Chapter 14

Impulse Control

“I can resist everything except temptation.”

—OSCAR WILDE, LADY WINDERMERE'S FAN

DEFINITION:

Impulse control is the ability to resist or delay an impulse, drive, or temptation to act. Impulse control entails avoiding rash behaviors and decision making, being composed, and able to put the brakes on angry, aggressive, hostile, and irresponsible behavior. Problems in impulse control are manifested by low frustration tolerance, impulsiveness, anger-control problems, abusiveness, loss of self-control, and explosive and unpredictable behavior.1 Impulsive people are often described as tempestuous, hot-headed, and “leap-before-they-look” people.

Following a presentation on emotional intelligence to a group of business executives, ...

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