By Joe James When things don’t go the way we planned, it’s normal to feel angry, but when anger gets out of control, a few anger management skills can help. This is especially critical around the holidays when tempers run short and patience wears thin.
When we are really angry, it’s helpful to remember that we are not seeing the whole picture. We focus on the negative aspects of the person or situation and can no longer see the positive ones. Remembering that we don’t have the whole picture can sometimes help us check ourselves and avoid an embarrassing meltdown.
Try to avoid reacting in the heat of the moment and go for a walk until you calm down enough to make a more rational decision. Going for a walk combines two anger control skills: providing a release of tension through physical exercise and the time and space needed for relaxation techniques to work.
An angry outburst is rarely only about the situation that triggered it; get to the root of the problem. What needs are not being met?
Practicing effective communications skills is a crucial part of anger management. The more you know yourself, the better you will be able to communicate your own needs and feelings to others.
Learning empathy is one of the most effective skills you can learn. If you can imagine what the other person’s needs and feelings might be, even if they aren’t effectively communicating them at the moment, you might be able to reduce your own anger and theirs as well.
Ask for more information, listen to what they have to say without judging, and validate their feelings in your own words.
During the holidays we often have more encounters with people who we don’t normally interact with on a daily basis. It may be a challenge but with a few anger management skills at our disposal we can keep things under control.
We’re often faced with statements, actions, arguments, behavior, etc. that is galling in the extreme. Whether it’s road rage, an annoying co-worker, or a whiny teenager, it’s an unfortunate but safe bet that you’ll feel angry several times a week. So how can you handle it when faced with provocation that would make the Buddha quiver with rage?
1. Keep your attention on the motivation behind the provocation. Is the person who’s enraging you doing it intentionally, or is it a by-product of words or behavior that he likely thinks perfectly appropriate? If it’s the former, don’t give him the satisfaction of knowing he succeeded. If it’s the latter, consider whether displaying annoyance would stop the behavior or simply let your opponent know that he’s found a soft spot.
2. Breathe. This is great advice for just about any situation, but it’s especially good for dealing with anger. You can react,, which implies knee-jerk emotional feedback made without any reflection, or you can respond, which implies feedback that follows a pause and analysis/reflection to determine the best way to address the provocation. It’s far better to respond than to react. There’s no reason why you can’t fall silent for a few seconds (which may feel interminable to you and your opponent) while you work through your options.
3. Speak softly. Most of us tend to raise our voices when we speak in anger. Therefore, it’s disarming to do the opposite and to speak more quietly. The effect is to appear reasonable and controlled (especially helpful if your opponent is ranting and raving and appearing to be out of control) and to force your opponent to listen carefully to hear what you have to say. In Japanese culture, when two parties are arguing, the one who raises her voice first loses. It’s a difficult tactic for many of us to master, but if you can speak softly in the face of provocation, you will stand a much better chance of controlling your anger.
4. Vent. Express your anger in some forum that poses no risk of exposing it. Writing can be helpful, but especially if you write an angry response to an email, be sure that you don’t accidentally send it!
5. Exercise. That’s physical venting. When feasible, it’s a great idea to get up and take a walk instead of marinating in a situation that makes you angry.
6. Selective release of anger. Sometimes, it’s absolutely appropriate to express your anger at the person whose behavior has caused it. But consider the consequences of such an expression. Will you disrupt a relationship? Do you stand to lose ground? Will your expressed anger cause the person to react in a way that will cause you even more trouble? And when you do choose to display anger, consider doing so through your words only but continuing to speak in a low, even tone of voice. That will reinforce the gravity of your words.
And, despite our best efforts at these tactics, sometimes we all lose our tempers. Especially in time of frustration and stress, it’s easy to let it slip. When that happens, don’t be afraid to apologize and admit to being human.
Julie A. Fleming, J.D., A.C.C. provides business and executive coaching with an emphasis on business development, leadership development, time mastery and organization, and work/life integration. Julie holds a coaching certificate from the Georgetown Leadership Coaching program and holds the Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential from the International Coach Federation. She is certified to administer the DISC(r) assessment, the Leadership Circle Profile 360, and the Leadership Culture Survey.
To learn more, to subscribe to Julie’s monthly email newsletter The DLR Report, or to request a complimentary consultation with Julie, please visit http://www.DynamicLeadershipResults.com or call her at 800.758.6214.
Do you often find yourself blowing up at someone for no reason? Have you regretted your actions after all was said and done? With some simple steps that you consciously take, anger management help can be a reality for you.
1. Train yourself to walk away.
You don’t need to become a total wuss, cowering at any and all adversity that comes your way, but learning to walk away will give you a cooling off period, allowing you to think about if you want to confront the problem which made you angry. Once you have walked away, you will have time to think about if confronting someone is really necessary and you will then have some time to think about how you are going to handle the problem.
