Most of us encounter hostile and aggressive behaviour at some point in our lives. You may come across people showing signs of frustration even at the slightest hint of an unpleasant situation. In fact, they may be oblivious to their behaviour and how their action might impact others. In such cases, it is necessary to make an assessment and take measures to prevent the situation from escalating. Be it in the personal or professional sphere, the ability to contain a difficult situation is a vital skill. It is important to effectively neutralize a problem situation to prevent emotional and physical harm.
Here are some top aggressive behaviour management tips that will help you tackle difficult situations with ease:
Listening to the aggressive person may seem like the last thing you’d want to do during a difficult situation. However, it is the first crucial step to solving the problem.
Some aggressive people are stubborn or difficult because they are not used to being listened to. Nobody understands them or respects their opinion. So, they believe raising their voice, being mean and aggressive can help them put their point across.
Showing respect and a small amount of empathy can make a world of difference. When you genuinely listen to the problems of such aggressive people, you show them that you are different from everyone else who treat them badly. You want to help them.
When aggressive people feel respected, they are likely to act less toxic. When you demonstrate that you empathize and understand how they feel, they are more likely to calm down and cooperate with you.
2. Remain calm and avoid arguing
It is normal and common to get angry when dealing with an aggressive person. You can get upset emotionally and personally. However, getting upset will cause more damage to the situation than help it.
Keep your emotions in check by taking deep breaths. You will be able to listen and understand the situation better when you are calm. You can remove yourself from the situation and understand what is going on. This perspective will allow you to remain in control and enable you to take better decisions.
3. Avoid judging
While it can be easy to stereotype an angry person and judge them accordingly, the same can affect your interaction with them. Stereotyping them can hinder your understanding of their problem and situation.
Like everyone else, aggressive people also deserve a chance. As mentioned earlier, you need to listen to what they want to say and acknowledge their opinion. If they are wrong, kindly explain to them why it is so. Some aggressive people calm down significantly when they are shown respect.
And remember, if a difficult person is acting aggressively, there might be something triggering this behaviour. Giving them the benefit of doubt is sometimes all you need to clear the situation.
4. Maintain eye contact
Maintaining eye contact during communication represents honesty and confidence. It is important to let the other person know that you genuinely want to help them but you are not afraid to do what’s right either.
Good eye contact will allow you to come across as a strong and stable individual. This will help develop trust from the aggressive individual who may be feeling insecure in that situation. When the individual trusts you, they can calm down and allow you to resolve their problem.
Eye contact also signifies respect for the other person. Avoiding eye contact will just make you look guilty and add further tension to the situation.
5. Know when silence is better
Some aggressive people can make it impossible to speak to them. They would refuse to listen to you and reveal your anger and frustration, making the situation worse.
In such a situation, there is no point in speaking. The best thing to do would be to stay silent and wait for the right time (when they are ready to listen) to share your thoughts. By avoiding to fall to their level, you take the high ground and can help solve the problem when the situation calms.
6. Do not demand compliance
People rarely calm down when you tell them to calm down. Aggressive people especially do not like being told what to do. You may make them angrier if you ask them to calm down.
So, instead of demanding them to relax, ask them about their reason for being upset and how you can help. It is better to have a conversation that will procure results rather than that which will make the situation worse.
Dealing with aggressive people is never easy, especially in industries like retail or marketing where customer impression and feedback is of crucial importance. In such situations, you will need to pull in all your skills to handle aggressive clients and customers and avoid damage to your brand, company or workspace.