Faced with aggression? This is a difficult thing to handle. Naturally, our response is 'fight or flight.' When faced with agression we are naturally designed, due to our hormonal reactions, to immediatly react. Typically we will either freeze in shock or lash out at the aggressive person. This is the 'fight or flight response in action.
Our natural reaction is to have a personal and emotional response. To be hurt, insulted, shocked or angry. So how to handle aggression from others in a balanced way when our natural reaction is otherwise?
It is possible and advisable to take a moment to calm and centre yourself when faced with aggression from others. Keep your composure.
Fighting fire with fire is not going to calm the aggressive person. Think a moment before you say something you may later regret or will just add negatively to the situation.
You can actually calm the other person down or make them realise they are getting out of control simply by how you react to them.
This is something that people can be trained to do as part of their profession. Paramedics and the Police for example are highly trained in dealing with aggressive people as they deal with hurt, angry & intoxicated people as part of their job.
In some aggressive situations we have an opportunity to walk away or tell the person we will get back to them later. We can assure them that we have heard their grievance and give them a time frame as to when they can expect to hear back from us.
If the aggressive person simply wants to vent, and has no intentions of being reasonable, then you are in a bullying and harassment situation. Do not allow yourself to be intimidated by handling the situation as calmly as you can.
If the aggressive person has begun to be insulting to you personally then this is a situation that is already out of control. Personal insults are never ok.
It may be possible for you to say to this insulting aggressive person, 'I know you are frustrated and can see it, we will have to end this conversation if you continue to speak to me in this way, I am listening to you.'
Then, if the person continues, you have warned them and can back away from this situation, having kept your composure and dignity.
The other person is then in the position to have to realise that they allowed the situation to get out of hand with how they reacted and spoke to you. Therefore owing you an apology.
Of course, if you are in fact dealing with a bully or manipulator, any apology if ever there is one, would be for them to gain an advantage.
'Fighting fire with fire is not going to calm the aggressive person.'