There is tremendous power to be gained from the pause.
It certainly isn't easy to do because our instinct is to want to react. However, pausing to think prior to reacting is one of the most effective ways to gain personal control as well as situational-control which is why comfort in the pause (and with the silence that comes with it), is a strong indicator of mental strength & maturity.
When your emotions are elevated, your heart rate increases because your body is trying to get more oxygen-rich blood to your major muscles so that you can fight, run, or hold still. This depletes your brain of oxygen making it nearly impossible to think clearly.
In most cases, the most appropriate response for the situation in which you find yourself is NOT to engage in a physical fight - or - freeze like a deer in headlights - or - sprint away like a rabbit soon to become a coyote's dinner. No, in these moments, what you really need is for oxygen to quickly return to your brain so that you can begin thinking objectively and rationally again.
The most effective way to make this happen is to consciously slow your breathing. This can be done in the moment without having to remove yourself from the situation. Simply inhale through your nose for a count of three to five. Then, exhale through your mouth for the same count. This will...
Find your bearings, refocus your mind, and return to a place of objective and rational thinking by reflecting on the various questions below.
Stay focused on the situation and the business you are addressing and consciously let go of emotions that are making it difficult to think objectively.
And remember that those with whom you're interacting are human too. Be aware of their emotions and where they might be coming from, but don't allow them to cloud your decision-making.
Get your head straight by challenging your internal dialogue...
Put things back into proper perspective by gathering the facts...
Pulling It All Together
The next time you're faced with a stress, anxiety, fear, frustration, anger, panic, or dread-inducing situation, pop a PBR to get your head straight and put the situation into proper perspective. Then, with a much more informed and confident state of mind, you can say, "Hold my beer. I've got this!" and really mean it!