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How to recover after losing your temper

Let’s start with sorry

You know that feeling? When your partner forgets to take the chicken out of the freezer? Or your toddler refuses to wear socks, like ever again? Or your teenager learns how to slam their door? And all you want to do is scream into a pillow?

We all get frustrated. And no matter how much we try to breathe through it, we all blow up sometimes. Today’s newsletter is all about how to bounce back after you lose your cool. Let’s get real—and have a good time doing it!


We're All Just Doing Our Best

The truth is…we all have moments when our temper gets the best of us. We shout when we should have empathized. We slam the door when we should have reached out. We say “dinner’s at 7” instead of “I’m sorry.”

How many times have we talked about how to handle your toddler’s “big feelings” in this newsletter? A lot…and now it’s time to talk about how to handle yours. Because your feelings matter too.

Ready to learn how to understand, validate, and recover from those I’m-about-to-blow moments? We did some research and here’s the 411:

Get quiet

Here’s our official case for implementing adult time out.

After a burst of emotion, give yourself and whomever you were sparring with the opportunity to mellow out. Why?

  • In the heat of the moment, we often say or do things we don’t mean.

  • Five or 10 minutes of deep breathing can help get the situation—whatever it was that needs resolving—back on track.

Get curious

Once you’re back to being cool as a cucumber? Get curious about where the emotions came from. Was it really your spouse forgetting to put down the toilet seat, or are you feeling under-appreciated for how hard you work to keep the bathroom tidy?

Identifying the root cause of big feelings—from using words to describe them to exploring the physical sensations they might stir—helps us get and stay grounded in our bodies and brains.

Get compassionate

Whether it’s getting down to your child’s level after yelling or squeezing your partner's hand after an argument, small actions build connection and remind all parties involved that no matter what was said…the love and compassion aren’t going anywhere.

And that means for you, too. Treat yourself with the understanding you’d extend to your loved ones. You likely had a valid reason to get upset. Think of your anger as a person who needs a little attention—ignoring or downplaying that need doesn’t fix the problem.

Give two words, seven letters

Saying “I’m sorry” is a great way to begin the healing process and signal to yourself and your loved ones that it’s time to move forward. And modeling that positive behavior—I felt, I learned, I’m ready to grow—is great for any wide-eyed little ones.

The big picture?

There’s bad news: You will get frustrated and lose your cool again, even if you feel super zen in the aftermath of an emotional situation.

There’s good news: You’re equipped to handle big feelings. And maybe you can identify the things that send smoke out of your ears and set a plan for when they happen again, like…

  • Having a cool down practice or a meditation to turn to when things get dicey

  • Setting and holding boundaries for yourself to avoid triggers

  • Using positive, loving self-talk—try “would you say that to your best friend?”

  • Taking time to yourself

When in doubt, celebrate the small wins and have patience when things get rocky. Learn when you can. Love always.

Celebs are fans, too! If you’ve ever heard Adele talk about Beyoncé, you know she is an active member of the Beyhive! Check out this list of moments when celebs met their own celebrity idols. 😍

Were the '80s actually better? Or did they just turn us into maladjusted adults? Classic Nerd seeks to answer questions like these and much more, with old-school takes and trivia about nerdy topics of yesteryear. Unleash your outer nerd by subscribing here.

Box it up. Ever heard of box breathing? This is a skill I learned recently and it can make a major difference in how I’m feeling in moments of stress and anxiety. This YouTube video breaks it down easily.

Carry on. You’re doing better than you know. Have a great week!