An overview on anger
Remember how you got so worked up that you couldn’t find the right words to describe yourself within your current vocabulary? Well, if you think it is anger then it can be defined by a variety of words such as irritation, rage, agitation, outrage, indignation, pique, and a variety of other synonyms. Anger can make you do things that you never thought you could do. That is why it’s important to understand it from a physiological and psychological perspective.
The body’s fight or flight reaction is triggered by anger. Fear, enthusiasm, and anxiety are some of the other feelings that trigger this reaction. The adrenal glands secrete stress hormones including adrenaline and cortisol, which flood your system. In preparation for physical exertion, your brain diverts blood away from the stomach and into the muscles. The body temperature increases and the skin perspires as the heart rate, blood pressure, and respiration increase. This makes your mind sharper and more concentrated, readying you for a confrontation of sorts.
Anger is probably the most relentlessly destructive and self-destructive, yet simultaneously constructive feeling in human consciousness. More than just a feeling of irritation or displeasure, anger is a disruptive emotion that can completely overtake your life when left unattended. It can ruin relationships and cause lifelong psychological trauma if left unchecked. However, anger can also be a powerfully creative force when it is properly harnessed. The key to unleashing this incredible force lies in understanding what anger is and how it works.”
Why is it important to control anger?
Usually, anger leads us to make poor decisions and miss out on opportunities. There are two ways we can control our anger: by learning how to lower our levels of anger and by changing the patterns of thinking that trigger angry reactions in us. The second method is changing how we think about situations that raise our anger – in other words, finding ways to change how we react to them.
Anger is connected to a part of the human psyche that is scared and anxious. It can also be a sign of weakness. For a long time, the only way to control anger has been to try to hide it or minimize it. But denying your emotions could make them worse and lead to deeper problems in your life. When anger becomes accentuated, it can become destructive and violent. There are three primary ways to manage anger:
- Physical force
- Emotional manipulation
- and Cognitive Strategies
Physical force is probably the most effective way to eliminate the craving for anger. Other techniques include journaling, practisingcan patience and detachment, and limiting access to situations that make you angry.
There are times in life when we need to get over something quickly. It could be that you need to clear some space in your life for new opportunities or needs. It could be that someone close to you has challenged your beliefs or ways of thinking. Whatever the situation, getting over anger can be difficult. But it is vital if we wish to maintain our good standing in the world and be worthy of love and support from those around us.
How to manage your anger?
From time to time, we all worry and become upset. Isn’t it just a part of life? But what if your anxiety or anger takes over and you can’t seem to calm down? It’s often easier said than done to be able to calm yourself in the heat of the moment. There is guidance and support available. Anger management exercises continued to improve well-being and reduced the number of angry outbursts in each of these at-risk groups, according to research. These techniques may also help you calm down if you have trouble controlling your anger.
- Don’t ignore the problem
Some people repress their anger because they believe it is an unsuitable or “bad” emotion. Bottled rage, on the other hand, frequently leads to sadness and anxiety. Some people take out their bottled-up rage on innocent bystanders around them. Repressing negative emotions does more harm than good. Not only does it eat you away from the inside, but you’ll soon pour out those emotions out onto others. Thus, it’s better to let such emotions out safely and healthily.
- Observe your state of mind
This may be difficult to accomplish in the heat of the moment, what with your brain on fire and all, but if you can take a few deep breaths and reflect on why you’re upset, you might be able to cool down without dismissing your sentiments. When you accept your current state of mind, you will be able to understand what needs to be done to calm yourself down. Anger might be a front for another feeling that makes you feel powerless, including fear, hurt, or shame. Try to breathe through your fury without acting on it, and talk yourself through the emotions that lie underlying it.
- Change your line of thoughts
Having illogical ideas that don’t make sense is a part of being worried or furious. These are frequently the “worst-case scenario” ideas. You may become trapped in the “what if” loop, which can lead to you sabotaging many aspects of your life. When you’re in a heated argument, it’s easy to jump to conclusions and say things that aren’t kind. Stopping and listening to the other person (or yourself) in the conversation before reacting can help you control your anger and respond and resolve the situation more effectively. Before you respond, give it some thought. If you need to cool down before continuing the conversation, tell them you need to take a step back.
- Visualize yourself calm
This advice needs you to put your new breathing methods and imagination into practice. Close your eyes and visualize yourself calm after taking a few deep breaths. Imagine your body relaxed while you work through a difficult or anxiety-inducing circumstance while remaining calm and attentive. When you create a mental image of what it looks like to be calm, you would be able to relax. You can imagine yourself to be in a different location as well. Somewhere that you feel you can be comfortable and relaxed. Perhaps a beach or even your childhood street that you loved running around as a kid. Anywhere that grounds you to your mental peace.
- Recognize and acknowledge your anger
Take the time to recognize and understand your anger. Once you’ve regained your composure, look into what else could be bothering you. Anger may sometimes act as a shield against sentiments that are even more difficult to feel. Many of us, for example, were never taught how to deal with disappointment, so anger might erupt to protect us from deeper grief. Exploring the intricacy of our experience and delving underneath the surface of a large feeling might help us figure out what to do next.
- Try to laugh it out
In the middle of a heated argument, you can lose your train of thoughts and maybe say hurtful things to each other. A method that could help is to try making yourself and the other person laugh. Crack a joke or make a funny face. Laughing it out may help realize that the argument isn’t something that you need to break your head over. Once you laugh it out and calm down, the both of you will be able to figure out the real reason for the argument and try to sort that out. Remember, anger is not an isolated emotion that emerges on its own. It is a secondary emotion, a reaction to a feeling that precedes it. Once you deal with that, then being angry wouldn’t even be in the picture. For example, when you lose a game of cricket because of bad umpiring, you feel angry. But that anger is preceded by a feeling of disappointment because of the unfair ruling.
