4 reasons to not write an email when you are angry

4 reasons to not write an email when you are angryEmail when you are angry? Everyone has done it at least once in their life but there are people who make a habit of sending off angry, nasty emails when they should stay far away from the computer.

As a job seeker or entrepreneur in a very technological world, communication in writing can follow you for a very long time.

This same advice is applicable to Twitter, Facebook, and all other social media. If you are prone to writing the email blast, the whining or attacking Facebook update, or the condemning tweet, just stop right now.

When should you not write the email?

  1. When you are tired or hungry — all of us hit the wall now and then, we need sleep or food but we press on. Something is bugging us and we decide that we should just put it in an email.
  2. When you are overwhelmed — Again, when we are overloaded, things just look worse. We decide to write that email and it is not a nice email at all!
  3. When you don’t have all the facts — sometimes you think you know what is going on so you just blast away and if you had bothered to ask a question nicely, you wouldn’t have had a problem at all.

4 reasons to not write an email when you are angry

  1. Emails are a written record. They can be used in court and they certainly can be shared with other people.
  2. You could lose your job. Emails even if not written to your boss can be used against you.
  3. You may break a relationship that could have been valuable. Whether it is business or personal, you really should be sure that you are ready to face the consequences of loss of that relationship.
  4. You may damage future opportunities for yourself. In a day and age when you really want to be able to grow community, going off at someone who could have been your advocate is a bad idea.

What should you do instead of writing the email?

  1. Get the rest you need. Being overtired usually means that you aren’t thinking straight.
  2. If you really can’t get it out of your head, write it on paper with a pen or pencil. As long as it isn’t in the computer, it can’t accidentally get sent. If you are one of those who writes things you don’t plan to send, keep it off the computer. Imagine the horror if you accidentally send the rant you never intended to send.
  3. Talk to someone who is qualified to help you sort through the problem. Another perspective will help you figure it out.

The complications of our electronic world means that you need to be ever-vigilant in what you say and where you say it. Your career or business may depend on it.

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  1. Mark Harai (@Mark_Harai) on February 18, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    This is solid (wise) advice, Julie! : ) Only fools act without thinking through the consequences.

  2. davinahaisell on February 18, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    Very good advice, Julie. I believe we will feel better about ourselves too, if we avoid emailing something we might later regret.

    • Julie Walraven on February 18, 2013 at 2:15 pm

      Exactly, Davina! Going backwards to try to fix a problem called by sending a rash email is much harder than never writing it at all.

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