2. Learn to listen.
Listening is an extremely important part of communication. In fact, you may be angry because you only heard half of what the other party had to say. If you learn to use active listening by repeating what others have to say you will rarely have a misunderstanding that will make you angry.
3. Learn to communicate using “I” phrases instead of “You” phrases.
Using your cooling off period to think about what you’re going to say is great, but if you start your sentence with the word “You” there is a good chance that the other person will immediately be put on defense and try to start defending themselves by talking over you. This in turn would probably make you even more angry, I know it would have that effect on me.
Next time you find yourself confronting someone that mad you angry, try starting your sentence with the word “I”. this will allow the other person to know how you perceive or feel about things and they will more than likely listen to what you have to say instead of jumping right in to defend themselves.
As you can see, [http://7offers.com/anger-management-help]anger management help comes in all forms and taking steps to help yourself can make a real difference in your life. In this article, I have just hit the tip of the iceberg, but if you’d like to learn more about controlling your anger, I encourage you to visit http://7offers.com/anger-management-help.
When you strike out in anger, you might miss the other person, but you will always hit yourself. ~Jim Gallery
Striking out with angry words is the cause of so many relationship problems. Words are powerful. They can encourage, strengthen, and change destinies. They can also destroy potential and robs us of hope and peace. Most major fires begin with just a small flame. Before long the fire spreads and becomes more and more difficult to contain. It damages or completely destroys everything in its path. Do we realize how quickly unmanaged anger can do significant damage? And as the quote above humorously expresses, anger always hurts the angry person. Sometimes even more so than those to whom it is directed. That is because we cannot have both peace and bitterness in our hearts. An angry person loses his or her peace and joy. Anger obstructs the expression of love, and without love there is no true happiness.
We all get angry. It is inevitable. But, not all anger is bad. We have heard stories of people who have made major contributions to society, fought against injustices, and made positive life changes as they were motivated by righteous anger. Problematic anger, on the other hand, is usually explosive, hidden, or denied. If not faced and dealt with, anger hinders our ability to have healthy and loving relationships.
So how do we deal with anger? We can begin by recognizing the underlying emotions that lead up to our negative reactions such as feelings of hurt, frustration, shame, rejection, fear, jealousy. The next time you feel angry, ask yourself What emotion is behind my anger? You may begin to see a pattern. For example, a woman gets angry every time her boyfriend is late for their meeting. She realizes that his tardiness makes her feel rejected and this leads to her angry outbursts. What is the underlying problem that needs to be addressed? Rejection. How about the boyfriend who expresses his anger by shutting down when his girlfriend tries to engage him in conversation? As he identifies the pattern, he realizes that he feels jealous every time she talks to other guys. He tries to hide his anger and does not express his feelings to her directly, so he pulls away instead.
Anger does not have to bring ruin to our lives and relationships. There are healthy and effective ways to manage it. I have briefly discussed the underlying emotions of anger and the importance of dealing with the causes. If you need more help in this area, I highly recommend participating in an anger management group. It can be an extremely supportive and helpful resource to equip you with many tools for a better life.
Above all else, may peace rule in our hearts, Krystal
Krystal Kuehn, MA, LPC, LLP, NCC is a licensed professional counselor, author, teacher, and musician. She specializes in helping people live their best life now, reach their full potential, overcome barriers, heal from their past, and develop a lifestyle of health, happiness, and love. Krystal is the co-founder of New Day Counseling, a [http://NewDayCounseling.org/]marriage and family counseling center and BeHappy4Life.com, an award-winning [http://behappy4life.com/]self-improvement and personal growth site where you can find hundreds of free resources, online workshops, video presentations, insights, and inspiration.
Set peace of mind as your highest goal, and organize your life around it. ~Brian Tracy
It isn’t fun when you are sad most of the time. People that have anger management problems might have health problems as well. The danger lies in the fact that anger releases stress hormones that cause heart rate and pressure to rise and that clearly is a problem. When you noticed that, it might be good to question yourself whether you have anger issues.
First thing you should consider is reading next few simple sentences and thinking about them. It will be a good indicator of your anger management situation.
1) In the past couple of days I’ve lost control more than twice.
2) When I’m angry, I always point out other people’s mistakes and I don’t even think about mine.
3) I lose control when things don’t happen as I’m expecting them to happen.
4) I’m having hard time getting rid of feeling angry.
5) I usually regret reacting fast without thinking.
If you found yourself in these sentences, then you clearly have anger management problem. And if you are still reading, that means that you want to solve that issue. Here are some things you should try:
- Take a deep breath before reacting to something you don’t like. Talk about problems. Don’t be selfish, think about other people as well. I’m sure they don’t want to make you angry for no reason.
