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18 techniques to relieve emotional stress

About techniques for relieving emotional stress

Conventionally, they can be divided into techniques that allow a person to regulate his own emotional state and techniques for relieving emotional stress in case of excess emotions or the manifestation of aggression on the part of the interlocutor.

Today we will talk about the latter.

Their possession largely determines our ability to cope with difficult situations, not only in a work environment but also in communication with friends and family.

Why relieve the emotional stress of the interlocutor

People are not machines. Any information that we exchange is perceived against an emotional background, which usually does not interfere with communication.

We can negotiate, give orders, receive assignments, negotiate. But if emotions go wild, we lose the ability to communicate constructively.

Emotions “block” the communication channel, so communication will be difficult until the “normal” emotional background is restored.

You will not be able to agree on anything until the interlocutor is ready to receive your speech. To achieve this, you need to be able to cope with emotions and create conditions for communication, even in a conflict situation.

How to Overcome Job Interview Anxiety

How to learn how to relieve tension in conflict situations

Many of their techniques, which will be discussed, we use unconsciously and intuitively.

It would be useful to know their full list to consciously apply in cases where your existing skills do not allow you to cope with the situation.

Choose the techniques you feel are most effective. Try them out in practice.

3 groups of stress relief techniques

I divided the 18 listed techniques into 3 groups:

  • Group 1 – non-verbal techniques to relieve emotional stress.
  • Group 2 – speech techniques for relieving emotional stress.
  • Group 3 – techniques that allow you to protect yourself from insults and “save face” without responding to the interlocutor with mutual aggression.

Non-verbal emotional stress reduction techniques

Allow the interlocutor to speak out

Do not try to outshout, interrupt, “talk”. Conducting a conversation in a raised voice, especially when screaming, requires a lot of nervous tension.

Once the person has said everything that he was going to say, you will have time to say whatever you want, and he will be ready to hear you. Until he says everything he planned to say or gets tired of pouring out emotions, any attempt to interrupt will cause even more aggression.

Listen carefully

Try to establish and maintain eye contact with your partner, nod, bend or lean forward, implicitly “join” – take a pose the same as the interlocutor.

Close the distance

At a distance of social communication (0.5-1.2 m), it is difficult to conduct a conversation in a raised voice.

Martial arts masters sharply reduce the distance, not allowing the enemy to kick, arm, knee, or elbow, close people hug each other to calm down, in communication with colleagues and clients, it is better to look for ways to resolve the conflict at a distance, not to show aggression and raising your voice is inappropriate and uncomfortable.

Smile, touch, bend over. Electronic means of communication depersonalize communication – it is easy to write rudeness in an e-mail, messenger, or correspondence on social networks, say something unpleasant on the phone and hang up easily.

Making the same decision in person is more difficult. If the conflict arose during correspondence or telephone communication, get a personal meeting.

Create spatial comfort for communication

If your opponent is standing, stand up, if sitting, sit down. If an obstacle separates – a table, chair, counter – remove or bypass. Offer to sit at an acute or 90-degree angle. If possible, sit next to it.

Speech techniques for reducing emotional stress

If you are unfamiliar, say your name and find out the name of the interlocutor

During the conversation, try to pronounce the interlocutor’s name as often as possible. Addressing by name does not allow communication to be impersonal. It is much easier to insult a stranger than someone you know, even if only for a few seconds.

Adjust the pace of the conversation

Slightly tighten the rhythm and tempo of your speech, if the interlocutor speaks too quickly and emotionally, pause in speech. A calm, measured speech is difficult to “load” with emotions.

Make it clear that you understand the importance of the problem and the willingness to resolve it

Tell your interlocutor about this.

Emphasize the importance of the other person.

Be prepared to say that you value him and his opinion and relationship with him are very important to you.

Tell us about your state of health, the state that the interlocutor called, if his status is higher, the position is stronger than yours

“I’m sorry, I’m offended, I’m unpleasant …”.

Tell us about the state of the interlocutor, if his status is lower, the position is weaker than yours

“I understand how unpleasant you are, it is insulting … I understand, you are disappointed …”

Refer to the facts – without emotion, speak out all the details of the situation that caused the conflict

“Let’s see what happened…”

Suggest a concrete way out of this situation

If this is not possible, promise to find it as soon as possible. Ask your interlocutor what way out of the situation he thinks is the best.

You don’t need to accept it – the main thing is that your communication partner will have to control emotions, otherwise it will be difficult for him to collect his thoughts.

Find and emphasize something in common

It can be a similarity of interests, opinions, goals, or even just a desire to quickly cope with the situation in which you find yourself – unity is very important. If “we” means “ours”, and ours cannot but agree.

Admit the interlocutor is right about what he is right about

If you know that this situation is your fault, admit it immediately. This will not change the situation, and the opponent will have fewer reasons for overly emotional communication.

He no longer needs to prove that he is not guilty and convince you to admit that you are wrong, he will be ready to discuss the problem on the merits.

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Face Saving Techniques

What to do when you are insulted? How to respond with dignity, while maintaining an inner calm and not losing face?

“External consent”

When someone says something unpleasant and offensive to you, it is assumed that you will lose control of yourself and reciprocate with the other person. Or start proving to him that he is wrong and his words are unfair.

The phrase “maybe you are right” does not mean that you agree, everyone understands this, but it deprives the interlocutor of the right to continue the verbal attack. In any case, it is obvious that repeating it is useless.


Saying out loud what the other person told you in the heat is very useful. It is unlikely that someone who has already prepared to hear “The fool himself!” ready to hear from you my words and ready to react to them.

Even if he has a large vocabulary, constantly hearing the echo of his words without getting the desired result in the form of an emotional reaction is unlikely to please the opponent.


“Do you really think so? Why?”

Part of My Personality

Someone doesn’t like something about you.

Acknowledge that this is acceptable. But this is your personal quality, which belongs to you, so you should not worry about someone else’s judgment about it. “Yes, I work slowly. But I try to do everything without mistakes, so I double-check my work.”

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