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13 August 2018,

Behind Most Anger is Fear

13 August 2018

My friend lashed out at his wife when she drove slightly into another lane on the highway. He scolded her and told her she needed to be more careful. She felt awful for the way he raised his voice. He later apologized once he realised that behind his anger was a fear for her getting hurt. He cared for her so much that his fear was expressed into anger.

Most angry moments result from a certain fear we have. Usually our lashing out is not about the other person. And by mindfully setting apart what is the fact and what is our perception of the fact, we can be more aware of the triggers within ourselves that cause us to behave a certain way.


Example :

Staff makes a mistake.

We lash out, raise voice, scolds them repeatedly, negative body language, brings up similar past issues… to the point when this staff feels incompetent and offended.

Step back and take a Mindful Minute.

What happened? Look at the Facts


Staff did something that was different from what I expected.

What did I perceive happened? Look at my worries and fears that was triggered by the fact

I label it a mistake. I worry it will ruin our future plan. I worry it will negatively impact the rest of the organization. I fear our company is at risk. I worry.. I fear.. I …


What is the positive intention of my behavior?

How was that my cry for help?


I want them to know that it should not be done that way.. I want them to understand how I think. I want them to help me make this company better. Furthermore I have been stressed abt this for a long time and lashing out was just this pent up fear bursting within me.


How could I have handled it differently?

What other alternative behaviors could I have used?


Not raising my voice and negative body language because that just dilutes my message. Expressing that I am concerned and ask for help, instead of scolding.


What do I need to correct about my relationship now?

Go back to my staff and apologize for the behavior I displayed. Calmly express my concern and ask for help.


The above is just an example. The bolded questions can be used for your own Mindful Minute.

Have a mindful day.

Coach Cynthia Wihardja


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