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Desk Rage: How to Deal with It

Desk Rage: How to Deal with It

Christine on the Monster Blog

September 22, 2008

This article first appeared on the Monster Blog

You feel it building, slowly: That feeling of anger. Maybe someone stole your pen. Or perhaps someone told you to slow down in the parking lot when you were going 5 miles an hour (happened to me this morning). Maybe someone tried to pass your idea off as their own in a big meeting. Whatever the trigger, something makes you suddenly blow up at your coworkers, your boss or even the lady in the cafeteria.

Turns out there’s a name for this phenomenon: Desk rage. And it’s on the rise. No surprise there, what with the economy sputtering, everything being more expensive (including the gas it takes to get to work) and rudeness becoming the order of the day. The question is, in a workplace filled with pressures, how do you keep your cool?

As someone with a bit of a temper, here are my strategies for not blowing my top when things get heated:

-Counting to 10 before you react is good advice. If that doesn’t work, I take a walk. This allows your emotions to settle before they boil over and your logical side to come up with a more reasonable response.

-Some rudeness can be ignored, but some kinds shouldn’t be. At an old job, someone I worked with used to call me screaming about some small matter. After discussing it with my boss, I made it clear to this person that yelling was not appropriate. And it stopped.

-If you feel like you’re angry all the time, at everyone, take a look at yourself. Perhaps rather than everyone else being jerks, something is eating you. Finding and addressing the problem can help make you more productive.

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