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  • Writer's pictureLaura

Mastering Anger Management



One key area that people ask me to help them with, is to control their anger. Anger is a perfectly natural, valid emotion, however uncontrollable or sudden anger can have a huge impact in all areas of life, personal and professional.


Is it a problem?


Understanding the difference between a healthy expression of an emotion, and having a problem with managing anger, can be difficult at first, however there are some signs which may suggest the latter.


  1. Cycles of unhealthy behaviour, leading to feelings of regret once the initial emotion has subsided.

  2. Anger having a detrimental impact on your relationships.

  3. An inability to have a difference of opinion, negotiation or discussion without feeling angry.

  4. Outward expressions of anger including shouting, swearing, being physically violent or threatening to others.

  5. Unhealthy inward expressions of anger including self-harm or turning to addictive substances.


In order to master anger management, it is essential to gain control over your emotions, by getting into a mindset that allows you to think before you act or speak. This second of thinking time can make all the difference between an explosion of anger and a more helpful alternative.


You may not be to blame for what is causing your anger, however the responsibility to deal with it is only yours. If you don't learn to control your anger, you may destroy the relationships around you and cause physical and emotional harm to everyone, including yourself.


About Anger


Anger serves an important purpose. Anger is an emotion that tells us that something is wrong. It may even help us to get out of dangerous situations, however, sometimes these threats are just perceived and anger is not an appropriate emotion.


Anger itself is not the main problem here though. It may help you to try to feel less angry in some situations, but for the most part your goal should be to learn how to express yourself in a healthier way.


Here are some strategies that will help you to keep a cool head:


Don't React


Think about the situations that have gotten you into trouble in the past. You likely immediately reacted to the problem at hand with angry emotions.


Whenever you're presented with a stressful situation, it's important withhold rash reactions. Think about what's really going on, and then decide how you really feel about everything.


Take Cool Down Time


You're not always in a situation where you can take as long as you want without a reaction. If you're feeling extremely angry, make sure you take a few moments of cool down time. Before you react, try counting to ten in order to give yourself at least a moment to get into the right mindset.


Don't Worry About Others


Sometimes you feel terrible about other people's opinions of you. When you get caught up in making everyone else happy, you end up forgetting about yourself. This is how your emotions can take control, but you can only ignore yourself for so long.


Start Exercising


A daily exercise routine can help you to release energy and emotions. If anger arises, you can also go out for a walk or play some sports as an outlet for that anger.


Don't Hold Grudges


A grudge only hurts you in the long run. If someone has committed an act or mis-deed against you, holding on to the anger means that person still holds power over your emotional state, sometimes even decades after the event!


Learn the art of forgiving


Forgiving does not have to mean you forget what has happened, instead it is making the conscious decision to let go of any feelings of resentment, anger or thoughts of revenge, regardless of whether the person deserves it or not. Forgiveness is all about you, not them, and will bring peace to you going forward.


Practice Relaxation


Anger arises more often if you're tense and stressed. Practice different relaxation techniques that will help you to unwind.


Some of these techniques include:


* Yoga

* Meditation

* Taking a Bath

* Deep Breathing

* Listening to Music

* Journaling


Learn Healthy Anger Expression


The trick is not to completely ignore your anger, but to express it in a healthy manner. After you have taken some cool down time, consider your words and communicate why you're feeling angry in a calm fashion.


Avoid Suppression


You may think that you have mastered your anger, but you might actually be suppressing your anger, which could end up making everything worse.


Imagine your emotions as a pressure cooker, that steam needs to be released somehow. When you suppress your anger it ends up buried deep inside and will come out in undesirable ways.


You could start to feel overly stressed, you could get headaches, or you may even start to have problems with high blood pressure. Your mental health may begin to suffer as well. Suppressing anger has been known to lead to life-long problems with depression.



Finally anger management issues may be a sign of underlying emotions.


If you've been feeling especially out of control, please seek the help of a professional who will be able to assist you in working through this.


If you feel you need help working through anger, please feel free to contact me to see how I can help.


Laura

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