This article in Inc. suggests that, when you come to a sticky point in a business conversation, you pause for ten seconds before you respond.
The author’s strategy here is a cool one, I think. The pause allows you time to shift from your default intention into something that is more likely to support your long-term goals.
Added bonus? You’ll get a real-time experience of how looooooooong ten seconds really is. (I think three or four could actually do the trick!)
Here’s the article, if you’d like to check it out for yourself!