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How to Deal With Short-tempered People

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Anyone who is living with a short-tempered person, or dealing with one, will tell you that it is not an easy road.

The short-tempered person doesn’t have to be your partner or friend; it could be an angry customer that an uber driver has to face, or it could be somebody who is having a bad day, and unfortunately, you bumped into accidentally.

According to a study “Almost a third of people polled (32%) say they have a close friend or family member who has trouble controlling their anger.”

When you get angry, stress hormones flood your body and shut down the rational part of your brain. Being angry is not the problem, but what and how you act afterward, that has its consequences. 

Short temper people usually do not realize what they have said or done while they are angry. During the episode of anger, the usual way they vent out is by hurting someone physically or verbally. 

Living or dealing with a short-tempered person is not an easy task. You have to be patient, let go of your ego, and not take it personally. 

Here are 5 ways to deal with short-tempered people.

1. Recognize the triggers

The first most important thing to do is to recognize what triggers the anger. Once you understand and know the trigger, talk the issue via an open and healthy discussion, without being judgemental. Share with them how their anger can be hurtful and how they could have dealt with it.

2. Give them space

 When the person is lashing out, make sure you do not engage with them. If you react in anger, things will turn ugly. It is better you let the person cool down and then handle the situation. Once the person is calm, the chances are he or she will realize their mistake themself and apologize. So it is important to give them space.

3. Don’t fight to win

The person who is angry will be throwing in arguments just to win. Make sure you do not do the same. Even if you know you are “right,” try not to bring that up at that moment as that only makes things worse. The angry person is most definitely not thinking rationally and will not move back, so it is better you let them win. It’s better than getting drawn into a battle where everyone loses.

4. Encourage and support

If anyone is aware, they have anger issues, support them, and help them in ways they can calm down. You can advise them in order to control their anger like meditation, breathing exercises. If they are fond of and good at something, they must be pushed in that direction eg, music, fine arts, or any other passion. You can support them by attending counseling with them.

5. Patience

The most important thing you can do at that time is to have patience. It may seem forever, but it will pass. You must have patience if the other does not have. You need to handle the other person’s personality with patience and calm. You do not need to approve of every outburst of theirs, but the key to deal with this is to avoid responding with equally nasty and hurtful comments.

6. Give them a smile

Even though angry people give out an obnoxious behavior, like loud shouting, clenching fists, pointing fingers, red faces and all, most angry people have a sad message. They are mostly hurt or feeling ignored, and as they do not know any other way to show these feelings, they depict these feelings through anger. Offer some reflective listening, validating their concerns to an extent. Tell them something nice and peaceful.

7. Get help

If all the above does not work and you feel that talking with the person has not helped either, ask them to get professional help in a healthy way. Watch out for signs like punching walls, breaking plates, or damaging property, assault or domestic violence, threats of self-harm, or thoughts of suicide. These are major signs for someone to get help. Getting help from a mental health expert can provide the right treatment and help you find ways of managing explosive anger.


Being angry or having a temper from time to time is normal, but when anger comes at the drop of a pin and is violent, it causes chaos in relationships. It is also not healthy and good for overall well-being as it can lead to high blood pressure, stress, and heart attack.

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Azza Shahid
Azza Shahid is the Marketing Consultant at Gigworker. Besides that, she is the mother of a 3-year-old daughter who is sparkly and adventurous when she is not throwing tantrums.

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