Anger! Look at the image. The power and explosive fallout of the emotion are staggering. And it’s so stealthy, often directing our lives beyond our awareness.
We began a two-part series yesterday on anger, pouring a solid foundation by examining its roots. Lots of psychobabble, but well worth the time. Here’s a link to yesterday’s piece.
Let’s tie a bow on the series by discussing some of the things we can do to manage our anger.
Looking at my case history, it’s pretty obvious I was an angry guy. I mean, it astounds me just how much anger impacted my day-to-day living over the years. Actually, the propensity is still there, though I’ve come to better understand and manage it.
Anger is an appropriate emotion. But retained for long periods of time, because it’s not resolved or managed, it can become horribly destructive. And I believe the reason it’s not resolved or managed is, in most cases, its source – its very existence – is never identified and acknowledged.
So what’s making us angry, anyway? Yesterday we reviewed a lot of psychobabble; but in simpler terms, how ’bout these – self-hate, self-punishment, poor self-esteem, the inability to initiate or manage a healthy relationship, unresolved internal conflict, believing we’re constantly letting people down, attempting to resolve past trauma, and on and on. Think those will get the job done?
Okay, ’nuff said. Let’s get down to what we can do about our anger…
10 Things to Put the Whammy on Anger
- Connect-the-dots. That means identifying the relationship between our thinking, feeling, and behavior – and the obvious presence of anger.
- Do all we can to sustain a presence of calm and self-management. Activities such as exercise, journaling, guided imagery, and relaxation sessions are just what the doc ordered.
- Anger equals energy. So when it hits, what better time to handle that chore we’ve been putting off? And what better time to catch a workout?
- Have a trusted friend, family member, or counselor with whom we can chat. We can use them as a sounding board, but turn to them for perspective, as well.
- Be what our emotions are dictating, within the context of self-awareness and management.
- Share our feelings with anyone with whom we’re in conflict. And if it appears to be a losing proposition, learn to process and let it go (arghhh!).
- Take a walk in the woods, find the biggest stick we can handle, and start swinging. Every tree trunk is a target!
- Scream! When we’re alone, it’s time to let it rip. Driving is the perfect time.
- Go to a dollar store and buy a set of drinking glasses. Head for the woods, basement, or garage. Throw those babies at a tree, a rock, or a wall – verbalizing our anger (we need to be sure to clean up the mess).
- Take a hand towel with one hand at each end. Now just start twisting like crazy, grunting and groaning while you’re at it. If you’re so moved, again, verbalize some thoughts and feelings.
So how ’bout it? Think any of those will work for you?
Well, that’ll do it for the series. Hopefully, you’ve learned something about the origin of anger; along with some techniques to help you better identify and manage your anger experience.
Oh, one last thing. I can’t stress enough that I never let myself believe feeling angry is wrong or bad. It isn’t. However, displacing, mismanaging, stuffing, and abusively displaying anger will only lead to misery for you and those with whom you interact.
Sure would like to read your comments, and so would other chipur readers. Won’t you?