We all get angry, and anger is almost always a destructive emotion, disrupting the peace of mind of ourselves, or other people, or – too commonly – of both.
So if we all get angry, and it’s destructive, then any of us will benefit from reducing it. Here’s a quick guide that will help you to see how to make beneficial changes in your own life.
Understand Your Anger
OK, so anger can generally be defined as a strong feeling of being upset or annoyed.
Note the word “strong”. This is because it’s an emotion that’s way past any feeling of mild irritation or discomfort. Your heartbeat will rise, your breathing will be affected and it tends to take over your thoughts. If allowed to go far enough, your senses of empathy or reason suffer too.
So ask yourself, “What things make me angry”. Then answer the question “Why?” Spend a little time on it, and see if you can identify any patterns in the events, and your responses.
A common problem is for people to perceive things incorrectly. Just because someone keeps doing something you don’t like doesn’t mean they are aiming at you. You may have heard it said that if you look for insults, you’ll find them. So stop looking.
Change Your Trigger Points
This is a bit different from changing perceptions because you’re now thinking about your own reactions.
So if your partner is too fond of leaving empty milk bottles in the fridge – and doesn’t seem able to stop – then ask yourself whether it’s really worth getting so worked up about it. This doesn’t mean you must no longer ask them to stop doing it, but changing your own internal response can bring about a refreshing change in your peace of mind – and that of those around you, too.
Lots of angry people don’t let on what makes them angry. And those around them don’t necessarily want to ask in case they get a bad reaction.
But surely if someone sitting across from you doesn’t know that tapping on their desk is driving you mad, how can they be expected to stop? And when you finally explode because you can’t stand it any more, who’s at fault?
If you catch it early enough – that’s before it gets to you – your comment can easily be a polite, or even light hearted, request. There’s no longer a problem to fix.
Control Your Behavior
Well, if all else fails, and you’re still angry about something, then it’s probably your behavior that’s at fault, not your anger.
So change it. If you want to do this properly, an Anger Management course from an established provider like ZandaX will take you through what anger is, the effects it has, and easy-to-follow ways to control your behavior. A good one (and the example I’ve given here does this) will even show you how to reduce the anger (or, to be correct, the bad behavior) in others.
You can see that anger has nothing to be said in its defence. It may serve as a way of “letting off steam” but there are much better ways of doing this, like taking up exercise or even a rewarding hobby, that don’t upset people or damage relationships. If we can all take a few steps like those mentioned above, we’d benefit – and the world would be a better place too.