- Avoid potentially dangerous situations. Find a hobby where you can work on yourself and feel comfortable in your skin.
- Take a time and relax. Think about various situations and what can you do improve your reactions.
I hope those tips helped. You have to be mentally strong to transform those tips into action so I wish you good luck.
Bitterness… What do you think when you hear that term? Personally, I think of it as a weed in a lovely garden. Growing up, my grandmother had a rock garden, which obviously didn’t require much care but served its purpose of beautifying her yard. She hated when weeds would spring up in her garden. She even took care to lay plastic underneath the rocks to stop the growth; however, the weeds somehow and at some point inevitably popped up through the plastic and ruined my grandmother’s rock masterpiece!
It may seem like a trivial story; however, that’s how I see bitterness. It doesn’t come around, at least initially, where it can be seen. It’s not one of the most overt emotions. But once it rears its ugly head, it can cause more destruction to the person harboring the bitterness than to those around them.
There is a “joi de vive” I think we all should have. But a life of seething bitterness takes away any joy or contentment you may try to hold on to. So how do you know if you are bitter? Here are five ways to know if you are allowing the weeds of bitterness to spring up in your life:
When you hear a certain person’s name, your whole mood changes.
The mention or thought of a particular situation or person puts an ugly expression on your face.
People tell you often, “You need to get over it!”.
When you begin talking about a certain situation, it turns into a soliloquy and others begin yawning, rolling their eyes, changing the subject, or suddenly have to leave your presence.
When you encounter the object of your bitterness, your body begins to react. Your heart beats fast, your palms get sweaty or your face may turn red among other physical reactions.
So how do we get rid of these weeds? Unfortunately, weed killer won’t work here! It’s the “F” word…forgiveness. In order to rid your life of bitterness, there will come a point that you will need to let go and move on from what has hurt you and begin to experience a life of contentment, happiness and joy!
Neca C. Smith, Ed.S., LPC, CAMS, is a Certified Anger Management Specialist, Licensed Professional Counselor, and Consultant in Atlanta, Georgia. She owns and operates AidevO People Consulting,LLC, an organization that specializes in helping professionals reduce anger and conflict in the workplace. For more information, please go to http://www.aidevo.com
Many people carry around old emotional wounds that they express in a variety of ways such as depression or rage. Anger Work teaches us that In order to heal the wounds, the person needs to specifically focus on the anger within. By focusing on the trauma over and over, the pain will gradually go away, never to affect you again. Anger Work is the path to healing!
Three types of individuals would benefit from Anger Work:
1. Those who know they are angry.
2. Those who are struggling with past events and perhaps don’t know they have repressed anger.
3. Those who wish to lead happier, more fulfilling lives.
This article will deal strictly with the people in the first category-Anger Work for people who know they are angry.
A comparison can be made between our physical health and our emotional health. When the body experiences a severe injury or laceration, infection will most certainly occur if the wound is left unattended. Eventually, it will fester and may even turn into gangrene, a life threatening condition. If, however, the wound is cleansed thoroughly and allowed to heal completely, all that is left is a scar to remind the victim of the event.
Likewise, when an emotional wound is sustained by the psyche, it will start to affect other areas of the person’s life, just as infection spreads to other parts of the body. Since abusive people and emotional pain are part of everyday life, the person who does not learn to deal appropriately with them will start to experience a cumulative negative effect. Eventually the individual’s overall emotional and psychological health will be at risk. But if the emotional wound is cleansed well, and allowed to heal completely, all that is left is a memory. Like an old scar, this memory does not hurt. It becomes no more than a record of your personal memory, an experience that you have learned from. Anger Work is the cleansing process that can bring this healing about.
Since abusive people and emotional pain are part of everyday life, the person who does not learn to deal appropriately with them will start to experience a cumulative negative effect. Eventually the individual’s overall emotional and psychological health will be at risk.
