Anger Management

I frequently argue and fight with my roommates over silly things. How can I manage this during COVID-19?

While we stay home to remain safe during the current pandemic, we are spending far more time than usual with families/ roommates. For some, it is a welcome opportunity to be together during an anxious time, but for others, this forced togetherness can also be a source of stress and anger. While these are normal emotions, if not managed properly, they can harm both our health and our relationships.

Here are some coping strategies.

  • Identify situational triggers and avoid them as much as possible.
  • Acknowledge emotional reactions in your body.
  • Accept your emotions, step away from the situation, and try relaxation methods to prevent your irritation from escalating.
  • Try thinking from the other person’s perspective.
  • Remember you have a choice. Choose to act wisely.
I am working from home these days and I often feel angry with my spouse and children for simple mistakes. This is affecting our family life, what can I do?

Working from home during the COVID-19 crisis comes with many challenges – including having your spouse & kids around all the time. Being unable to focus on work or give it your complete attention can be quite frustrating.

Here are some strategies to help you cope:

  • Positive communication:
    Channelize your feelings openly and spend quality time with your partner and other family members.
  • Make a plan:
    Have a family meeting and work out a schedule for each family member that includes work/school work, exercise and screen time. Planning your routine together respecting individual space will allow everyone to get a sense of control over a challenging situation.
  • Look for silver linings:
    This is the time to show our children how to be resilient and navigate through challenges in life.
  • Managing self-care:
    Do more of what makes you happy. Yoga, meditation and breathing exercises can also help manage negative emotions like anger. You could also read self-development / motivational books or listen to podcasts.
I used to get along well with my office mates before but it has become a struggle these days. How can I stay calm and avoid conflicts with my colleagues?

Even under the best circumstances, remote work is not without challenges. Amid anxiety over COVID-19, market and economic conditions, homeschooling of children makes it a fertile ground for conflict.

Here are some ways you can deal with this:

  • Be particular about how, when and what you communicate with your colleagues. Check on their availability and convenience considering the presence of other members at home.
  • Set realistic expectations from others, give some leeway and appropriate guidance as and when required.
  • Be mindful of feelings – your own as well as of other people’s. If you are in a bad mood, hold off non-essential communication until you get a better handle on your emotions.
  • Use your curiosity and develop empathetic understanding. Simulate your office lunch-time conversations or chats over coffee-breaks to maintain good rapport.

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