someone (and this includes yourself), many clearly positive psychological and physiological changes take place. You will feel more relaxed, your heart and blood pressure rate will drop, you will breathe a little easier etc..

    The purpose of anger is to let your grievance known and if the grievance is not confronted it will not matter whether the anger is kept in, let out, or wrapped in red ribbons and dropped off at the door step. Expressing anger is necessary for good health.
    I hope you feel better soon. Hugs.



  • Reply #2 10/08/13  4:15pm
    Thank you for the tips nabby1. I will be mindful of these and try to implement when the situation allows. Anger serves a purpose when i channel it correctly (calmly convinced the vet office staff to search for the records and they were found!) but the excess can be harmful.
  • Reply #3 10/08/13  10:25pm
    andms ... welcome! I also re-play negative experiences over & over. I'm glad the vet's office got things sorted out. nabby1, thanks for the list. It seems I need to keep being reminded of these suggestions. It might be a good idea for me to make a copy so I can re-read it every day. One thing I do remember all the time it to tell myself "perhaps the other person is just having a bad day". That is really helpful.
  • Reply #4 10/11/13  10:41am
    Great tips nabby and Janvier. I agree, trying to be considerate of others is a good thing.

    To be fair, it is very hard to deal with upset customers, I have to do it in my job too. Sometimes (and I don't mean you here, I am talking in general) people are very upset for whatever reason, and whatever the person tells them is not enough for them as they are lost in their emotions and cannot step back and see things objectively. If someone is that upset, it is a real skill to calm them down. However much you apologize or explain, they cannot hear you. I have had people on the phone in tears before, it is upsetting for the employee too, as it might not be your fault they are upset but you feel it is, and you feel a failure because you cannot help them. As an employee you are constrained by whatever rules your employer imposes, however upset someone might be, if you cannot help them then you cannot help them.

    One thing that helps me is to name my emotions. I step back and say 'what do I feel and why?' For example 'I am angry because the vet lost my cat's records and don't seem to care. I am worried about what might happen'. Sometimes just naming it can really help.And realizing the size of the problems in the scheme of things. What is the worst that can happen? Maybe your cat is inoculated twice for something as they have no record of whether it happened. Once you face the worst, it could be it isn't that bad, or there is something you can do to prepare, Once you have done that, the next question is, why worry? If it is under your control, and there is something you can do, then do it. if it is out of your control, then logically, what can worrying achieve? Nothing, except to make you feel miserable.

    Another thing - people won't necessarily validate your emotions. They respond in their own way, and that is their choice, as it is your choice how you respond to them. You felt angry and worried, so you expected them to acknowledge that or respond to it in a certain way, in order to make you feel it was a valid feeling to have. But they didn't. That doesn't mean your feelings are any less valid - it was a worrying thing to happen. So have confidence that your feelings are valid, regardless of whether others respond how you expect them to.

    Meditation and mindfulness are very helpful to a lot of people. Keep yourself busy so you don't have a chance to brood or obsess over things. Practice gratitude daily - think of say, 5 things you are grateful for each day and realize how lucky you are. Everyone in this group, for example, has access to a computer and the internet - many many people even in prosperous countries do not have those luxuries. We also have had access to sufficient training and experience so that we are confident in knowing how to access this website and post on it. We have hands to type and eyes to read the screen.

    I also find it helpful to remember 'this too shall pass' - whatever you are going through, it will be over in time, as you have discovered with the records. Things like that are practical issues, not emotional ones - the records will either be found (as they indeed were) or not, in which case some other action needs to be taken.

    It may not seem like you are in control of your thoughts. But you are. Mindfulness teaches, among other things, that we are not our thoughts and we do not have to interact with them. It is possible to just observe them, watch them pass. This sort of skill might be helpful to you.
  • Reply #5 10/11/13  12:01pm
    When I say I was upset, I meant after the fact. I was not angry when speaking to this person. I have worked in a similar role dealing with customers, and was always polite so guess I'm particularly sensitive to how I interact. I feel like there are so many bad customer stories out there but customers that get poor treatment are treated as liars or get accused of exaggerating.
  • Reply #6 10/11/13  12:45pm
    Sounds like you need to do some growing out in the assertive direction. I used to be like that and still can be at time ... just going into a safety zone by not explaining nor expressing ... keeping that role of MY EXPERIENCE AND CONCERNS(FEELINGS) ARE NOT TO BE SEEN NOR HEARD NOR EXPRESSED, they are locked up until I get home where they spin out all over the place. In the mean time I suppressed them in order to not make a fuss. NOT as in NOT ANY MORE.

    I do work with the public and it goes both ways. When I am in the directors seat I have to both be available to manage people issues and draw boundaries as to what is my job ... on the other hand when I am the student I have to be smart about asking for what I need and pay for but of course not figuring that all my stuff is the other person stuff to sort through with me.

    When I am director I meet people that want all of my attention to their needs above and beyond call of duty
    when I am in the position of being directed I see that I am still in charge of what I need to have happen. So really there is balance.

    I interpret your statements in that you are not balancing but rather keeping the one role up all the time and in doing so ... in pleasing every one momentarily ... You later come to blow up because stuff has been suppressed. In other words you got to learn to get a little bigger and dynamic in your roles. Pleasing others, keeping subdued and quiet, remaining with out expressing need or opinion really does not do the world a whole lot of good. But I understand that position and I have lived it for quite some time.

    I also am really aware of being in the face of a fool person that will not do their job and in that I step back realizing that that person lack of capabilities is not only statement on my reality.

    In other words if some one can not help me with my concerns over the phone then find some one else to do the job. BUT make sure to state the business you need addressed. do not expect all or many people to figure it out or just know what is appropriate.

  • Reply #7 10/11/13  6:15pm
    IMO......clerks,waitresses, customer service people and a lot of the medical profession are getting pretty rude....actually I was just talking to my husband about this very thing. I do not accept the fact that because I am HSP I am just more sensitive to this. People are so unhappy in general way more than they used to be.

    I am not certain what to do but no tips and complaining to mgmt may help.....you would think all these people donate their time. I am sure the state of the economy does not help....then there is our wonderful, talented and experienced president stirring up a mess. (That is a discussion best not had)
  • Reply #8 10/11/13  10:47pm
    I get easily upset over things like people honking at me in traffic. I takes maybe an hour or so and then I try to move on. I breathe in "fading away," exhale "world peace."

Welcome

Join This Group

The highly sensitive person (or HSP) is someone who cares deeply about everything ... feels emotions with great intensity ... is highly conscientious ... has a rich and complex inner life ... is very intuitive ... is often creative in a variety of ways... is easily overwhelmed and/or overstimulated. A HSP needs lots of quiet time,space, and freedom. If this sounds familiar ... you are welcome to join us.