Okay, so you know you are angry. You have been mistreated or abused and you’ve had enough of that. You may be in touch with the feelings of your anger, but have not yet started expressing them, or you may be a seasoned veteran at “giving people a piece of your mind.” You may even have a “temper problem” so serious that you experience episodes in which your anger seems to have control of you, rather than your being in control of your anger. People have been getting angry since the beginning of time, and that is nothing new. You may be thinking, “I don’t need a book to tell me to get mad when somebody does something that ticks me off!” But Anger Work is not simply “getting mad” at someone, nor does it deal exclusively with the present. People who describe themselves as having a “temper problem” are generally people who have had some very negative experiences in the past. Because they have not yet successfully worked through all their feelings about these events, they walk around with “leftovers,” that is, leftover anger from situations that happened a long time ago. They bring these “leftovers” with them into every new situation. The result is that they are already somewhat angry before anything happens. So when someone does something that might normally be a minor source of irritation, the person with “leftovers” finds him or herself inordinately angry. They feel the anger of the current situation plus the “leftovers” they had in store. In situations that would normally make them feel genuinely angry, and for good reason, they go beyond that and become explosive. They may haul off and slug a person or berate him or her verbally instead of of assertively asking someone to stop the offending behavior. You may be experiencing problems because of angry outbursts. Or maybe you haven’t done anything regrettable yet, but you feel like a volcano about to explode and burn everything in your path. If either of these descriptions fits you, you can learn how to channel your anger and aggressive feelings in positive ways. Over time, through Anger Work, you can work out all your residual feelings of anger so that you have no “leftovers.” You will break out of the negative cycle of Anger ’ Outburst ’ Guilt ’ Regret ’ Shame ’ Anger, without becoming a doormat.
Dr. Robert Puff is a psychologist and business consultant who has given almost a thousand media interviews, including magazines, online magazines, TV and radio talk shows. All of Dr. Puff’s writings are free, as e-books and unabridged audio recordings at his web-site. If you would like to read or listen to his free numerous selections of how to handle fear, manage anger, reduce stress, go to http://www.doctorpuff.com/
In any relationship and our interactions with other people, we have certain needs, demands, expectations and attitudes. We may be aware or unaware of these; they may be expressed or not. But when they are not met, we feel hurt, disappointed, violated and angry. This is how anger begins; feeling violated.
Our needs, demands and expectations need to be clearly and explicitly expressed to others. We cannot be angry with others and hold them responsible for needs and expectations that we never communicated to them. And these needs and expectations need not be self-serving, and completely ignoring the needs of others that we relate and interact with. If this is the case, then some of our anger will be born from selfishness, and this will be unjustified anger.
As human beings we have certain preferences for certain things, we also have rights and our dignity, which we hold dear. When our rights and dignity are violated, we feel angry, and rightly so, because one’s dignity is dear and valuable. In such cases, when we are truly violated, the best way to deal with our anger is to express it to the offending party. We express anger by talking to the person(s) offending us, not talking about them behind their backs. We need to talk to the relevant person, in soft attitudes, express how their specific actions make us feel, how they violate our dignity and rights.
Talking to the person that is hurting us is not an opportunity to get even, and start violating them the same way they violated us. It is not a time to start name-calling and judging each other. Keep it focused – talk about the issue and how it violates you and how it makes you feel. Show respect for the other’s dignity. People are much more inclined to be less defensive and will listen to you when they perceive that you respect them.
When we are genuinely hurt and violated, we need a healthy expression of this hurtful emotion. Talking about anger to the one that hurt and angered us should release the anger, irrespective of their response to our expression. Anger is not worth harboring inside, it only turns toxic. It can lead to bitterness, resentment and even hatred. That’s when people start getting sarcastic, humiliating others, getting exasperated and disgusted with others. It can descend into name-calling, gossiping, losing respect for the other person and fighting. In holding on to anger and refusing to let go, some have vowed to revenge themselves, and got into a lot of trouble.
Children have needs too; they need to be heard and listened to. Parents need to talk to their children about their emotions, how certain actions by their parents make them feel and why they make them angry. Just as much as it is unhealthy for adults to bottle their anger inside, so it is also for children. Expressing anger will always release it, of course expressing while still maintaining respect for the object of our anger – without attitudes.
Parents are ideally to be the most influential behavioral models for their kids. They want to display behaviors that their children can want to emulate, yet at the same time being true and authentic. It is almost impossible for anyone to never feel angry at one point or another, so parents will at times find themselves in situations that make them angry in front of their children. It is not necessarily a bad thing, but it is crucially important how they will handle that anger in front of their children. Trying hard to hide their anger from their kids will make them less authentic and hypocritical, and their kids will not respect them for that. We all like authentic people.
The fact that we are able to talk calmly about our anger, while still feeling that our rights and dignity have been violated, means that we do have control over our angry emotions. Everyone can have control over their emotions, with practise. So, there is no need for dramatic show of anger like tantrums, door-banging and disrespectful back-talking in the case of children. Adults who make little effort to harness their anger will exhibit dramatic signs of foul, disrespectful language, banging their fists on table, pushing, choking and even beating others. There is absolutely no need for this, as we all can control our anger.
The writer of this article; Muriel Gill, is the author of a book “The Ultimate Human Need.” It can be checked out at her website http://www.murielgill.com. Order information and a link to her publisher direct online bookstore is also on her website. To learn more about anger, you can read pages 265 to 272 in her book The Ultimate Human Need.
In preparing this article or researching on anger while writing her book, she referred to “Anger is a choice,” by Tim LaHaye and Bob Phillips.
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