We all say or do things that we don’t mean. And quite often, it only takes a couple seconds to realize we have made a mistake.
The amygdala reacted and took over. It initiated your fight or flight response. The frontal cortex, the one that actually controls language, takes two seconds longer to respond.
The question then becomes:
When we are angry or frustrated or afraid, who is doing the talking?
When someone is mad at you, is that their amygdala talking?
As a rule: When in the heat of the moment, it is your/their amygdala talking. After a few moments, when emotions calm down, that is when real dialogue can take begin.
Resist the temptation to snap back, it’s just your amygdala talking.