Understanding Your Anger and How to Deal with it?
Men and women have different means of coping with anger. Some do not seem to know how to cope at all. This is where “blind rage” comes into the picture; the next thing you know, you may have already hurt someone physically or said something to destroy a perfectly good relationship completely.
Emotions are a natural phenomenon in humans that you cannot prevent or control*, and you cannot “un-feel” once you have felt it. So, like any other logical human being, you must first understand what you are dealing with to manage your anger.
So what is anger? Charles Spielberger, Ph.D., a psychologist who specializes in the study of anger, defines anger as a state in which your emotions can vary from minor frustration to extreme fury and wrath. It is a natural reaction to a deed that was done to you that you feel is bad or threatening. This emotional state is accompanied by physical conditions like feeling hot or flustered, an adrenaline rush, increased heart rate and increased blood pressure. Sometimes you feel the need to cry out of extreme frustration, or feel the need to throw something or hit someone. Other times, physical reactions happen like a reflex, and you slap someone before you even realize that your hand was in the process of hitting them.
Don’t let Anger Eat you up Inside
Emotions are not meant to be kept inside, especially not an emotion as extreme as anger. Keeping this emotion bottled up could eventually lead to adverse effects on your mental and physical health. Some of these effects are:
- High Blood Pressure
- Coronary Heart Disease
- Cold & Flu
- Gastrointestinal Problems
Aside from these, long-term anger may lead to substance or alcohol abuse, which aggravates the anger that you already feel.
Expressing your anger does not mean going on a rampage or shouting at the person you are angry with. Believe it or not, there are healthy ways of expressing or releasing your anger. Here are just a few of them:
Exercising, or any other physical activity that releases endorphins that are hormones that make you feel good or happy. Not only do you alleviate* anger by exercising but also reduce* stress and avoid depression.
Breathing and counting to ten can give you time to calm down and assess the situation. This can help you clear your head and think more clearly so that you will not say anything regretful.
Once you have given yourself time to breathe, think and assess the situation, talk to the person you are angry with in a calm, assertive, but non-violent way. Explain why you are angry, or why you think the action or words that were done or said to you was not acceptable. This can solve the problem much faster because you are dealing with your anger with the person that caused it, and, therefore, you can find a compromise to work out your differences together.
Who to Turn to?
There are many people you can turn to if you think that you cannot manage your anger alone. You can talk to a friend or your local priest to vent your emotion. They may not be able to offer solutions to the problem, but having someone listen to you and understand why you are angry can do miracles. You can also try to get counselling from a psychologist or a guidance counsellor whom you can talk to about your feelings and change the way you respond to certain scenarios that may lead to anger. Alternatively, you can also enroll in an anger management courses that will help sort everything out. Online anger management classes are free and are helpful.
Or you can always just watch self-help videos on YouTube that offer different options for how you can express and deal with your anger, as well as how to assess yourself and how you think and react to certain situations.
The road to a calmer life may not come easily to people dealing with anger, it can become more frustrating. It can also hurt your pride or ego to accept that you could have dealt with your anger better*, or you had no reason to be angry in the first place. However, being angry all the time is not healthy, and it could ruin your chances of living a life you enjoy. So close your eyes, take a deep breath, and accept that there is a better*, happier way of dealing with life’s stresses. Only YOU will be able to make that change.