Ways to Handle and Diffuse Aggressive Behavior Safely

by Erika Slater

Aggressive Behavior Concept Image
Have you ever found yourself in an uncomfortable situation where another person’s emotions were getting out of control – potentially violent towards you?

What likely started out as an innocent, or even a minor conflicting incident quickly turned into a volcano about to erupt. Even though you were able to keep your own emotions in check, the other person just seems to be sitting on a keg of dynamite, apparently about to explode at any moment.

Just to be clear here I’m not talking about some salesperson that went to a training class where the guru told them you need to be aggressive in order to get the sale. I’m talking about a person who has it in for you personally at that point in time!

What the heck can you do to prevent this from escalating into a major verbal, even potential physical attack on you?



Even though the other person may seem out of control, the key is for you stay in control. The only thing you can control in this moment is the thoughts leading to your own emotions. Keep cool, or keep the short fuse burning to the powder keg of dynamite…the choice is yours!

What can you do, or are you willing to do?

Aggression in Traffic Jam ImageIndividuals who possess aggressive behavior usually possess what are called ‘triggers’. Triggers are usually things that set someone off easily, or repeatedly. Triggers can be people, things or situations that over a period of time become habitual for the individual.

For example, bumper to bumper traffic can be a trigger for some. Noise or rude people can be another trigger for others. Interestingly, people and situations that one knows best are usually the greatest triggers as they become well known, and they can even expect these situations or people to set them off.

When you have a discussion with someone who possesses aggressive behavior and you’re one of their ‘triggers’, the potential for it escalating into an aggressive, even volatile situation increases.

However, the only thing you can control is yourself, and whether or not you’re going to engage the situation, or de-escalate it.

Often times when others start to argue with you, or appear to ‘attack’ you verbally, your human nature is to ‘fight’ back and say things in the heat of the moment.

To feel or be insulted isn’t a pleasant feeling, so it’s easier to fire back at the other person. It may even make you “feel better” in that brief moment.

Before you know, it’s gotten out of hand and you can’t take back what you’ve said and vice versa. This is when aggression is most likely to arise.

Avoidance Behavior Concept ImageThe key is not to get to this point.

This is your make or break point – you can make it into an argument, or break free and avoid the conflict growing worse.

Remember when an argument develops beyond a discussion and becomes emotional and even violent consider what you’re trying to achieve by staying in the moment arguing? Do you want to win the argument? If you do then just remember nobody really wins an intense argument. Oh, the other person may cave in making you think you won, but in reality under bated breath and behind the scenes you didn’t change their mind one iota.

So what can you do to move beyond hopeless and potentially dangerous aggression?



Here a few simple strategies to employ when you realize you’re confronting aggressive behavior.

  1. Remove yourself from the situation – “Get out of Dodge” as quickly as you can. Make an excuse or no excuse and just leave quietly if you can. Live another day to have more pleasant relationships with others who respect you.
  2. Count to ten slowly before you explode after somebody says or does something to infuriate you. Usually after 10 seconds it’s enough to have a clear head and respond thoughtfully. If you still feel like you want to “wring their neck” then resort to tactic #1 – leave Dodge City.
  3. Ask questions to put the focus back on the other person. Many people switch into aggressive behavior by focusing the attention on somebody else in an attempt to make them uncomfortable and show up their weaknesses. By asking positive questions you can switch the spotlight back on them.
  4. Before you respond “put yourself in the other person’s shoes.” If you know them personally and about their background maybe they grew up in an environment or family causing this behavior. This can also be true if it’s obvious the person is having mental health issues. Empathy can be a powerful tool in resolving conflicts. In the clear light of day you can decide if you want to continue the relationship.

Arguing Avoidance Concept ImageThe key is to avoid getting into repetitive argumentative situations with the same individuals or similar situations.

If you can’t achieve this on your own through your own mind-set or willpower, then consider using hypnosis.

A skilled hypnotherapist can help you avoid these types of situations, or getting into it with individuals who like to argue, by placing in your unconscious mind post-hypnotic suggestions which stop you from engaging in aggressive and conflicting situations once they start.

In the past you may have unconsciously or even consciously gotten into these situations.

Hypnosis will help stop you from going there again or even the first time. If you want to consider working directly with me through my online or in-office sessions then check out my Hypnosis Services or if you’ve a specific need around this topic then contact me here.

Alternatively, if you live or work in an environment where you want to be able to react better to aggressive behavior and are considering a self-hypnosis product, then check out this hypnosis download session here to see if it can help you >>>



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