U.S. News & World Report:
Telling yourself that an angry person is just having a bad day and that it’s not about you can help take the sting out of their ire, a new study suggests.
This strategy of finding another way to regard an angry person is an approach commonly suggested in cognitive behavioral therapy. For example, you can tell yourself that the angry person has just lost his dog or received bad news and is taking it out on you.
Stanford University researchers conducted two experiments to examine the speed and efficiency of this process of reappraising others’ emotions.
In one experiment, participants were upset when they were shown a picture of an angry face. But when some of them were told to consider that the person had had a bad day and saw the same angry face again, it had less impact.
Participants who were told to just feel the emotions triggered by the angry face continued to be upset when they saw it again.
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