I was listening to a radio talk show today. ESPN news of all places. And the host was talking about "then" and "now" situations. The dicussion just struck me as interesting. Maybe this will be something to consider before you react next time.
I'm sure this originally had something to do with sports and he went on and ranted about the latest athlete who did something really stupid. And isn't that how things always seem when you look back on them? Aren't they all "stupid"?
Basically he was saying back "then" when someone made you mad, you got in your car, you drove home, you picked up the rotary-dial phone (before my time), and by the time you started talking you had at least 20 minutes to cool off.
"Now" when someone pisses you off, you just pick up your cell phone-blackberry-treo-palm-pocket pc-internet enabled-always online-always connected device and give 'em hell right then and there. You let them have it full blast. You yell through your cell phone right on the spot that they miffed you.
There is no cooling off period. There is no time to let your mind think things through. There is no time to consider the consequences.
Battles are taking place when really they shouldn't be. What ever happened to "pick your battles wisely?"
Keep in mind that most online communication does not convey emotions very well. What comes accross to you in an email may seem completely different than the frame of reference it was written in. Take a little extra time to re-read, digest and thoughtfully convey yourself so that you are not being mis-interpreted.
Take extra time for "heated" discussions. Give yourself that cooling off period. Run things by your peers, friends and family. You might be surprised to find yourself calmer and cooler.