Short fuse? long fuse?


Are you on a short fuse or a long fuse? In other words do you lose your temper quickly or do you remain calm in times of provocation and then ‘explode’ later?


I worked in my sister-in-law’s private company for a couple of weeks when she was short on help and I was short on money. My brother warned her about me before I arrived.

When my brother didn’t like something that happened, he tended to get angry right away. He told his wife – and he’s right – that when I don’t like something someone has done, I wait. First I think the person has only made a mistake, or that it’s a one-time occurrence. I look for a good reason why the person must have done what she did. Then I let the person do it to me again and again and again, until I realize it wasn’t a mistake, and after that I explode.

Sometimes I pretend to lose my temper when I really haven’t. I had a coworker once who used to be sloppy in a way that made it difficult for other people to do their work. For example, she never felt like writing the correct network file path down when she passed work on to the next person, so the next person could never find the file. This was catastrophic when there was a tight deadline and the woman had left for the day. She also would make sloppy design mistakes in Quark XPress and expect editors to fix them for her. I asked her politely to be more careful with this and that for about six months, but it never did any good. Finally, I went to her office, pretended I was in a rage, and shouted at her. This mostly fixed the problem.

My fuses don’t blow so easily these days. They did when my children were younger and sometimes less manageable – and I had less patience with everything and was more impulsive (God, have I really changed all that much?). And my kids could be a bit of a handful – have I already said that?

On the whole, I try to keep a cool head and avoid fighting at all costs (I hate arguments), which isn’t always easy. Maybe that’s why I need to do all that singing and dancing to let out the negative feelings!


Formerly and nowadays I?m that unpatient person. The difference between earlier days and today is that I learned having that under control. :roll: Utmost, at least! :lol: