Have you ever been in a conversation with someone, and before you know it, they are screaming at the top of their lungs? Or have you ever had a boss, who the minute they felt their authority was threatened, they start name-calling and cursing at people?
Today I am going to be unpacking the best way to deal with people with explosive boundaries, and more specifically people who respond EXPLOSIVELY to your boundaries or to feeling threatened. In this video, I cover:
- How you may have drawn explosive people into your life
- Your boundary blueprint
- Three questions to ask yourself when encountering explosive people
- Fight or flight response to explosive boundaries
- How to stay calm through the explosive boundary storm
Let’s start with the issue of drawing these kinds of people into your life. You have been attracting people with this explosive boundary style for a reason. We need to look at your boundary blueprint and get clear about why these people are familiar to you. What is your past experience with rage and explosive anger? When you understand your own history, you can understand why you are responding the way you are to explosive people today. Download the below Cheat Sheet: Exploring Explosive Boundaries now to answer more questions for a deeper dive into your boundary blueprint in the area.
Next, I want to cover our natural and human flight or fight response to explosive people. As human beings, this response was a primal survival instinct. When we are in this mode, our pupils dilate, hearts beat faster, the blood in our bodies goes to our limbs so we can run or fight if we need to, we get focused and may start to sweat. In a split second, your body prepares to fight or flee. Although this was an adaptive response to danger centuries ago, it becomes maladaptive to respond to an angry boss as though they were a saber-toothed tiger. You have to be able to make the distinction between an unpleasant exchange and actual danger. Being in a state of fight or flight too often is bad for your health and your mind.
When you are in the situation with an explosive person, the key is to stay calm. Imagine that person as a toddler having a temper tantrum. They do not have control of themselves and no one can reason with them. Stay level-headed, breathe deep and try not to add fuel to the explosive fire as it will only escalate the situation. You can learn to de-escalate the situation by saying the person’s name and getting their attention. Sometimes saying the person’s name can stop them from spiraling further. You can say “let’s stop because no progress is going to be made right here, right now.” You can also say “Hey, I’m here to be a part of the solution, but not like this.” You need to assess if it is necessary for you to remove yourself from the situation to remain safe. State that you are taking a break and will be back. Turn around and leave. This is like hitting the reset button, which gives everyone a break. Draw your boundary that clearly illustrates, if they become too explosive, hot or abusive, you are going to remove yourself from the situation.
You can download the Cheat Sheet: Exploring Explosive Boundaries below for more tips on how to handle people. Plus a FREE energy exercise to calm your fight or flight response from my pal and energy expert, Lara Riggio, from The Lara Touch! As well as view my video guide here.
There are many tactics you can use, but the most important thing to remember when encountering an explosive boundary person is to respond instead of react.
Terri Cole is a licensed psychotherapist, transformation coach, and an expert at turning fear into freedom. Sign up for Terri’s weekly Newsletter, check out her blog and follow her on Twitter.