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10 Things Only People Who Seldom Get Angry Would Understand

10 Things Only People Who Seldom Get Angry Would Understand

There are many instances in life where your patience and temper will constantly be tested. Take for instance the scenario where someone cuts you off in traffic, takes the parking space you were waiting for, or messes up paperwork that you just meticulously placed in order. When these types of daily instances occur, it is natural and somewhat easy to lose our tempers and yell at the parties responsible for the violations. However, there are individuals who find the best course of action to be remaining level-headed and maintaining composure. For these individuals, to get mad would be too easy, and they would rather react in a civil manner and decide the best course of action. For those who get angry easily, it is not wrong to display emotions, but those who seldom get angry choose to handle frustrating situations in a different manner.

1. They are more understanding

Before reacting to a situation, individuals who seldom get angry attempt to understand the position of the conflicting party. They realize that it would be easy to react angrily to a situation, but they attempt to understand the variables that created the situation. It is not always easy to understand the motives of everyone, but they do their best to get to the root cause of a conflict. In addition, when they realize that the misunderstanding was a mistake, they are usually more compassionate and let the problem become a learning situation.

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2. They find themselves focused on solutions

How many times in life have you been subjected to a parent, coach, or boss with a face flushed in anger and yelling commands in response to an issue that comes up? When you stop and think about the situation, what is really solved by yelling at someone or demanding change through a raised voice? After all the yelling, the problem still exists and nothing has progressed towards a solution. People who seldom react with anger, focus on solving the issue as soon as it occurs. All yelling at people will do is create anger and make them not want to work with the team. Instead, use the time to focus on creating steps towards the solution and deciding the best course of action.

3. They are misunderstood as not caring enough

One of the most common misconceptions about people who don’t display strong emotions and remain calm is that they lack passion or care. This can be completely unfair and frustrating to people who remain calm in the face of pressure. Just because someone doesn’t display strong emotion outwardly, doesn’t mean that they aren’t internalizing the issue. Most calm individuals are amongst the most passionate about their work, hobbies, and everyday life. However, they understand the need to maintain a solid foundation and be reasonable.

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4. They are mistaken as pushovers

Sometimes people mistake calm individuals as pushovers or too nice. This couldn’t be further from the truth. People who rarely react with anger are some of the strongest people you will ever come across. Don’t be deceived into thinking that they won’t mind if you try to take advantage or use them for your benefit. They may not react angrily, but they will usually stand up for themselves in a stern manner.

5. They are usually the most reasonable in their social circles

Every social circle is comprised of many different personality types. There are emotional, sensitive, logical, and mellow types. The mellow types are usually the most easygoing and get along with everyone in the group. When there is a tough decision to be made or if a conflict arises in the group, the mellow individual will be at the center attempting to solve the issue. This is because they usually hold a diplomatic temperament and like to hear all sides out before reaching a conclusion.

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6. They know that reacting angrily won’t solve anything

Huffing and puffing, pacing back and forth across a room doesn’t accomplish much. You internalize something hastily until you work yourself into an anger fueled tirade. All that you are doing is negatively affecting your own mood, which clouds your best judgment and decision making ability. Many times people overreact to a situation that really isn’t as problematic or shouldn’t be cared about as much. By reacting with anger, you are simply keeping yourself stagnant.

7. They know they control their reactions

The calm mannered individual knows that they can only control so much in life. You can’t control the actions of others or the world around you. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “life is 90% the way you react to what happens to you.” You simply need to understand the cards that you have been dealt. In order to be strong-willed, you need to control your reactions and emotions. The way you react and adapt to problematic situations helps build the character you wish to become.

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8. They realize it’s not always easy to remain so calm

It is not always so easy to remain civil when we feel slighted or taken advantage of. Many assume that mellow people are always so happy and never feel frustrated. However, it is easily one of the hardest things to do in life when faced with conflict and problems. Everyday life is full of troubles, and they realize that burdening others with their problems or losing control is not beneficial. By angrily creating a scene, you are showing that you have lost control of a situation.

9. They learn to not be manipulated

This is easily connected to the idea that people who seldom get angry are mistakenly thought of as pushovers. Sometimes mellow people are seen as people who can be easily fooled or deceived due to their calm disposition. However, they can usually detect when others are attempting to use or take advantage of them. Instead of reacting angrily, they will usually cut off contact with offending parties.

10. They make the best leaders

Individuals who maintain a cool demeanor can be looked towards in times of distress or conflict. They realize that anger and conflict does not build teams or motivate individuals to work towards a goal. In order to be productive and a leader, you need to remain calm and hold your frame. Even though they might not be the most emotional, they still demonstrate passion in other ways. It is always important to portray a level-headedness, and the person who seldom reacts with anger understands this. Their level-headedness can be a calming trait in a leader.

Featured photo credit: The 99Fridays Bartenders/Joi Ito via imcreator.com

More by this author

Mark Ortega

Professor of English

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Last Updated on January 15, 2021

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

Posture

First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

  • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
  • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
  • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
  • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

Facial Expressions

Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

  • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
  • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
  • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

2. Relax Your Face

New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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3. Improve Your Eye Contact

Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

3. Smile More

There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

4. Hand Gestures

Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

5. Enhance Your Handshake

In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

“Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

Final Takeaways

Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

Reference

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