- Practice deep breathing and relax your body
You may notice that your breathing becomes faster and shallower when you are irritated. Slowing and deepening your breathing is a simple method to relax your body and minimize your irritation. Slowly breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Instead of breathing from your chest, take deep breaths from your abdomen. As needed, repeat the breaths. If your body is stiff, your posture is likely to suffer as a result. Take some deep breaths and relax your shoulders by sitting tall. Focus on pulling your shoulder blades together and then down to achieve this. Your shoulders will be pulled down as a result of this. Take a couple of deep breaths in and out. This is something you can do numerous times a day.
- Stay away from negative media and individuals
The smallest spark is enough to amplify your frustration and irritation. If you find yourself already cranky, then it is best to stay away from anything that could set you on fire. Often the media showcase a lot of negative news. So it’s better to stay away from any gadgets while you are not in a calm state of mind. There are also people, who aren’t as understanding as you would want them to be. If you believe that there are people that you need space from while you are not in the best mood, then keep your distance at all costs. Chances are, they could trigger you further and if at all you explode your anger onto them, they will not take it well. Therefore, it is suggested to stay away from anything that gives the possibility of making matters worse for you.
- Write your worries in a journal
Grab that journal, sit down and just write. Pour out all that negative energy out of you. Don’t worry about what you write or the punctuation or anything of such. You are writing it down to express yourself and to allow all those thoughts and energy to flow out of you. Once you are able to channel that energy out of you, you might even find yourself much calmer. Writing down also helps you understand your triggers. This could help you deal with it appropriately the next time you approach your triggers. Maybe you can even take the next step and figure out what you could do next. With a much clearer headspace, you will be able to find a solution or see what is your next action plan to sort out the issue at hand.
- Go out for a walk
A room’s temperature and air circulation might make you feel more anxious or angry. If you’re nervous and the environment is hot and stuffy, you may get a panic attack. Withdraw yourself from that surroundings as quickly as possible and walk outside, even if just for a few minutes, to obtain some fresh air. Not only will the fresh air help you relax, but the change of environment may also help you break free from your nervous or angry thoughts. Find a mental or physical escape from your current environment.
- Focus on something
The idea is to be able to centrecan yourself or shift your focus away from what is currently happening. When you are angry or overly anxious, most of your mental and physical energy will be shifted onto irrational thoughts and actions. The moment you find yourself in such a situation, it is best to push your entire focus onto something else. It could be anything in the room such as a board pin or a switchboard. Or you could even carry something small or wear something that you could have easy access to when experiencing anger. An example would be to wear a locket around your neck and hold on to it the moment you find yourself angry or frustrated. Tell yourself that you need to calm down and divert your attention elsewhere.
- Practice relaxation methods
Progressive muscle relaxation is one method that attempts gradual muscle relaxation to help you relax. This entails tensing and then releasing each muscle group in the body one by one. Start from the top of your head and work your way down to your toes, or the other way around. Another method that could help is to identify the pressure points on the body that could help relieve tension. There is an approach that entails applying pressure to certain parts of the body using your fingers or hand. The pressure relieves stress and allows your body to rest. The spot where the inside of your wrist makes a crease with your hand is a good place to start. For two minutes, press your thumb on this spot. This can assist in the reduction of stress.
- Talk to someone
When you are angry, your judgment is clouded. This is the perfect opportunity for your thoughts to go haywire and to any extreme, that may or may not make any sense. This could lead to you being even angrier at the situation. It is suggested to talk to someone who isn’t involved you will be able to receive a different perspective that isn’t influenced by any sort of factor related to the situation. Talking to a friend or close family member would not only help you calm down but even show you a logical way out of your negative emotions. Getting some help and sorting it out is always better than burning yourself with a wide range of emotions and having no progress at all.
- Let go
Sometimes many of us hold onto situations, people, things that we have no control over. By holding onto it, we get nothing but hurt ourselves with anger and disappointment. If there isn’t anything that can be done, then the next best thing to do is to let go and hope for the best. By holding on, you are hurting yourself which in turn leads to negative emotions such as anger. This will soon take over you and you will be spilling your emotions onto those around you. Thus, let go of something that you have no control over. It is better to hurt for a short period over the loss of something rather than hurting yourself for a long period because you aren’t able to get what you want out of it.
- Focus on the positive aspects of life
This is probably something a lot of us have to practice. Especially those who get irritated easily when something inconvenient happens. One could say that it helps distract the negatives in life. However, it’s much more than that. Appreciating the good in your life may change your line of thought and improve your overall well-being. Many therapists and professionals recommend practising gratitude regularly can as it is known to show improvements in one’s mental health. Each time you feel that something isn’t going well in your life, think of the other aspects that are going well. Such as having a roof over your head or having someone that loves and cares for you. This could make such great improvements with how you see your life and yourself with time.
Anger is one of the most destructive and toxic feelings. It is the perfect ingredient that could lead to a disaster. The ripples of anger can cause a lot of injuries in life. It harms your health through stress. It doesn’t just stop with you but goes on to disrupt relationships that you hold dear. Holding anger inside prevents you from seeing things clearly and your ability to change for the better and learn from experiences. The first step in overcoming anger is to recognize that it is a normal part of life. Anger does not make us bad people, but it can be limiting and needs to be controlled.